Austin, TX, Aug. 18, 2019 – The Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) is pleased to announce it has accredited its first program outside the United States. During the monthly CAATE Board meeting on August 13, 2019, the Board voted to grant the Master’s in Athletic Training and Therapy program at Universidad Camilo José Cela (UCJC), in Madrid, the maximum initial five-years of accreditation.

The program initially applied for accreditation in February 2017 and submitted their comprehensive self-study in July 1, 2018. An experienced site-visit team performed a successful standard on-site visitation of the program this spring.

“We are extremely proud of the work done by Universidad Camilo José Cela (UCJC) to achieve CAATE accreditation. This is the result of a joint effort between the CAATE leadership, spearheaded by president-elect Eric Sauers; volunteers, and the faculty at UCJC to advance our profession globally,” said LesLee Taylor, CAATE President.

CAATE accreditation assures that programs meet standards to produce graduates ready to enter the profession. Programs outside of the U.S. follow the same process, policies, and procedures for accreditation as programs within the U.S. Non-English-speaking programs are required to translate any foreign language documents into English for their review. Once a program from outside the U.S. achieves initial accreditation, it has all the same benefits and is subject to all the same policies and procedures as their U.S.-based counterparts.

In December 2017, the CAATE developed the 2012 Substantial Equivalent Documentation for non-U.S. Programs, which provides instructions for how professional programs outside of the United States can demonstrate compliance with specific standards. A total of nine standards were identified as being able to be achieved through ‘substantial equivalence’ if a program were housed outside of the U.S. These standards are only related to the sponsoring institution, the name of the
degree awarded, the type of personnel who may teach within the program, and specific trainings pertaining to the protection of health and student data.

Aside from these nine standards, programs outside of the U.S. must demonstrate compliance with all other standards in an identical manner to programs within the U.S. With regards to the sponsoring institution, they must demonstrate that they have approval by appropriate governmental entities (e.g., ministry of education) to offer higher education. The personnel standards are specific to the profession of athletic training, which may not exist in some countries and where the CAATE has determined that other appropriately qualified personnel may deliver the
program. The standard pertaining to student training with regards to patient health and student data requires that programs outside of the U.S. still teach the U.S. standards in addition to pertinent local standards.