Ashford University Receives Extensions from HLC

On July 27, 2012, Ashford University received a letter from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges (HLC) updating and modifying previously announced deadlines related to the University’s compliance with HLC’s jurisdictional requirements, as well as the requirement for the University to provide a report and host a site visit as part of the special monitoring process. 

With respect to HLC’s jurisdictional requirements, the letter specified that Ashford University will be required to provide HLC with an implementation plan on or before December 1, 2012 that demonstrates how the University will comply with HLC’s policy on substantial presence in the event that a migration to the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) either will not occur or is significantly delayed.  

The HLC Board of Trustees will review the implementation plan at its February 2013 meeting to determine whether it is acceptable. If Ashford University is required to exercise the implementation plan, it must accomplish the move of its core operations to the 19-state north central region immediately after the anticipated June 2013 WASC decision. 

Separately, in order to ensure that Ashford University has sufficient time to prepare for the HLC Advisory Visit while, simultaneously, providing timely information to the visiting team, the letter states that the University will be permitted to provide its report demonstrating compliance with HLC’s Criteria for Accreditation and Core Components in two phases. Rather than the original August 10, 2012 deadline, at which time the full report would be due, the first phase of the University report will now be due by August 31, 2012, with the second phase due by September 21, 2012. Additionally, the Advisory Visit will be postponed to the week of October 22, 2012, with the caveat that the visit date may need to be adjusted due to the availability of the Advisory Visit team members. 

Ashford University believes it is in substantial compliance with the HLC accreditation criteria and intends to cooperate fully with HLC in this matter. 

The HLC region includes 19 states from Arizona to West Virginia, including Iowa where Ashford University maintains its residential campus.  

About Ashford University

Ashford University is defining the modern college experience by combining the heritage of a traditional campus with the flexibility and effectiveness of online learning. The University provides a vibrant learning community where high-quality programs and leading-edge technology create a dynamic, immersive and stimulating learning experience. Ashford University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association ( The University offers practical and progressive associate's, bachelor's and masters's degree programs online, as well as bachelor's degree programs at its Clinton, Iowa, campus.  Ashford University - where heritage meets innovation.  For more information, please visit or call Shari Rodriguez, associate vice president of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.