What is the IACBE?

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The increasing innovations in business school education are owed in large part to accreditation agencies like the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE).

The IACBE accredits business school programs at colleges and universities that offer undergraduate and graduate degrees. However, the accredited programs can include business degrees from the associate to the doctoral levels.

Globalization has made international standards of quality for business education almost necessary as many students pursue degrees in one country but seek full time employment after graduation in other countries. IACBE is a leader in international accreditation that promotes excellence in all types of business and management degree programs.

Here are some distinctive functions and benefits of IACBE accreditation, its accreditation requirements and the process that schools follow to become accredited through IACBE.

Functions and Benefits of IACBE Accreditation

The primary purpose for IACBE accreditation is to provide a quality assurance mechanism for business school programs. One of the ways that the organization does this is by developing quality principles for business education that are based on the latest research in the field of education. An updated set of IACBE quality principles or standards include areas of education like curricula development, faculty recruitment, research and scholarly publications, industry partnerships, international business education and innovations in education.

The schools that meet IACBE quality principles receive a credential that is recognized globally by industry and other academic institutions. Besides providing a way to hold business schools accountable for the quality of their educational programs, IACBE helps to keep its member organizations up to date with the latest industry and regulatory information about the field of education through its workshops, conferences and other meetings that are held throughout the year.

IACBE Accreditation Requirements for Business Program Candidates

IACBE gives its educational members the opportunity to become accredited. Organizations that want to become educational members of IACBE must apply, pay dues, provide proof of national, institutional accreditation and demonstrate that they minimally administer business degrees at the undergraduate level. Organizations must also submit their mission and vision statements for review by IACBE board members to determine if their goals match those of IACBE.

IACBE Accreditation Process

After becoming members, schools can apply for accreditation candidacy by providing proof that they have enrolled students in their business programs during the last two years. Designated school representatives are required to attend workshops on how to develop outcomes assessment plans, and they must build and submit one with their candidacy applications to IACBE.

First time accreditation of a business school program is granted after a school has a group of graduates to measure its outcomes assessment plan against. School representatives are required to take training on how to develop self studies and then create approved self studies.

The final step in the accreditation process is a site visit that is conducted by IACBE officials. The IACBE accreditation process typically takes between two and four years to accomplish, and it can cost organizations over $5,000 in fees and expenses to become IACBE accredited.


IACBE was established in 1997 because leaders in industry and academia recognized gaps in business program accreditation services. Other accreditation agencies did not offer outcomes based, mission driven accreditation processes, and subsequently, many business programs did not meet their accreditation criteria. Also, IACBE addressed the challenge of comparing the level of quality between business school programs that are offered domestically and internationally. Over the years, the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education IACBE has improved its own processes and received recognition as an official accreditation body in the United States by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation in 2011.

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