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What is the Association for Biblical Higher Education?

The Association for Biblical Higher Education is not only the accrediting agency for approximately 200 Bible schools and colleges throughout Canada and the United States, it is a proactive organization that seeks to encourage the discovery of solutions that both emerge from and promote Christian spiritual movements throughout the world.

For believers who value a quality higher education in academics guided by a Christian worldview, the ABHE has provided a new generation of spiritual leaders who love and serve God in a variety of callings that may or may not consist of church-related occupations. In fact, there are nearly 2,500 programs of study available.


Unlike uniform and heavily regulated policies that govern universities in several parts of the world, accredited universities assure their partnering member institutions meet accepted standards of quality and integrity through voluntary participation, self-evaluation, and peer review that offers recommendations concerning compliance or for improvement. This method of quality assurance for institutions of higher learning is now being adopted by a growing number of countries.

ABHE is a recognized national accrediting agency, which is an agency that accredits institutions with specific vocational, professional, or theological missions. Recognized accrediting agencies may be found through USDE or CHEA online accreditation databases.

What is an institution of Biblical Higher Education?

As defined by the ABHE Manual, an institution of higher education is one "in which the Bible is central and the development of Christian life and ministry is essential." Schools that fit this description require extensive, serious Bible study, not for the purpose of detachment and skepticism, but for the purpose of discipleship, humbly seeking to understand God's will and conforming to it, thereby participating in bringing about the fulfillment of God's plan. There are more than 200 institutions of higher education that enroll more than 50,000 students. These institutions offer undergraduate and graduate educational opportunities in eight time zones that stretch from the Canadian Maritimes to Hawaii and from Alaska to Puerto Rico. Each of these institutions is accredited by the ABHE.

Member Networks

Global Partner Network: ABHE participates as one of nine regional associations of the International Council for Evangelical Theological Education (ICETE). This global community serves a combined enrollment of more than 100,000 students in 1,000 institutions, located in 113 countries.

ABHE Membership: Institutions may qualify to participate in one of three categories of membership: the Commission on Accreditation (COA) for institutions actively pursuing accreditation, Associate Membership for members of the Association of Christian Schools International, or Affiliate Membership institutions that do not hold USDE- or CHEA-recognized accreditation. These memberships expand the influence and availability of resources provided by ABHE for the purpose of ensuring quality, Christ-centered educational opportunities for even more students.

Educational Resources

Several resources and services continue to be developed and are available from ABHE to help member institutions flourish. These resources include a comprehensive campus software platform that integrates all data streams used by the school into one campus data management system, Bible exams, and surveys and statistical reports.

More than an accrediting agency, the ABHE envisions a spiritually robust future that is culturally relevant and professionally respected. The Association for Biblical Higher Education therefore contributes to member institutions so they may make a global Gospel impact, then multiply that impact in scale, scope and significance.

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