The new Standards are now available on our website.
During the summer months of 2012, the NAACLS Board of Directors released a draft version of revised Standards on the NAACLS website with the request for public comment. All comments were collected and reviewed by the Board and, subsequently, revisions were made. The final version was passed by the Board at its September 2012 meeting, and this final version is now available on the NAACLS website. The next course of action, then, is the implementation of the new Standards, which will follow a timeline that is dependent upon the work of two new task forces that have been created by the Board of Directors.
The first new task force is charged with creating an online document that includes required and/or suggested documentation to demonstrate compliance with the new Standards, and is intended for the convenience of program officials. This guide will be developed with the knowledge that it will be a “living” document, continuously evolving on the NAACLS website. For example, quantitative performance benchmarks would appear in this new guide, but not in the Standards, and are likely to be altered as the database matures.
The second new task force is charged with developing NAACLS’ policies that would be created and/or changed as a result of the new Standards. Common examples of that which would be developed are a new Guide to Accreditation, length of years on accreditation/approval awards, benchmark data collection and frequency, processes for analyzing outcomes data, and new policies/procedures for consortia and multi-location sponsors.
NAACLS anticipates that the work of these task forces will be completed no sooner than the April 2013 Board of Directors meeting. Once the work of the task forces has been accepted for implementation by the Board, the soonest that programs will be reviewed by NAACLS using the new Standards will be those that receive their Notification of Renewal letters in October 2013. Such programs will have Self-Study Reports due in fall 2014 and accreditation awards expiring October 2015.
This projected timeline will become firmer following the April 2013 Board of Directors meeting, and a definite timeline for implementation will be posted on the NAACLS website once it is confirmed. Also, due to the possibility of a fluctuating timeline, NAACLS will not accept any Self-Study Reports based on the new Standards any sooner than September 1, 2014.
NAACLS workshops in November 2013 (Chicago area) and February 2014 (preceding the CLEC) will include content that features elements of the new Standards, particularly in the area of program assessment. In addition, NAACLS will also be publishing articles to the NAACLS Blog that address the new Standards and keys to demonstrating compliance.
If you haven’t yet, we urge you subscribe to the NAACLS News in order to receive any updates as soon as they are made publicly available!
By Dianne M. Cearlock, PhD, Chief Executive Officer and
Edward Rotchford, Accreditation Specialist