The National Institute for Liberal Education (NILE) was founded and incorporated in 2000 A.D. to promote traditional, dialectical, interdisciplinary approaches to liberal education (including the liberal arts) which integrate disciplines and avoid the disintegration of education and the early specialization by students before their liberal education in the humanities. NILE exists to accredit institutions and programs offering outstanding general and interdisciplinary education in the liberal arts that meet the Institute’s criteria.

Accreditation by NILE signifies institutional and/or program integrity and a strong commitment to a pedagogy involving the interdisciplinary study of the humanities.  Part of the institutional and/or program integrity required of NILE-accredited institutions and programs is the intellectual docility of the faculty requisite for any institution or program effectively to teach or guide students in the study of the great classics, since it is assumed by the offering of them that they must be worthy of serious study, by everyone, and hence of teaching the teachers. The absence of a faculty docile to the wisdom of the authors of the classics of our civilization would defeat, in large measure, the purpose of such study.

NILE Accreditation certifies that the institution or program meets or exceeds the Institute’s Standards for Accreditation. These standards require students to complete rigorous, interdisciplinary, dialectical studies in the greatest classics of Western civilization, sometimes referred to generically as the Great Books. NILE Standards for Accreditation provide parents and prospective students with a clear means of identifying colleges, schools, on-ground and online programs and distance education courses, at all levels, with demanding studies in the classics of Western civilization. The Institute may accredit institutions and programs worldwide that meet or exceed its standards. NILE is not a Title IV accreditor for colleges within or outside the US.  Accreditation by NILE authorizes the accredited institution or program to display this image:

NILE Standards for Accreditation

Accreditation involves the assessment of the various aspects of an educational organization or program. The following list indicates areas assessed for accreditation.

Philosophy and Educational Objectives
Pedagogy and Curriculum
Organization and Administration

Accreditation is a non-governmental review process. It is a self-governing accountability to identify and verify the integrity, purpose, and good faith of a school or program and its faculty.

For information please email: nile.edu@gmail.com

[Link to List of Colleges/Schools/Programs with Interdisciplinary, Dialectical, Great Books Programs]  


(listing here is informational only and does not imply NILE accreditation or membership)

Colleges with 4-year Great Books programs (B.A.)

St. John’s College, Annapolis, MD & Santa Fe, NM

Thomas Aquinas College, Santa Paula, CA

Gutenberg College, Eugene, OR

Online College-level 4-year Great Books Program

Ignatius-Angelicum Liberal Studies Program Online*

High/Home School  4-yr. Great Books Programs

The Great Books Academy, Online*

The Angelicum Academy, Online*
Colleges with 3-year Great Books-based Programs
Mercer University, Macon, GA

Shimer College, Waukegan, IL

U. of  Notre Dame, S. Bend, IN


Colleges with 2-year Great Books-based programs

St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN


Colleges with some form of  Great Books courses

Biola University, La Mirada, CA

Boston University, MS

Brock University, St. Catherines, Ontario

Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario

Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec

Central Washington U., Ellensburg, WA

College of St. Thomas More, Ft. Worth, TX

Columbia College, Columbia U., NY, NY

Kentucky State U., Frankfort, KY

Lawrence U., Appleton, WI

Lynchburg College, Lynchburg, VA

Malaspina College-University, Nanaimo, B.C.

North Park College, Chicago, IL

Northwestern State U., Natchitoches, LA

Rose Hill College, Aiken, SC

Seaver College, Pepperdine U., Malibu, CA

S. Virginia College, Buena Vista, VA

St. Anselm College, Manchester, NH

St. Mary’s College

Temple U., Philadelphia, PA

U. of Chicago Center for Continuing Studies, IL

University of King’s College, Halifax, N.S.

U. of N. Texas, Denton, TX

U. of Dallas, Irving, TX

U. of Oklahoma, Honors Program, Norman, OK

U. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, WI

Wesleyan U., Middleton, CN

Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA

*Accredited by NILE