SUNY Cortland's Recreation, Parks & Leisure Studies Department is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Parks, Recreation, Tourism and Related Professions (COAPRT). The program at SUNY Cortland was first accredited in 1990, and is only one of three programs in the state of New York with accreditation status. In addition, it is the only university in the state with four accredited options in addition to the generalist core.
Accreditation is a status granted to an academic institution or program that meets established criteria for education quality. The purpose of accreditation is to assure quality and continual improvement. Accredited programs have undergone a rigorous process of self assessment and peer review and have met standards established by the profession itself as essential to educate graduates for competence in entry level positions in the field.
SUNY Cortland is an accredited program. In addition, the following areas are accredited:
- Leisure/Recreation Program Delivery
- Natural Resources Recreation Management
- Recreation Management
- Therapeutic Recreation
The following data demonstrate how SUNY Cortland's program meets various learning outcomes consistent with COAPRT Standards:
Standard 7.01 - Students graduating from the program shall demonstrate the following entry-level knowledge: a) the nature and scope of the relevant park, recreation, tourism or related professions and their associated industries; b) techniques and processes used by professionals and workers in these industries; and c) the foundation of the profession in history, science and philosophy.
- Agency Visitation and Analysis: Students visit an agency, organization, business, or facility which provides recreation services; interview a professional at the organization to gather information about the site and job; and write a summary report.
- During the 2012-2013 academic year, 83 of 90 students scored 70% or better on this assignment for an outcome success rate of 92%.
Standard 7.02 - Students graduating from the program shall be able to demonstrate the ability to design, implement, and evaluate services that facilitate targeted human experiences and that embrace personal and cultural dimensions of diversity.
- Inclusion Advocate Written Assignments: Students first assess the facility and participants of a local service learning site. Second, they design and deliver programs there. Third, they evaluate their overall experience as an inclusion advocate.
- During the 2012-2013 academic year, 44 of 50 students scored 70% or better on all three Inclusion Advocate Assignments for an outcome success rate of 88%.
Standard 7.03 - Students graduating from the program shall be able to demonstrate entry-level knowledge about operations and strategic management/administration in parks, recreation, tourism and/or related professions.
- Strategic Plan: Students create a strategic plan by producing a mission statement and values for an organization; analyzing services offered; completing a SWOT analysis; and creating goals and objectives for present weaknesses and future threats.
- During the 2012-2013 academic year, 41 of 46 students scored 70% or better on this assignment for an outcome success rate of 89%.
Information on SUNY Cortland's Accreditation
SUNY Cortland is accredited by Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Information on institution-wide assessments are available to prospective students, including graduation, retention, certification and licensing pass rates, and other outcomes as appropriate to the programs offered.
The Council on Accreditation of Parks, Recreation, Tourism and Related Professions (COAPRT) is the only accreditation of recreation, park resources and leisure services curricula recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
For more information on COA accreditation, contact the Council on Accreditation at 800.626.NRPA (6772) or write to:
Council on Accreditation
Professional Services Division
National Recreation and Park Association
22377 Belmont Ridge Road
Ashburn, VA 20148-4501