Hills Learning is a fully accredited institution by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. What this means is a governing body has come in and observed our classes, facilities, administration, finances, instructors, and overall program and given us the distinction of being an accredited institution.
Generally what this means is that the institution has a quality offering, meaning that our curriculum, teaching methods, assessments, and other parts of our program have been checked by experts in the field. It also means that we are a data driven organization, we have specific objectives that we have set for educational performance for our students and our teachers for the coming years.
Here's a recent history of our accreditation and key dates for the future:
June 2014 - Hills Learning applies to be a candidate for accreditation
July 2014 - After the initial application process and president approval, Hills Learning applies to be a Candidate for Accreditation
November 2014 - Candidacy Approved, and Initial Site Visit Confirmed
February 2015 - Candidacy Site Visit by Middle States Representative to Hills Learning. Multiple recommendations analyzed and condensed into one report for actioning.
April 2015 - Hills Learning Planning Team Established, with one teacher representing each language, and a client representative also nominated
September 2015 - Accreditation Survey Conducted of all students of Hills Learning and employees. 100+ responses received.
October 2015 - Results of survey analyzed by planning team and objectives and action plans proposed for Hills Learning
December 2015 - Objectives Approved by Middle States Association
February 2016 - Site Visit by Middle States Association, two representatives came and interviewed multiple students, teachers and other stake holders of the learning center. The team also analyzed and commented on the accreditation report submitted by Hills Learning (200 page report).
March 2016 - Visiting Team's Report Processed and sent to President for Approval. Recommendations taken under consideration by Hills Learning, but the conclusion by the visiting team is to recommend Hills Learning for accreditation.
May 1, 2016 - Accreditation granted to Hills Learning for a term of 7 years, until May 1 2023
May 1, 2019 - Midterm review due
May 1, 2023 - Reaccreditation
The accreditation objectives are the drivers of Hills Learning's educational program and are reviewed semi-annually by the planning team. Data for each objective is collected and analyzed. Each objective is aimed to be fulfilled by 2023:
- 75% of all students will pass their speaking assessments
- Technical Objective: By 2023, 75% of all students enrolled in a 12 hr class will increase their speaking (based on ACTFL) by one phase level. Data Points: Assessment grades from speaking assessments. Can-Do Statements issued in group classes, where students self assess themselves on each can-do statement at the end of the semester.
- 75% of all students will pass their proficiency assessments (proficiency is listening, reading and writing)
- Technical Objective: By 2023, 75% of all students enrolled in a 12 hr class pass their proficiency tests (70% or greater) Data Points: Assessment grades from proficiency assessments. Can-Do Statements issued in group classes, where students self assess themselves on each can-do statement at the end of the semester.
- 60% of all our students continue taking classes with us
- Technical Objective: By 2023, 60% of all students enrolled in a 12 hr class will continue learning with us as measured by 6 month increments Data Points: Data from active versus inactive students at Hills Learning
- 90% of all classes will be conducted in target language
- Technical Objective: By 2023, Hills Learning classes will use target language only (90% or greater). Data Points: Class observations given by administrators, colleague teachers, and students in feedback forms.
- 60% of class time is STT (Student Talking Time)
- Technical Objective: By 2023, Hills Learning classes will have STT, or Student Talking Time, of (60% or greater). Data Points: Class observations given by administrators, colleague teachers, and students in feedback forms.