The Professional Education Unit of the College of Education at the University of Central Arkansas has been granted continuing accreditation by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).
NCATE is one of the two organizations approved by the U.S. Department of Education to offer accreditation to professional education units.
UCA has maintained its NCATE accreditation since 1954. The accreditation is for seven years.
The Professional Education Unit and its programs must meet rigorous standards set forth by the professional education community in order to achieve accreditation. The standards included candidate knowledge, skills and professional dispositions; assessment system and unit evaluation; field experiences and clinical practice; diversity; faculty qualifications, performance and development; and unit governance and resources.
UCA met all six of these standards and received strong praise from the evaluating team for its collaboration with public school partners and its commitment to and involvement in the preparation of professional educators.
The accreditation report stated that the UCA program has “functioned to maintain rigorous standards for candidates in unit programs. The standing committees within the PEU have engaged all faculty in assessment work for the purposes of improving candidate performance and programs.”
Also, the college has “curricula to ensure that candidates develop the appropriate knowledge, skills and dispositions for their professional roles, and that the unit's candidates meet professional, state and institutional standards,” the report stated.
Dr. Diana Pounder, dean of the College of Education, was pleased that UCA has once again met NCATE’s standards for accreditation.
“We have raised our rating in several categories, showing improvement over our last review seven years ago,” Pounder said. “UCA has been recognized by the state and by NCATE for many years as one of Arkansas' strongest educator preparation institutions. UCA has a long and strong history of leading Arkansas in preparing high quality educators.”