For other federal regulations affecting distance education, please visit the Federal Regulations page.
Reference the WCET State Authorization Network's (SAN) Professional Licensure Notifications in a Nutshell for a 1-page, high-level reference on the considerations for the professional licensure requirements.
WCET's State Authorization Network conducted a webcast titled, Professional Licensure Notifications Now Required!. Helpful resources are provided related to the webcast, including slides, recording with a transcript, and a Q&A document.
Professional Licensure Programs Offered to Out-of-State Students
For those programs that lead to professional licensure and enroll students from out-of-state, new requirements took place on July 1, 2020. As described in WCET's Handbook, this requirement is focused on ensuring institutions communicate to students whether their programs will meet the students’ state licensing requirements.
WCET provides details about the general disclosure (posting to a program website, for example) and direct disclosure (sending current and prospective program students an email, for example) requirements. The WCET site also includes directories that may help in locating the appropriate state contacts for state licensing requirements.
A webinar was recently hosted by NC-SARA, visit the NC-SARA site about this regulation for related resources. Please note the information included in this webinar reinforces that this is in addition to state authorization requirements for offering online classes to out-of-state students.
For more details including the above information, visit the WCET State Authorization Network’s Professional Licensure Disclosures: Implementation Handbook for Institutional Compliance with the 2019 Federal Regulations (PDF).
Michigan is now a SARA state - Michigan was approved by the Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC) in August 2015 to join the national SARA initiative. The Michigan Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) agency will by our state portal agency for the SARA. Colleges wishing to be a part of the SARA must be approved by LARA. Institution application forms can be found here .
Education Department Proposes Rule on State Authorization of Postsecondary Distance Education: The US Department of Education invited public comment on the proposed regulations over state authorization of distance learning by August 24, 2016 (final regulations will be published before the end of the year). The Instructional Technology Council (ITC) submitted public comment in a joint letter with 8 other agencies. You can view that letter here.
As authorized by the MCCVLC Advisory Council at the January 28, 2011 meeting, the MCCVLC will work to secure state authorization on behalf of the MCCVLC membership. State Authorization Requirements - This document is a state-by-state analysis of distance education authorization regulations. (Revised June 2014)
Student Complaint Process - Part of the U.S. Department of Education regulations - that was not over-ruled by the U.S. District Court's ruling on July 12, 2011 - require colleges to "provide its students with contact information for filing complaints with its accreditor and with its State approval or licensing entity and any other relevant State official or agency that would appropriately handle a student’s complaint." This regulation pertains to all current and prospective students - whether they are taking face-to-face classes or classes offered online.
§ 668.43 (b) Institutional Information
(b) The institution must make available for review to any enrolled or prospective student upon request, a copy of the documents describing the institution’s accreditation and its State, Federal, or tribal approval or licensing. The institution must also provide its students or prospective students with contact information for filing complaints with its accreditor and with its State approval or licensing entity and any other relevant State official or agency that would appropriately handle a student’s complaint.
Distance educators should provide this information on their website as they may likely offer online courses to students who live in other states. MCCVLC has provided a document that outlines each state's complaint process, phone number, and any pertinent links - for colleges to link to as a compliance activity.
MCCVLC Student Complaint State Resources