Quality first. All of our degree programs surpass the accepted standards established by experts in the field.
University of the Cumberlands is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate, baccalaureate, masters, educational specialist, and doctorate degrees. University of the Cumberlands also may offer credentials such as certificates and diplomas at approved degree levels. Questions about the accreditation of University of the Cumberlands may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website (www.sacscoc.org).
Information on institutional accreditation standards, polices, and procedures are available via Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
Useful SACSCOC resources include:
University of the Cumberlands Academic Programs:
For federal reporting needs, SACSCOC requires that the University maintains as list of approved academic programs with associated CIP codes. UC’s list is linked below.
Additional Accreditation Resources
University of the Cumberlands’ Education programs are further state accredited through Kentucky's Educational Professional Standards Board (EPSB), 100 Airport Road, 3rd Floor, Frankfort, KY 40601, Phone: 502.564.4606, Fax: 502.564.7080.
The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is responsible for the oversight of accredited programs and ensures the proper teaching and administrator standards are fully implemented for its accredited programs. Learn more by reading our CAEP Accountability Measures.
The Associate Degree nursing program at the Forcht School of Nursing at the University of the Cumberlands located in Williamsburg, KY is accredited by the:
Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
3390 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 1400 Atlanta, GA 30326
The RN-BSN degree program at University of the Cumberlands is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education , 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.
The MSN-FNP degree program at University of the Cumberlands is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education , 655 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001, 202-887-6791.
The Hutton School of Business at the University of the Cumberlands has received specialized accreditations for its business programs through the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) located at 11960 Quivira Road in Overland Park, Kansas, USA. For a list of accredited programs please refer to our IACBE member status page.
Effective October 25, 2022, the University of the Cumberlands Physical Therapy Program has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; phone: 703-706-3245; email: accreditation [at] apta.org (accreditation[at]apta[dot]org)). If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call 606.539.4251 or email: physicaltherapy [at] ucumberlands.edu (physicaltherapy[at]ucumberlands[dot]edu).
Candidate for Accreditation is an accreditation status of affiliation with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education that indicates the program may matriculate students in technical/professional courses. Achievement of Candidate for Accreditation status does not assure that the program will be granted Initial Accreditation.
Candidacy is considered to be an accredited status, as such the credits and degree earned from a program with Candidacy status are considered, by CAPTE, to be from an accredited program. Therefore, students in the charter (first) class should be eligible to take the licensure exam even if CAPTE withholds accreditation at the end of the candidacy period. That said, it is up to each state licensing agency, not CAPTE, to determine who is eligible for licensure. Information on licensing requirements should be directed to the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT; www.fsbpt.org) or specific state boards (a list of state boards and contact information is available on FSBPT's website.
CAPTE Timing and the Licensing Exam
The DPT program will be evaluated for Initial Accreditation status in the second year of the first cohort (2024). Notification regarding Initial Accreditation is anticipated to be received prior to graduation of the first cohort which will be December 2024. Based on Rule 7.2 (see below), graduates of the first cohort will be able to take the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as early as January 2025.
Program Accreditation Contingency Plan
The University of the Cumberlands (UC) DPT program received Candidate for Accreditation status on October 25, 2022. The UC DPT program will submit documentation for initial accreditation to CAPTE before the first cohort graduates, anticipating that the program will achieve initial accreditation in the Fall 2024/Spring 2025 cycle. Should the program fail to achieve initial accreditation, UC and the program will strive to resolve all concerns and provide necessary documented evidence to CAPTE for reconsideration. All current and prospective students will receive timely notification of the program’s accreditation status upon receipt from CAPTE.
The institution has developed a contingency plan for students if Initial Accreditation status is not achieved. In July 2020, the U.S. Department of Education ruled that Candidacy is a pre-accreditation status for institutions recognized by a national or regional accrediting body. UC is regionally accredited by SACS. Therefore, students who graduate from the first cohort will be considered graduates of an accredited program and eligible to sit for the FSBPT licensure examination according to the rules within their respective states. Students in the first cohort must successfully complete the program in the original time frame scheduled for their graduation, i.e., the twelve-month period following the date of the action initial accreditation is not received.
If initial accreditation is not received, students in later cohorts are not deemed eligible to sit for the FSBPT licensure examination. These students are offered a teach-out plan, that may lead to (1) a Master’s degree in Health and Human Performance from the University of the Cumberlands. This degree does not lead to licensure as a physical therapist. Alternatively, students may choose to (2) transfer to another major at the University of the Cumberlands; or (3) withdraw from the university. Enrolled students in these later cohorts will be provided with a list of accredited DPT academic programs offered by other institutions. Students will be informed that UC cannot assist students in securing admissions into other accredited programs, nor can UC assure that these other programs will accept UC students into their program.
Prospective students will be informed of this contingency plan in application materials and will sign to acknowledge awareness of the program’s candidacy status. This acknowledgment will note that if initial accreditation is not received before the student starting the program, they will be notified accordingly.
The University of the Cumberlands will do everything possible to ensure the program achieves initial accreditation but cannot guarantee an accreditation outcome. The University of the Cumberlands will not refund students for expenses related to the UC DPT program if initial accreditation is not achieved.
Complaints to the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education
The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education is a nationally recognized accrediting agency by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. CAPTE grants specialized accreditation status to qualified entry-level education programs for physical therapists and physical therapist assistants. The only mechanism through which CAPTE can act on an individual’s concerns is through a formal complaint process. For more information please visit the CAPTE website.
University of the Cumberlands has been named a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (CAE-CD) by the National Security (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). There are just over 200 universities nationwide with CAE-CD designation, and only two other universities in Kentucky included in this elite group. Learn more about our Cyber Security Center for Academic Excellence.
The CACREP Council accredits the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program, Addiction Counseling program, PhD in Counselor Education & Supervision, and the related Doctorate of Educational Leadership Online (EdD) Program. CACREP is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) that accredits counselor-preparation graduate degree programs. For more information, visit https://www.cacrep.org.
CACREP Outcomes for the Department of Counseling at University of Cumberlands:
Program Evaluation Outcomes Report: 2015-2018
University of the Cumberlands Physician Assistant Programs:
The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc. (ARC-PA) has granted Accreditation-Continued status to the University of the Cumberlands Physician Assistant Program sponsored by the University of the Cumberlands. Accreditation-Continued is an accreditation status granted when a currently accredited program is in compliance with the ARC-PA Standards.
Accreditation remains in effect until the program closes or withdraws from the accreditation process or until accreditation is withdrawn for failure to comply with the Standards. The approximate date for the next validation review of the program by the ARC-PA will be 2029 March. The review date is contingent upon continued compliance with the Accreditation Standards and ARC-PA policy.
The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website.
Northern Kentucky Program
The ARC-PA has granted Accreditation-Provisional status to the University of the Cumberlands Northern Kentucky Campus Physician Assistant Program sponsored by University of the Cumberlands.
Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding Accreditation-Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.
Accreditation-Provisional does not ensure any subsequent accreditation status. It is limited to no more than five years from matriculation of the first class.
The program’s accreditation history can be viewed on the ARC-PA website at http://www.arc-pa.org/accreditation-history-university-of-the-cumberlands-northern-ky/.
Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) COA approved Benchmark 1 and granted the program Candidacy status for the BSW.
The 2025 Strategic Plan provides measurable goals and builds on the universities mission and values.
Assessment of Student Achievement
University of the Cumberland identifies, evaluates, and publishes goals and outcomes for student achievement.
While University of the Cumberlands (UC) strives to be in compliance with state licensure requirements where University programs are offered, UC cannot confirm whether the course or program meets requirements for professional licensure in a student’s state of residence. Licensure requirements are established by each state’s respective board(s) and must be met to be licensed. The student is advised to contact their applicable licensing board(s) to determine if the program meets requirements for licensure in the student’s state of residence. Although a program may be available in a specific state, there may be additional obligations required by the institution. University of the Cumberlands has the right to determine if program will be available in each state.
Though SARA authorizes the University to offer its programs in member states, there is the possibility that other state requirements not covered by SARA (such as requirements from state licensing boards) could necessitate the restriction of certain programs in certain states. Please note that should a student choose to enroll in a restricted program in a particular state, there may be restrictions that could affect the student.
Examples could include:
- inability to sit for local licensing in that state
- ineligible for consumer protection that state
- A student may not be able to complete field placements (practicum, internship, clerkship, etc.). This could affect licensure or recognition of the degree to meet particular requirements.
Additionally, if a student moves during the course of his/her studies to a state where his/her program is restricted, please be aware that the student is taking a risk and may not be able to complete that program or use any of the credit earned towards licensing in that field of study in the new state of residence. Please note that the risks listed above are not exhaustive. Please verify with an individual state’s professional licensing board to ensure plans are not impacted by these risks.
CAEP Accountability Measures
- Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Education
- Bachelor of Science (BS) in Education
- Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)
- Master of Arts in Education – Teacher Leader, Literacy Specialist, and School Counseling (MAED)
- Educational Specialist in School Counseling and School and District Administration (EdS)
- Rank I in School and District Administration
- Endorsement in ESL and Teacher Leader
Measure 1: (Initial and Advanced) Completer Effectiveness and Impact on P-12 Learning and Development (CAEP Component R4.1)
Our completers are employed in several districts in Kentucky and surrounding states. To get a snapshot of the teaching effectiveness and impact of p-12 learning and development of our completers, we examine data from various sources including completer case studies. Case studies include observation of our completers in years 1 and 3 in initial and initial graduate programs. Classroom assessment data are collected and analyzed as part of the case studies. We were unable to complete classroom observations as part of our case studies in 2020-2021 because of limited access to schools due to COVID. For 2020-2021, we analyzed pre- and post-test data provided by partnering schools. The data were collected for both teacher-made tests and a variety of standardized tests including MAP, iReady, and ACT. Our Graduating Senior Survey, and Completer Surveys were also analyzed to determine effectiveness and impact of our completers. Analysis of data from all three sources show our completers to be effective and employers are satisfied with our completers.
Measure 2: (Initial and Advanced) Employer Satisfaction and Stakeholder Involvement (CAEP Component R4.2, R5.3, R4.1)
Through our Employer Satisfaction surveys, employers report their satisfaction of our completers in initial, graduate initial, and advanced programs. Employers across all programs indicate an overall satisfaction with our candidates. The majority of responding employers report they are satisfied with completer preparation and anticipate completers will reach employment milestones. Data are gathered during in-person P-12 stakeholder meetings and with electronic surveys.
In addition to employer surveys, many local administrators serve on our Education Preparation Advisory Committee and our P-12 Advisory Committee. Through this stakeholder involvement, employers and other stakeholders participate in a beneficial partnership with the School of Education providing valuable feedback used in continuous program improvement. Both groups meet twice per year, in the fall and spring, to receive department and program updates, discuss practical application of knowledge and skills for candidates, and provide programatic feedback. The Educator Preparation Advisory Committee votes on proposed policy and procedure changes and candidate action plans.
Measure 3: (Initial and Advanced) Completer Competency at Completion (CAEP Component R3.3)
Completers demonstrate competency at completion by taking the Praxis required for each program. Completers consistently score above the cut score on all exams except health and physical education in the initial and initial graduate programs and above state average in all programs. Advanced programs completers consistently maintain a first-time pass rate of 85% and higher in all programs. Initial program completers consistently score 3 or higher on a 4-point scale on Kentucky Teacher/InTasc standards. They consistently score the highest on Standards 3, Learning Environment, and 9, Professional Learning and Ethical Practice.
Measure 4: (Initial and Advanced) Ability of Completers to be Hired
University of the Cumberlands’ completers are employed throughout Kentucky and surrounding states with the highest number employed in Jefferson, Jessamine, and Fayette counties. Employment tracking is completed with personal contacts, EPSB data, and reports generated at the state level. Nearly 70% of our completers are employed in Kentucky three years after graduation and are earning a median annual income of approximately $50,000.