The Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) recently received the maximum 10-year renewal of recognition from the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
CHEA sets standards for accreditors related to academic quality, accountability, and improvements in higher education.
The renewal reaffirms that CAA, a semiautonomous body within the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), operates in ways that demonstrate compliance with CHEA's standards and accepted best practices within the accrediting community. It is the only accrediting body for programs in audiology and speech-language pathology that is recognized by both CHEA and the U.S. Secretary of Education.
As of March 2014, 243 master's programs in speech-language pathology and 73 clinical doctoral programs in audiology are CAA-accredited. Another 16 new programs—15 in speech-language pathology and one in audiology—hold candidate (or pre-accreditation) status for accreditation.
"ASHA has been committed to quality graduate education in the professions for more than 50 years, dating back to when the first set of accreditation standards were developed in the early 1960s," ASHA 2014 President Elizabeth S. McCrea, PhD, CCC-SLP, says. "Through the CAA's work, we are helping academic programs ensure they graduate students who are fully prepared to provide effective professional services as audiologists and speech-language pathologists."
"Just like our review of the academic programs, CHEA's recognition process provides CAA with an important opportunity for self-evaluation of our accreditation program and processes," CAA Chair Joan Besing, PhD, CCC-A, notes. "An important part of our self-study comes from peer review and dialogue with our stakeholders in the higher education community. Our accreditation program is strengthened by this rigorous review process and is valuable to us and the programs that we serve."
About the Council on Academic Accreditation
The CAA formulates standards for the accreditation of graduate education programs that provide entry-level professional preparation in audiology and/or speech-language pathology; evaluates programs that voluntarily apply for accreditation; grants certificates and recognizes those programs deemed to have fulfilled requirements for accreditation; maintains a registry of holders of such certificates; and prepares and furnishes to appropriate persons and agencies lists of accredited programs. Although it is part of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the CAA operates autonomously when it carries out its accreditation tasks.
About the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
ASHA is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for more than 173,000 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, speech, language, and hearing scientists, audiology and speech-language pathology support personnel, and students. Audiologists specialize in preventing and assessing hearing and balance disorders as well as providing audiologic treatment, including hearing aids. Speech-language pathologists identify, assess, and treat speech and language problems, including swallowing disorders. www.asha.org/