Frequently Asked Questions
How can a prospective student evaluate and compare colleges and universities?
The Middle States Commission on Higher Education does NOT rank colleges and universities. During the accreditation process each institution is examined for its compliance with the Commission's accreditation standards, federal regulations, and other factors. There is a great deal of both general and accreditation-specific information available to prospective students about the college or university they would consider attending. The following links should provide a useful starting point.
This site is maintained by the U.S. Department of Education. It enables users to search for and compare institutions by state or territory, by program or major, at the desired level of award (certificate, associate’s, bachelor’s, or graduate), by the number of students enrolled, by religious affiliation, or by distance from any given zip code.
College Results Online
This site is maintained by the Education Trust, based on data from the U.S. Department of Education. It enables users to examine and compare the graduation rates at four-year colleges and universities. Users can select a particular institution or a group of institutions, or they can select institutions based on their student and institutional characteristics. The search results include graphs for the selected institutions, comparison tables, and vital statistics about the institutions.
This site is maintained by the College Board to help prospective students search over 3,600 colleges to find and compare those that meet the student's needs or to get more information about a specific college. The search can include such factors as the type of school, its location, campus life, activities and sports, majors and academics, admission, cost and financial aid, and deadlines.
Please note: there are also many commercial publications and services that claim to rate colleges and universities. These ratings are often based on student or employee surveys or other factors. If you use one of these directories, pay close attention to the research methodology used by the publisher. Directories that rate colleges and universities are usually available in leading bookstores and libraries.
For institutions in the Middle States region, the MSCHE Directory of member and candidate institutions provides for each institution a data profile of institutional characteristics, including its branches or other locations and the next dates when it will be reviewed, together with a Statement of Accreditation Status that describes the institution's accreditation history since its last comprehensive evaluation.
For institutions in other regions, consult the websites of the other regional accreditors.