AACSB International–The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is a nonprofit association of approximately 900 educational institutions, corporations, and other organizations dedicated to the promotion and improvement of higher education in management, accounting, and business administration. AACSB International serves as a professional association for college and university management education and as the leading accrediting agency for bachelor, master, and doctoral degree programs in business administration and accounting around the world.
One of the primary functions of AACSB International is the accreditation of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in business administration and accounting. The association's demanding accreditation process begins with institutional self-evaluation, whereby a school assesses its own accomplishments relative to its stated mission and AACSB's accreditation criteria. AACSB International accreditation also requires a peer review, during which external analysts examine and evaluate the school's education programs, curriculum and faculty, assessment systems, and plans for growth and improvement.
In addition to its accreditation program, AACSB organizes and conducts a variety of professional development programs for faculty and staff of management and business administration schools. AACSB International also sponsors an annual two-day conference attended by more than 1,000 educators from around the world. The conference includes exhibits, presentations, special events, affinity-group meetings, and discussions of important issues in management, business administration, and accounting education. Other AACSB International meetings include the Dean's Conference and the New Deans Seminar for deans and other administrators of business schools; a two-day biennial Public and Media Relations Conference for business school public relations personnel; and the Business School Development Conference, which trains business school administrators about strategies for raising funds from foundational and corporate sources. AACSB International also helps organize the Global Forum on Management Education. Held every five years, this conference brings together administrators and educators from business schools around the world, heads of corporate education and training programs, and corporate executives to discuss the advancement and practice of business and management education worldwide.
AACSB International's Knowledge Services program collects, collates, and disseminates statistical and analytical information about business schools around the world. Information available from Knowledge Services includes salary surveys and demographic analyses of business school faculty and staff; student, staff, and alumni satisfaction surveys; and Effective Practice reports featuring analyses and comparisons of the career services, curriculum, and instruction offered by various MBA programs.
AACSB International also sponsors affinity groups to facilitate the communication and networking of member institutions with common interests and goals. Affinity groups meet at AACSB International conferences and seminars, establish e-mail networks, schedule their own meetings at times and locations convenient to group members, and post information on the AACSB web site. Each affinity group is also assigned an AACSB International staff liaison to help with record-keeping, program and meeting planning, and communications. In 2001, AACSB International affinity groups included the Small School Network group, the Metropolitan Schools group, the Woman Administrators in Management Education group, the MBA for Working Professionals group, and the Associated New American Colleges group. Institutions which are not members of AACSB International may participate in affinity groups if they are sponsored by an AACSB member.
AACSB International maintains relationships with business and management organizations around the world, and sponsors periodic educational exchange programs. Since 1993, AACSB International and Keizai Koho Center, a Japanese business organization, have sponsored an annual ten-day tour of Japan, during which AACSB members can study Japanese management techniques, corporate reforms, industrial technology, and business traditions. Tour participants also meet with Japanese business leaders, academics, and government officials.
AACSB International issues numerous print and electronic reports, surveys, accreditation manuals, curriculum guides, and guides to undergraduate and graduate business and management programs. Other publications include Newsline, the association's monthly newsletter, and BizEd, a bimonthly magazine that covers trends, practices, and issues in management education and training. AACSB also sponsors the Management Education Career Marketplace, an online job search and placement service with listings of open positions and resumes from those seeking jobs in business and management education.
AACSB International was organized in 1916 by seventeen leading American colleges and universities. The new organization began its accreditation function in 1919 when it adopted its first standards for business degree programs. AACSB standards for programs in accountancy were established in 1980, with new standards and a peer review process adopted in 1991. By 2002, AACSB International membership included about 650 American institutions of higher education, nearly 200 institutions of higher education in forty-nine foreign countries, and about fifty corporate and nonprofit organizations around the world. Formerly known as the International Association for Management Education or American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business, the association officially changed its name to AACSB International–The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business in April 2001.
See also: Business Education.
AACSB International. 2002. <www.aacsb.edu>.
Judith J. Culligan
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