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Subject: Accreditation


From: Bryan Owen <Bryan_Owen>
Date: Monday, May 3, 1999
I am always amazed that there is so little dialog, on both sides, on
an issue of this magnitude.  Here is a few comments from the latest
series of letters to the DistList.

Niccolo Caldararo <caldararo [at] aol__com> writes

>...  There is no
>other way for accreditation to stand than on assessment and one
>cannot assess individuals without reference to a standard and
>standards cannot be created without evaluation of practice.

The dictionary defines accreditation as--among other things--'to
recognize as maintaining standards that qualify the graduates for
admission to higher or more specialized institutions or for
professional practice.'  Also, ' conforming with a standard.'

Mr. Caldararo's comment--referenced above--seems agreeable enough,
but has no specifics attached to it.  Unfortunately the devil is in
the details.  If assessment is based on a process of evaluation
referenced to a standard, what is the standard and who will provide
it?  What machine will process the evaluation of practitioners work?
Will we have GMATs, GREs, and the like?

>From an English emailer on the DistList, Velson Horie
<c.v.horie [at] man__ac__uk>

>... Each of the parties pays a >price for and benefits from using
this standard when it is working >properly.  The practitioner must
demonstrate that he can reach and >maintain over a whole career the
evolving standard of practice of >conservation - but will receive a
proper reward for doing so.  The >client will pay more for the work
and may have his choice of >practitioner limited (compared with now)
only to those who have >demonstrated their competence--but will
receive a service that does >not fall below a fairly high quality

What 'profession' in America has a field totally populated with
highly ethical and proficient members? The answer is--none.  But,
the crux of this is that members of the standardized profession (
club, guild, whatever..) can earn more.

In the above email messages, and others, there is always some vague
implication that non-academically trained practitioners will have an
avenue to the field, but mostly it is about and for an academic
process that must be gone through in order to succeed. Is there a
white collar profession that does not go through academic ways and
means?  Now there are only excellent engineers, doctors, lawyers,
architects, curators, archivists, et cetera.  Let's face it,
accreditation will come eventually, and it will be only available
through graduate school than it will be through other means.  Its
limiting enough now that most of the advanced courses are really
only for post-grad folks.  That makes it easier to qualify.

I encourage people to read all the literature related to
professional accreditation, and you will find out where we are

Bryan Owen
Frederick Law Olmsted NHS
99 Warren St.
Brookline, Ma. 02445

                  Conservation DistList Instance 12:84
                   Distributed: Tuesday, May 4, 1999
                       Message Id: cdl-12-84-010
Received on Monday, 3 May, 1999

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