1. Meeting regulatory requirements
Standard 1.1 – Regulations. ACE providers know and adhere to social work regulations regarding CE requirements in the jurisdictions where they offer CE credit as an ACE provider.
2. Applying social work values and ethics
Standard 2.1 – Values and ethics. ACE providers’ overall programs and individual courses adhere to the social work profession’s values and codes of ethics.
Standard 2.2 – Nondiscrimination. ACE providers do not discriminate against any individual or group based on gender, race, creed, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, age, organizational membership, or any other basis prohibited by law or counter to the social work profession’s codes of ethics.
Standard 2.3 – Cultural awareness and diversity. ACE providers infuse cultural awareness and diversity into their courses and programs.
Standard 2.4 – Accessibility. ACE providers offer accommodations and accessibility as required by law.
3. Working with ACE
Standard 3.1 – Application eligibility. Prospective ACE applicants must meet eligibility requirements prior to applying to ACE.
Standard 3.2 – Provider staff. ACE providers have assigned staff members to the roles of continuing education director, social work consultant, and primary contact to work with the ACE program during the application process and after approval to ensure continued compliance with ACE standards. If required, ACE providers also assign an auxiliary social work consultant or advisory committee.
Standard 3.3 – Continued compliance. ACE providers ensure that their program and courses meet current ACE standards.
4. Ensuring course quality and relevance
Standard 4.1 – Acceptable topics. ACE providers offer courses on topics that are relevant to evidence-based social work practice and reflect current peer-reviewed research, best practices, and the needs of social workers.
Standard 4.2 – Bibliography. ACE providers create a bibliography, also called a reference list, that includes all source material used, consulted, referenced, or quoted for each course.
Standard 4.3 – Learning objectives. ACE providers offer courses with measurable learning objectives—clear and concise written statements defining the knowledge, skills, and abilities a learner should be able to demonstrate following the learning experience—that the ACE provider can evaluate and use to assess and improve future learning and course quality.
Standard 4.4 – Content level. ACE providers accurately identify content level as beginning, intermediate, or advanced.
Standard 4.5 – Instructor qualifications. ACE providers offer courses taught by instructors or presenters with appropriate professional qualifications.
Standard 4.6 – Instructional materials. ACE providers use appropriate, high-quality instructional materials.
Standard 4.7 – Avoiding commercial bias. ACE providers do not show commercial bias or promote commercial interests during CE activities.
Standard 4.8 – Calculating CE credit. ACE providers follow ACE requirements for determining CE credit.
Standard 4.9 – Pilot testing. ACE providers use pilot testing before delivering a course via distance learning to determine credit hours and ensure course quality and effectiveness.
Standard 4.10 – Posttesting. ACE providers use posttesting as required to assess participant learning and course quality and effectiveness.
5. Delivering learning experiences
Standard 5.1 – Course delivery. ACE providers deliver in-person or distance learning courses for CE credit to social workers using their ACE provider approval only in the formats for which they have been approved.
Standard 5.2 – Distance learning communication. ACE providers ensure the availability of communication between participants and instructors when delivering courses via distance learning formats.
Standard 5.3 – Cosponsorship. ACE providers may cosponsor courses with other providers under specified conditions following the first year of approval.
Standard 5.4 – Conferences. ACE providers have specific approval to offer CE credit for conferences as defined by ACE.
6. Promoting and advertising
Standard 6.1 – Promotional materials. ACE providers use promotional materials that provide adequate information and follow social work ethical conduct and core values.
Standard 6.2 – ACE approval statement. ACE providers display their ACE approval statement and provider number on promotional materials and certificates of credit.
7. Administering the CE program and courses
Standard 7.1 – Online security. ACE providers ensure the online security of participant information.
Standard 7.2 – Addressing grievances. ACE providers have a written grievance policy that guides their response in a timely and ethical manner to complaints received by the provider, a regulatory board, or ASWB.
Standard 7.3 – Record keeping. ACE providers collect and maintain important records.
Standard 7.4 – Course evaluation. ACE providers require participants to evaluate courses.
Standard 7.5 – Attendance documentation. ACE providers accurately document attendance at in-person and synchronous distance learning (live) events and participation in asynchronous distance learning (self-paced) educational activities and issue certificates of credit to those who complete courses.