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VISITING TEAMS INFORMATION
On-site Accreditation Visit for a Construction Education Program

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BRADLEY UNIVERSITY VISITING TEAM

Prof. Erin Vitale (Chair), Dr. Tulio Sulbaran, Mr. John Gaver, Dr. Andy Chae, and Dr. Robert Swegle

The on-site accreditation visit for a construction education program requesting accreditation is accomplished by a Visiting Team selected by ACCE and consisting of at least three members for an associate degree or bachelor’s degree program and at least two members for a master’s degree program, as described in Section 3.3 of the ACCE Document 103: Standards and Criteria for the Accreditation of Construction Education Programs.

The purpose of the Visiting Team is to evaluate the program based on the Institution's stated goals and objectives for the program and to verify compliance with ACCE standards and criteria in those areas that cannot be determined without visiting the Institution.  The Visiting Team shall submit a report of its findings along with a recommendation regarding accreditation to the Accreditation Committee in accordance with procedures established by the ACCE Board of Trustees

Classification of Team Members – Associate and Bachelor’s Degree Programs

 

Team Chair 

To be qualified as an undergraduate Visiting Team Chair, an individual must have participated in a Visiting Team Chair training session within the previous three years, completed the Case Studies Workshop within the previous three years, and served as a team member on three or more undergraduate degree accreditation visits.  In addition, if an educator, the Chair should be from an accredited undergraduate degree program.

 

Member

To be a qualified visitor, an individual must have attended Advanced Visiting Team Member Training within the previous three years, completed the Case Studies Workshop within the previous three years, and served on a Visiting Team as a Member-in-Training. 

Further, to be a qualified visitor:

• A construction industry practitioner must have knowledge of higher education and have had meaningful experience in construction at the middle management level or above.  A degree in construction or an allied discipline (e.g., architecture orMEM engineering) is desired.

• An educator must have a degree, preferably an advanced degree, in construction or an allied discipline (e.g., architecture or engineering), significant experience in construction education (preferably in an accredited construction program), and have had construction management experience.

• A public interest visitor must have knowledge of higher education and at least a bachelor’s degree.

 

Member-in-Training

In order to develop a well-qualified cadre of Visiting Team members, it is the practice of ACCE to send Team Members-in-Training as additional members on site visits. To qualify as a Visiting Team Member-in-Training, a person shall have attended Initial Visiting Team Member Training.  Members-in-Training must possess the same qualifications as a Visiting Team Member.

 

Observer

ACCE recognizes that there may be a need for observers from other constituencies to accompany the Visiting Team.  These associated constituencies may wish to observe and evaluate the operations, procedures, and conduct of an ACCE accreditation visit to ensure that they comply with criteria which they have established for such visits. Observers accompanying the Visiting Team may include:

• Representatives from the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

• The State’s educational board to which the Institution is responsible.

• Regional accrediting agency responsible for the overall accreditation of the Institution.

Representatives of members of the public and of the professional or technical press may also desire to observe as a means of learning more about accreditation's contribution to the advancement of construction programs.

 

Industry Observer

Representatives of the local construction industry may desire to observe a visit as a means of learning more about accreditation’s contribution to the advancement of construction programs.  Such industry observers may also be included on the Visiting Team.

 

Register of Visitors and Visitor Training – Associate and Bachelor’s Degree Programs 

An Undergraduate Degree Register of Visitors is maintained by the ACCE President and is divided into two categories based on training and experience.   

• Those designated as "Qualified Visitors" have been qualified in accordance with Section 3.3.1.2.

• Those designated as "Members in Training" have been qualified in accordance with Section 3.3.1.3.

 

Visiting Team Members are selected from the list of "Qualified Visitors," and “Members-in-Training” are selected from the list of those having been trained. 

In addition, the ACCE President maintains a Register of Visiting Team Chairs.  Those individuals designated as “qualified Visiting Team Chairs” have been qualified in accordance with Section 3.3.1.1.

 

All persons applying for participation in the Register of Visitors, preferably after attending a training session, are to be evaluated for their qualifications to serve as Visitors by the ACCE President.  Required Visitor Training may be completed at scheduled sessions which are conducted during the semi-annual ACCE Conferences.

The ACCE President will determine those who have successfully completed the requirements and will be included in the Register of Visitors.  Those who do not satisfy the requirements will be notified with an expression of appreciation for their interest and the reason(s) for them not being accepted into the Register of Visitors.  Also, they will be given opportunity to otherwise participate in the non-visitation aspects of ACCE. 

The Register of Visitors will be reviewed by the ACCE President each January to identify those persons on the Register of Visitors who should be removed for lack of appropriate retraining.  Those so identified will be notified by the ACCE President prior to the Midyear Conference.

 

Visiting Team Selection and Composition 

Members of each Visiting Team, with the concurrence of the Institution to be visited, are selected by the ACCE President from the current Register of Visitors for the appropriate degree program.  The Visiting Team may include construction educators, practicing industry professionals, and a local Industry Observer.  Typically, the Industry Observer serves the educational program as a member of their Industry Advisory Board.

 

The composition of the Visiting Team for associate and bachelor’s degree programs will include a Team Chair (if an educator, the chair must be from an accredited program) and two or more other members, one of whom must be a practitioner or a public interest representative. Additional team members may be required if the visited program offers instruction at multiple locations.  

The Visiting Team for master’s degree programs will consist of a Team Chair and one other member, both of whom may be educators.   

The Visiting Team may also include one or more Members-in-Training.

 

Protocol for Members-in-Training and Observers Accompanying a Visiting Team 

In order to develop a well-qualified cadre of Visiting Team members, it is the practice of ACCE to send Team Members-in-Training as additional members on site visits.  ACCE pays all travel and living costs for the Members-in-Training while on the visit.  The Members-in-Training are subject to all rules governing Team members and are to perform the responsibilities and duties assigned by the Team Chair. 

Representatives of the local construction industry may desire to observe a visit as a means of learning more about accreditation’s contribution to the advancement of construction programs.  Such Industry Observers may also be included on the Visiting Team.  Industry Observers are responsible their travel and living costs.  These costs are not charged to the Institution and are not paid by ACCE.  Industry Observers generally have not attended Initial Visiting Team Member training.  However, they are subject to all rules governing Visiting Team Members and Members-in-Training. 

Permission must be received from the ACCE President before arranging for an Observer to be present during a site visit.  To obtain permission, the person or group proposing the addition of an observer must submit to the ACCE President the name and affiliation of the person proposed as observer and the reasons for their presence during the visit.  The request must be made to the ACCE President at least 60 days before any scheduled visit.  The Institution and construction program(s) being visited must be informed of the request and have the right to express objections to any observer. The final decision on the Observer’s request will then be made by the ACCE President. 

While there are desirable and indeed necessary reasons for authorizing observation of the accrediting process, Observers nevertheless must not interfere with the process nor hamper an Institution's right to a full and fair evaluation of its program(s). The Observer must realize that their presence is a privilege which carries with it responsibility for adhering to the code of ethics for accreditation and to constraints and limitations on their participation in the visit.

 

Any Observer seeking permission to accompany a Visiting Team must agree to abide by the following guidelines: 

Observers are permitted to accompany a Visiting Team for the purpose of observing and are encouraged to participate in all Visiting Team activities except the team’s executive sessions. Only authorized Observers from the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and the regional accrediting agency will be permitted to attend executive sessions in which the Team formulates its recommendations.  Any official representatives who are permitted to observe these executive sessions shall agree to the rules of confidentiality required by the accrediting process. 

Representatives of any official and recognized accrediting agency or body such as the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) may request and receive the reports for the purpose of evaluating the accreditation process from the ACCE President of ACCE prior to the visit.  It will be considered a breach of ethics for any Observer to request or pressure the Chair or any member of a Visiting Team to have access to any confidential material.  Observers are required to refrain from making any such request. 

The travel expenses of the Observers performing their duties while reviewing ACCE’s procedures as part of ACCE’s requirements for CHEA recognition will not be included as a part of the accreditation costs for the Institution.   If the Institution has specifically requested permission for the Observer(s), then the travel expenses of the Observer(s) shall be the responsibility of the Institution. 

The Visiting Team will be working within a specific time schedule.  Observer(s) shall adhere to the schedule of activities of the visit.  Where Observer(s) are authorized to accompany a Visiting Team, the Chair shall inform the Observer(s) and the administrative head of the construction program of the policies governing the Observers' presence during the visit. Should an Observer express a concern that policies are too restrictive or inhibit their observation, they may appeal to the Chair of the Team.  If they are not granted the privilege as requested, the Observer(s) may send a written message to the Chair of the Accreditation Committee stating their concern.  

If in the opinion of the Chair of the Visiting Team, an Observer is deemed to be interfering with a full and fair evaluation, the Team Chair has the right to deny that Observer any further observations of the Visiting Team's work and shall document his action and the reasons for it in a supplement to the Visiting Team Report. 

Institutions and construction program(s) are asked to provide the same hospitality as the Visiting Team receives to the Observers while not interfering with the Institution's responsibility to present full and factual information to the Visiting Team.

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