About the American Council on Education

Who We Are

​​​​The American Council on Education (ACE) is a membership organization that mobilizes the higher education community to shape effective public policy and foster innovative, high-quality practice. As the major coordinating body for the nation’s colleges and universities, our strength lies in our diverse membership of more than 1,700 colleges and universities, related associations, and other organizations in America and abroad. ACE is the only major higher education association to represent all types of U.S. accredited, degree-granting colleges and universities. Our members educate two out of every three students in all accredited, degree-granting U.S. institutions.

What We Do

ACE convenes, organizes, mobilizes, and leads advocacy efforts that shape effective public policy and help colleges and universities best serve their students, their communities, and the wider public good. We help institutions build their capacity through high-quality innovation. We work to improve equity, expand access to our colleges and universities, and diversify the higher education leadership pipeline.

ACE delivers member value through high-quality professional learning programs that leverage a suite of blended solutions aimed at transforming institutions and diversifying the talent pipeline. ACE also offers services that demonstrate its commitment to postsecondary access and success, including the evaluation of corporate and military training experiences to ensure that all quality learning is connected and counted. Cutting-edge research and member insights on key higher education issues inform these offerings and help mobilize the community to enhance institutional performance.

ACE produces signature research projects and timely evidence-informed insights, and routinely engages members through a variety of formats to better understand and meet their needs. Research and insights focus on three critical components of higher education’s value proposition for the twenty-first century: equity-minded leadership, institutional transformation, and student success.

ACE is consistently at the center of federal policy debates concerning higher education. As a convener of higher education associations and agencies, we enable our community to speak with one voice on issues affecting institutions and students. ACE's work on behalf of the nation's colleges and universities ensures that our members are connected to policymakers and represented as officials make critical decisions on Capitol Hill.

As the only organization that represents presidents from all sectors, ACE is the:

  • Key point of contact on higher education matters for congressional staff and the executive branch.
  • Unifying representative for higher education on legal issues and federal court cases, including at the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Most frequently cited organization in the national media on higher education issues.
  • Source for information on timely and significant policy issues, shared with members through ACE President Ted Mitchell's weekly newsletter, President to President.
Where We Came From

ACE has played a major role in shaping higher education in the United States for more than a century. Since its founding in 1918, ACE has spearheaded programs, advocated for legislation, and led initiatives that have shaped the nation's postsecondary landscape.

Where We're Going

ACE is committed to affirming and strengthening public trust in higher education; championing equity, access, and completion; and enriching the capacity of institutions and leaders to innovate and adapt.

ACE Leadership

"Now, more than ever, we need high quality higher education to be a right available to all. This is in the interest of all Americans, and it is in the national interest. This is where I believe ACE can and must play a vital role in convening and mobilizing the entire higher education community to work together to help promote the value of higher education to a wide array of stakeholders."

Ted Mitchell, ACE President


At the American Council on Education, we demonstrate core values such as collaboration, inclusion, and innovation in the way we work and serve our members.

If you believe that your work should be fulfilling, and your workplace should be collaborative, consider joining our team.

As required by the Transparency in Coverage Final Rule, plans and issuers are required to publicly display in-network provider negotiated rates, historical out-of-network and allowed amounts through Machine Readable Files.

Become an ACE member and join the nation's largest higher education community!

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​​​Support ACE in building an inclusive, dynamic, and resilient higher education sector. Your gift to ACE will shape the future of U.S. higher education and build on a century of progress.

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​Partnerships & Collaborations

A graphic of the ACUE logo 

ACE and the Association of College and University Educators (ACUE) have formed an important collaboration to provide professional development and support services to college instructors, with a focus on current and future college faculty whose primary responsibility is to teach or support instruction. Learn more about the ACE-ACUE collaboration.

A graphic of the GED Testing Service logo  

GED Testing Service is a joint venture of the American Council on Education and Pearson. The GED® test has opened doors to better jobs and college programs for more than 18 million graduates since 1942. Last year nearly 800,000 adults sat for the GED test, which is accepted by virtually all U.S. colleges and employers.

To learn more about GED Testing Service, and the GED® test, visit the GED Testing Service website.