The American Academy for Liberal Education (AALE) is a national association for the accreditation of institutions and programs offering outstanding general education in the liberal arts that meet the Academy's education, administrative and fiscal standards and criteria.

Accreditation by AALE signifies institutional integrity and a strong commitment to liberal education.  Membership certifies that the institution meets or exceeds the Academy's independently established Education Standards.  These standards require students to complete demanding core studies in the arts, sciences, and humanities taught by senior as well as junior faculty.  Consequently, AALE's Education Standards provide stakeholders in higher education, including parents and prospective students, with a clear means of identifying colleges and programs with focused, well-articulated goals for liberal learning in areas such as history, mathematics, science, literature, languages and philosophy, and with coherent approaches to liberal education.

The Academy certifies and accredits institutions and programs worldwide that are concerned with liberal education and the liberal arts. At this time the Academy is not a Title IV accreditor for colleges within the US. The Academy is located in Alexandria, VA and is non-profit, non-partisan, and non-sectarian.


Board and Council

Final Decisions for accreditation and certification are made by the Academy's Board of Trustees, in consultation with the Council of Scholars for Higher Education decisions.

Archive: Articles about AALE


AALE Staff: Charles Butterworth, President; Mary Ann Powers, Executive Director

Questions and Answers

Some Questions and Answers about Liberal Education, a Higher Education Accreditation Publication

Frequently Asked Questions, a Charter School Accreditation Publication



"Take it as an article of my faith, the liberal arts have provided me the foundation of a most satisfying career and I couldn't imagine life without their underpinning."

-William Burleigh, President & CEO, E.W.Scripps Company