Understanding WASC

The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) is the regional organization that is responsible for the accreditation of public and private universities and colleges in California, Hawaii and the Pacific Basin. WASC provides the accreditation for UCSF as a whole and for the Graduate Division in particular. 

Accreditation confers several benefits, in particular the ability to administer federal financial aid for students. To remain accredited, institutions must demonstrate that they satisfy the  WASC Standards and Criteria for Review. The process of accreditation is described in WASC's Handbook of Accreditation. The WASC Evidence Guide  provides additional information about the documentation required.

 Reaccreditation is a three-stage process that takes place over three years:

  1. The development of an Institutional Proposal, which establishes the framework which connects UCSF's priorities and context with the WASC Standards. WASC approved UCSF's Institutional Proposal in July, 2007.
  2. The preparation of a Capacity and Preparatory Review (CPR), which describes the organizational capacity of the campus (e.g., resources, structure, and processes). UCSF's site visit for this review took place on February 17-19, 2009. The site visit team's report is available here.
  3. The final stage is the Educational Effectiveness Review (EER), which focuses on student and organizational learning across UCSF, addresses educational objectives and includes indicators of effectiveness. UCSF's site visit for this review took place October 13-15, 2010.