Glossary of Key AAQEP Terms

AAQEP liaison An individual designated by AAQEP to facilitate a member cohort and assist member providers through the quality assurance review process.
Accreditation Action Report An official record of actions taken by the AAQEP Accreditation Commission on a provider’s case. This report is posted publicly on the AAQEP website.
Accreditation Commission The decision-making authority for AAQEP. Determines accreditation status for a provider based on its Quality Assurance Report and Quality Review Team Report.
accreditation decision Ruling by the Accreditation Commission, based on the Quality Assurance Report and Quality Review Team Report, marking the conclusion of a quality assurance review.
Accreditation Proposal An optional step in the AAQEP process whereby providers can submit a plan 2-3 years prior to their site visit outlining proposed evidence for meeting Standards 1 and 2, plans for ensuring data quality, and contextual challenges and innovations; trained peer reviewers provide constructive feedback.
accreditation status Renewable award granted by the Accreditation Commission affirming a program meets AAQEP's standards; carries a term of 7 years.
advanced preparation program A program leading to a degree, license, endorsement, or certification in an education field for candidates who have already completed initial preparation.
adverse action Denial or revocation of accreditation by the Accreditation Commission; indicates that a program does not meet one or more of AAQEP’s standards.
ambassador A volunteer who has a deep familiarity with AAQEP’s process and philosophy and supports the organization and its members in a variety of ways. Ambassadors assist with presentations, facilitate conversations among providers, and serve as spokespeople for AAQEP based on their own experience with the process.
Annual Report A provider’s yearly update to AAQEP on the context and work of relevant programs. For accredited providers, the Annual Report addresses how the quality affirmed in the most recent accreditation decision is being maintained or enhanced and what steps providers are taking toward continuous improvement to address opportunities identified in their Quality Assurance Report and/or Accreditation Action Report.
aspect One of six constituent dimensions of each AAQEP standard. Evidence related to each aspect of a standard must be part of the evidence set for the standard. Aspects are integral to the standard, not separable components or elements to be judged independently.
Aspect-Evidence Tables Templated tables in a provider’s Quality Assurance Report, giving readers a road map for understanding the use of evidence in the report. A template and instructions are available on AAQEP’s website.
candidate A person enrolled in a program with the intent of becoming a credentialed professional educator or of adding one or more additional credentials in order to take on a new role as an education professional.
clarification questions Based on the Quality Review Team’s read of the provider’s Quality Assurance Report, the Off-Site Review Report identifies these areas to be addressed by the provider before or at the beginning of the on-site review.
clinical experience Educator candidates’ engagement in authentic educational settings appropriate to the degree or credential being sought, supported by coursework and supervision that gradually releases them to independent practice.
cohort A group of provider representatives who share an AAQEP liaison and may participate in a joint monthly check-in call to receive updates, ask questions, and, to the extent desired, provide mutual support and feedback.
commendation Notation that the Accreditation Commission may attach to an accreditation action (decision); a commendation is awarded when evidence shows outstanding performance on one or more aspects of a standard or on a standard as a whole.
comment Notation that the Accreditation Commission may attach to an accreditation action (decision); a comment calls attention to a finding of program strength that is noteworthy but not so significant or pervasive as to warrant a commendation.
completer A candidate who has successfully finished a preparation program.
concern Notation that the Accreditation Commission may attach to an accreditation action (decision); a concern is a relatively minor or restricted shortcoming in relation to one or more aspects of a standard. Evidence regarding progress in addressing concerns must be presented in the provider’s Annual Report.
condition Notation that the Accreditation Commission may attach to an accreditation action (decision); a condition indicates a significant problem that threatens a provider’s ability to meet a standard and that thus requires immediate action. Notation of one condition may allow full accreditation, but evidence of the condition’s resolution must be provided within 2 years. The noting of two conditions, however, leads to the award of a probationary 2-year term of accreditation. Failure to resolve any condition in 2 years results in adverse action.
criteria for success A provider's stated expectations for candidate or completer performance, either defined by the provider itself or specified by an external authority, such as for state licensure examinations.
expectations framework A document defining AAQEP’s four standards, their associated aspects, and evidence requirements.
initial accreditation status Nonrenewable award granted by the Accreditation Commission affirming a program meets AAQEP's standards; carries a term of 5 years.
initial preparation program A program leading to a candidate’s first degree, license, endorsement, or certification in an education field; may include graduate programs.
internal audit A process in which a provider identifies its system’s quality controls and evaluates them to ensure they are working as intended. A report on internal quality controls is included as Appendix D to the Quality Assurance Report.
local practitioner A provider-selected representative from the field who completes AAQEP training and serves as a member of the Quality Review Team. The practitioner has relevant experience (in a role such as a practicing or recently retired teacher, administrator, counselor, or other as appropriate to the programs seeking accreditation) and familiarity with the program and its completers.
observation Notation that the Accreditation Commission may attach to an accreditation action (decision); an observation offers relatively neutral, nonevaluative feedback to the provider.
Off-Site Review Report A document produced by the Quality Review Team during the off-site review based on team members’ reading of the provider’s Quality Assurance Report. The Off-Site Review Report includes a draft summary and specification of the case along with clarification questions for the provider to address prior to or at the beginning of the site visit.
peer reviewer An AAQEP-trained volunteer who takes part in the quality assurance review process as either a proposal reviewer or a quality assurance reviewer.
probationary accreditation status Award granted by the Accreditation Commission affirming a program meets AAQEP’s standards but has two conditions that must be resolved within 2 years.
program A set of academic courses and experiences required by an educator preparation provider that leads to (a) recommendation for state licensure, certification, or endorsement or (b) additional expertise in the area(s) indicated by the academic degree(s).
Program Specification Table A standard format for reporting a provider’s specific programs reviewed by AAQEP, including each program’s name, level, and corresponding state license or certificate (if any) along with enrollment and productivity data. Included in the Accreditation Proposal, Quality Assurance Report, Quality Review Team reports, Annual Report, and Accreditation Action Report. A template for the table is available on AAQEP’s website along with sample entries.
Proposal Review Form The document used by proposal reviewers to jointly record feedback on a provider’s Accreditation Proposal.
proposal reviewer An AAQEP-trained volunteer who reads a provider’s Accreditation Proposal and engages in one to two rounds of feedback and other communication with the provider and the proposal's second reviewer.
provider An institution or organization that provides one or more educator preparation programs. In the AAQEP model, membership is generally held by providers.
Quality Assurance Report Self-study documenting the provider’s evidence that it meets the AAQEP standards. The report includes an overview of programs’ scope and context, evidence to support the claim that they meet each of the four standards, and designated appendices.
quality assurance review The peer-review segment of the AAQEP accreditation cycle; includes off-site and on-site review and culminates in an accreditation decision.
quality assurance reviewer An AAQEP-trained volunteer who serves as a peer reviewer in off-site and on-site components of the quality assurance review process.
Quality Review Team A group consisting of AAQEP-trained quality assurance reviewers who conduct a quality assurance review. Teams include reviewers who fill the role of a team lead and a local practitioner nominated by the provider. The size of the QRT is based on the size and complexity of the program(s) under review. A typical team consists of three to five individuals.
Quality Review Team Report Report authored by reviewers summarizing the team’s findings after the site visit. A draft of the report is shared with the provider for factual correction; the final report is shared with both the provider and the AAQEP Accreditation Commission.
site visit liaison An AAQEP staff member assigned to a particular quality assurance review to support the Quality Review Team and provider throughout the process. The site visit liaison observes the virtual off-site review meetings and the exit meeting (conducted at the end of the site visit) for consistency.
site visit observer An individual granted permission by a provider to attend the on-site review.
third-party comment Feedback collected from the public and various stakeholders about a provider 4-6 months prior to the site visit that becomes part of the provider’s case record.  
training modules Online professional learning provided by AAQEP to prepare volunteers consistently for their peer-review roles.
working groups Ad hoc bodies of interested stakeholders in educator preparation convened by AAQEP to develop recommendations for the organization’s standards, processes, and practices.