Assessment, Accreditation and Strategic Planning

University Accreditation

What is accreditation?

Accreditation is a review process that determines if a university meets a set of standards. According to the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), the body that accredits WIU, “the goal of accreditation is to assure students, as well as parents and employers, that a college or university provides a quality educational experience.”

Western Illinois University was first accredited in 1913 and has maintained continuous accreditation since then. Every ten years WIU undergoes a reaffirmation of its accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission. The process is an opportunity to strengthen the university through a comprehensive evaluation.

Most recent reaffirmation of accreditation

The Higher Learning Commission announced in June 2021 that Western Illinois University has been reaccredited for 10 years, with the next re-affirmation of accreditation review scheduled for 2030-31.

That announcement followed a long process during which a task force and a writing team gathered information, and drafted a lengthy assurance argument that was submitted to HLC along with evidence that university meets the high-quality standards demanded by HLC. The process included visits with all constituent groups across the university and a podcast series to help explain the process. Then in March 2021, the HLC's on-site review team visited the Macomb and Quad Cities campuses, for a comprehensive review that included numerous meetings with faculty, staff, students, administration, the Board of Trustees and community leaders in both locations. The visit also included a close review of the University's assurance argument, federal compliance forms and numerous other documents, websites and more.

Below are the documents and evidence files that were submitted to HLC in 2021.