Accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) is an important “seal of approval” for program quality and continuous improvement. The SCU accounting program is one of the only five AACSB-accredited programs in California and the only accredited accounting program in Northern California. In March 2021, we hosted an AACSB peer review team for the Continuous Improvement Review (CIR) that occurs every five years. During the four-day virtual visit, the peer review team met with various members of our school community, including the accounting faculty and staff, students, Advisory Board members, and the Business School and University leadership team, to discuss the mission, impact, engagement, and innovation of the accounting program. At the end of the visit, the peer review team recommended extending accreditation for the accounting program, and this recommendation was concurred with by the Accounting Accreditation Committee (AAC) and ratified by the AACSB Board of Directors.
The peer review team has commended our department in many areas, including teaching, research, student support, and strong bonds with the business community. For example, the Certificate in Advanced Accounting Proficiency (CAAP) program and the way it is managed “exemplify best practice”. The peer review team also highlighted accounting faculty’s research productivity that competes well with faculty at R1 institutions who have doctoral students as research assistants, the active and effective SCU Accounting Association, and the department’s investment in the Center for Accounting Research and Education (CARE). In addition, the review team commented that the department is well positioned to react and deliver programs that will meet requirements for the forthcoming CPA Exam Evolution model, which will be effective January 2024. During the exit meeting with the University President and Provost, the chair of the peer review team highly praised our department and said that we are "the gold standard that other programs can look to.”
The peer review team also identified areas that the department should address during the coming review cycle. For example, the department needs to continue to improve and develop the assurance of learning process related to data agility. We should also continue to integrate data analytics and technology skills into the curriculum in accordance with the department’s mission.
The next on-site AACSB continuous improvement review will occur in AY 2025-2026.