Salt Lake City, Utah
June 23, 2018
June 23, 2018
July 27, 2018
Computing and Information Technology
Institutional accreditation by regional or national accreditation organizations provides assurance that a university as a whole provides quality education. However, it does not look specifically at the quality of each individual degree program, program-level accreditation is needed to ensure that degree programs meet established standards that are set by accrediting bodies, based on disciplinary guidelines in areas as diverse as curriculum, faculty expertise, student admission and graduation requirements, available facilities and financial resources. In particular, program-level accreditation focuses on the quality of both the degree program and the characteristics of its graduates
For programs in computing, engineering and engineering technology, as well as applied and natural science, ABET has been the accrediting body. Within ABET, the Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) is charged with accrediting computer science, information systems, and other computing programs, initially in the United States but now in more than 20 countries across the world. In computing, program accreditation has been viewed as optional, unlike engineering, where nearly all American engineering programs are accredited through the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET, both because graduates from an ABET-accredited program find it easier to get licensed as a Professional Engineer and because of wider acceptance of the accreditation process by the engineering communities. Despite the lack of mandatory accreditation, an increasing number of institutions seek accreditation for their computing programs each year, suggesting that the community is finding value in accreditation. These programs can state they have passed a rigorous review, and their graduates have learned what they need to know about that area of study. Moreover, graduates of ABET accredited programs also get global acceptance due to its conformance with the Seoul Accord that provides mutual recognition of accredited academic computing programs that prepare graduates for professional practice.
Based on the authors' experiences both as faculty associated with accredited and non-accredited computer science programs and as program evaluators for ABET, this paper examines the process and requirements for achieving ABET accreditation for computing programs, and discusses the value of computing accreditation for students, faculty, institutions, program constituents and global society at large.
Oudshoorn, M., & Raj, R. K., & Thomas, S., & Parrish, A. (2018, June), The Value of ABET Accreditation to Computing Programs Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/31135
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