Watson Chronicle

WATSON COLLEGE OF EDUCATION

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UNCW’s Watson College of Education Receives CAEP Accreditation

Tuesday, November 01, 2022

The Watson College is pleased to announce that the college has received accreditation for all undergraduate and graduate level teacher preparation programs, following a 2022 accreditation review by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

Programs receiving accreditation include 29 undergraduate and Master of Arts in Teaching programs leading to initial teacher licensure, and six advanced level educator preparation programs including the M.Ed. in Curriculum Studies for Equity in Education, M.Ed. in Language and Literacy Education, M.Ed. in Physical Education and Health, M.Ed. in Teaching English as a Second Language, Masters of School Administration and Ed.D. in Educational Administration Leadership.

The Fall 2022 review by the CAEP Accreditation Council resulted in 55 educator preparation providers receiving accreditation, bringing the total to 507 providers approved under the CAEP Accreditation Standards – rigorous, nationally recognized standards that were developed to ensure excellence in educator preparation programs. 

“These institutions meet high standards so that their students receive an education that prepares them to succeed in a diverse range of classrooms after they graduate,” said CAEP President Dr. Christopher A. Koch. “Seeking CAEP Accreditation is a significant commitment on the part of an educator preparation provider.”

CAEP is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Accreditation is a nongovernmental activity based on peer review that serves the dual functions of assuring quality and promoting improvement. CAEP is a unified accreditation system intent on raising the performance of all institutions focused on educator preparation. More than 600 educator preparation providers participate in the CAEP Accreditation system, including some previously accredited through former standards.

Educator preparation providers seeking accreditation must pass peer review of the CAEP standards, which are based on two principles:

  1. Solid evidence that the provider’s graduates are competent and caring educators, and
  2. Solid evidence that the provider’s educator staff have the capacity to create a culture of evidence and use it to maintain and enhance the quality of the professional programs they offer.

“Our students, staff, faculty, and partners do excellent work every day that puts us in a position for a successful accreditation outcome,” said Watson College Dean Van Dempsey. “Since our last accreditation with NCATE in 2014, we have been through a major hurricane, a few minor ones, and through a worldwide pandemic. Through it all we have found ways to collaborate with our school partners and kept our focus on educating the best educators we can provide to the profession. CAEP has acknowledged this excellence with their decision. We live that excellence every day in our commitment to the profession and the children it serves.”

Jaci Webb-Dempsey, Director of Program Assessment, Accreditation, and Development and the team in Watson’s Office of Assessment, Accreditation, and Data Operations led the effort for the intensive review as part of the Watson College’s ongoing continuous assessment process.

The Watson College of Education’s Accreditation status is effective between Fall 2022 and Fall 2028. The next national accreditation review is scheduled for spring 2028.