The Lewis University College of Nursing and Health Professions baccalaureate and masters programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). CCNE is officially recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a national accreditation agency, ensuring the quality and integrity of baccalaureate, graduate, and residency programs in nursing. The College of Nursing and Health Professions is one of only 30 programs in Illinois accredited by the prestigious Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) is an autonomous accrediting agency, contributing to the improvement of the public's health. CCNE ensures the quality and integrity of baccalaureate and graduate education programs preparing effective nurses. CCNE serves the public interest by assessing and identifying programs that engage in effective educational practices. As a voluntary, self-regulatory process, CCNE accreditation supports and encourages continuing self-assessment by nursing education programs and supports continuing growth and improvement of collegiate professional education.
CCNE accreditation is a nongovernmental peer review process that operates in accordance with nationally recognized standards established for the practice of accreditation in the United States. Accreditation by CCNE is intended to accomplish at least five general purposes:
- To hold nursing programs accountable to the community of interest -- the nursing profession, consumers, employers, higher education, students and their families -- and to one another by ensuring that these programs have mission statements, goals, and outcomes that are appropriate to prepare individuals to fulfill their expected roles.
- To evaluate the success of a nursing education program in achieving its mission, goals, and outcomes.
- To assess the extent to which a nursing education program meets accreditation standards.
- To inform the public of the purposes and values of accreditation and to identify nursing education programs that meet accreditation standards.
- To foster continuing improvement in nursing education programs -- and thereby in professional practice.
CCNE serves higher education institutions throughout the United States.
Goals for Accrediting Nursing Education Programs
In developing the educational standards for determining accreditation of baccalaureate and graduate nursing education programs, CCNE has formulated specific premises or goals on which the standards are based. These goals include the following:
- develop and implement accreditation standards that foster continuing improvement within nursing education programs;
- enable the community of interest to participate in significant ways in the review, formulation, and validation of accreditation standards and policies and in determining the reliability of the conduct of the accreditation process;
- establish and implement an evaluation and recognition process that is efficient, cost effective, and cost-accountable with respect to the institution and student;
- assess whether nursing education programs consistently fulfill their stated missions, goals, and purposes;
- assure that nursing education program outcomes are in accordance with the expectations of the nursing profession to adequately prepare individuals for professional practice, life-long learning, and graduate education;
- encourage nursing education programs to pursue academic excellence through improved teaching/learning and assessment practices and in scholarship and public service in accordance with the unique mission of the institution;
- assure that nursing education programs engage in self-evaluation of personnel, procedures, and services, and that they facilitate continuous improvement through planning and resource development;
- acknowledge and respect the autonomy of institutions and the diversity of programs involved in nursing education;
- ensure consistency, peer review, agency self-assessment, due process, identification and avoidance of conflict of interest, and an assurance of appropriate confidentiality in accreditation practices;
- enhance public understanding of the functions and values inherent in nursing education accreditation;
- provide the public an accounting of nursing education programs that are accredited and which merit public approbation and support; and
- work cooperatively with other agencies to minimize duplication of review processes.
The CCNE shall be autonomous in conducting all aspects of its evaluation and accreditation activities, including but not limited to the establishment of bylaws, standards, policies, and procedures; control of its financial affairs; implementation of its operating rules; selection of its members, officers, committee members, evaluators, and consultants; and the administration of its own affairs.