North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Informations clés

Autre nom NCA


Année de création 1895

  • logo_North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
    • The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), also known as the North Central Association, is a membership organization, consisting of colleges, universities, and schools in 19 U.S. states, that is engaged in educational accreditation. It is one of six regional accreditation bodies in the United States, and its Higher Learning Commission is recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) as a regional accreditor for higher education institutions.

      The NCA accredits over 10,000 public and private educational institutions in its service area, including more than 1,000 higher education institutions. The service area includes the states of Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, as well as the Navajo Nation.

      The accreditation work of the North Central Association is undertaken by two independent corporations that are components of the association. The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) oversees higher education accreditation, providing institution-level accreditation of degree-granting colleges and universities. The Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI) accredits a wide variety of educational institutions, ranging from early childhood, through elementary, middle, and secondary schools to adult-vocational, college preparatory, and non-degree granting post-secondary institutions. In July 2006, NCA CASI combined with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) Council on Accreditation and School Improvement to form AdvancED; NCA CASI and SACS CASI now operate as divisions of AdvancED and as components of their respective regional associations.

      The North Central Association was organized in 1895 at a meeting of 36 administrators of schools, colleges, and universities located in seven midwestern states. The association's original objective was "the establishment of close relations between the colleges and secondary schools." Better articulation between the two levels of education was a particular focus. In pursuit of that objective, the association undertook a thorough examination of education quality at both the secondary and college level. That examination process led to the establishment of an accreditation process for secondary schools. Accreditation of colleges and universities followed later. The North Central carried out the functions of post-secondary accreditation and accreditation of pre-college education through a unified organization until 2000, when its Commission on Schools (now NAC CASI) and its Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (now the Higher Learning Commission) were formed as independent corporations that began independent operation on January 1, 2001.

      The association is organized as nonprofit corporation, chartered in Illinois and governed by a board of directors. The Higher Learning Commission is based in Chicago, while the CASI/AdvancED maintains offices in each of the states it serves.