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Community College Accreditation

Inver Hills Community College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (, a regional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Inver Hills Community College concluded its most recent eight-year reaffirmation of accreditation cycle through the HLC AQIP pathway with a Comprehensive Quality Review on March 20-22, 2017.

In their report to the HLC Institutional Action Council, the peer review team who conducted the Comprehensive Quality Review recommended Inver Hills Community College receive full reaffirmation of accreditation with no monitoring or interim reports.

On August 7, 2017 Inver Hills Community College received an action letter from HLC indicating Inver Hills Community College's accreditation status has been continued with the next comprehensive evaluation occurring in or before 2026-2027 and no interim or monitoring reports required.

Inver Hills Community College was eligible to select its next pathway to reaffirmation of accreditation (Standard, open or AQIP). A committee of representatives across the college determined Inver Hills Community College would select the AQIP pathway for its next eight year cycle, 2017-2025.

About AQIP

Inver Hills Community College is committed to continual improvement. The Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) is one of three pathways to reaffirmation of accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). AQIP employs a quality-improvement model. Inver Hills was admitted to AQIP on Nov. 22, 2002.

The Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) is an eight-year cycle for reaffirmation of accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). AQIP is premised on principles of continuous quality improvement, and its various processes and requirements are designed to assist institutions in achieving quality improvement, along with reaffirming the institution’s accredited status with the HLC once every AQIP cycle. Many institutions have reported transforming their quality cultures since embarking on the AQIP Pathway.

The eight–year AQIP cycle includes five review systems:

  1. Annual Institutional Update
  2. Annual Action Projects
  3. Systems Portfolio Review and Appraisal
  4. Strategy Forum
  5. Comprehensive Quality Review (CQR) including Federal Compliance Review

AQIP at Inver Hills Community College

Each year since the most recent reaffirmation of accreditation, Inver Hills has submitted an Annual Institutional Update to HLC and has had three action projects annually.

In June 2014, Inver Hills Community College submitted its AQIP Systems Portfolio and in September 2014, Inver Hills received its Systems Appraisal Feedback Report.

A team of peer reviewers visited Inver Hills Community College to conduct a Comprehensive Quality Review (CQR) visit March 20-22, 2017 as the final step in reaffirming the College's accreditation in this cycle.

Preparations for the Comprehensive Quality Review Visit

Inver Hills Community College began preparing for the spring 2017 Comprehensive Quality Review visit in fall 2015 through the work of the college's Institutional Effectiveness Committee. Throughout fall 2015 and spring 2016, members of the IEC worked to assess evidence that the College is meeting expectations regarding HLC's Assumed Practices and Criteria for Accreditation and Core Components.

In addition, in summer 2016, the College began working on the Federal Compliance Filing component of the CQR. The Federal Compliance Filing demonstrates the College's compliance with federal mandates, HLC policies, and Title IV program responsibilities. Subject matter experts throughout the College gathered evidence to contribute to the Federal Compliance Filing document. The Federal Compliance Filing was submitted to HLC in January 2017.

In fall 2016, the College began working on the Quality Highlights document and the Portfolio Addendum. The Quality Highlights document provides new information and updates that were not available when the Systems Portfolio was submitted in 2014. The Quality Highlights document was submitted to the Higher Learning Commission in early February, 2017.

The Portfolio Addendum document contains information describing how the institution meets the criteria for accreditation. Subject matter experts throughout the College gathered evidence, reviewed and offered comments throughout the writing process. The Portfolio Addendum document was submitted to the Higher Learning Commission in early February 2017.

For more details on the timeline and preparations for the Comprehensive Quality Review, click here.

About the Higher Learning Commission

The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) is an independent corporation founded in 1895 as one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. HLC accredits degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in 19 states in the North Central region, including Minnesota.

Higher Learning Commission
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
Chicago, IL 60604

AQIP Systems Portfolio June 2014

The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Peer Review Team has reviewed the Inver Hills Community College AQIP Systems Portfolio. The college's Systems Appraisal Feedback Report was delivered to the campus community in late 2014.

Program Accreditation

Accounting and Business

The Accounting, Contemporary Business and Contemporary Business Practice programs have been granted full accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

Emergency Medical Services

The Emergency Medical Services program has been awarded national accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs.


The Nursing program is approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).


The Paralegal program is approved by the American Bar Association. Learn more by visiting Current ABA Definition of Legal Assistant/Paralegal and Approval Process Materials.

NACEP Accreditation

Inver Hills Community College received accreditation through the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP) in May 2018. The program accredits institutions that demonstrate high levels of academic oversight for college courses taught by high school instructors.

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