Posted on 08-Jan-18
Accreditation Tip of the Month - Documenting Processes in Your Application image

One of the most common exchanges between an applicant and the IACET reviewers is the return of an application due to some deficiency in documented processes.  The application for initial accreditation asks for the provider to submit to the reviewers, processes for most aspects of the instructional design and delivery functions of the organization.  These processes are what make up most of the day to day work flow for the people in the training/education department of the organization.

As an accreditor, IACET examines the processes that are submitted for their thoroughness.  The process submitted should contain the following elements:

  • When the process is used (Is there a triggering event or is it a set date on calendar)
  • Who does the process (what is that employee’s title and role in the organization)
  • What are the steps involved in the process (be explicit, as if you training someone)
  • What tools are used as a part of the process (checklists or forms)

When an application is sent back to the provider, it is often due to a weakness in one or more aspects of the process described.

When you draft a new process, it would be a good practice to have someone outside of the training/education department to review it.  Often fresh eyes can help fine tune something that comes so automatically to you.  This familiarity most providers have with the process is also often one of the greatest hindrances in getting them down on paper thoroughly.  When the process you are trying to document is so much a part of what you day to day, it can be hard to break it down step by step.  Think about teaching a teenager to drive or child to tie their shoe, these are process that we engage in everyday and yet at some point we have had to break them down to a step by step set of instructions. 

The process can then be written as a narrative or displayed graphically through a flow chart.  Take care in putting a flow chart together as often there can be too little instruction and flow charts by nature have little text.  Be sure that your documented process includes the elements outlined above and that it could serve as a job aid or training tool for a new person to perform that process.


About the Author

Teri LaliberteTeri LaliberteMA is IACET's Director of Accreditation and Special Projects. Teri's work with adult learners as a trainer, teacher and mentor spans more than 25-years.  The early part of her teaching career was spent teaching English (ESL) internationally.  After earning a Master’s in Applied Linguistics, she lived in Turkey and Poland teaching at the University level.  Teri served as Director for English as a  second language programs with the University of Cincinnati, Northern Illinois University (with ELS Language Centers) and as a District Director oversaw the programs at many more partner universities.  While partnering with Universities she worked with the language programs involving a number of accrediting organizations.  Moving from the academic world to the association world she developed a train the trainer program and worked to standardize the training for her former employer, The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE,) in addition to developing a global trainer program.  Teri can be reached at


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