The IRA/NCATE Program Review Process (power point)
Accreditation decisions are based on materials submitted by the institution seeking accreditation, as well as an onsite visit by members of NCATE’s Board of Examiners.
Approximately two semesters (typically one year) prior to the site visit, an institution seeking accreditation of its advanced literacy education program at the reading specialist/literacy coach level
submits a program report. That is, the assessment must be given and data collected at least two times. If an assessment is in a class that is offered every semester, then the two applications could be satisfied in one academic year. If the assessment is in a class that is offered once per year, then the two applications would take two academic years. For revised and response to conditions reports, data from one application of the assessment would be required for full recognition.
NCATE accepts program reports twice a year – September 15 and March 1. Approximately three weeks after NCATE receives the institution report, reviewers are notified by NCATE of their team and assigned programs for review. Reviewers have about 5 weeks to complete the review. The lead reviewer will post the team’s composite report to the AIMS PRS (Program Review System) online.
This composite report, the program recognition report, is then reviewed by the IRA auditors to confirm agreement about the final program recognition decision
. NCATE completes a final technical editing of the program recognition report before it becomes available to the institution. If a program receives national recognition with conditions or further development required, an institution has 18 months in which to submit a revised report. The program report can include recommendations for onsite follow-up by the Board of Directors; the report itself is available to examiners during their site visit.
Beginning fall 2010, institutions may submit a program report using one of NCATE’s new options:
- Option A, the current process, that uses 6-8 key assessments required of all candidates; Option A Program Report template and Option A instructions.
- Option B, flexibility to choose their own assessments (up to a maximum of 8) and take responsibility to demonstrate candidate mastery of the IRA standards, Option B Program Report template and Option B instructions.
- Option C, continuing recognition – available to programs that, during their previous review cycle, were nationally recognized suing the 6-8 key assessments. For those using the 2010 standards, this option is not available until fall 2012, Option C Program Report template and Option C instructions.
- Option D, validity and reliability studies option. Program Report template not available.
IRA program reviewers use the Guidelines for Program Writers and Reviewers for guidance in conducting the review.