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ACBSP advances the academic quality of business degree programs through the process of accreditation.

ACBSP is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) to accredit business, accounting, and business-related programs at the associate, baccalaureate, master, and doctorate degree levels worldwide.

ACBSP offers separate accreditation of accounting programs within the business unit in two ways. Accounting degrees accredited as business degrees through the normal accreditation process or a separate accreditation in accounting that is optional and in addition to the business degree accreditation. The business unit's business degrees must be accredited to add the separate and additional accounting degree accreditation. Separate accreditation in accounting is available to baccalaureate/graduate degree institutions only.

Accreditation by ACBSP is based on an independent evaluation of an institution’s business programs by professionals in the field of business education, which include faculty and academic administrators.

The Difference Between Program Accreditation and
Institutional Accreditation

ACBSP accredits business programs. ACBSP does not accredit the institution, only the business programs offered at the institution. Most businesses and universities reviewing transcripts and accepting degrees base their decisions on institutional accreditation. Program accreditation from ACBSP without institutional accreditation may not be considered sufficient when accepting degrees or credits for transfer.

For institutions located within the United States, regional accreditation of the institution is required for membership and accreditation eligibility. Not all countries have the equivalent of regional accreditation and the government may provide the authority to grant degrees. When considering business programs, students are encouraged to contact institutions they may wish to attend in the future as well as the human resource department of specific employers. Degree acceptance policies will vary by institution and employer.

Additional information on accreditation, as well as forms and process books, can be found via the links in the navigation menu. For answers to specific questions about accreditation, contact Steve Parscale, Director of Accreditation, at 913-339-9356 or sparscale@acbsp.org.

Harm from Diploma and Accreditation Mills


Diploma or degree mills come in many guises. Some degree mills blatantly offer to sell a degree and perhaps a transcript from a legitimate school. Others can be easily recognized by promising that an applicant can receive a degree in a very short period of time, sometimes as little as five days. Another type of degree mill will purport to look at an applicant’s life experience and award a degree based solely on a description of this experience. Others may require the student to submit papers or other assignments, but still will provide the degree in a short period of time with much less work than would be required by legitimate institutions. An advertisement that claims a student can “earn” a degree in much less time than it would take at a legitimate institution is likely evidence that the school is a degree mill.

To learn more about the harm of diploma and accreditation mills and how to protect yourself, read the Council of Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) article Degree Mills: An Old Problem and a New Threat.


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