The ACEN Accreditation Conference:

Program Preview

We are quickly approaching our inaugural Nursing Education Accreditation Conference, and if you haven't registered yet it's not too late! We offer invoicing as a payment option to make it possible for you to register today but pay the registration fee tomorrow. The three-day event is jam packed with education, networking, and fun, all in the heart of ACEN's hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. Pack your thinking cap and sunscreen, and come on down!

For your inaugural conference we will be offering the first ever Knowledge Café and Human Library. In the Knowledge Café, attendees will be able sip coffee and enjoy pastries while reading and exploring a variety of example documents such as Self-Study Reports, Follow-Up Reports, Focused Visit Reports, and Candidacy Presentations. Meanwhile, at the adjoining Human Library attendees will be able to "check out" ACEN accreditation experts and spend face-to-face time with ACEN Associate Directors, Seasoned ACEN Peer Evaluators, and members of the ACEN Board of Commissioners. These resources will be available on a first come first serve basis so make sure to register for the conference now and then check in with the maître d' and librarian as soon as you enter the Marketplace Exhibit Hall!

While the experts in the Knowledge Café and Human Library will wow you with their expertise in nursing education accreditation, you don't want to miss three days of concurrent sessions and poster presentations. On Thursday morning (July 12th) the ACEN Associate Directors and ACEN partner Organization for Associate Degree Nursing (OADN), will each present a pre-session: Merging End-of-Program Student Learning Outcomes (ACEN) and Transforming Nursing Education Through Cross-Institutional Pathways (OADN). OADN's presentation will describe new models of academic progression and collegial partnerships between associate and baccalaureate programs that facilitate academic progression while improving outcomes. The session will explore academic progression and its intersection with accreditation. ACEN's presentation meanwhile will provide an overview of end-of-program student learning outcomes (SLOs) and explore effective assessment techniques that may be utilized to assess end-of-program SLOs. It will merge components of ACEN's Standard 4 Curriculum with assessment of end-of-program student learning outcomes as required in ACEN's Standard 6 Outcomes.

Among the list of many other thought-provoking sessions, below is a sampling of some of our most popular sessions:

  • Using Internal and External Resources to Measure Student Attainment of End-of-Program Student Learning Outcomes
  • Taking a Program Selfie: Evaluating Outcomes in Concept-Based Curriculum
  • An Evidence-Based Approach to Conducting Valid and Reliable Surveys Part I: Writing Effective Surveys
  • Building a Concept-Based Curriculum: Creating a Solid Foundation for Success
  • Attitude Hygiene: Bringing the Affective Domain to Life in Your Nursing Program
  • Let the Standards be Your Guide: One Community College's Experience with Development and Implementation
  • ACEN Accreditation Mysteries and Reality: Let's Demystify What Appears to be Mysterious
  • Issues and Trends in Nursing Programs
  • SOS! Supplying Optimal Support for Writing Efficient Follow-Up Reports
  • Two Improvement Processes to Advance the Quality of Nursing Education Programs
  • Don't Get Ready, Stay Ready for Accreditation 
  • Tips and Tools to Support Nursing Program Completion and First-Time Licensure Success

Please note that due to space limitations you will need to sign up in advance for all of the sessions that you wish to attend. To do this, log in to your registration through your confirmation e-mail, select "Modify," and then add sessions to your heart's content! Walk-ins are also accepted, however, there is no guarantee of availability. If you have any questions regarding signing up for your sessions in advance, please contact Quinda Barrett at

Finally, Dr. Marsal P. Stoll will announce ACEN's first recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. You do not want to miss this historic yet fun and informative conference! We look forward to seeing you in Atlanta very soon.  


The Conference

at Your Fingertips

We're Going Paperless!

We are very excited: The #2018ACEN conference is an entirely paperless event! For the past several months the team at ACEN has been working tirelessly to bring you a fully integrated conference app. This app will serve as your event guide, giving you the ability to build a personalized schedule, access session handouts, find and connect with other attendees, view speaker, session, and exhibitor information, and use interactive maps to navigate the venue - all in one place!

The app will also allow you to participate in the Click game, a point-based photo scavenger hunt where you can earn badges by participating in fun challenges, both solo and in a group. Earning badges equates to real-world discounts in the on-site ACEN store!

  • Two badges = 10% off your purchase
  • Four badges = 15% off your purchase
  • Six badges = 20% off your purchase
  • ALL badges = 25% off your purchase

If you're already registered for the conference, don't forget to visit your app store and download the CrowdCompass AttendeeHub app. We guarantee that it will enhance your event experience!


The Marketplace Exhibit Hall

The #2018ACEN conference features over 30 concurrent sessions, but did you know that there will also be more than 30 exhibit booths? When you enter the Grand Ballroom at the Omni Hotel you will immediately be greeted by event sponsor Indigo Interactive. Directly to their right you will be able to visit with ACEN partner organization, OADN, and the sponsors MCG, safeMedicate, and Nasco Healthcare. Stretched out behind these entryway booths you will see an ocean of exhibitors, pumped to speak with you, share giveaways, and show you their products. The vendors you'll be able to spend time with are:

Apperson - ATI - Avkin - Challenger Corporation - ClinPrep, LLC - Elsevier - ExamSoft - Feel Good, Inc. - Hurst Review - I CAN Publishing/Sylvia Rayfield & Associates - Intellectus Statistics - Kaplan - Life & Death Matters - Linda Caputi - MEA Healthcare Education Supplies - Meridy's Uniforms - NurseTim, Inc. - Performance Scrubs - ProjectConcert - Questionmark - Rasmussen College - Respondus - Shadow Health - Skyfactor - Trajecsys - UWorld - Wolters Kluwer

The conference app features a Marketplace Exhibit Hall map to help you navigate all of the activity and find the exhibitors you are most excited to visit with.

PS. Make sure to check the conference bag for your Marketplace Passport! Collect all the vendor stamps to be entered into the Passport Challenge prize drawing.

Win a FREE Self-Study Forum Registration!

In the Marketplace Exhibit Hall you will also find a special ACEN Events booth. Visit this booth to register for any of our upcoming events! Register on-site for the ACEN 2019 Nursing Education Accreditation Conference to be entered into a raffle to win a free registration to an ACEN Self-Study Forum (a value of $499). Register on-site for the 2019 Fall Self-Study Forum to be entered into a raffle to win a free registration to an ACEN Program Administrator Workshop (a value of $175).


Step Challenge

Step Up With New Friends

If you have a competitive nature, you may enjoy the step challenge at the conference. The #2018ACEN Step Challenge is a friendly competition open to all registered conference goers. The minimum requirement to enter is 5,000 steps gained in the first half of the day on Friday, July 13th. To participate:

  • Take as many steps as you can by 2:30 PM on Friday, July 13th
  • By 2:30 PM, submit your raffle entry by uploading a screenshot or picture of the number of steps on your step counter* to Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter along with a caption including your first name and last initial, and the tags #2018ACEN, #2018ACENStepChallenge, and @NursingAccreditation (on Facebook/Instagram) or @ACENursing (on Twitter). Please note that if your default photo settings are "Private" your entry will not be seen by staff. Make sure this photo is set to public.
  • There are three different levels of the raffle:
  1. 10,000 Steps Achieved – Prize Level 1 (grand prize)
  2. 7,500 Steps Achieved – Prize Level 2
  3. 5,000 Steps Achieved – Prize Level 3
  • The drawings for all three prize levels will take place at the Marketplace at 3:15 PM on Friday. Make sure to attend! You must be present to win.

How to add more steps to your day

Join us for the morning walk (or run) in Centennial Park! All walk participants receive an exclusive "I stepped up" collapsible water bottle. Rain or shine – we will be there!

Don't have a step counter? Do it for the bragging rights!

This is a friendly competition with the ultimate goal of helping everyone stay healthy and active during the conference. Even if you don't have a step counter, we would love to see you at the morning walk, and you will still go home with an exclusive water bottle!

* Your step counter can be any wearable technology that you own which counts your steps, e.g. a FitBit, an Apple Watch, or a cellphone with a built-in step counter. Your counter must be of the type which resets at midnight every night.

USDE Grants Continued Recognition to the ACEN

On May 9th the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) once again granted recognition to the ACEN as a specialized accreditor for nursing education programs. The decision letter from Diane Auer Jones, Senior Policy Advisor form the Office of Postsecondary Education at the USDE, confirmed that the recognition of the ACEN was renewed for a period of five years in accordance with 34 CFR 602.36 of the Secretary of Education's Criteria. The ACEN has been recognized by the USDE continuously since 1952, however, what makes this year's recognition so momentous is the ACEN was awarded the maximum number of years possible, with no follow-up. This flawless result demonstrates that the ACEN is the gold standard of nursing education program accreditation.

Says Dr. Marcy Stoll, Chief Executive Officer of ACEN, "We are ecstatic to receive this five-year recognition decision from the USDE, which benefits nursing programs nationally and worldwide. This continued recognition acknowledges our commitment to quality nursing education through accreditation. The ACEN will remain focused on being a supportive partner for our accredited programs as we continue to be the leading authority for nursing education accreditation."

Dr. Sharon F. Beasley, Associate Director of the ACEN, started her work with the Commission in 2015, first coming on board as the Director of Accreditation Services and then as a member of the Professional Staff. She came to the ACEN after her tenure as a nursing program director at the Technical College of the Lowcountry (TCL) in South Carolina. In that role, she gained regional accreditation experience and experience as an ACEN peer evaluator and ACEN Evaluation Review Panelist. A native of South Carolina, she received her PhD from the University of South Carolina College of Education.

In the last year, Dr. Beasley has co-coordinated the planning efforts for the inaugural ACEN Nursing Education Accreditation Conference. In this venture, Dr. Beasley seeks to dispel myths that are sometimes assumed with the accreditation process. On a daily basis, she enjoys interacting with nurse administrators, faculty, and other colleagues who work in the field of accreditation. Particularly, Dr. Beasley delights in mentoring peer evaluators from all over the country. In her free time, she enjoys the pleasures of domestic and international travel.

July 12 - 14, Atlanta

What: 2018 ACEN Nursing Education Accreditation Conference: Quality Education Through Accreditation

Where: The Omni Atlanta Hotel – CNN Center in Atlanta, Georgia

September 15 - 18, Indianapolis

What: STTI Leadership Connection Conference

Where: Hyatt Regency Indianapolis in Indianapolis, Indiana

October 3, Orlando

What: Effectively Leading an ACEN-Accredited Program: A Workshop for Program Administrators

Where: Double Tree Hilton Hotel at the Entrance to Universal Orlando in Orlando, Florida

October 4 - 5, Orlando

What: Fall 2018 Self-Study Forum

Where: Double Tree Hilton Hotel at the Entrance to Universal Orlando in Orlando, Florida


ACEN 2019 Nursing Education Accreditation Conference

July 18 - 20, 2019

Q: What is the deadline for conference registration?

A: Not only have the prices remained the same since registration opened in October, but we will be accepting on-site registrations in Atlanta! You can walk in on July 12th and register for the event at the venue.

However, we recommend that you register in advance so that you receive all of the event communications, have time to set up your personalized experience in the conference app, and can reach out to staff if you happen to have any questions!

Have more questions

for ACEN?

Scattered throughout the conference venue you will find question boxes! Pick up a question card, write down your thoughts, and drop it in. After the conference a member of the ACEN staff will reach out to you to respond!

Exclusive sunrise walk/run water bottle

Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing

3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850 | Atlanta, GA 30326 | (404) 975-5000 |

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