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Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) Accreditation Records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UASC.UA.006

Scope and Contents

These records depict the administrative history of the University of Texas at Tyler’s accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Administrators presiding over accreditation and reaffirmation processes include Dr. James H. Stewart (Tyler State College, Texas Eastern University, University of Texas at Tyler), Dr. George F. Hamm (University of Texas at Tyler), and Dr. Rodney H. Mabry (University of Texas at Tyler). Dr. Frank Smyrl, professor-emeritus and former Dean of the School of Liberal Arts, served as the first chairman of the Self-Study Committee. Materials in this collection include correspondence among university administration members and SACS evaluators, informational materials regarding the accreditation process,  reports and recommendations from the accreditation committees, self-evaluations and responses from representatives of the University, self-study materials (including surveys and reports), meeting minutes, meeting agendas, committee rosters, newsletters, memoranda, manuals, SACS guidelines for accreditation and reaffirmation, invoices, travel documents, and training materials. This collection includes materials dated between 1972 and 2004, with the bulk of materials representing the University of Texas at Tyler. Materials were compiled by the Office of the President, but created by a number of entities including the Office of the President, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and a variety of University steering committees created on an ad hoc basis. Materials detailing the initial accreditation in 1974 are not included in this collection, although materials immediately preceding and following the accreditation status are well represented. This collection does not include records of the most recent reaffirmation process, which took place in 2010.


  • Creation: 1972-2004
  • Creation: Majority of material found in 1972-2004
  • Other: Date acquired: 2011-03-03


Conditions Governing Access

The majority of this collection is open for research use. Administrative records of the president still in office are restricted, please contact University Archivist for more information.

Conditions Governing Use

Some restrictions may apply; please contact University Archivist for more information.

Biographical or Historical Information

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) was founded in 1895, and serves as the primary regional accreditation agency for institutions of higher education in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and parts of Latin America. Regional accreditation is overseen by the SACS College Delegate Assembly, comprised of one voting representative for each member institution. Member institutions are non-profit educational entities who have voluntarily associated themselves with SACS through the accreditation process. An institution may become eligible for accreditation during the calendar year of its first graduating class. An institution seeking accreditation must prepare an analytical report, undergo a site evaluation by a committee, and attend a review hearing. The initial accreditation must be reaffirmed within four years, and the institution must complete periodic self-studies every ten years through the Institutional Self-Study program. Visiting committees present periodic reports and recommendations to the SACS Commission on Colleges and the Executive Council (both subsidiary bodies of the College Delegate Assembly). The University of Texas at Tyler (UT Tyler), then operating as Tyler State College (TSC), initiated the accreditation process in 1972 under the administration of President Dr. James H. Stewart. TSC received official Correspondent Member Status in November of 1972, completing the first step towards full accreditation. After submitting a self-study status report and corresponding with SACS evaluators, TSC was designated a Candidate for Accreditation. This new status made TSC subject to evaluation by a Visiting Committee of qualified evaluators. The TSC Visiting Committee was chaired by Dr. Joe B. Ezell, with the first visit taking place in September 1973.  In September 1974, Tyler State College hosted the Visiting Committee again and prepared a self-study report in response to Visiting Committee recommendations. Tyler State College received its initial accreditation in 1974 (according to the SACS website). Pursuant to SACS guidelines, TSC began preparing for its initial reaffirmation. In 1975, the college changed its name to Texas Eastern University (TEU). TEU submitted its initial Self-Study Report to SACS in 1978. During this reaffirmation process, TEU joined the University of Texas system, becoming the University of Texas at Tyler in the fall of 1979. After subsequent site visits and follow up reports throughout 1978 and 1979, SACS renewed UT Tyler’s accreditation in 1980. UT Tyler successful maintained its accreditation in 1990, 2000, and 2010. SACS accreditation for UT Tyler is distinct from accreditation for the University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler (a unique entity), and does not include specialized accreditation for specific departments such as engineering, nursing, education, accounting, and business. Note written by Office of the President, University of Texas at Tyler.


6.70 Linear Feet

1.00 Items

6.70 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



These records represent a selection of materials related to the accreditation of the University of Texas at Tyler through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, from 1972 through 2004. Materials are textual, including memoranda, newsetters, SACS informational materials, correspondence, meeting records, and official reports. These records offer insight into the initial accreditation of Tyler State College and subsequent reaffirmations under Texas Eastern University and the University of Texas at Tyler.


These materials reflected loose chronological order at the item level with haphazard arrangement at the folder level. They have been arranged to reflect a more consistent chronological order while respecting the original administrative filing, and grouped intellectually according to the institution under which they originated.

Physical Location

K.4.e - K.4.g

Source of Acquisition

Office of the President, University of Texas at Tyler

Method of Acquisition

Materials were accessioned in March 2011 as part of a general University Archives accession, transferred to the archives from the Physical Plant. Materials were previously compiled and stored by the Office of the President.

Accruals and Additions

Additional accessions are expected as the accreditation reaffirmation process continues. The most recent reaffirmation took place in 2010. The next upcoming reaffirmation will take place in 2020.

Other Descriptive Information

The University of Texas at Tyler is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral degrees.  Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of The University of Texas at Tyler.

Samantha Winn
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Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the The University of Texas at Tyler University Archives and Special Collections Department Repository