The goal of institutional accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality. It validates that an institution is doing what it says it is doing and that the institution is operating within the scope and standards of its accrediting body. In many respects, accreditation is a quality assurance program wherein professionals from outside of the institution review the university based upon the standards of the accrediting body. It is a voluntary, non-governmental, self-regulatory process and peer evaluation of educational institutions. Institutional accreditation applies to the entire institution, indicating that each of an institution's parts is contributing to the achievement of the institution's mission.