Capella University to Receive 2010 CHEA Award

January 11, 2010

MINNEAPOLIS, Jan 11, 2010 - The Council for Higher Education Accreditation, a national advocate and institutional voice for self-regulation of academic quality through accreditation, has awarded the 2010 CHEA Award for Outstanding Institutional Practice in Student Learning Outcomes to Capella University, one of four institutions that will receive the award in 2010. Capella University is the first online university to receive the award.

For the last decade, Capella University's faculty have developed an outcomes-based curricular model that begins with adult learners' educational needs and builds programs and courses to meet those needs. The university's assessment system capitalizes on this model to gather data on the learning process and to report on outcome attainment, enabling leadership to target quality improvement efforts. Details on this approach and program learning outcome results are published on Capella's Learning & Career Outcomes Website (www.capellaresults.com).

"Capella University is a leader in accountability in higher education. Their work in student learning outcomes exemplifies the progress that institutions are making through the implementation of comprehensive, relevant and effective initiatives," said CHEA President Judith Eaton. "We are pleased to recognize this institution with the CHEA Award."

CHEA is an association of 3,000 degree-granting colleges and universities and recognizes 59 institutional and programmatic accreditors. The CHEA Award was established in 2005 to recognize institutions that have been exceptional in developing and applying evidence of student learning outcomes to improve higher education quality and accountability. A committee selected from higher education institutions, accrediting organizations and the public judged the winners on the basis of four award criteria: 1) articulation and evidence of outcomes; 2) success with regard to outcomes; 3) information to the public about outcomes; and 4) use of outcomes for educational improvement.

Capella University is an online university offering graduate and undergraduate education to more than 30,000 working adults. Capella has been active in leading higher education accountability initiatives, including Transparency By Design.

In addition to Capella University, Portland State University (OR), St. Olaf College (MN) and the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith (AR) also will receive the 2010 CHEA Award. The award will be presented at the 2010 CHEA Annual Conference, which will be held January 25–28 in Washington, D.C.

For more information on the 2010 CHEA Award for Outstanding Institutional Practice in Student Learning Outcomes or to arrange an interview with an award recipient, contact Timothy Willard, CHEA's Director of Communications, at (202) 955-6126 or via email at willard@chea.org.

A national advocate and institutional voice for self-regulation of academic quality through accreditation, CHEA is an association of 3,000 degree-granting colleges and universities and recognizes 59 institutional and programmatic accrediting organizations.