Landmark accredited for new courses

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PUTNEY — Landmark College, a leader in educating students with learning differences, has received accreditation from the New England Association of Schools & Colleges to offer a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and an online post-baccalaureate certificate program in Learning Differences and Neurodiversity.

In a letter to Landmark College President, Dr. Peter Eden, the NEASC Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, said it "commends Landmark College for its well-organized and cogent proposal."

"There is a demonstrated demand for these programs," said President Eden, citing market research and alumni-based feedback data about how the College can best serve future students. "Both support our mission to improve education-based knowledge, practices, and models, as well as increase opportunities for students who learn differently."

The B.A. in Psychology becomes Landmark College's fourth baccalaureate degree, adding to the B.A. in Liberal Studies, B.A. in Studio Art, and B.S. in Computer Science programs. The new program will emphasize neurodiversity and learning within the discipline of Psychology, and Dr. Eden said the College expects it to demonstrate a similar growth pattern to the other degrees.

"Many of our students who earn associate degrees have seized the opportunity to stay at Landmark for their bachelor's degree because they have grown and succeeded due to the comprehensive support we provide, in and out of the classroom. Likewise, many neurodiverse students have transferred here from other institutions, in pursuit of a B.A. or B.S. delivered via our unique and student-centered model," said Eden, adding that, like the other programs, students pursuing the new B.A. in Psychology will benefit from superior instruction and engagement, as well as work- and internship-based opportunities that are part of the College's career-readiness programmatic focus.

The online post-baccalaureate certificate program in Learning Differences and Neurodiversity enhances professional development opportunities the College already offers to educators and others who work with students with learning differences (including dyslexia, ADHD, and autism). The program consists of five online courses, and two "strands" or "tracks" — both germane to LD education — are currently offered.

Eden says that the online, graduate-level LDN certificate program allows educators and professionals to gain credentials from an institution that operates, in many ways, like a natural laboratory. "The juxtaposition of R+D through our research and training institute, our Center for Neurodiversity, and our residential 'living-learning' program, directly inform the content of the courses in the certificate program," says Eden. "This experience will enrich many individuals in the field of education, not simply those faced with challenges and opportunities related to learning differences."

CIHE will conduct an on-site evaluation of both programs during the fall 2019 semester, according to their letter. Landmark College will prepare a report on the initial success of the programs in advance of their visit, in compliance with NEASC guidelines for accreditation.

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