Revision of the Accreditation Operating Procedures
The existing Accreditation Operating Procedures (AoP) (PDF, 167KB) align with the Guidelines and Principles for Accreditation (G&P) (PDF, 157KB) and have been updated and revised in response to requested changes by CoA’s recognition bodies (e.g., U.S. Department of Education and Council for Higher Education Accreditation), requests by CoA’s constituent groups, and also to improve the internal operations of CoA. All changes to the AoP undergo a period of public comment and review as well as review by the APA Board of Educational Affairs, and approval by the APA Board of Directors.
During 2014 thus far, CoA dedicated time to draft new operating procedures to complement the proposed Standards of Accreditation (SoA) in Health Service Psychology currently available for public review and comment.
In moving forward with drafting the new AoP, CoA is examining policy changes that will meet some of the flexibility requested by its publics as well as to provide the greatest functionality that reflects the different needs for each level of training. Most notably, CoA is looking into creating an earlier entry to accreditation for doctoral programs similar to the current “accredited, on contingency” status for internship and postdoctoral programs.
Also under consideration is changing the time periods between periodic reviews. Currently, CoA grants periodic accreditation review periods between three and seven years from the date of the last site visit.
At the postdoctoral level, CoA is evaluating both the composition of site visit teams and the review process to better reflect the specialized education and training occurring at this level of training.
CoA tentatively plans to vote on a draft of the new AoP at its July meeting, with the draft AoP then made available for a period of public comment. Stay tuned for further information from the Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation.