University of Puget Sound is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). You can learn more about the NWCCU and accreditation at

Campus building walkway

Accreditation by the NWCCU is not permanent nor awarded for a fixed number of years. Rather, accreditation must be reaffirmed periodically through a process of self evaluation and peer evaluation grounded in the commission's Standards for Accreditation. Review or evaluation occurs at specific points during a seven-year cycle. The current standards require a Mid-Cycle Review in year three; a Policies, Regulations and Financial Review (PRFR) in year six; and the Evaluation of Institutional Effectiveness (EIE) in year seven. Each of these requires a self-evaluation report written by the institution followed by an on-site visit of peer evaluators. The peer evaluators submit a written evaluation which is shared with the Commission, who review both reports and take action of either reaffirming accreditation, asking for additional information, or taking other action. 

The links below are for internal use only at the University of Puget Sound, and are not for public dissemination.


2024 Policies, Regulations, and Finances Review

Puget Sound’s Policies, Regulations, and Finances Review (PRFR) was submitted to NWCCU in February 2024. The PRFR is submitted during year six of the institution's seven-year accreditation cycle and focuses on Standard Two: Governance, Resources, and Capacity.

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2021 Mid-Cycle Review

Puget Sound’s Mid-Cycle Review took place in Spring 2021 and included an institutional report and a peer evaluation. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the visit was virtual, and an onsite visit will be arranged when it can be done safely. The purpose of the Mid-Cycle Review is to provide feedback to the institution in preparation for the Evaluation of Institutional Effectiveness, and focuses on student achievement and program assessment. In 2021, Puget Sound profiled the Core Curriculum and the Gender and Queer Studies program. 

2019 Year One Mission and Core Themes Report

In 2019, under the previous standards, Puget Sound submitted a Year One Mission and Core Themes Report. The Commission reviewed that report and reaffirmed our accreditation.

2017 Demonstration Project

Under the 2010 Standards, Puget Sound was scheduled to have a Year Seven comprehensive evaluation in 2017. As part of the commission's efforts to improve evaluation processes, Puget Sound was invited to take part in a demonstration project in lieu of a regular Year Seven evaluation. Beginning in December 2014, we worked with the commission and three other institutions-Columbia Basin College, University of Montana, and University of Oregon-to develop and test variations on the evaluation process. Therefore, our self evaluation report is in the form of a demonstration project report submitted to the commission in March 2017. Following that submission two peer evaluators-the provosts of Lewis & Clark College and Rocky Mountain College-visited campus in April 2017 to review the report and meet with members of the campus community to learn more about our work. Based on their review of our report and their visit, the peer evaluators submitted their independent report to the commission. As a final step in the process, Puget Sound representatives appeared before the NWCCU Board of Commissioners in June 2017 to address questions and discuss both Puget Sound's accreditation and lessons learned from the demonstration project. On the basis of our self evaluation report, the peer evaluation report, and the board appearance, the commission reaffirmed Puget Sound's accreditation in a July 2017 letter.

2018 Ad Hoc Report

Per the July 2017 NWCCU letter, Puget Sound was asked to continue addressing Recommendation 1 from the 2013 Year Three evaluation, with an ad hoc report due to the commission in Spring 2018. This recommendation concerned 2010 Standard 2.C.2:

“The institution identifies and publishes expected course, program, and degree learning outcomes. Expected student learning outcomes for courses, wherever offered and however delivered, are provided in written form to enrolled students.”

The Year Three recommendation itself reads:

“The Evaluation Committee recommends that the University of Puget Sound take action to ensure that intended student learning outcomes are listed in all syllabi and in all program descriptions.”

While Puget Sound published degree and program learning outcomes, some work remained to ensure expected course learning outcomes are provided in written form for all courses.

The ad hoc response was submitted in March 2018, with notification that the recommendation was addressed and no further action required. 

2018 Puget Sound Ad Hoc Report (PDF)
2018 Puget Sound Ad Hoc Commission Action (PDF)

Verification Letter

For the purposes of external reporting, a letter verifying Puget Sound’s accreditation is available.