Accreditation ensures higher education institutions meet established criteria and provide quality educational opportunities to the students and communities it serves.

Accreditation status reflects an external assessment of a college through intensive, periodic self-study and peer evaluation processes. Self-study and peer evaluation are required for reaffirmation of accreditation and allow the college to evaluate institutional operations. This process also promotes cross-campus communication and information for ongoing improvement and future planning.

To ensure the quality of your education, Iowa Lakes Community College follows the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) criteria, the Iowa Department of Education, and the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP).

Higher Learning Commission

Iowa Lakes Community College is accredited by the  opens in a new windowHigher Learning Commission (HLC), 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL  60604, 800-621-7440, and participates in the Standard Pathway, one of several pathways leading to reaffirmation of accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission.

The Standard Pathway is one of three options institutions have for maintaining accreditation with HLC. It follows a 10-year cycle and is focused on quality assurance and institutional improvement. These improvement topics are integrated into comprehensive evaluations conducted during the cycle.

Institutions undergo a comprehensive evaluation (during year four) to ensure they are meeting the Criteria for Accreditation, pursuing institutional improvement and complying with certain requirements set by the U.S. Department of Education. The second comprehensive evaluation (during year ten) conducted in the Standard Pathway cycle follows the same process as the evaluation conducted in Year 4. The Year 10 evaluation leads to an action regarding the reaffirmation of the institution’s accreditation.

Iowa Department of Education

Iowa Lakes Community College is accredited by the  opens in a new windowIowa Department of Education. State accreditation cycles are coordinated with HLC cycles.

National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP)

NACEP works to ensure that college courses taught by high school teachers are as rigorous as courses offered on the sponsoring college campus. As the sole national accrediting body for concurrent enrollment partnerships, NACEP helps these programs adhere to the highest standards so students experience a seamless transition to college and teachers benefit from meaningful, ongoing professional development. All high school students will be prepared for, have access to, and succeed in Quality College courses. opens in a new windowLearn more about LACEP at

The Planning & Development Office coordinates activities associated with continued institutional accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and the Iowa Department of Education.


Iowa Lakes Community College
Administrative Building
Planning & Development Office
19 South 7th Street
Estherville, Iowa 51334