Required Opportunity for Third-Party Comment

Approximately three months before the scheduled site visit, the accreditation unit should notify its major constituents that an accreditation review is scheduled and that they are invited to provide written comments to CEPH until 30 days before the scheduled site visit. 

This opportunity is referred to as the opportunity for “third-party comments.” The requirement to invite third-party comments is a separate procedural requirement from the expectation that units will involve stakeholders in the self-study process and from the ongoing obligation, expressed in the accreditation criteria, for units to solicit input from constituents, including students, alumni, employers, community partners, etc. 

The third-party comment process is a broader, more general call for comment that allows any stakeholder to provide feedback directly to CEPH to inform the accreditation review. 

CEPH does not share this feedback with the unit. Notice to constituents of the opportunity to provide comments must include the email address as the sole address for submission of third-party comments. 

The form of such notice is at the discretion of the accreditation unit. Notification methods might include the following: a notice posted in a visible location, an announcement in a regular newsletter for constituents, a notice published on the website or email listservs, etc. Methods of soliciting third-party comments must be documented in the ERF and verifiable by the site visit team. See this document’s description of the ERF for additional information.