16. Standard Operating Procedures
16.1. Consistency of Application
The COE is committed to consistency in application of the 11 Standards used as a basis for veterinary college accreditation. Because of turnover in COE membership and the potential for variation in individual interpretations of the standards, the Council provides several means to ensure a clear understanding of member responsibility and interpretation of documentation in making accreditation decisions.
16.2. Database Retrieval
Staff of the Division of Education and Research, along with the Chair of the COE, maintain a database on interpretation of site visit results and outcomes. The database uses information from the past ten years of accreditation history and will be evolutionary as new sites are visited and data entered. Use of the database ensures that similar situations and concerns are subject to analogous interpretation. Factual information from the database is used in evaluating similar situations (standard findings) at differing locations (colleges). Further, this activity ensures consistency of application of policy in making accreditation decisions.
Orientation and annual training for COE members and initial and annual training for site team members is conducted using in-person training sessions, videotapes, a training manual, and online presentations. The training ensures a common understanding of standard interpretation and site visit conduct. AVMA staff accompanies all site teams to provide reference and consistency.
The Council maintains complete records of each veterinary medical college or school indefinitely. The records are confidential and include reports of evaluation, annual interim reports, self-study and reaccreditation reports, and all related correspondence. These files are available for inspection by representatives of the Department of Education.
16.5. Sharing Information
The Council shares information related to the accreditation or preaccreditation status of a veterinary medical program, and/or any adverse action taken, with appropriate accrediting agencies and state agencies.