U.S.Department of Education Staff Report
Senior Department Official on Recognition Compliance Issues
The American Optometric Association, Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE) accredits professional optometric degree (O.D.) programs and optometric residency programs.
The agency currently accredits 23professional optometric degree programs and 213 optometric residency programs. In addition, the agency preaccredits 2 professional optometric degree program. These programs are all located throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.
The ACOE is a programmatic accreditor, and consequently is not required to meet the Secretary’s “separate and independent” requirements. The agency’s programs use the agency’s accreditation to enable them to establish eligibility for federal programs under the Title VII Public Health Service Act and for participation in the Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health Administration education and training program for optometry residency programs.
The Department received no complaints regarding the agency during the recognition period and no third party comments regarding the agency's renewal petition.
The American Optometric Association was on the first list of nationally recognized accrediting agencies published in 1952, and has received periodic renewal of recognition since that time. ACOE was last reviewed for recognition in the Spring of 2013. At which time, the Senior Department Official required the agency to come into compliance within 12 months, and submit a compliance report that demonstrates the agency's compliance with the issues identified in the staff analysis. The agency's compliance report submission was reviewed at the Spring 2015 NACIQI meeting, which resulted in the agency’s continued recognition for a period of two and one half years. The agency's review for continued recognition is the subject of this analysis.
The agency meets the requirements of the Secretary's Criteria for Recognition.
The Department did not receive any written third - party comments regarding this agency.