AACSB’s business accreditation standards have continued to be revised to improve relevancy, maintain currency, and increase value. Most recently, the Business Accreditation Task Force spent over a year and a half working on improving the business standards to meet the needs of future business school learners, of global business, and of society in general. The outcome of the task force’s work is the 2020 Guiding Principles and Standards for Business Accreditation, adopted by the AACSB Accreditation Council on July 28, 2020.
Through the Business Accreditation Task Force’s extensive outreach and solicitation of input from members, the 2020 standards truly represent the broad views of AACSB’s diverse, global membership. The new standards fulfill the following key objectives:
1. Reinforce long-held AACSB commitments to mission focus and peer review;
2. Emphasize a principles-based and outcomes-focused approach, as well as relevance for business schools now and in the future;
3. Recognize the changing landscape of student demographics and reflect the activities we envision business schools of the future will undertake to ensure continuous improvement and high quality in business education;
4. Value the diversity of thought leadership in the context of a school’s mission;
5. Characterize the guiding principles that represent key values to AACSB.
The nine standards are organized into three categories: strategic management and innovation; learner success; and thought leadership, engagement, and societal impact. View a comparison of the 2013 and 2020 business accreditation standards.
The transition period for adopting the 2020 business accreditation standards will take place between January 2021 and June 2023. The initial pilot will occur in the 2020-21 academic year, with a small number of schools with visits scheduled between January and June 2021 reviewed under the 2020 business standards. The pilot schools have been identified and all other schools outside the pilot group will be reviewed under the 2013 standards.
Schools with peer review team visits scheduled between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2023, can choose to be reviewed under either the 2013 or 2020 business standards. Schools should communicate their preference to their AACSB accreditation staff liaison.
Beginning July 1, 2023, all schools will be reviewed under the 2020 standards during their next scheduled visit.
Download the 2020 Business