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About Accreditation / Accrediting Types
"Making sense of the three kinds of accrediting organizations in the U.S."
Written by Paul Chappell

1. Institutional accreditors accredit entire institutions-that is, all degree programs, schools and delivery systems within an institution. These organizations are categorized as regional or national accreditors. All public postsecondary institutions-from large, prestigious universities to local community colleges-and most private institutions and liberal arts colleges are regionally accredited. CHEA and the USDE recognize two types of national accreditors: faith-related and career-related. Within the faith-related field, four organizations accredit institutions with a distinct religious or spiritual identity or affiliation: the Association for Biblical Higher Education, Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools, and Association of Advanced Rabbinical and Talmudic Schools.

2. Programmatic accreditors accredit specialized professional programs such as a business school, seminary or music school. In most cases, however, these free-standing schools and programs are units within a larger educational structure (college, university) and have sought programmatic accreditation in addition to regional or national comprehensive accreditation. Because of this, most universities and colleges with regional or national accreditation simultaneously have programmatic accreditation for programs within the institution.

3. Non-governmental accrediting is a developing avenue for many churches and ministries offering higher education. This type of accreditation not only allows churches and ministries to retain their constitutional rights of "free exercise" of religion, it also lets a church or ministry's leaders be directly involved with their institution-something not typically permitted due to government-imposed limitations. These institutions fully finance themselves via their ministries rather than through government-dependent funding, grants, etc. Non-governmental accrediting organizations, such as Transworld Accrediting Commission International based in California, continue to grow in popularity among churches and ministries seeking an alternative route to validate their educational institution's academic and biblical standards. Many of these Bible and ministry schools have partnered with and been accepted by major institutions throughout the U.S. that are accredited regionally or otherwise. Christian leaders such as Rodney Howard-Browne, Jentezen Franklin, Bayless Conley, Frederick Price, Guillermo Maldonado and Ron Phillips have established institutions that now receive this type of accreditation.

(Reprinted by permission from Charisma Magazine.)

Transworld Accrediting Commission International
Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., has met the standards of accreditation through Transworld Accrediting Commission International.
(Transworld Accrediting Commission International: 231 E. Alessandro Blvd Suite A-210, Riverside, CA 92508 Ph: 951-901-5586)

Statements on Petra Theological Seminary Inc., Accreditation
State of Florida - Florida Department of Education Commission for Independent Education
Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., operates under the authorization of the Florida Department of Education Commission for Independent Education by exemption as a religious degree granting institution. Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., only offers religious educational programs and religious degrees that prepare students for Christian vocations.

U.S. Department of Education
Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., a 501 (c) (3), is a religious based organization and as such has not pursued regional accreditation/recognition from the U.S. Department of Education. Further, Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., accepts no tuition or other finance from any agency of the State or Federal Government for any purpose. As such, Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., religious courses/certificates and or religious degree(s) are church/biblically/religiously related and are not recognized by the United States Department of Education. Petra Theological Seminary, Inc., a 501 (c) (3), is a religious educational organization with all rights and privileges as provided by law.

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