ACJS Certification Standards for Academic Programs were approved May 2, 2005 and amended October 28, 2005 by the ACJS Executive Board. The goal of ACJS in adopting these Standards and implementing a Certification Review process is to measurably improve the quality of criminal justice education. For several years, ACJS had Minimum Standards for Criminal Justice Education and these standards were used in a peer review process through ACJS Academic Review. The new standards and process represent an evolution from “peer review” to “certification”. The ACJS Certification is designed to evaluate evidence-based compliance with the Certification Standards.
What do we mean by compliance with standards? The ACJS Executive Board will Certify those programs that undergo ACJS Certification Review and that have demonstrated, through substantive, credible evidence, the program meets or exceeds all parts of every standard. The emphasis is on evidence, not intention. Programs are required to provide evidence of program quality & effectiveness based on program outcome assessment.
The Certification Standards are broken into nine sections, each of which has specific Standards & Recommended Indicators. The sections are:
A: Program Mission and History
B: Program Structure and Curriculum
D: Admission and Articulation
F: Student Services
H: Program Quality & Effectiveness
I: Branch Campuses, Additional Locations, and Other Instructional Sites
The Certification Standards for Academic Programs and Process for Undergoing Review are available for Associate, Baccalaureate, and Master’s degree programs. Click on the degree type below to view the document that includes the process and standards. The certification process is the same for each of the three levels of degree programs.
Self-Study Templates for Associate, Baccalaureate, and Master’s degree programs are provided below. Supplemental forms and detailed directions for completion and submission of the self-study are provided to programs upon completion of the application process. Due to recent revisions to the certification standards, some aspects of the self-study templates are incorrect. Before beginning to complete the forms, please contact Dr. Barbara Peat, email@example.com, for further information.Updated forms should be online in early 2015.
Certification Reviewer Standards and Application. Only ACJS Executive Board Certified Reviewers who have undergone certification reviewer training are eligible to serve on a review team. To nominate an individual as a potential reviewer, please email the nomination letter including the individual’s contact information to Dr. Barbara Peat, firstname.lastname@example.org. The nominee must complete the Certification Reviewer Application Form and provide a current vita before action will be taken by the ACJS Executive Board.