Institutions of higher education in the United States are accredited by two types of agencies, institutional and specialized.

Institutional accreditation evaluates a college or university’s overall quality, but does not focus on specific academic programs, which falls to specialized accrediting organizations.  Many academic programs have professional/discipline accreditation. Those accreditation and self-study documents, as well as the review processes, are integral to UMKC’s academic program review requirements and institutional accreditation with HLC. The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) has institutional, regional accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission.

About the Higher Learning Commission

The University of Missouri-Kansas City is accredited through the Higher Learning Commission ( As the largest regional accrediting body, HLC is one of six that operate under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Education. Regional accreditation is institutional accreditation and accredits the university not specific degree programs. HLC sets standards for maintaining accreditation with which each accredited college or university complies: assumed practices, criteria for accreditation, reporting guidelines, and federal compliance regulations. Many of UMKC’s specific degree programs have earned specialized accreditation (a list may be found here).

UMKC has been continuously accredited by the Higher Learning Commission since 1938 when we were the Kansas City University. When UMKC became part of the University of Missouri in 1963, our name changed to the University of Missouri – Kansas City. Throughout this change, UMKC has maintained its regional accreditation. Our most recent comprehensive evaluation and site visit was in 2009, and our accreditation was reaffirmed by HLC following that visit. Over the next two years, UMKC is preparing for the reaffirmation of our HLC accreditation, which will culminate in an assurance argument and an institutional site visit on December 2 and 3, 2019.

Details about UMKC’s HLC Accreditation Status are available on the HLC website.

Fast facts:

  • UMKC has been accredited by HLC since 1938.
  • The most recent reaffirmation of accreditation was 2009-2010.
  • UMKC’s upcoming reaffirmation of accreditation is 2019-2020.
  • A comprehensive evaluation and institutional site visit is scheduled for December 2 & 3, 2019.