The Accrediting Committee on Journalism Education recommended at
a meeting this past weekend that the School of Mass Communication
and Journalism at The University of Southern Mississippi be given
a one-year provisional accreditation status. The Accrediting Council
on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (ACEJMC) will
weigh the recommendation at a meeting April 30- May 1.
been present at the accrediting council's discussions and knowing
exactly what issues they'd like us to address further, I have no
doubt that we will have this fully resolved within the next year,"
said Dr. Elliott Pood, dean of the College of Arts and Letters at
a few programs nationwide receive provisional re-accreditation at
one point or another, and that's simply an indication that there
are couple of items we need to address."
At the start
of the 2001-2002 academic year, the former Department of Journalism
and Department of Radio, Television, and Film merged to form the
School of Mass Communication and Journalism. At that time, the Department
of Journalism held accreditation from the ACEJMC; however, the RTF
Department was not accredited.
2003-2004, is the year during which the Journalism department was
scheduled to be re-evaluated for accreditation. Instead, because
of the merger, the entire School of Mass Communication and Journalism
was reviewed for its initial accreditation as an academic unit.
A self-study was submitted to ACEJMC last fall, and a site visit
took place February 1-4.
team recommended provisional accreditation for the School of Mass
Communication and Journalism at the conclusion of its visit. Accrediting
Council decisions fall into three categories--accreditation, provisional
accreditation, and denial.
of full accreditation or denial of accreditation are self-evident.
A unit may receive provisional accreditation when the council has
found deficiencies that can be corrected in a relatively short time,
at most a year," said Dr. David Goff, director of the Southern
Miss School of Mass Communication and Journalism.
On March 13,
the site-visit team's recommendation was supported unanimously by
the Accrediting Committee of ACEJMC at a meeting in Chicago. The
committee's recommendation goes to the full Accrediting Council
at a meeting in Cambridge, Mass., in May. According to Susanne Shaw,
executive director of ACEJMC, "A program granted provisional
accreditation does not lose any of the privileges of accreditation."
"The accreditation review is a valuable diagnostic tool for
a program. Historically, the former Journalism department was reviewed
for accreditation three times, and received a provisional recommendation
school structure includes elements that had never been reviewed
for accreditation. The fact that we achieved a recommendation for
provisional accreditation in our third year of existence is an affirmation
that we have done well and are on track for a recommendation for
full accreditation in 2005."