Accreditation and Assessment

Central Arizona College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (, a regional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

AQIP Portfolio 2018

Reaffirmation of Accreditation Letter 2018

Action Projects

Action Projects

Action Projects are quality activities CAC selects and focuses its efforts to support and drive continuous quality improvement. These activities are tied directly to the nine AQIP criteria, and group faculty and staff to share a sense of activity, momentum, and purpose, while implementing district wide quality improvement.

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Quality Checkup Visit


Central Arizona College (CAC) had a Quality Checkup Visit on March 25-27, 2014. The Quality Checkup Visit is an important part of the regular AQIP cycle that occurs prior to reaffirmation of accreditation. Components of the AQIP Quality Checkup Visit are:

1. Systems Portfolio Clarification and Verification
2. Systems Appraisal Follow-Up
3. Accreditation Issues Follow-Up
4. Federal Compliance Review
5. Organizational Quality Commitment

CAC’s AQIP Quality Checkup Visit was conducted by two trained and experienced AQIP Reviewers — Gloria Dohman, Ph.D., Accreditation Liaison Officer, North Dakota State College of Science and Donna Wood, Ph.D., Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs, Tulsa Community College.

AQIP Quality Checkup Visit Documents:

1. Quality Checkup Visit Agenda
2. AQIP Quality Program Summary
3. AQIP Federal Compliance Review
4. Check-Up Visit eResource Room
5. Quality Checkup Visit Report

Quality Council


Historically, the purpose of the Central Arizona College Quality Council (formerly the North Central Association Steering Committee) has been driven by accreditation. With the emphasis of district-wide quality, a need existed for an entity to coordinate, monitor, and provide leadership in the development and implementation of quality initiatives. Therefore, the Quality Council is responsible for coordinating college quality initiatives with accreditation requirements.The Quality Council also provides leadership and training in the development and implementation of quality initiatives and serves as a resource to the college for quality improvement. This will include serving on quality initiative teams as a quality liaison and coordinating college initiatives with accreditation activities (Action Projects, Systems Portfolio, Systems Appraisal, Strategy Forum, Check-Up Visit, and Reaffirmation).

To facilitate the continuous quality improvement process, the President appoints representatives, deemed experts in their area, from each college constituency group across the district. The council works closely with the college’s academic and support operations to ensure efforts that the best practices for improvement initiatives are employed. Units within the college use appropriate results to identify opportunities for improvement. These results include the CAC Systems Portfolio and Appraisal, Academic Program Review, and other institutional assessments and data. Appropriate units tackle smaller improvement initiatives on their own and are encouraged to complete CAC’s Quality Improvement Record.

Broader institutional initiatives typically employ the support of the Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Advancement through the Quality Initiatives Proposal process. The Quality Council owns this process with the intention of quality initiative proposals moving forward to the President and Cabinet for consideration. Quality initiatives can emerge from a variety of sources. Based on results from an evaluative tool (survey, needs assessment or formal program review), a unit or employee may propose a quality initiative. A quality initiative may result from an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) activity such as the Systems Portfolio, Systems Appraisal or Strategy Forum. The Quality Council, as a representation of each constituent group, moves the proposal forward with the the vice president of the area that is most impacted by the proposal as the process owner. These vice presidents share the Cabinet’s decision and any related recommendations with the Quality Council.

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System Portfolio


One of the Academic Quality Improvement Program’s (AQIP) core processes, the systems Portfolio “describes key systems and processes the organization uses to achieve its goals and the performance results it obtains from them. During the first four years of participation, an organization assembles a Systems Portfolio with broad faculty and staff involvement. This document is essential for the systems Appraisal that AQIP conducts three years after the organization is accepted to partcipate in AQIP. The systems Portfolio consists of an Organizational Overview and explicates each of the major systems employed to accomplish an organization’s mission and objectives. The organization answers specific questions for each of the nine AQIP Categories. For each system, the questions deal with, processes, results, and improvement. The Organizational Overview presents a capsule picture that helps readers understand the organization’s key strengths and ambitions, as well as the challenges and conflicts it faces.”

The Systems Portfolio is a record of CAC’s activities with regard to the nine key processes of AQIP and acts as a

  • high-quality, actionable feedback on CAC’s strengths & opportunities from a team of quality improvement experts and educators,
  • body of evidence to show the Higher Learning Commission that CAC is meeting its Criteria for Accreditation,
  • common reference point that lets everyone at CAC share an understanding of how we are organized, what are our key processes, what kind of performance those processes produce, and how we improve,
  • planning tool that helps us share the institution’s future agenda and concentrates everyone’s attention on those areas that should be the focus for scrutiny for improvement,
  • body of evidence, over time, that AQIP is working to CAC’s advantage, and that our continued participation in the program makes sense,
  • public information and relations tool that lets all of our stakeholders understand clearly and persuasively what we are accomplishing with our resources

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Archived Portfolio
Other Accreditations


Early Childhood Education National Association for the Education of Young Children 1313 L St. N.W. Suite 500
Washington DC, 20005
(202) 232-8777
Health Careers
Dietetic Technician Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND)
120 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 6006-6995
(800) 877-1600, ext. 400
Dietary Managers Training Program Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Professionals (ANFP)
406 Surrey Woods Drive
St. Charles, IL 60174
(800) 323-1908
Emergency Medical Services Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
25400 U.S. Highway 19 North, Suite 158
Clearwater, FL 33763
Phone: (727) 210-2350
Health Information Technology The Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information management Education (CAHIIM)
233 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1200
Chicago, IL 606601-5809
(312) 233-1183
Medical Assistant Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)
1361 Park Street
Clearwater, FL 33756
(727) 210-2350
Medical Billing American Medical Billing Association (AMBA)
2465 E. Main
Davis, OK 73030
(580) 369-2700
Radiography Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT)
20 N. Wacker Dr., Suite 2850
Chicago, IL 60606-3182
(312) 704-5300
Nursing Assistant Arizona State Board of Nursing
4747 N. 7th St., Suite 200
Phoenix, AZ 85014-3655
(602) 771-7800
Practical Nurse Arizona State Board of Nursing
4747 N. 7th St., Suite 200
Phoenix, AZ 85014-3655
(602) 771-7800
Registered Nurse Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc.
3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850
Atlanta, GA 30326
(404) 975-5000
Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology Associated Equipment Distributors Foundation
615 W. 22nd Street
Oak Brook, IL 60523
(630) 574-0650
Heavy Equipment Operators National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER)
13614 E. Progress Blvd.
Alachua, FL 32615
(386) 518-6500
Welding National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER)
13614 E. Progress Blvd.
Alachua, FL 32615
(386) 518-6500

For more information contact William Brown at

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The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA) granted Central Arizona College correspondent status in March 1968 candidate status in March 1971; its first full accreditation status in March 1973; NCA accreditation for a seven-year period in July 1978; and accreditation for another seven-year period from October 1985 with a focus visit in 1987. In March 1993, NCA extended full accreditation to the District for ten years (the maximum period allowable).

In November 2000, Central Arizona College was accepted as a participant in the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP), by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), a Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. AQIP provides CAC with a structure to increasingly transform into an institution focusing on continuous improvement. Action Projects (institutional quality initiatives), the Systems Portfolio (self-study), and Systems Appraisal (feedback) assist in CAC’s improvement.

CAC has an infrastructure in place to support institutional improvements consisting of the CAC Quality Council, the Director of Accreditation and Quality Initiatives, the Office of Institutional Planning and Research, and the Office of Resource Development.


– Central Arizona College AQIP Reaffirmation Action Letter 03-09-15
– Statement of Accreditation Status

2. Other Accreditations

3. Current Action Projects

4. Past Systems Portfolios

5. Quality Checkup Visit 2014

For further information contact Dr. Mary Kay Gilliland, Accreditation Liaison Officer,

Content on this page is provided by Accreditation & Quality Initiatives.