Just months after academic restructuring led to the creation of the School of Nursing, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) granted 10 more years of accreditation for the Master’s of Science in Nursing (MSN) and Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN) degrees.
According to Dr. Barbara Ihrke, Executive Director of the IWU School of Nursing, the school’s three divisions “were reviewed and deemed excellent” by the CCNE, a national accreditation agency, serves higher education institutions and acute care hospitals throughout the United States.
The School of Nursing, born out of a re-organization of IWU academic units in 2009, consists of the divisions of Graduate Studies, Post-licensure Nursing Program and Pre-licensure Programs in Nursing.
“The successful preparation, writing and visit were a team effort by the faculty and staff of the newly-created School of Nursing,” said Dr. Ihrke.
The CCNE evaluation was based on four accreditation standards, including mission and governance; program quality as it relates to institutional commitment and resources; program quality as it relates to curriculum, teaching-learning practices, and individual student learning outcomes; and program effectiveness as it relates to aggregate student performance and faculty accomplishments.
Following the process of all accredited programs, the School of Nursing will submit a Continuous Improvement Progress Report (CIPR) at the mid-point of the accreditation term, which extends to 2020.
“The process of working through a self-study reaccreditation experience not only strengthened the programs in the three divisions, but it helped in the maturation process of the School of Nursing,” said Carol Bence, chair of the division of Post-licensure (RNBSN) Nursing program. “The timing was perfect.”
Although unrelated to the accreditation process, the School of Nursing has a vision for a number of new initiatives over the next 10 years. Under discussion is development of a Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) program and an MSN in Global Health Nursing, establishment of an endowed chair of Spiritual and Nursing, creation of a Center for Nursing Research, expansion of global study initiatives and construction of a new School of Nursing facility.
“We look forward to maintaining excellence while we continue to mature as a cohesive, Christ-centered, mission-focused School of Nursing,” said Dr. Ihrke.