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1. What is accreditation?
Accreditation is a voluntary process sought by colleges and universities consisting of an external evaluation of the entire institution in light of the institution's mission and certain accepted standards and criteria as established by the accrediting agency. Accreditation has two primary purposes: quality assurance and institutional/program improvement.

2. Who is the accrediting organization for Redlands Community College?
Redlands Community College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. (www.ncahlc.org)

3. Just who is The Higher Learning Commission?
The Higher Learning Commission is a division of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), which is one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. The Higher Learning Commission accredits degree-granting post- secondary educational institutions in the North Central region.

4. What are the types of accreditation?
There are two types of accreditation; Institutional and specialized accreditation. The HLC evaluation of Redlands Community College provides institutional accreditation. Specialized accrediting bodies evaluate particular units, schools, or programs within an institution, such as the Nursing Department.

5. Why is accreditation important to ME as well as to  Redlands Community College?
Accreditation provides public assurance of institutional quality, it promotes institutional self-study, and it is required in order for us to participate in federal financial aid programs. Accreditation also means that our degrees and courses are accepted by other colleges and universities, and it allows students to be eligible for scholarships.

6. What are the five HLC criteria for accreditation?
• Mission & Integrity
• Preparing for the Future
• Student Learning & Effective Teaching
• Acquisition, Discovery & Application of Knowledge
• Engagement & Service

7. When will the HLC Accreditation Team visit Redlands Community College?
The actual site visit will begin on February 14, 2011.

8. What is the self-study report that Redlands Community College is preparing?
It is a written report submitted to the HLC of the college's strengths and areas for improvement as well as data and evidence to support the institution's self-analysis.

9. Who is involved in the self-study process?
The self-study process includes the entire Redlands Community College campus; students, faculty, staff, administration, alumni, and the Board of Regents. We have established a committee to examine each of the five criteria and an overall Steering Committee that guides the process. However, Redlands has not limited input for the self-study report to just the formal committee structure, but rather is approaching the upcoming site visit with an across-the-board self-evaluation of the institution in which everyone is invited and encouraged to participate. If you have not been assigned to one of the formal committees, but would like to submit information or evidence for the self-study report or the upcoming HLC visit, please submit it to your immediate supervisor.