Accreditation contributes to high quality education and consistently high standards of professional practice in a variety of manners through the potential functions it may perform including:
- a vehicle for organizational change;
- a method to achieve sound quality assurance practices;
- a system for demonstrating accountability to
a) children, youth, and families,
b) students, and
c) child and youth care educators;
- a mechanism to create a community of practice among child and youth care education programs.
There are over 50 publicly funded post-secondary institutions offering Child and Youth Care (CYC)/Child and Youth Work (CYW) education in Canada. CYC/CYW educators believe quality of care and service to young people and their families will be enhanced by setting standards for educational programs, assuring both the public and aspiring professionals that graduates of those programs will have a common base of knowledge and skill that can be directly linked to a child and youth care competency document and the affiliated curriculum. The CYCEAB uses a model that focuses on program outcomes with the intent that graduate outcomes will ultimately affect the quality of life and quality of care received by young people who are served by child and youth care practitioners.
The specific standards and the model have undergone extensive and comprehensive review and adjustment based on the feedback of educators and professional associations across Canada. The model will be implemented in conjunction with existing provincial and institutional program approval and program review processes. As new CYC programs develop and as existing programs undertake their regular cycle of review and evaluation, the model will evolve.
The focus in this accreditation is on outcomes and the use of outcome results by programs. Programs must demonstrate that their institutions have plans in place for assessing educational outcomes. They must show evidence that the results of these assessments have led to the improvement of teaching and learning processes and improved preparation of program graduates to enter professional positions upon graduation.
Who is the Child and Youth Care Educational Accreditation Board of Canada or CYCEAB?
CYCEAB is a not-for-profit corporation that is charged with the accreditation of child and youth care post-secondary programs. CYCEAB accreditation activities document efforts to be accountable to children, youth, and families; to students; and to the profession.
Who can apply for accreditation?
Accreditation is open to all members of CYCEAB.
What is the cost of membership to CYCEAB?
An annual fee of $400.00 pays for membership from January 1 to December 31 of each year. Membership must be retained throughout the accreditation process and to keep accreditation status. Accreditation and membership are separate.
Does CYCEAB have a website where I can get more information?
You will find additional information including an Accreditation Process flowchart under the “Accreditation” tab at www.cycaccreditation.ca.
What is the cost to submit an accreditation application? Is there a deadline?
Please refer to the Accreditation Process flowchart. The application deadline is September 15 annually. Submission of the application should include payment of $250.00. Once the application is accepted, a fee of $5750 is due before an institution initiates the accreditation process. Please contact the CYCEAB office if you have any questions. CYCEAB will invoice as required.
Why does it cost $6000 if CYCEAB is a non-profit organization?
The accreditation fee covers direct and indirect costs of accreditation. Direct costs include the one-on-one service that accreditation applicants or programs undergoing accreditation receive from the Accreditation Coordinator and the stipends paid to the reviewers and three members of the Recommendation Panel. These costs total approximately 68% of each accreditation fee paid to ensure accreditation applicants have the support they need and that qualified reviewers are in place to conduct the site visit and make recommendations to the board on accreditation.
Approximately 32% of the accreditation fee is directed towards operating costs, survey costs, and the services that accrediting programs receive from the Office Manager. In recent years, we have formalized the accreditation process and developed tools such as the Self-Study Guide and the Site Review Guide. Since our inception, we have worked diligently on ensuring our bylaws, policies and procedures, and business processes are robust and meet the needs of CYCEAB and its members. We ensure financial audits are conducted every three years and we meet every spring to discuss future directions and priorities.
Can accreditation fees be paid in installments?
Accreditation fees can be paid in annual installments if the payments begin at least one year before the accreditation year. A payment plan must be identified by the applicant in advance and approved by the CYCEAB Board of Directors.
Who will be my primary contact for the accreditation process? Who do I contact if I have any questions?
Upon an expression of interest to our CYCEAB office (firstname.lastname@example.org), the Accreditation Coordinator will contact you. The CYCEAB office can also answer questions or direct your inquires to the appropriate contact. The Accreditation Coordinator can be reached at email@example.com, 403-393-3574.
My institution is undergoing a program review. How do I align that with the accreditation self-study?
There are options to ensure that institutions do not have to duplicate their work, such as merging the templates for a program review with the CYCEAB self-study template. The Accreditation Coordinator can assist with looking at options.
With respect to CYCEAB, what is a diploma and what is a degree?
Diploma means a two- or three-year postsecondary qualification from a college or university. Degree includes a Bachelors (4 years), Masters, or Doctoral post-secondary qualification.
How long is the accreditation process, from start to finish? What are the deadlines, who sets the deadlines, what if I miss a deadline?
The accreditation process may take up to two years based on the requirements. The CYCEAB will issue a letter to the successful applicant communicating the decision of the board with respect to the approval of the application for accreditation and the date by when the accreditation process is to be completed. This date will allow for 24 months from the time the board makes its decision to accept the application to when it makes its decision on granting accreditation.
The Accreditation Coordinator will support you throughout the accreditation process and as situations arise, they will provide guidance. Some deadlines are self-imposed and others are regulated as described in the Accreditation Process flowchart; e.g., the Reviewers’ Report is due four weeks from the date of the site review. Missed deadlines outside those self-imposed by your institution can be resolved through the Accreditation Coordinator.
Can extensions of the accreditation process be granted?
Please refer to the Policy and Procedure Manual under the Publications tab on the CYCEAB website. A request for extension can be granted when an applicant provides written documentation to CYCEAB clearly detailing the circumstances surrounding the request. An extension can be issued up to a maximum of 90 days, as approved by the Accreditation Coordinator. The Accreditation Coordinator will then report the approval of this extension to the board.
In the case of exceptional circumstances as determined by the Accreditation Coordinator, requests for exceptions and/or accommodations for decision in addition to the 90-day extension are to be submitted via written documentation to the Board of Direct c/o the CYCEAB office. The CYCEAB board will, in turn, objectively determine whether an extension should be granted and provide a written response to the applicant within 10 business days of receiving a request for such an extension.
How much time/resources should I plan for the accreditation process? What should I expect?
First, you should have a primary program contact who can lead the institutional or program process. Resources required depend on the size of the program, the number of people that will be involved, and the time the program team can dedicate to the accreditation process. The Accreditation Coordinator can help you and your program team identify required resources but recognize that unanticipated needs may arise.
What if our program does not meet all the standards … should we still apply? For example, if the CYCEAB requires two courses on “families” and we only have one course, is it even possible to be accredited? Or maybe practicum hours aren’t enough, or maybe a program has a part-time faculty that does not meet the qualifications yet.
Any variations to what is stated in the Self-Study Guide should be discussed prior to your application with the Accreditation Coordinator.
How will I know when we’re ready to apply?
Go to Part One of the application form which can be found at this link: Application Form.
When can I see the surveys? How can we access them?
Once your application is approved by the CYCEAB Board of Directors, and you are ready to initiate the survey process, please contact the Accreditation Coordinator who, in turn, will notify the CYCEAB Office Manager and the Survey Coordinator. They will work with you on a recommended sampling plan and the best surveys to fit your needs.
Can we use our institutions already existing data, like KPI results? Are the CYCEAB surveys mandatory? That is, can I just use what my institution already has in place?
Questions in the accreditation surveys are linked directly to professional practice. This may not be the information gathered in your institution’s surveys. The Accreditation Coordinator can provide guidance.
How long and/or comprehensive is the Self-Study Report which includes the Quality Enhancement Plan?
Please refer to the CYCEAB website for the details on the self-study information to be gathered. And please remember the Accreditation Coordinator is available to work with you.
Who selects the reviewers?
The CYCEAB Accreditation Coordinator provides a list of approved reviewers and the accreditation applicant selects the reviewers and work with the reviewers directly on scheduling the site review. All site reviews are virtual.
How many reviewers are required?
The CYCEAB board has an approved list of reviewers who can complete a site review. Institutions are required to select two reviewers from the approved list and one reviewer must be outside of the institution’s geographical region. Accreditation applicants work with the reviewers to determine dates for the virtual site review that are convenient to both the applicant and the reviewers.
What are the regions as identified by CYCEAB?
West includes British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.
Central and Northern include Ontario, Quebec, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, and Yukon.
East includes Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island.
Are the reviewers compensated for each review?
CYCEAB pays each reviewer a stipend per review.
Is the reviewer compensated for each review?
CYCEAB pays each reviewer a stipend per review.
Who needs to be involved in the site review (faculty, students etc.)?
Please refer to the information provided in the Site Review Guide which is on the CYCEAB website.
Can we send our reports electronically to the reviewers?
Please refer to the Accreditation Process overview. An accreditation applicant provides the Self-Study Report by downloading the digital file(s) to the CYCEAB Team Site. The CYEAB office provides access to this site for the applicant program staff as required.
If successful, how long will our program be accredited before the next round?
Seven (7) years
Membership with the CYCEAB must be maintained throughout this period to retain accreditation status.