National vs. Regional Accreditation

Is your college accredited? It is important for you to know the answer to this question, as it may impact the choices you are able to make about your career and your education.


Educational institutions can either be nationally or regionally accredited. Some colleges have both.

As a rule of thumb, regional accreditation organizations are more concerned with academic rigor and overall quality of the program. Nationally accreditation organizations tend to be more career-focused and ensure programs are up-to-date and relevant.

Why Does it Matter?

Perhaps the most important difference between the two is that credits from regionally accredited universities tend to be accepted at most other universities, both regionally and nationally accredited. However, credits from colleges that are only nationally accredited are not likely able to be transferred to other institutions. In the same way, the degree may not be recognized by some employers or educational institutes.

Carefully consider how your decision may impact your future. If you plan on transferring to another school, or pursuing any sort of post-graduate education or certification program, attending a regionally accredited university may be crucial to your success.

Additional Accreditation

In addition, specific programs at universities can also be accredited. This is called Programmatic Accreditation. This is necessary in specific fields like physical therapy, paralegal, engineering, nursing and some other healthcare fields. Research your field to determine what kind of accreditation is necessary, and if you need to be certified in your local region after completing your degree.

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*To learn more about accreditation, go here