The Hussman School of Journalism and Media was granted provisional accreditation status by an international professional journalism evaluation agency, according to an email from interim dean Heidi Hennink-Kaminski.
The decision was the result of a vote on April 29 made by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications.
The ACEJMC reviews accredited journalism schools every six years to ensure the schools are continuing to follow the council’s standards. After the evaluative process is complete, programs receive one of the following evaluations: accredited/reaccredited, provisional or denial.
The Hussman school was routinely reviewed in October 2021. The council found that the journalism school was out of compliance with its standard involving diversity and inclusiveness after its routine review of the school. It also found issues of concern involving the council's standard relating to mission, governance and administration.
However, the accrediting site team still recommended reaccreditation and the ACEJMC Accrediting Committee voted unanimously 12-0, with two recusals, to affirm the site team's recommendation in March. The recommendation was then sent to the ACEJMC Accrediting Council for review.
Provisional accreditation means that the Hussman school is still accredited as it undergoes the necessary changes needed to meet the standards of the accreditation council.
“Our policies state that a unit may receive provisional accreditation when the Council has found weaknesses that can be corrected within two years,” Peter Bhatia, president of the Accrediting Council and editor of the Detroit Free Press, said in a May 10 letter to Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz.
After two years have passed, the ACEJMC will revisit the Hussman school and conduct a follow-up investigation. This investigation will lead to a decision to either re-accredit the school or revoke its accreditation.
When a school is provisionally accredited, the council president sends a letter to the institution's chief administrator detailing the program's deficiencies.