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Standards Review Process

Accreditation Handbook—Chapter XIV: Standards Development and Implementation


As a recognized accrediting agency by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, the CAA is required to conduct a comprehensive review of its standards on a periodic basis, and does so every 5 to 8 years. The CAA also may conduct interim or focused reviews of standards before the formal comprehensive review is due.

The purposes of accreditation standards are to:

  • Promote excellence in preparing students to enter the professions of audiology and speech-language pathology
  • Protect and inform the public by recognizing programs that meet or exceed accreditation standards
  • Stimulate improvement of programs’ educational activities by means of self-study and evaluation

The goal of CAA’s standards review and revision process is to develop standards that focus primarily on academic quality and student achievement sufficient to successfully prepare individuals to enter professional practice. It is good practice to consider the dynamic, ongoing discussions in higher education and the professions of audiology and speech-language pathology to ensure that the standards are in alignment with the needs and goals of our stakeholders.

The CAA proactively engages stakeholders and communities of interest in the standards review process. These stakeholders include:

  • Faculty
  • Clinical educators
  • Students
  • CAA site visitors
  • State credentialing authorities
  • Association representatives, professional organizations, and professionals in audiology and speech-language pathology

Throughout the standards development process, the CAA seeks, receives, and uses comments and suggestions from the stakeholders and communities of interest to develop, validate, and clarify standards.

Last Comprehensive Review

The CAA conducted its last comprehensive review of accreditation standards during 2014–2016, including opportunities for peer review in 2014–2015, which yielded more than 1,000 comments. After careful review and consideration of all comments received, the CAA voted at its February 2016 meeting to approve the revisions to the standards. The CAA implemented revised Standards for Accreditation of Graduate Education Programs in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology on August 1, 2017.

Focused Reviews

When warranted, the CAA conducts interim or focused reviews of standards between formal comprehensive reviews. Since approving the August 2017 standards, the CAA approved changes with implementation date noted to targeted standards after a peer review was conducted. Details of the changes are reflected in side-by-side documents.

  • August 2017 – Standard 1.8 (Equitable Treatment)
  • April 2019 – Standards 2.1 (Faculty Sufficiency-Overall Program) and 2.2 (Faculty Sufficiency-Institutional Expectations)
  • August 2020 – Standards 1.8 (Equitable Treatment), 1.9 (Public Information), and 4.10 (Verification of Student Identity for Distance Education)
  • Pending (Fall 2020 peer review) – Standards 1.1 (Institutional Accreditation), 1.9 (Public Information), 3.1A (Audiology Curriculum), 3.1B (Speech-Language Pathology Curriculum), 3.8A/3.8B (Clinical Education-Client Welfare), 5.2 (Program Assessment of Students), and 5.7 (Employment Rate)

About ASHA

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for members and affiliates who are audiologists, speech-language pathologists, speech, language, and hearing scientists, audiology and speech-language pathology support personnel, and students.

Connect With ASHA

About the CAA

The Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA) accredits eligible clinical doctoral programs in audiology and master's degree programs in speech-language pathology. The CAA relies on a dedicated corps of volunteers serving as Council members and site visitors to accomplish the work of the accreditation program.

Contact the CAA

Questions and/or requests for information about accreditation or the CAA can be directed to:

The Council on Academic Accreditation in
Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
2200 Research Boulevard, #310
Rockville, MD 20850

800-498-2071

Email the CAA