Ottawa University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (hlcommission.org), a regional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) is an independent corporation that was founded in 1895 as one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. HLC accredits degree-granting post-secondary education institutions in the North Central region, which includes 19 states including Kansas. The federal government has a distinct interest in the role of accreditation in assuring quality in higher education for the students who benefit from federal financial aid program. By being recognized by the US Department of Education as a gatekeeper agency, the Commission agrees to fulfill specific federally defined responsibilities within the accreditation processes, as described by HLC.