IV.6 Appeal Review Committee (ARC)

IV.6.1  Roster of potential members

The ALA President, with the advice and approval of the ALA Executive Board, appoints an ARC to review a COA decision. Committee members are selected from a roster of volunteers maintained by the ALA Office for Accreditation. To be eligible for this roster, individuals must be familiar with the ALA accreditation process (for example, they must be currently active ERP members or former COA members), or must have experience with another accrediting agency (for example, a regional accreditor), or must have attended training sessions about the ALA accreditation and appeal process.

ARC members will receive additional training as needed when an appeal is filed.


IV.6.2  Conflicts of interest for members of the ARC

A person cannot serve on an ARC for any institution at which that person:

  • Received a graduate level degree;
  • Is currently, or has ever been, an employee or paid consultant;
  • Is related to an employee at that institution. Such relationships are defined as relation by blood or marriage and include immediate family, immediate stepfamily or in-laws, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews to the first degree (first cousins, etc.);
  • Served on the COA when it made the last accreditation decision for that program;
  • Served on an ERP for that program within the past ten (10) years; or
  • Has any other interest that he or she believes might prevent their objectivity or might cause a reasonable person to believe that he or she is biased.


IV.6.3  Composition of the ARC

The ARC consists of five (5) members and two (2) alternates. At least two (2) members of the ARC must be educators and two (2) must be practitioners. A person appointed to the ARC will be told which role he or she is filling (educator or practitioner). The ARC members select their own chair.

Each alternate reviews documentation and listens to discussions, but does not participate in the discussions unless another member cannot serve.

The process of appointing an ARC begins when ALA receives the notice of intent to file an appeal. The ALA President appoints the ARC within approximately forty-five (45) calendar days of the receipt of the notice of intent. The appointment process proceeds while the institution and the COA are preparing their documents.


IV.6.4  Appointing the ARC

When the ALA receives the notice of intent, the ALA Executive Office, with help from the Office for Accreditation, identifies all people on the appeal review roster who are eligible to consider the appeal—that is, those without obvious conflicts of interest—and and eliminates those known not to be available at the time of the scheduled meetings. The Office for Accreditation prepares this list within fourteen (14) calendar days of receipt of the notice of intent.

The ALA Executive Director sends the institution and the COA the list of all eligible members with signature of receipt required. Within fourteen (14) calendar days of receipt of the list, each party reviews the list and may ask that individuals be removed for cause (cause must be shown) due to conflict of interest reasons listed above. Each side is allowed two (2) peremptory challenges. The list of challenges is sent to the ALA Executive Director with a copy to the Office for Accreditation. Failure by either party to submit a list of challenges within fourteen (14) calendar days of receipt of the list is deemed a waiver of any grounds for disqualification.

The people on the roster who have not been removed for conflicts of interest or schedule or for peremptory challenge are eligible to review the appeal. The ALA President selects the ARC members from this final list with the advice and approval of the ALA Executive Board. The ARC must be appointed within fourteen (14) calendar days of the receipt of both the institution’s and the COA’s lists of challenges. This is approximately forty-five (45) calendar days after receipt of the notice of intent to file an appeal.