WSCUC’s standards are framed by three core commitments that all institutions must affirm:
- Core Commitment to Learning and Success
- Core Commitment to Quality and Improvement
- Core Commitment to Institutional Integrity, Sustainability, and Accountability.
Institutions accredited by WSCUC are also expected to demonstrate commitment to the WSCUC Equity and Inclusion Policy, as well as other WSCUC policies.
All WSCUC-accredited institutions must demonstrate compliance with thirty-nine Criteria For Review (CFRs), which are distributed among the four WSCUC Standards:
Defining Institutional Purposes and Ensuring Educational Objectives
The institution defines its purposes and establishes educational objectives aligned with those purposes. The institution has a clear and explicit sense of its essential values and character, its distinctive elements, its place in both the higher education community and society, and its contribution to the public good. It functions with integrity, transparency, and autonomy.
Achieving Educational Objectives Through Core Functions
The institution achieves its purposes and attains its educational objectives at the institutional and program level through the core functions of teaching and learning, scholarship and creative activity, and support for student learning and success. The institution demonstrates that these core functions are performed effectively by evaluating valid and reliable evidence of learning and by supporting the success of every student.
Developing and Applying Resources and Organizational Structures to Ensure Quality and Sustainability
The institution sustains its operations and supports the achievement of its educational objectives through investments in human, physical, fiscal, technological, and information resources and through an appropriate and effective set of organizational and decision-making structures. These key resources and organizational structures promote the achievement of institutional purposes and educational objectives and create a high-quality environment for learning.
Creating an Organization Committed to Quality Assurance, Institutional Learning, and Improvement.
The institution engages in sustained, evidence-based, and participatory self-reflection about how effectively it is accomplishing its purposes and achieving its educational objectives. The institution considers the changing environment of higher education in envisioning its future. These activities inform both institutional planning and systematic evaluations of educational effectiveness. The results of institutional inquiry, research, and data collection are used to establish priorities, to plan, and to improve quality and effectiveness.