According to the U.S. Department of Education, the goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by Colleges and Universities meets acceptable levels of quality.
Henry Ford College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The Higher Learning Commission is a regional accreditation agency. While it is not directly affiliated with the federal government, it is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a body qualified to accredit degree-granting colleges and universities in the North Central region of the United States.
To maintain this accreditation, the College is required to submit an Assurance Argument (formerly called a Self Study) and host a site visit from the HLC every fourth and tenth year of HLC’s Standard Pathway 10-year cycle. In the current cycle, the fourth year was 2019, and the 10th year will be 2025. The Assurance Argument describes how the College meets the HLC’s criteria for accreditation and provides extensive documentation that supports the Argument.
The most recent assurance argument and site visit took place in 2019. The argument and the final report are available below.
2019 Accreditation Documents
Benefits of HLC accreditation for students, faculty, and staff
Students can afford to study here. Perhaps the most significant benefit of accreditation is that it allows students to use federal financial aid to fund their education at HFC. Students cannot use federal financial aid (including Pell grants) to pay for their education at non-accredited institutions.
Students can transfer. Another benefit is accreditation also helps facilitate transfer opportunities. Most accredited colleges and universities will only accept transfer credits from other accredited institutions. HFC’s accredited status helps students to achieve their goal of transferring to earn more advance degrees.
It makes us think about what’s important. One benefit that is often overlooked is that accreditation encourages us to pause and evaluate our successes, challenges, opportunities for change, and possibilities for improvement.
It is cause for celebration and collaboration. Accreditation is an occasion for celebrating what we are doing well and for learning about the ways in which different areas of the College intersect and contribute to our successes. Completing the accreditation review process means learning more about the institution and the commitment of our colleagues and students.
It supports our continuous improvement model. Institutional improvements are continuous, not intermittent. Accreditation helps us maintain our ongoing focus on improvements that support student success.
The five criteria for HLC accreditation
The institution’s mission is clear and articulated publicly; it guides the institution’s operations.
Integrity: Ethical and Responsible Conduct
The institution acts with integrity; its conduct is ethical and reasonable.
Teaching and Learning: Quality, Resources, and Support
The institution provides high quality education, wherever and however its offerings are delivered;
Teaching and Learning: Evaluation and Improvement
The institution demonstrates responsibility for the quality of its educational programs, learning environments, and support services, and it evaluates their effectiveness for student learning through processes designed to promote continuous improvement; and
Resources, Planning, and Institutional Effectiveness
The institution’s resources, structures and processes are efficient to fulfill its mission, improve the quality of its educational offerings, and respond to future challenges and opportunities. The institution plans for the future.
Please note that the above Criteria for Accreditation are being revised by the HLC, with an expected effective date of September 2020.
Accreditation for Specified Academic Programs
In addition to the College and all HFC programs receiving the highest level of accreditation from the HLC, many of our individual programs are accredited by the premier professional organizations in their field.
Visit HFC Program Accreditations for detailed information regarding individual program accreditation.