NMU's Current Accreditation

Northern Michigan University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Northern has been accredited by HLC since 1916. 

The HLC has described foundational Assumed Practices that are shared by all accredited institutions of higher education and Criteria for Accreditation organized into five headings, each with multiple Core Components. All components of each criterion must be met in order to satisfy a Criterion for Accreditation and all Criteria must be met for an institution to remain in good standing.

NMU is currently in good standing with HLC. Accreditation was most recently reaffirmed in 2016-17.

NMU's Assurance Review was in 2020-21, year four of the accreditation cycle. On February 3, 2021, HLC notified NMU: "Northern Michigan University has successfully completed its Year 4 Assurance Review with no recommended monitoring." The finding was that all 18 Core Components of the 5 Criteria for Accreditation are "met." A timeline of the process of preparing our 2020 Assurance Argument is available here

NMU's upcoming Comprehensive Evaluation for reaffirmation is scheduled for 2026-27.

Accreditation is an ongoing process of meeting standards, continuously improving, and assuring quality demonstrated through internal and external review. Through the accreditation process, the University continuously reviews indicators against accreditation criteria to ensure that the standards are being met and to identify opportunities to strengthen or improve practices, processes, and policies. Regular accreditation review requires the University to identify data, information, and evidence and to document results that validate that we are meeting each standard. 

NMU is accredited on HLC's Open Pathway, which is focused on quality assurance and institutional improvement. Fostering a culture of careful attention to quality and continuous quality improvement is essential to remaining a high-caliber university and meeting Open Pathway expectations. The Open Pathway allows more freedom for NMU than other HLC accreditation pathways. 

Contact information for HLC:

Higher Learning Commission
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, Illinois 60604-1411
Phone: 800.621.7440 / 312.263.0456 | Fax: 312.263.7462 | info@hlcommission.org

Next in maintaining accreditation, NMU has proposed and will carry out a years-long Quality Initiative. NMU designed this work to advance the institution toward aspirational goals. An explanation of the project and ongoing updates about the work can be found here.  

Historical Institutional Accreditation Information

Previously, NMU adopted the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) method of accreditation formerly offered as an option by HLC. Information and resources from the period of NMU's accreditation under AQIP is available on our webpages at www.nmu.edu/aqip. When AQIP was a major HLC Pathway for accreditation, on a continuous basis, every participating institution had at least three Action Projects underway.

After the last System Portfolio review which led to reaffirmation of accreditation in 2016-17, NMU transitioned from the AQIP Pathway to HLC's Open Pathway. 

New NMU Academic Programs

In addition to institutional accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission, many programs at NMU are accredited by discipline-specific organizations. Academic Affairs maintains a list of current additional accreditations

NMU units that are considering offering new academic programs should review the information and submit the appropriate form here


Main Campus

1401 Presque Isle Avenue
Marquette, MI 49855-5301 

(906) 227-1000

Active Additional Location

K I Sawyer
MSDC Building, 411 Avenue A
Gwinn, Michigan
Open: 09/01/2004

Delta-Schoolcraft ISD Career Technical Center
2525 3rd Avenue South
Escanaba, Michigan
Open: 06/01/2015
Inactive: 06/28/2019

Lake Superior State University
Ashwaubenon Street
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan
Open: 08/25/2002
Closed: 09/27/2017

Macomb Community College
44575 Garfield Road
Clinton Township, Michigan
Open: 01/21/2013
Closed: 09/27/2017

Northern Michigan University – Escanaba
2001 N. Lincoln Road
Escanaba, Michigan
Open: 01/01/1996
Closed: 09/27/2017

Northern Michigan University – Hancock
809 Hecla Street
Hancock, Michigan
Open: 01/01/2007
Closed: 12/12/2009

Northern Michigan University - Iron Mountain
2801 North U.S. 2
Iron Mountain, Michigan
Open: 01/01/2007
Inactive: 06/28/2019

Northern Michigan University – MGHS
420 W. Magnetic
Marquette, Michigan
Open: 08/01/2007
Closed: 06/02/2019