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The Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) is one of the four commissions operated by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).

Headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, the CAC is responsible for reviewing educational programs specifically for the technical disciplines of computer science. The CAC will accredit bachelor’s degrees preparing students for the computing profession. Under the leadership of a Board of Directors, the CAC makes the final decisions to determine whether computer science degrees meet their high curricular standards. Accreditation from the CAC can be voluntarily pursued by any university’s computer science department.

CAC-accredited programs are currently offered in 46 states, excluding Hawaii, Delaware, Vermont, and Rhode Island. There’s even one online bachelor’s degree accredited by the CAC at Regis University in Colorado.

If you’re studying computer science, here’s everything you must know about the CAC.

Criteria Reviewed by the CAC

Each accreditation cycle, the Commission will review applicant universities based on certain  academic criteria . Perhaps the most crucial factor considered is student performance. The CAC will evaluate whether the computer science program fosters success by the retention rate, job placement rate, and attainment of educational objectives. The CAC will pore over the curriculum to determine if there’s an optimal balance of general education, major core, and electives. Preparing students with courses relevant to the modern 21st century is key. Programs pursuing CAC accreditation must demonstrate good faculty credentials, including ongoing professional development and certification. The CAC will also evaluate the program’s access to state-of-the-art classrooms and computer labs.

Importance of CAC Accreditation

Whether you wish to become a software engineer, network architect, programmer, web developer, or systems analyst, having an accredited computer science degree is essential. CAC accreditation is legitimate proof that the bachelor’s program produces graduates ready to enter the computing industry. Graduates with accredited degrees are often given preference by employers due to their solid educational background. Students can be confident that their CAC-accredited degree is reputable and will transfer credits into future training. Many certification programs, including Lean Six Sigma, require having attended an accredited college. Students at regionally accredited colleges with CAC or ABET accreditation are also eligible to apply for federal loans and grants.

Finding an Accredited Program

There are currently 844 universities worldwide featuring approval from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The best way to narrow down the results for CAC-accredited degrees is through this  accredited program search . In the “Program Name” box, type in “computer science.” Then check the box for four-year bachelor’s programs. You can either view all programs in the United States or filter by your state of residence. Your search results will yield listings of the university’s name, location, degree type, and accreditation date. Don’t simply trust colleges who promote CAC accreditation on their website because the so-called “diploma mills” can use malicious marketing. Go right to the Computing Accreditation Commission for true university facts.

The CAC is an important commission of the ABET that’s responsible for leading the on-campus evaluation visits for programs in computer science. CAC program evaluators interview students, faculty, and administrators to ensure the programs meets high institutional standards. Programs accredited by the CAC are considered the best of the best in the computing industry. Prepare yourself for lifetime success in your computing career by selecting a bachelor’s program granted approval from the Computing Accreditation Commission.

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