In 1989 International CHRIE recommended two accrediting bodies: the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration™ (ACPHA) which accredited hospitality administration programs at the baccalaureate level, and the Commission for Accreditation of Hospitality Management Programs (CAHM) which accredited hospitality management programs at the associate’s degree or equivalent level.
During the Summer of 2008 the Commissions’ representatives from accredited hospitality programs, hospitality industry professionals, international programs, the public at large and ex-officio representatives from International CHRIE voted to merge those two commissions.
The newly organized Commission will retain the ACPHA name and has established the accrediting standards which represent those generalized conditions or characteristics determined to be essential in order for program objectives to be achieved. The standards are expressed qualitatively, applicable to a diversity of programs, and consider educational outcomes (outputs) as well as resources and processes (inputs). The standards cover the following areas: Mission and Objectives; Evaluation and Planning; Administration and Governance; Curriculum; Faculty/Instructional Staff; Student Services and Activities and Resources.
The accreditation process requires three major efforts—a programmatic self-analysis, an evaluation by professional colleagues, and a review and decision by the Commission. Through self-study, the applicant program uses the standards to analyze its effectiveness, strengths and weaknesses and to work towards improvement. At completion of the self-study period and submission of a self-study document, the program is visited by a team assembled by the Commission staff. The evaluation team conducts a rigorous review of the program and then prepares a report which is submitted to the Commission. Based on the program’s self-study, the team report and the program’s response to the report, the Commission makes a decision whether or not to grant accreditation. Accreditation is generally granted for not more than seven years.
The reorganized ACPHA Commission consists of 12 Commissioners, including hospitality educators, executives from the lodging, restaurant and hospitality industry and public-at-large members. The Commission members meet twice a year to review, assess and evaluate four-year and two-year hospitality programs at colleges and universities across the United States and throughout the world.