Kairos University has the highest levels of accreditation awarded to universities in the United States

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Accreditation is important because it:

  • Requires commitment to serving students well
  • Follows the biblical principle of peer accountability
  • Encourages schools to improve their work and offerings

Types of Accreditation

There are several types of accreditation. The primary ones applicable to theological education are:

Kairos has all of them. In addition to accreditation, Universities in the United States must have state authorization to provide online and distance education across the country. Finally, such agencies require that schools publish certain information. Below you will find a description of the agencies that accredit or authorize Kairos University and the relevant information the university is required to make public.

Institutional Accreditation

Institutional accreditation involves a comprehensive review of all institutional functions. Voluntary, non-governmental, institutional accreditation, is a unique characteristic of education in the United States and Canada. Accreditation is granted by the US Department of Education at the completion of a peer review process, and assures the educational community, the general public, and other organizations that an accredited institution has met high standards of quality and effectiveness.

There are two kinds of institutional accrediting agencies and Kairos University is accredited by both.

Regional Accreditation

Regional accrediting agencies originally requested from the Department of Education a scope, or range of authority, that is limited to institutions whose main campuses are located in a specific region of the United States. They also historically denote high levels of quality. The regional accreditor for Kairos University is the Higher Learning Commission.

230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
Chicago, IL 60602
(800) 621-7440

National Accreditation

National accrediting agencies have requested a scope that extends across the United States. Often national agencies are focused on helping specific types of schools (like seminaries). In recent years, several regional agencies have sought to extend their scope to include the entire US. The National Accreditor for Kairos University is the Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools.

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Pittsburgh, PA 15275
(412) 788-6505

In February 2024, the Board of Commissioners approved an educational experiment to offer the university’s ThD and PhD programs with no residency requirement, utilizing videoconferencing to replace in-person residency intensives.

Specialized and Professional Accreditation

Accrediting agencies that focus on specific aspects of an institution or particular programs are referred to as specialized or professional accreditors. These accreditors are focused on ensuring quality or accountability regarding particular aspects of the school. Kairos University has one for the financial integrity of the institution and one for the Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy program (which was formerly offered through Evangelical Seminary):

Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability

ECFA enhances trust in Christ-centered churches and ministries by establishing and applying Seven Standards of Responsible Stewardship™ to accredited organizations.

Founded in 1979, ECFA provides accreditation to leading Christian nonprofit organizations that faithfully demonstrate compliance with established standards for financial accountability, transparency, fundraising, and board governance.

440 West Jubal Early Drive, Suite 100
Winchester, VA 22601
(800) 323-9473

Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education

The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE) is the national accrediting agency for marriage and family therapy education and training. COAMFTE is also officially recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), which is a non-governmental organization that recognizes accrediting bodies and works to foster and facilitate the role of accrediting bodies in promoting and ensuring the quality and diversity of American postsecondary education.

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Alexandria, Virginia 22314
(703) 838-9808

Denominational Accreditation

Some denominations require schools to be formally approved by the denomination in order for graduates of the school to seek ordination within that denomination. In most cases, however, denominations require students to participate in certain types of learning experiences in order to pursue ordination. Kairos University is approved by:

The University Senate of the United Methodist Church

The University Senate is an elected body of peer professionals in higher education created by the General Conference, designed to work with United Methodist educational institutions. Senators provide consultative support to member schools, colleges, universities and theological institutions, and conduct periodic peer reviews to determine which of these meet the criteria for listing as institutions affiliated with The United Methodist Church.

In addition, students from over 70 different denominations attend Kairos University. The Kairos Project allows students to work closely with any denomination to ensure ordination requirements are fully embedded in their educational journey.

State Authorization

National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement

State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) is a national initiative which seeks to establish comparable national standards for the interstate offering of postsecondary distance-education courses and programs.

Kairos University has been approved to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements.

Global Partnership

Kairos University is an affiliate member of:

The International Council for Evangelical Theological Education (ICETE)

The International Council for Evangelical Theological Education (ICETE) is a global community, sponsored by eight regional associations of theological schools, that enables international interaction and collaboration among all those engaged in the enhancement of evangelical theological education worldwide.

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