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The Value of Accreditation

NCOPE’s accreditation process is a valuable service to students, the education and residency programs, the profession, and the public. These processes benefit each group of stakeholders in a different way:

  • Students are able to identify those O&P educational and residency programs that meet their chosen profession’s standards for a quality, relevant education. Graduation from an accredited program is required for certification.

  • Educational Programs benefit from the self-evaluation and self-directed improvement provided by the accreditation process. Accreditation status increases opportunities for public and private funding for both the institution and its students.

  • Residency Programs contribute to the continuing education of future O&P professionals. These programs provide students with a structured experience designed to develop competent independent practitioners based upon established standards and guidelines. Completion of an accredited residency program is required for certification.

  • The profession benefits from its members’ vital input into the standards established for education of entry-level O&P professionals. A commitment to excellence in O&P practice is reinforced since the accreditation process unites practitioners, instructors and students in an activity directed toward continual improvement of O&P education.

  • The public is assured that accredited O&P education and residency programs are evaluated extensively and conform to general expectations of the O&P profession. Through the accreditation process the public can be assured the educational quality of the programs remains current and reflects changes in O&P knowledge and practice. This assurance is important to the patients who use O&P services and their families.

The Association of Specialized and Professional Accreditors (ASPA) has created a brief video explaining the importance of accreditation.  Click on the image above to view the video.