About Us

The Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) accredits university programs in North America leading to bachelor’s and master’s degrees in planning. PAB standards are developed with input from the public and our sponsoring organizations: the American Planning Association (APA); APA’s American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP); and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP).

The Planning Accreditation Board’s (PAB) mission is to promote excellence among planning programs and ensure high quality education for future urban planners . In furtherance of this mission, PAB embraces five core values:

  • Stewardship: preserving the knowledge base of the urban planning profession with which the PAB has been entrusted and supporting the innovations that enhance this knowledge base over time.
  • Collaboration: advancing the dialogue and partnerships between the academic and practitioner communities.
  • Communication: articulating the value of an accredited urban planning education to students and the communities they will study and serve.
  • Integrity: maintaining a commitment to fairness, transparency, consistency and state-of-the-art accreditation practices.
  • Leadership: providing leadership in sharing and encouraging instructional innovation.

In addition to accrediting graduate and undergraduate planning programs in North America, PAB mentors programs to further academic excellence in professional education; collects and provides data on the state of planning education (student profiles, performance, placement, effectiveness, etc.); and strengthens professional education in partnership with its sponsors (ACSP, AICP, and APA). Through these connections, the PAB seeks to strengthen links between planning practice and the academy.

PAB’s mission is enhanced by a 5-year strategic plan, approved December 2023, that guides the organization’s activities. The strategic plan builds on PAB’s accomplishments, strengths, and key themes developed in collaboration with leaders of ACSP, AICP, and APA. The PAB Strategic Plan is available here.

PAB is a member of the Association of Specialized and Professional Accreditors (ASPA) and adheres to the ASPA Code of Good Practice.

PAB is also recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and adheres to the CHEA Recognition Policy. Under CHEA recognition, PAB undergoes periodic review. Additional information on CHEA policies, including an important item that discusses degree mills and accreditation mills, is available on the CHEA website.