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Fundamental Elements of Integrity
An accredited institution is expected to possess or demonstrate the following
attributes or activities:*

  • fair and impartial processes, published and widely available, to address
    student grievances, such as alleged violations of institutional policies.
    The institution assures that student grievances are addressed promptly,
    appropriately, and equitably;
  • fair and impartial practices in the hiring, evaluation and dismissal of
  • sound ethical practices and respect for individuals through its teaching,
    scholarship/research, service, and administrative practice, including the
    avoidance of conflict of interest or the appearance of such conflict in all
    its activities and among all its constituents;
  • equitable and appropriately consistent treatment of constituencies, as
    evident in such areas as the application of academic requirements and
    policies, student discipline, student evaluation, grievance procedures,
  • faculty promotion, tenure, retention and compensation, administrative
    review, curricular improvement, and institutional governance and
  • a climate of academic inquiry and engagement supported by widely
    disseminated policies regarding academic and intellectual freedom;
  • an institutional commitment to principles of protecting intellectual
    property rights;
  • a climate that fosters respect among students, faculty, staff, and
    administration for a range of backgrounds, ideas, and perspectives;
  • honesty and truthfulness in public relations announcements,
    advertisements, and recruiting and admissions materials and practices;
  • required and elective courses that are sufficiently available to allow
    students to graduate within the published program length;
  • reasonable, continuing student access to paper or electronic catalogs;
  • when catalogs are available only electronically, the institution's web page
    provides a guide or index to catalog information for each catalog
    available electronically;
  • when catalogs are available only electronically, the institution archives
    copies of the catalogs as sections or policies are updated;
  • changes and issues affecting institutional mission, goals, sites, programs,
    operations, and other material changes are disclosed accurately and in a
    timely manner to the institution's community, to the Middle States
    Commission on Higher Education, and to any other appropriate
    regulatory bodies;
  • availability of factual information about the institution, such as the
    Middle States Commission on Higher Education annual data reporting,
    the self-study or periodic review report, the team report, and the
    Commission's action, accurately reported and made publicly available to
    the institution's community;
  • information on institution-wide assessments available to prospective
    students, including graduation, retention, certification and licensing pass
    rates, and other outcomes as appropriate to the programs offered;
  • institutional information provided in a manner that ensures student and
    public access, such as print, electronic, or video presentation;
  • fulfillment of all applicable standards and reporting and other
    requirements of the Commission; and
  • periodic assessment of the integrity evidenced in institutional policies,
    processes, practices, and the manner in which these are implemented.
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