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Voluntary System of Accountability

The Voluntary System of Accountability, or VSA, is a voluntary initiative designed to provide greater accountability by public colleges and universities through accessible, transparent, and comparable information.  The VSA is jointly sponsored by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) and the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC).  Collectively AASCU and NASULGC represent over 500 public institutions that enroll 7.5 million students and award 70% of bachelor's degrees in the U.S. each year.

The VSA is designed to help institutions meet the following objectives:

  • Demonstrate accountability and stewardship to public
  • Measure educational outcomes to identify effective educational practices
  • Assemble information that is accessible, understandable, and comparable

College Portrait

The College Portrait is the name of the web template designed to communicate VSA information to the public.   All participating institutions use this same template to report consistent, comparable, and transparent information on the characteristics of the institutions and its students, cost of attendance, student engagement with the learning process, and core educational outcomes. The information is intended for students, families, policy-makers, campus faculty and staff, the general public, and other higher education stakeholders.

University of Houston-Downtown College Portrait


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Page maintained by UHD Institutional Research Webmaster

Last updated or reviewed on 2/20/15

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