FAQ

The CAATE has compiled frequently asked questions for students, professionals and post-professionals. Find answers to your questions below.

Students -­ GENERAL QUESTIONS

Athletic Trainers (ATs) are health care professionals who collaborate with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions.

Students should contact their program director to obtain proof of graduation from an accredited program. The CAATE no longer provides certificates for professional programs as verification of graduation from an accredited program, as all candidates for the Board of Certification (BOC) examination must graduate from a CAATE accredited program.  State licensing boards have been notified of this change in certificate issuance and no longer requires a certificate from the CAATE as proof of graduation from an accredited program.

To become an athletic trainer, candidates must graduate with a degree in Athletic Training from an accredited athletic training program and successfully pass the Board of Certification (BOC) exam.  To practice as an athletic trainer in most states, the individual must also be credentialed within the state.  Degrees in physical therapy, exercise science, strength and conditioning or others DO NOT qualify the candidate to sit for the BOC examination.

The CAATE accredits Athletic Training programs at colleges, universities and other institutions across the country. The (CAATE) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization incorporated in the State of Texas. The CAATE is recognized as an accrediting agency by the Council of Higher Education (CHEA), but the CAATE is not an educational institution.

Tags: CAATE, CHEA

There are three different types of CAATE accredited programs

Professional Programs

  • Professional programs lead to eligibility to sit for the Board of Certification (BOC) examination and to enter the profession of athletic training.
  • Professional programs are currently available at both the baccalaureate and master’s degree levels.
  • This is the degree for you if you are either:
  • A soon-to-be high school graduate interested in athletic training OR
  • A graduate of a baccalaureate program with a degree in a related field such as exercise science that would now like to pursue athletic training.

Post-Professional Degree Programs

  • Post-Professional Degree programs lead to a degree (currently masters or doctorate) for students that are already credentialed as athletic trainers and expand the depth and breadth of the applied, experiential, and propositional knowledge and skills of athletic trainers through didactic, clinical, and research experiences.
  • These programs DO NOT qualify the learner to sit for the BOC exam.
  • This is the degree for you if you have already:
  • graduated from an accredited professional program AND
  • taken, or are currently eligible to take, the BOC credentialing examination

Post-Professional Residency Programs

  • Post-Professional Residency Programs are formal educational programs that offer structured curricula, including didactic and clinical components, to educate Athletic Trainers. They are designed to build upon and expand the Athletic Trainer’s knowledge and experience acquired during professional (entry-level) education.
  • These programs may be contained within an institution of higher learning or within a health care facility, such as a hospital
  • These programs DO NOT qualify the learner to sit for the BOC exam.
  • This is the program for you if you have either:
  • Graduated from an accredited professional program AND/OR
  • Graduated from either an accredited post-professional degree program OR have graduated from another post-baccalaureate degree program after achieving your credential in athletic training

PROFESSIONAL FAQS - General Questions

If the question is specific to a program, please submit the question via email the to the CAATE Office (support@caate.net).  Many questions may be able to be answered by office staff, but occasionally questions need to be brought to the Commission for a definitive answer.  Questions forwarded to the Commission will be addressed on monthly conference calls if received a minimum of two weeks prior to the call.  Final official responses will be emailed to the individual or the program(s) submitting the question(s).

Tag: CAATE

The regular CAATE logo is reserved exclusively for use by the CAATE, and unauthorized use of the CAATE logo is a violation of copyright and trademark law.  Accredited programs are encouraged to use the CAATE Accredited Program Seal that is available for download from the CAATE website (https://caate.net/professional-program-documents-and-resources/). All CAATE logos and seals must be used exactly as they were created, without changes in color, verbiage, typeface, or otherwise altering their appearance.

Tags: logo, Seal

The CAATE does not release information that is not already publicly available on institutional websites.  Requests for information should be made in writing to the CAATE (support@caate.net), and should include an explanation of intended usage of any information provided.

All Program Official changes, with the exception of the Program Director, may be done online through eAccreditation.

Program director change can be completed by logging into eAccreditation and selecting the “Substantive Change” tab and then selecting Program Director Change. Changes to the program director should be submitted 30 days in advance of the change occurring. If problems are encountered when trying to access to eAccreditation please contact the CAATE office via phone or by email at support@caate.net

The preceptor does not need to sign the affiliation agreement. The person signing must have the authority to sign on behalf of the facility and their employees. For example, at a high school, signing authority might reside with the principle or superintendent, at a clinic it might be the CEO, etc. For colleges/universities, it is usually a president, dean or their designee. There may be a contracts office at the college/university that handles these types of agreements. Remember if the preceptor is employed by one facility (i.e., a clinic) and is supervising students at another facility (i.e., a high school) then there must be an affiliation agreement or MOU on file for both facilities.

If both sites are under the governance and management by the college/university then no affiliation agreement is required. If the health center is managed by an outside entity (i.e., outside physician group or clinic), then an affiliation agreement would be necessary.

A substantive change is any change made to the program that may result in a change to the delivery or process of program administration.  Examples of substantive changes include change of degree level being offered, change in program leadership (i.e. Program Director), major curricular changes, institutionally internal relocation of program (e.g. change in department in which program is housed), or a change in resources from the University.  All of these changes can be submitted in the ‘Substantive Change’ section on eAccreditation.

Yes, the CAATE accepts credit cards for program transactions.  The directions for paying via credit card are contained within CAATE electronic invoices. The CAATE office does NOT take credit card information over the phone.

All programs will submit a flat fee of $5,000 with their self-study. All expenses for the site visit will be covered from these funds. Programs will no longer be invoiced for expenses after a site visit. Invoices for this fee are sent upon submission of the program’s self-study in eAccreditation.  Review of the program’s self-study materials will not commence until payment of this fee has been remitted.

Yes, all accredited programs pay the yearly accreditation fee. The annual accreditation fee schedule for each program type can be found on the CAATE website. The self-study/site visit fee covers the cost of reviewing the self-study and all related site visit costs, but not the cost of yearly accreditation. The annual accreditation fee is invoiced in the beginning of August and is due 60 days after the invoicing date.

Under the CAATE system of accreditation, accreditation is a continuing process. Should a program not submit the self-study at the required time, the athletic training program will be placed on probation and ultimately, may have its accreditation removed involuntarily. All self-studies are due July 1st. If a program’s accreditation certificate says 2019-20, the self-study is due July 1 of 2019. The site visit must occur during a window of dates determined by the CAATE, in the fall of 2019 or spring of 2020. The program director and the site visitors (once they are assigned) mutually agree on the date of site visit. Self-studies are submitted within the eAccreditation system.

No, your site visit does not have to be in the same semester as in was in your previous site visit.

All programs will now submit self-studies through e-Accreditation. The self-study tab in e-Accreditation will become available to programs one year prior to the due date of the program’s next comprehensive review (July 1 of each year). Programs that are not within one year of their accreditation cycle will have access to the Assessment Module.

The Site Visit Committee assigns a site visit team to each program. The names of the site visitors will be emailed to the program director. If there is a conflict of interest, the program director must contact the CAATE Office. If there is no conflict of interest, the site visit team is notified. The site visit chair then contacts the program director to schedule the site visit at a time that is agreeable to the institution and to the site visit team.

You can add a new user by navigating to the ‘Users‘ tab and selecting ‘add user.’ You can then assign them as a Program Official by navigating to the ‘Officials‘ tab.

You can review your Annual Report by navigating to the ‘Annual Report’ tab and then the ‘Review‘ tab. You can then go through each section to review any comments. The Annual Review function is made available to the programs immediately once the Annual Report has been reviewed and accepted by the CAATE

The CAATE does not track the number of graduates by state. The Board of Certification (BOC) may have the number of ATCs by state.

Tags: BOC, graduates

Yes, an individual who instructs within the athletic training program, but is not responsible for core AT courses are considered Associated Faculty.  This includes those who may have a split appointment with another institutional department, college, or school.

While the DPM should be encouraged to participate in the program, and can be a valuable asset, the Standard explicitly states that the Medical Director must be a licensed MD/DO.

There is no longer an ‘ACI’ designation or a requirement for the preceptor to be credentialed for a year. The program, however, should evaluate the newly credentialed healthcare professional’s ability to provide quality clinical education experiences for students in the program while they themselves are transitioning to practice.

No, there is nothing that needs to be submitted to the CAATE to notify a change in CEC.  You will need to make the changes in eAccreditation in relation to officials as well as faculty profiles. Additionally, Standards 16 and 17 (2012 Professional Standards) may need to be adjusted with regard to FTE and PD/CEC course load, if that changes with this transition.

Because the knowledge, skills, and abilities in the Athletic Training Educational Competencies are of a higher skill level than first aid or ECC, students do not have to have formal certification in either of those areas. The content must be taught and evaluated, but there is no requirement to have “cards” to document instruction. Documentation might be completed through the curriculum module/matrix and/or in the course syllabi in which the content is taught and evaluated. Please note: Candidates who sit for the BOC exam MUST have documentation of ECC for verification.

The 2012 Standards do not state that students need to have a physical.

Typically the institution will stipulate how many years student records should be kept.  The CAATE doesn’t require a certain time period, although it does state which records must be kept for students within your program (Standards 98-105, 2012 Professional Program Standards).  Programs should keep in mind their specific outcome measures and how those are measured.  For instance, if a program’s plan regarding a specific outcome states a specific timeframe for intended change or measurement, then the program would need to maintain student records for that time period to demonstrate plan effectiveness and outcome monitoring.

The competency (5th edition) analysis and mapping to courses are independent of each other, since many of the competencies will go across courses. The red boxes on the competency analysis will turn green once the competency is mapped to at least one instructional method and one evaluation method (of course you can map many more). The competency analysis is all about teaching/evaluating and the courses will map the competency to a course. You should be able to see whether something is mapped to the course on the course page. You will also see the methods and weather they are mapped or not. You do not have to upload syllabi to map. You will see the “upload missing” message in the syllabi box. The competencies only turn green when they are mapped to at least one instructional method and one evaluation method. That process is independent of matching to specific courses, as it is the expectation that competencies will be addressed in several courses thus they don’t turn green until mapped to the instructional method(s) and evaluation method(s).

PROFESSIONAL FAQS - 2012 Professional Program Standards

All sites where students are involved in patient care or observation-only experience (excluding the Program’s sponsoring institution) must have an affiliation agreement or memorandum(s) of understanding that is endorsed by the appropriate administrative authority (i.e. those bearing signature authority) at both the sponsoring institution and site. In the case where the administrative oversight of the preceptor differs from the affiliate site, formal agreements must be obtained from all parties.

A sample of the tools would be more appropriate than just one in each category.  No need to include all, but enough to allow the reviewers to evaluate.

The intent of this Standard (2012 Professional Program Standards) is to ensure that program directors are given adequate time and resources to fulfill the requirements of their position and the needs of the program.  The PD’s overall load must be comparable to similarly held health care positions at the institution or benchmarked by peer institutions. It is up to the institution to describe a case where this practice is consistent with other health care programs at the institution or peer institutions. If the program cannot verify this practice is consistent with the required benchmarking criterion, the practice would be non-compliant.

Only include AT core courses. Pre-requisites or courses outside the department that are included as basic science courses do not need to be included.

The list of Faculty and Instructional Staff is maintained on the Faculty Tab. A direct link is provided within the Standard in the self-study.

Yes, typically faculty appointment letters would include multiple courses if that was the expectation for the faculty member to teach.

If the chair or dean of the academic unit gives academic release time to a faculty member for clinical responsibilities, that person would fulfill the faculty status as described in the glossary and Standard 30.

Standard 51 (2012 Professional Program Standards) states that all clinical education sites must be evaluated by the program on an annual and planned basis and the evaluations must serve as part of the program’s comprehensive assessment plan. The Standard does not indicate the types of evaluations that need to be performed. Educationally it may be appropriate to evaluate the site and the surgeon to determine if it is a worthwhile experience for the student.

A clinical experience can extend beyond the academic semester and during breaks as long as it is tied to an academic course. The aforementioned scenario could be considered compliant if all other criteria are met.  For example, it is critical that this practice is approved by those in the institution with authority to do so to ensure students are not prohibited from returning early for a variety of reasons (e.g. liability insurance coverage).

Assessment of knowledge, skills, and abilities can occur in any fashion consistent with the program’s policy including, but not limited to, times during early arrival and holiday coverage.

Any deviation from the Standard that occurs outside of institution’s normal academic calendar must be written within an institutional policy that has been approved by the Program Director, the Department Chair, Dean, and the institution’s legal counsel to ensure this practice does not contradict any federal and state statutes.

The athletic training student must be supervised at all times, therefore, sending the student to perform athletic training services, including application of ice, on a patient would require the presence of an appropriately credentialed preceptor (e.g. licensed athletic trainer).  Failure to assure athletic training students are supervised during all clinical experiences will result in non-compliance.

Yes, Standard 78 (2012 Professional Program Standards), as well as Standard 79 (The program must have a process for site specific training and review of the EAP with the student before they begin patient care at that site.) and Standard 80 (Students must have immediate access to the EAP in an emergency situation.) apply to all venues where athletic training students are placed for clinical education.

PROFESSIONAL FAQS - Student Directory

If the student(s) recently applied for a BOC # it may not be available in the eAccreditation system yet to match. We only receive the BOC #’s to be uploaded 5 times per year.

The cohorts are “admission cohorts;” when the student is actually admitted to the program.   Each cohort will have an on-time graduation.  IF a student needs extended time and will not graduate until the next year, they remain with the original cohort and you (as Program Director) will have the ability to manually put in the actual graduation date.

We suggest that students obtain BOC IDs as soon as they are enrolled in the program, but it is not a requirement on the annual report for students who have not graduated.  All students who have graduated and have taken the exam MUST be matched to the BOC ID.

Once you are logged in to eAccreditation, navigate to the ‘Students’ sub-tab. This will bring up all students and will show those students who are not yet matched to their BOC ID. For those students who need to be matched, click on their individual name and their student profile will pop up. You can then click on the ‘BOC Search’ tool, match the student to their BOC ID and click save. This will automatically populate the BOC Pass Rate Table.

PROFESSIONAL FAQS - BOC Pass Rate Table

Please check and make sure all students who should have graduated (for the appropriate academic year) are marked as ‘graduated’ in their student profile. If a student is still listed as ‘in progress’ mark them as ‘graduated.’

 The undergraduate BOC data would be carried over since it is considered the same accredited program.

PROFESSIONAL FAQS - Annual Report

Yes, if the program director feels the program is non-compliant with any of the Standards, the PD should select “No” for the appropriate section. A pop-up window will appear requesting an explanation of a “No” response.

Please refer to the Glossary terms Preceptor and Health Care Professional located in the 2012 Standards.

The directory information (clinical site, faculty, and preceptor profiles) are dynamic and can be updated at all times. Programs are encouraged to put in the most recent training date. The reviewers will not be concerned with the training date occurring within the reporting year.

It is assumed that the CEC and/or PD will evaluate students so it is not necessary for you to list yourself as a preceptor.

Only students enrolled in the program should be included.

With the Mutual Agreement between CATA and BOC, the CAATE does not see an issue with using a preceptor who is CATA Certified. It would be treated like Texas licensure (non-BOC) where they would need a majority of their clinical experience with the BOC-credentialed individual.

POST-PROFESSIONAL FAQS - General Questions

If the question is specific to a program, please submit the question via email the to the CAATE office (support@caate.net).  Many questions may be able to be answered by office staff, but occasionally questions need to be brought to the Commission for a definitive answer.  Questions forwarded to the Commission will be addressed on monthly conference calls if received a minimum of two weeks prior to the call.  Final official responses will be emailed to the individual or the program(s) submitting the question(s).

The regular CAATE logo is reserved exclusively for use by the CAATE, and unauthorized use of the CAATE logo is a violation of copyright and trademark law.  Accredited programs are encouraged to use the CAATE Accredited Program Seal that is available for download from the CAATE website (https://caate.net/professional-program-documents-and-resources/). All CAATE logos and seals must be used exactly as they were created, without changes in color, verbiage, typeface, or otherwise altering their appearance.

Tags: logo, Seal

The CAATE does not release information that is not already publicly available on institutional websites.  Requests for information should be made in writing to the CAATE (support@caate.net), and should include an explanation of intended usage of any information provided.

All Program Official changes, with the exception of the Program Director, may be done online through eAccreditation.

Program director change can be completed by logging into eAccreditation and selecting the “Substantive Change” tab and then selecting Program Director Change. Materials should be submitted 30 days in advance of the change occurring. If problems are encountered when trying to access to eAccreditation please contact the CAATE Office via phone or by email at support@caate.net

The preceptor/supervisor does not need to sign the affiliation agreement. The person signing must have the authority to sign on behalf of the facility and their employees. For example, at a high school, signing authority might reside with the principle or superintendent, at a clinic it might be the CEO, etc. For colleges/universities, it is usually a president, dean or their designee. There may be a contracts office at the college/university that handles these types of agreements. Remember if the preceptor is employed by one facility (i.e., a clinic) and is supervising students at another facility (i.e., a high school) then there must be an affiliation agreement or MOU on file for both facilities.

A substantive change is any change made to the program that may result in a change to the delivery or process of program administration.  Examples of substantive changes include change of degree level being offered, change in program leadership (i.e. Program Director), institutionally internal relocation of program (e.g. change in department in which program is housed), or a change in resources from the University.  All of these changes can be submitted in the ‘Substantive Change’ section on eAccreditation.

Yes, the CAATE accepts credit cards for program transactions.  The directions for paying via credit card are contained within CAATE electronic invoices. The CAATE office does NOT take credit card information over the phone.

All programs will submit a flat fee of $5,000 with their self-study. All expenses for the site visit will be covered from these funds. Programs will no longer be invoiced for expenses after a site visit. Invoices for this fee are sent upon submission of the program’s self-study in eAccreditation.  Review of the program’s self-study materials will not commence until payment of this fee has been remitted.

Yes, all accredited programs pay the yearly accreditation fee. The annual accreditation fee schedule for each program type can be found on the CAATE website. The self-study/site visit fee covers the cost of reviewing the self-study and all related site visit costs, but not the cost of yearly accreditation. The annual accreditation fee is invoiced in the beginning of August and is due 60 days after the invoicing date.

Under the CAATE system of accreditation, accreditation is a continuing process. Should a program not submit the self-study at the required time, the athletic training program will be placed on probation and ultimately, may have its accreditation removed involuntarily. All self-studies are due July 1st. If a program’s accreditation certificate says 2019-20, the self-study is due July 1 of 2019. The site visit must occur during a window of dates determined by the CAATE, in the fall of 2019 or spring of 2020. The program director and the site visitors (once they are assigned) mutually agree on the date of site visit. Self-studies are submitted within the eAccreditation system.

No, your site visit does not have to be in the same semester as in was in your previous site visit.

All programs will now submit self-studies through e-Accreditation. The self-study tab in e-Accreditation will become available to programs one year prior to the due date of the program’s next comprehensive review (July 1 of each year). Programs that are not within one year of their accreditation cycle will have access to the Assessment Module.

The Site Visit Committee assigns a site visit team to each program. The names of the site visitors will be emailed to the program director. If there is a conflict of interest, the program director must contact the CAATE Office. If there is no conflict of interest, the site visit team is notified. The site visit chair then contacts the program director to schedule the site visit at a time that is agreeable to the institution and to the site visit team.

You can add a new user by navigating to the ‘Users‘ tab and selecting ‘add user.’ You can then assign them as a Program Official by navigating to the ‘Officials‘ tab.

You can review your Annual Report by navigating to the ‘Annual Report’ tab and then the ‘Review‘ tab. You can then go through each section to review any comments. The Annual Review function is made available to the programs immediately once the Annual Report has been reviewed and accepted by the CAATE

While the DPM should be encouraged to participate in the program, and can be a valuable asset, the Standard explicitly states that the Medical Director must be a licensed MD/DO.

POST-PROFESSIONAL FAQS - Post Professional Standards

Standard 12 (2014 PP Degree Standards) is referring to the need for the existence of a comprehensive assessment plan, while Standard 14 (2014 PP Degree Standards) is referring to the need for the existence of comprehensive assessment measures and also asks the program to relate the measures back to the plan as well as the Program’s mission, goals, and objectives.

Standard 17 (2014 PP Degree Standards) is asking the Program Director to explain and submit documentation demonstrating how this is done. It may be in the form of Course evaluations, but it may also be exit interview data (depending on questions), or other unique metrics that you may have incorporated within your program.

Standard 17 (2014 PP Degree Standards) is asking the Program Director to explain and submit documentation demonstrating how this is done. This might be in the form of course evaluations, capstone experience evaluations, Practical examinations, Objective Structured Clinical Exams (OSCE), student portfolio developments, or other unique metrics that the program utilizes.

Standard 18 (2014 PP Degree Standards) is referring to the program learning outcomes and the student learning outcomes.  The Program would have identified how they would measure a program outcome or a student learning outcome within their comprehensive plan, and this question is asking the program to explain how those measures were analyzed in relationship to the completion of those objectives.  The upload(s) could be in the form of summary or data sheets demonstrating this.

CONSULTANTS - GENERAL QUESTIONS

No, the CAATE does not endorse any individual who chooses to provide consulting services to a program. The CAATE is not responsible for the services provided by such consultants, nor does the CAATE guarantee, recommend, or endorse the services of any consultant.

If a program chooses to hire an external consultant to assess any aspect of their program, they should consider the following: Does the individual have past experience with a CAATE accredited program? Does the individual have a clear understanding of the current Standards? Can the individual provide evidence of experience with accreditation? Does the individual have references that verify the level of experience needed to properly assess your program?

The CAATE is not responsible for the services provided by such consultants, nor does the CAATE guarantee, recommend, or endorse the services of any consultant.

VOLUNTARY WITHDRAWAL FAQS

A program who has submitted their voluntary withdrawal documentation to the CAATE and has been notified that the withdrawal date and documentation is satisfactory will not have to do a selfstudy. However, programs going through Voluntary Withdrawal are expected to remain in compliance with the Standards and must continue to submit Annual Reports, submit any Progress Reports, and pay annual accreditation fees until the approved date of withdrawal.

Yes. A program will need to submit their Voluntary Withdrawal documentation and have it approved by the CAATE.

According to the P & P, once the CAATE approves the programs Voluntary Withdrawal date, the program cannot admit students. So if the program has submitted their Voluntary Withdrawal documentation with teach out plan, the closing date should be after the last class graduates.

Yes. It is expected that programs will remain in compliance with ALL Standards during the withdrawal process. Programs that have non-compliances with the Standards will be required to complete Progress Reports on the noncompliant Standards until the withdrawal date.

Automatic extensions are not granted, however a program can appeal at the point that the CAATE would move to withdraw accreditation. Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education Edited 03/16

The program will most likely not hire a faculty member to meet this requirement. A program will continue to submit progress report indicating how the instructional needs of the program are being met.

Program names an interim PD that is not qualified. The Program must submit a Substantive Change for interim PD and follow the Substantive Change process. The program may be placed on probation for not having a qualified Program Director in place. Programs must continue to submit progress reports on how the administrative and instructional needs of the program are being met during voluntary withdrawal.

Voluntary Withdrawal materials must be approved by the CAATE Office. It is recommended that the program submit documentation for Voluntary Withdrawal by June 1. The program could not accept students for that fall.

Is the date based on when they were actually admitted or when they actually begin the professional phase of the program? Students may not be admitted, enrolled, or matriculated into the program after the Voluntary Withdrawal documentation has been approved by the CAATE.

f withdrawal is voluntary, all aspects of the programs closure plan, including their teach-out plan and staffing levels, must be approved by the Commission.

Yes, programs who are not transitioning to the master’s degree must complete Voluntary Withdrawal. Instructions to Voluntary Withdrawal are located on the CAATE Website.