The Higher Learning Commission
The Higher Learning Commission (HLC/Commission) is one of two commission members of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, one of six regional institutional accreditation agencies in the United States. The HLC accredits, and thereby grants membership in the Commission and in the North Central Association, to degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions located in the North Central region of the U.S.
The Commission, like other voluntary higher education accrediting agencies in the United States, evaluates an entire organization and accredits it as a whole. The evaluation covers formal educational activities, student academic achievement, governance and administration, financial stability, resources, admissions and student personnel services, organization effectiveness, and relationships with outside constituencies. The HLC can be contacted at the following:
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
Chicago, Illinois 60604-1413
Phone: 800.621.7440 / 312.263.0456
CCA and Accreditation
CCA has been accredited by the HLC since 1988. Following the college’s submission of a self-study report and an HLC evaluation team visit in April of 2013, the Commission authorized re-accreditation for CCA for ten more years. It also approved the college’s request that five area high schools where CCA offers a substantial amount of concurrent enrollment be designated as CCA “locations.” In a related action, the Commission gave approval to CCA’s request for authorization for a change in student body based on the rapid growth in the portion of CCA’s enrollment that is made up of concurrently enrolled high school students. The Commission is requiring two monitoring reports from CCA. These will be embedded in the Comprehensive Evaluation due in 2016
To directly access CCA’s specific accreditation information on the HLC website, please click on the mark of affiliation:
Changes in HLC Processes for Maintaining Accreditation
The HLC has changed its processes for maintaining accreditation. For a number of years, CCA participated in the Commission’s Program to Evaluate and Advance Quality (PEAQ), one avenue for maintaining accreditation. PEAQ is being replaced by two new pathways for accreditation with CCA transitioning to the Standard Pathway. In addition to regular interim reports that the college sends to the HLC, participation in the Standard Pathway will require two comprehensive evaluations during the next decade, one in 2016-17 and a second in 2022-23. These evaluations will include short visits to CCA by an HLC team.
Annual Report on Organizational Information and Operational Indicators
All affiliated institutions complete the Commission's Annual Report on Organizational Information and Operational Indicators each Fall. The report provides the Commission with up-to-date information so it can understand and respond to significant shifts in an institution's capacity and/or scope of activities.
CCA Reports to the Higher Learning Commission
The College has submitted four reports to the Commission in the last decade:
- Self Study Report 2013
- Self Study Report 2013-Summary
- Self Study Report 2003
- Monitoring Report on Assessment of Student Learning 2006
- Request for Change in Educational Sites (for concurrent enrollment) 2010
All were accepted by the Commission.
The College discloses accurately to the public and the Commission its relationship with any specialized, professional, or institutional accreditor and with all governing or coordinating bodies in states in which CCA has a presence. The Community College of Aurora does not hold any specialized accreditation with a single agency that covers one-third or more of either the college’s offerings or its students.
The following CCA programs are accredited/approved by special agencies:
Paralegal – The American Bar Association Standing Committee on Paralegals
Emergency Medical Services - Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs upon the recommendation of the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions.
Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy - Approved by the Colorado Peace Officer Standards and Training Board for Colorado law enforcement officer certification training.