Bethany Missions and Goals


Teaching and learning form the mission of Bethany College. Central to this is providing a liberal arts education for students, including the preparation of professionals, in an atmosphere of study, work, and service.


In its original charter, the mission of Bethany College was “the instruction of youth in the various branches of science and literature, the useful arts and the learned and foreign languages.”

Founder Alexander Campbell set the purpose of the College to prepare students to become useful and responsible members of society by liberating them from superstition and ignorance, the tyranny of others, and “vulgar prejudices.” Campbell envisioned that upon graduation, students would become their own teachers and pupils and continue their education throughout life.

Today, Bethany College continues to follow that same mission to educate effective, honorable, humane, and intelligent citizens who believe in and will promote the creation of a world of worth and value, integrating critical reason with the convictions of faith, personal accomplishment with ethical responsibility, and individual development with service to others.

Bethany is accredited by or holds membership in:

The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is the profession’s mechanism to help establish high-quality teacher preparation. Through the process of professional accreditation of schools, colleges and departments of education, CAEP works to make a difference in the quality of teaching and teacher preparation today, tomorrow and for the next century. CAEP’s performance-based system of accreditation fosters competent classroom teachers and other educators who work to improve the education of all P-12 students. CAEP believes every student deserves a caring, competent and highly-qualified teacher.

CAEP was founded in 1954. Five groups were instrumental in the creation of CAEP: the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE), the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC), the National Education Association (NEA), the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), and the National School Boards Association (NSBA). When CAEP was founded as an independent accrediting body, it replaced AACTE as the agency responsible for accreditation in teacher education.

The U. S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) recognize CAEP as a professional accrediting body for teacher preparation.

The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) is a nonprofit national association representing more than 3,000 individual members as well as graduate and undergraduate programs of professional social work education.

Founded in 1952, this partnership of educational and professional institutions, social welfare agencies, and private citizens is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation as the sole accrediting agency for social work education in this country.

Bethany is accredited by or holds membership in:

  • American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education
  • American Council on Education
  • Appalachian College Association
  • Association of American Colleges
  • College Entrance Examination Board
  • Council of Independent Colleges
  • Council on Social Work Education
  • Division of Higher Education of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
  • East Central Colleges
  • Eastern College Athletic Conference
  • National Collegiate Athletic Association, Division III
  • Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation
  • North Central Association
  • Presidents’ Athletic Conference

The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) is an independent corporation and one of two Commission members of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), which was founded in 1895 as one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. The Higher Learning Commission accredits, and thereby grants membership in the Commission and in the North Central Association, to degree-granting educational institutions in the North Central region: Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, New Mexico, South Dakota, Wisconsin, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

HLC is recognized by the US Department of Education and the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).