The undergraduate major in Recreation Administration at the University of Mississippi is accredited by the Council on Accreditation for Parks, Recreation, Tourism and Related Professions (COAPRT). COAPRT recognizes academic programs in colleges and universities that prepare new professionals to enter the parks, recreation, tourism and related professions. COAPRT Accreditation is a status granted to an academic program that meets or exceeds stated criteria of educational quality. In the United States, accreditation of professional preparation curricula is conferred by non-governmental bodies, which are often closely associated with professional associations in the field. COAPRT accredits baccalaureate degree programs in this profession.
The degree program has been accredited since 2000 and will be reviewed for re-accreditation during 2015. In 2013, based on University strategic planning initiatives, faculty evaluation, and advisory board recommendations, the program was renamed Recreation Administration.
COAPRT standard 2.05.05 requires reporting of aggregated results of learning outcomes assessment. Results for the most recent University of Mississippi assessment cycle (2011 & 2012) follow:
The Recreation Administration degree program provides a contemporary education focused on preparing students to become certified park and recreation professionals (COAPRT 7.01, 7.02, 7.03).
Recreation Administration students will attend at least one professional conference within the field prior to graduation to gain insight about the profession, attend continuing education programs, and meet other professionals. (COAPRT 7.01, 7.02, 7.03)
The contemporary Recreation Administration degree program curriculum culminates in a professional internship experience that requires students to apply the knowledge they have gained. (COAPRT 7.01, 7.02, 7.03 & 7.04)
COAPRT is accredited by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) which requires accredited institutions to inform the public about “degree and accreditation mills.” Cautions concerning these are summarized in a video that can be viewed at: http://chea.org/public_info/video_degree_mills.asp.
According to CHEA,
“Degree mills and accreditation mills mislead and harm. In the United States, degrees and certificates from mills may not be acknowledged by other institutions when students seek to transfer or go to graduate school. Employers may not acknowledge degrees and certificates from degree mills when providing tuition assistance for continuing education. “Accreditation” from an accreditation mill can mislead students and the public about the quality of an institution or program. In the presence of degree mills and accreditation mills, students may spend a good deal of money and receive neither an education nor a useable credential”.
Read more on CHEA’s website.