HLC Self Study Cover

What is HLC, and why is it important?

The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) was founded in 1895 as one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. HLC accredits degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in the North Central region, which includes the state of Kansas.

HLC has established five Criteria for Accreditation, and evaluates colleges and universities to verify that they are met. The Criteria set forth basic standards in areas such as mission, integrity, educational quality, and resources.

Accreditation is an ongoing process that requires all colleges and universities to be reviewed periodically for reaffirmation of their accreditation. Emporia State University’s affiliation with HLC began in 1915 with its initial accreditation. The university’s next reaffirmation review is scheduled for Spring 2015.

The Self-Study

The university initially “makes its case” for continued accreditation by writing and submitting a Self-Study document. The purpose of the Self-Study is to demonstrate, with evidence, that ESU meets the five Criteria for Accreditation set forth by the Higher Learning Commission. ESU’s Self-Study has been more than a year in the making, and incorporates broad input from faculty members, staff members, and administrators.

The link on this page will take you to ESU’s Self-Study. You will note that one section of the document is devoted to each of the required criteria, and that internal links refer the reader to evidence supporting the university’s compliance with the criteria.

The HLC campus visit: March 23-25, 2015

If the Self-Study is the university’s initial opportunity to “make the case,” then the Comprehensive Evaluation Visit is a culminating process based on peer review. An evaluation team comprising appointees from other HLC-accredited institutions will visit Emporia State University on March 23-25, 2015. Using the Self-Study as its frame of reference, the team will conduct a close observation of ESU’s compliance with the Criteria for Accreditation.

Public comments for HLC reaccreditation

Emporia State University is seeking comments from the public about the university in preparation for its periodic evaluation by its regional accrediting agency. The university will host a visit March 23-25, 2015, with a team representing the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. Emporia State University has been accredited by the Commission since 1915. The team will review the institution’s ongoing ability to meet the Commission’s Criteria for Accreditation.

The public is invited to submit written comments regarding the university to:

Third Party Comment on Emporia State University
The Higher Learning Commission
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
Chicago, IL 60604-1411

Alternatively, the public may submit comments electronically on the Commission’s website at www.ncahlc.org.

Comments must address substantive matters related to the quality of the institution or its academic programs. Comments must be in writing.

All comments must be received by February 23, 2015.

To view the complete study, click here.

HLC Steering Committee

  • Mr. Jason Bosch
  • Dr. Joan Brewer
  • Mr. Rob Catlett
  • Dr. David Cordle
  • Mr. Mike Erickson
  • Dr. Kathy Ermler
  • Mr. Cory Falldine
  • Dr. Shelly Gehrke
  • Dr. Dipak Ghosh
  • Mr. Art Gutierrez
  • Ms. Elaine Henrie
  • Ms. Lynn Hobson
  • Ms. Cynthia Kane
  • Dr. Jo Kord
  • Ms. Diana Kuhlmann
  • Ms. Gwen Larson
  • Dr. Marie Miller
  • Dr. Andrew Smith
  • Dr. R. Brent Thomas
  • Dr. Ken Weaver
  • Dr. Jim Williams
  • Dr. Gary Wyatt

Criterion Committees

Criterion OneCriterion TwoCriterion ThreeCriterion FourCriterion Five
  • Jason Brooks
  • Gonzalo Bruce
  • Jim Costello
  • Kathy Ermler
  • Shelly Gehrke, Chair
  • Heidi Hamilton
  • Steven Hanschu
  • Joyce Zhou
  • Kathy Ermler, Chair
  • Dipok Ghosh
  • Elaine Henrie
  • Kim Massoth
  • Joella Mehrhof
  • Amy Sage-Webb
  • Andrew Smith
  • Jason Bosch
  • Tim Burnett
  • Rob Catlett
  • William Clamurro
  • June Coleman
  • Art Gutierrez
  • Lynn Hobson
  • Kathy Landwehr
  • Jodie Leiss
  • Marie Miller
  • Amy Sage-Webb
  • Ken Weaver, Chair
  • Gary Wyatt
  • Jason Bosch
  • Joan Brewer, Chair
  • Rob Catlett
  • June Coleman
  • Elaine Henrie
  • Marie Miller
  • Gary Wyatt
  • Michael Erickson, Co-Chair
  • Ray Hauke
  • Diana Kuhlmann, Co-Chair
  • Ray Lauber
  • Kevin Rabas
  • Mike Wise


Higher Learning Commission Mark of Affiliation

Criteria for HLC Accreditation

Criteria Overview