The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art has been accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) since 1946 and was most recently reaccredited in 2018.

As a member of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, The Cooper Union voluntarily participates in the accreditation process. The MSCHE mission states that it, "assures students and the public of the educational quality of higher education. The Commission’s accreditation process ensures institutional accountability, self-appraisal, improvement, and innovation through peer review and the rigorous application of standards within the context of institutional mission."

MSCHE University Accreditation Process

Accreditation entails ongoing self-assessment and a peer review process, both with the stated purpose of assuring educational quality.

The MSCHE Accreditation Standards and Requirements of Affiliation provide ongoing guidance to institutions engaged in self-review and peer evaluation. They are comprised of 7 standards and 15 requirements.  Accredited institutions are expected to demonstrate compliance with these standards and requirements, to conduct their activities in a manner consistent with the standards and requirements in the context of their mission, and to engage in ongoing processes of self-review and improvement. See the 2018 Self-Study Report.

The Evaluation Team representing the Middle States Commission on Higher Education was comprised of members from peer institutions who facilitated a peer review process based on Cooper Union’s mission and Self Study. An institution is accredited when the educational community has verified that its goals are achieved.

Next Steps

  • Annual institutional updates
  • Mid-point peer review: 2023
  • The next self study evaluation:  2026 – 2027
  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.