To positively affect people’s lives by nurturing connections to the sacred through experiential education and spiritual care.


To create measurable and appreciable improvement in spiritual health that transforms people and communities in the US and across the globe.


*Diversity and inclusion – demonstrated through cultural humility, attentiveness and collegiality.

*Integrity – demonstrated through trust, respect and excellence.

*Curiosity – demonstrated through listening, experiential models, innovation and creativity.

*Process – demonstrated through action/reflection, listening, experiential and relational models.

*Service – demonstrated through compassion, authenticity and growth.

Purpose of Accreditation

Through its accreditation process, ACPE seeks to assure each CPE center meets the standards set nationally by ACPE, Inc. to:

  • assure quality in clinical pastoral education (CPE);
  • assure students of consistency in educational programs;
  • recognize achievement in creative programming;
  • promote fairness in conduct and evaluation of educational programs;
  • support best practices in pastoral education;
  • integrate unique clinical/educational resources; and
  • facilitate planning and evaluation.

III. Accreditation Commission (hereafter “the Commission”)

A. Authority

  1. The U.S. Department of Education, Office of Post-Secondary Education, recognizes ACPE as a national accrediting body, making ACPE accredited centers eligible to participate in these Federal programs:
  • International Exchange Visitors Program.
  • Veterans Educational (tuition) Benefits.
  1. The ACPE bylaws grant authority to the Accreditation Commission to make decisions on all accreditation matters, including: granting, suspending or withdrawing accreditation for any center or program, subject to the appeal process of ACPE. The Commission establishes procedures and guidelines governing accreditation processes for ACPE accredited centers (ACPE Standards 300).
  1. Changes in accreditation policy, procedures and criteria are subject to review and approval of the ACPE Board of Representatives and are communicated to members in a timely, effective manner.
  1. The Commission participates in review of ACPE standards to ensure they are adequate to evaluate the quality and relevance of education provided in ACPE accredited centers and relevant to the educational needs of students.

B. Function

ACPE has established policies governing the function of the Accreditation Commission and ACPE accreditation processes. These include:

  1. setting minimum qualifications for those involved in accreditation reviews, processes and decisions.
  2. making available the credentials /resumes of persons involved in accreditation reviews and decisions. See the ACPE website.
  3. avoiding bias and conflict in accreditation decisions.
  4. implementing, updating and improving processes for orienting and training persons involved in accreditation reviews and decisions.
  5. defining the role of regional accreditation committees.

The Accreditation Commission Policy and Procedure Manual details these policies. It is available by clicking here.

C. Composition

The Commission has 14 members – the chair, one representative from each of the accreditation areas, two at-large members, one of whom must be employed as a practitioner/clinician, and two public members.