About COA

Recognized Scope

The Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) is nationally recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) as an accrediting agency for the “accreditation of institutions and programs of nurse anesthesia at the post-master’s certificate, master’s, or doctoral degree levels in the United States, and its territories, including programs offering distance education.”

Accreditation Activities Outside the COA’s Recognized Scope

In addition to the accreditation activities identified in its recognized scope the COA accredits one clinical site at the Navy Hospital, Okinawa, Japan. It also accredits five Post-Graduate CRNA Fellowships located in the United States. These accreditation activities are not part of the COA’s USDE or CHEA-recognized scopes of accreditation.


  1. To grant public recognition to nurse anesthesia programs and institutions that award post master’s certificates, master’s, and doctoral degrees that meet nationally established standards of academic quality (quality assessment).
  2. To assist programs and institutions in improving educational quality (quality enhancement).


The goals of the Council are to:

  1. Pursue its mission, goals and objectives and conduct its operations with integrity.
  2. Advise, formulate, and/or adopt standards, criteria, policies and procedures for the accreditation of nurse anesthesia educational programs, subject to review and comment by all constituencies that are significantly affected by them.
  3. Foster academic quality in educational programs.
  4. Utilize evaluation to measure a program’s degree of success in meeting programmatic objectives and accreditation requirements within the context of its institutional mission and resources.
  5. Encourage innovations in program design and/or experimental programs that are based on sound educational principles.
  6. Ensure responsiveness to its communities of interest including, but not limited to students, programs, and the public.
  7. Foster student achievement and continuous program improvement as a basis of promoting quality nurse anesthesia services to the public.
  8. Incorporate public involvement in its decision making related to quality and accountability.


Click here to download the COA’s Bylaws.