Accreditations Accreditations

LBM AACSB process in brief
LUT School of Business and Management seeks international recognition for the quality of its education by aiming at receiving a school-wide accreditation from AACSB (The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business).

What is AACSB?
AACSB accreditation is a leading organization assessing the quality of business schools worldwide. It constitutes a network of 1,600 member organizations and 800 accredited business schools. Approx. 5 % of the business schools in the world are accredited by AACSB, including most of the top business schools in the US.

What does the AACSB do?
AACSB challenges business schools to continuous improvement of education, research, programs, faculty, stakeholder relationships and processes of the school in general.

AACSB accreditation consists of 15 standards. The main areas being evaluated are strategic management of the business school, participants (students, faculty and professional staff) and the quality of programs and student learning.

Accreditation process
Accreditation processes are long and it takes typically several years to gain initial accreditation. After successful initial accreditation the accreditation has to be renewed every fifth year in order to prove the quality of continuous improvement. The evaluation is based on the self-assessment report written by the school as well as documentation and information exchanged in the external evaluation conducted by AACSB peer-review team. The process itself is a learning experience for all the faculty and administrators involved. Additional support is provided by a mentor appointed by AACSB and peers in the AACSB network.

Why?
Although accreditations are a lot of work, they will pay off sooner or later. They have an increasingly significant role in the competitive higher education markets, especially in the field of business and management education where accreditations are becoming a standard themselves.

Accredited degrees look better on the students’ CVs as they verify to the potential employees that the student has graduated from a high quality business school where the education matches also with international standards.

The school on the other hand will benefit by being able to build better quality international partner networks, attracting new international faculty, international degree students and by improving the processes and brand of the business school.

Accreditation also facilitates the development of systematic processes for assessing the student learning on a program level. In other words, building mechanisms, which guarantee that students meet each program level learning goals and objectives set. As a result, the transparency of assessment will increase. In practice this means that program directors will have better data on student learning and better possibilities to identify potential problem areas for example in the curriculum structure, content or teaching methods used. Assessment of learning processes will verify that areas of improvement needs are recognized and corrective actions implemented.

When?
LBM has received eligibility to apply for the accreditation in July 2018, the initial self-assessment report was accepted in December 2020 and LBM is now in the process of applying for initial peer-review visit to be most likely organized at the beginning of year 2022.

Further details: Head of Degree Program Hanna Salojärvi, hanna.salojarvi@lut.fi