Self-Study Guide

MSCHE Self-Study Institute

This guide provides an overview of the self-study process and On-Site Evaluation Visit conducted by peer evaluators as part of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education’s eight-year cycle of review of accredited institutions. For an introduction to the Commission and accreditation, see Module One.

Module Two describes the multi-year self-study process that begins with the institution having preliminary discussions and making initial decisions in preparation for participation by several of its representatives in the Commission’s Self-Study Institute.  This in-person training event provides the institution’s representatives with the information and tools they need to inform others and guide the next steps in the self-study process at the institution.

Module Three expands on those steps, which include organizing the self-study Steering Committee that will manage the institution’s self-study process and drafting the Self-Study Design, the comprehensive planning document for the process.

Module Four provides a brief overview of the Self-Study Preparation Visit conducted by the institution’s Commission staff liaison. During the visit the Self-Study Design is discussed, and the liaison assists the institution’s self-study leaders in conveying essential information about accreditation, the Commission, and the self-study process to the campus community.

Module Five and Module Six focus on the researching, writing, and documentation necessary to prepare the Self-Study Report and Evidence Inventory as outlined in the Design.

Module Seven details the activities of the peer review component of the Self-Study Evaluation, beginning with the identification of a chair for the team and followed by identification of team members. The Chair’s Preliminary Visit to the institution prior to the final completion of the Self-Study Report and the On-Site Evaluation Visit are also described.

Disclaimer: The material provided in this guide was developed to provide clarity for the self-study process. Commission Policy and Procedures will govern in the case of a conflict with this material. For any questions about an institution’s accreditation status or for additional information about MSCHE’s standards for accreditation, requirements of affiliation, policies, and procedures, you should contact MSCHE staff. This material is not intended as a substitute for professional advice from MSCHE staff and use of the material does not guarantee any specific accreditation outcome.