Middle States Commission on Higher Education


Policies, Guidelines & Procedures

Policies on Ballot

The Commission recently sent a ballot to the chief executive officer of each MSCHE institution, asking for approval of three revised policies. Voting will conclude on June 2. To see the policies that are on the current ballot, click on the policy titles below.


Accreditation Review Cycle and Monitoring

This revised policy reflects member institutions' recent affirmation of the revised accreditation cycle and processes following an extensive and intensively collaborative process of proposing and approving changes. The Commission's policy on the accreditation cycle delineates the required activities in the accreditation cycle and explains the process by which accreditation decisions are made. The document also explains the ways in which the Commission conducts ongoing as well as off-cycle or ad hoc monitoring of institutional compliance with accreditation requirements.

Conflict of Interest - Commission Representatives

All representatives of the Commission participating in an institution's accreditation review must adhere to the Conflict of Interest policy. This policy has been revised to clarify conflicts based on family relationships. Previously, different definitions for both "immediate family member" and "family member" were applied to different types of conflicts. The version approved by the Commission at the March 2, 2017 Commission meeting uses only "immediate family member." The Commission defines an immediate family member as a spouse, partner, child, or other dependent. This includes any other family member living in the individual's house. The revised policy also more clearly addresses the role of the Commissioner and the potential conflicts that may arise when a Commissioner serves as both a participant in the on-site team as well as a Commissioner decision-maker. Any Commissioner who served as a member of an on-site evaluation team is required to formally abstain in the voting process while the Commission is taking formal action regarding the institution. Commissioners may answer questions at the request of the Commission. Finally, the revised policy also removes any references to Commissioner corporate responsibilities, such as fiduciary duties, since those are already addressed in the Mid-Atlantic Region Commission on Higher Education (MARCHE) policy for corporate actions. The Mid-Atlantic Region Commission on Higher Education is MSCHE's corporate name, but the Commission is able to do business as the Middle States Commission on Higher Education under an agreement with the Middle States Association.

Review of Commission Standards, Requirements of Affiliation, and Policy

When the Commission incorporated as the Mid-Atlantic Region Commission on Higher Education, it established new bylaws that define member rights and duties, including voting on accreditation requirements. Member institutions were invited to submit comments over the Winter. The document reflects current bylaws.