ECS
From the ECS State Policy Database
Postsecondary Accountability--Accreditation


Education Commission of the States • 700 Broadway, Suite 810 • Denver, CO 80203-3442 • 303.299.3600 • fax 303.296.8332 • www.ecs.org

This database is made possible by your state's fiscal support of the Education Commission of the States (ECS). Most entries are legislative, although rules/regulations and executive orders that make substantive changes are included. Every effort is made to collect the latest available version of policies; in some instances, recent changes might not be reflected. For expediency purposes minimal attention has been paid to style (capitalization, punctuation) and format.

Please cite use of the database as: Education Commission of the States (ECS) State Policy Database, retrieved [date].

State Status/Date Level Summary
ARSigned into law 04/2013Postsec.Religious Institutions
H.B. 1297
Requires religious institutions accredited by independent state entities to notify students that courses are not usually transferable. Directs institutions to submit student-signed affidavits confirming notification.
http://www.arkleg.state.ar.us/assembly/2013...

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NVAdopted 06/2012Postsec.Licensing, Personnel, Instruction and Operations in Postsecondary Education
NAC 394.535, 380, 385, 390, 400, 405, 410, 415, 420, 427, 435, 440, 445, 450, 485, 490, 522, 525, 535, 537, 540, 550, 560, 570, 575, 580, 600, 605, 610, 615, 623, 650, 655, 720, 735
Revises various provisions governing licensing, personnel, instruction, and operations in postsecondary education. http://www.leg.state.nv.us/Division/Legal/LawLibrary/NAC/NAC-394.html...

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PASigned into law 06/2012P-12
Postsec.
An Act amending Title 24 (Education) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, in private colleges, universities and seminaries, further providing for certification of institutions.
S.B. 1406
Adds a new subsection to Title 24 concerning the certification of higher education institutions. Allows a private, nonprofit college or university to offer an additional degree, major or program if the college or university satisfies both of the following: 1) ...

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COSigned into law 05/2012Postsec.Accreditation for Private Nonprofit and For-profit Institutions
H.B. 1155 (sections 12 to 20)
Details authority, responsibility of Commission on Higher Education to authorize, revoke right of private nonprofit or for-profit institutions for operating in Colorado. Requires institutions to have regional or national accreditation, release financial data t...

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VTSigned into law 05/2011Postsec.Postsecondary Institution Approval Process
S.B. 100
Sets the process for approval for any postsecondary school that operates primarily or exclusively in the state of
Vermont. Defines "Postsecondary school" as any person who offers or operates a program of college or professional education for credit or a degree...

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ARSigned into law 03/2011Postsec.
Community College
Postsecondary Accreditation
H.B. 1254
Prohibits the use of false academic credentials. Requires accrediation from the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board before a postsecondary institution may operate in the state. Exempts existing non-public non-profit institutions. Defines criteria the ...

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MSSigned into law 03/2011Postsec.
Community College
Accreditation Alternative for Private Business Vocational Schools
H.B. 838
Authorizes private business and vocational schools that have obtained national accreditation from an accrediting agency designated by the U.S. Department of Education to submit evidence of current accreditation in lieu of other application requests.
http://bil...

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MNSigned into law 05/2010Postsec.
Community College
Private Institutions Registering with Office of Higher Education
S.F. 184
Clarifies that public and private institutions outside Minnesota offering courses or programs to Minnesota residents must register with OHE
https://www.revisor.mn.gov/bin/bldbill.php?bill=S0184.3.html&session=ls86...

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MNSigned into law 05/2010Postsec.
Community College
Student Refunds
S.F. 184
Requires private schools to issue students a full refund of money it received for a student or if a contract with that student is unenforceable because the school is not licensed. The refund must be made within 30 days of a written demand from OHE.
https://ww...

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ALAdopted 03/2010Postsec.Postsecondary Course Offerings by Non-Accredited Institutions
300-2-1-.02
Defines "non-accredited institution" as an institution not accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Requires a non-accredited institution seeking to offer degree programs in Alabama to...

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MISigned into law 01/2010Postsec.Proprietary Schools
S.B. 786
Provides for the accreditation, regulation and licensing of proprietary schools; authorizes a proprietary school to sell goods or services produced or provided by a student provided that, among other things, money from the sale of the goods or services is used...

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CASigned into law 11/2009Postsec.Workforce Development
S.B. 599
Requires the successor agency to the Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education to transmit school performance data from schools under its jurisdiction to the Postsecondary Education Commission (but only if A.B. 48 of the 2009–10 regular session...

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TXAdopted 11/2009Postsec.Degree-Granting Colleges and Universities
19 TAC 1.7.7.1 -.13
Establishes new rules concerning degree-granting colleges and universities other than Texas public institutions. As stated in the August 7, 2009 Register, "The intent of the re-write is to provide greater transparency of the rules regarding the operation of ou...

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IDAdopted 06/2009Postsec.Registration of Postsecondary Institutions
IDAPA 08.01.11
Clarifies that postsecondary institutions need to register to ensure they are legitimate degree granting institutions and that proprietary schools are legitimate.
adm.idaho.gov/adminrules/rules/idapa08/0111.pdf ...

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OHAdopted 06/2009Postsec.
Community College
Career Colleges and Schools
OAC 3332-1-01, -02, -04.5, -11, -12.1, -14, -18 thru -22, -22.1
Amends rules regarding career colleges and schools. Replaces all references to the state board of "proprietary school registration" to state board of "career colleges and schools."
Highlights:
3332-1-04.5: Authorizes the state board of career colleges and sc...

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MDAdopted 05/2009Postsec.
Community College
Requirements for Degree-granting HE Institutions
COMAR 13B.02.02.01 to .22
Establishes minimum requirements for issuing certificates, diplomas, and degrees by in-state public and private institutions of postsecondary education.
http://www.dsd.state.md.us/comar/subtitle_chapters/13B_Chapters.htm...

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ORSigned into law 05/2009Postsec.Diploma Mills
S.B. 113
Limits the exemption of certain post-secondary schools and separately accredited campuses from degree requirements of Office of Degree Authorization to nonprofit schools. Chapter 172
http://www.leg.state.or.us...

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ORSigned into law 05/2009Postsec.Diploma Mills
S.B. 114
Prohibits person who receives degree from diploma mill from using disclaimer to claim or represent that person possesses academic degree; declares emergency, effective on passage. Chapter 173
http://www.leg.state.or.us...

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ORSigned into law 05/2009Postsec.
Community College
Career/Technical
H.B. 2108
Requires school that confers or offers to confer academic degree to be licensed as career school for course or program that does not lead to academic degree until the school meets specified requirements; clarifies the types of schools subject to career school ...

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COSigned into law 05/2008Postsec.
Community College
Diplomas from Private Colleges and Universities
S.B. 167
Clarifies the authority related to the authorization to do business for private colleges or universities, bible colleges, and seminaries; permits the Commission on Higher Education to establish fees payable by institutions related to the administration of degr...

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VASigned into law 03/2008Postsec.Fraudulent Academic Credentials
H.B. 766
Makes it a Class 1 misdemeanor (a fine up to $2,500 and/or up to 12 months in jail) to issue or manufacture a fraudulent academic credential or knowingly using a fraudulent academic credential to obtain employment, promotion, licensure, or admission to an inst...

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SDAdopted 10/2007Postsec.TEACHER CERTIFICATION, STANDARDS OF ACCREDITATION
SDR 24:15:03:08, :10, :43:01:01, :02:02, :08, :09:03
Amends rules to allow school service specialists to add a teaching program to their current certificate upon completion of a full degree. Requires that non- public and tribal schools follow the same standards for accreditation, and that all schools submit a "p...

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MDAdopted 08/2007Postsec.
Community College
Postsecondary Institution Diploma and Degree Requirements
COMAR 13B.02.02.02-.08, .10-.19, .21, .22
Requires the Maryland Higher Education Commission to establish minimum requirements for issuing certificates, diplomas, and degrees by public and nonpublic institutions of postsecondary education.
A. The requirements in this chapter apply to all degree-granti...

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RISigned into law 07/2007Postsec.Purchase and Sale of Academic Degrees
S.B. 392
Prohibits the purchase and sale of academic degrees wherein the degree is obtained on the basis of a combination of a payment of a fee and the attainment of academic credit for so-called life experiences, without the applicant undertaking any coursework.
http:...

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CTSigned into law 06/2007Postsec.
Community College
Accreditation and Diploma Mill Oversight
S.B. 1139
Concerns enhanced enforcement authority by the Department of Higher Education; provides the Board of Governors of Higher Education and the Commissioner of Higher Education with enhanced enforcement authority regarding colleges and universities which are operat...

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ORSigned into law 06/2007Postsec.
Community College
Diploma Mills
S.B. 198
Allows the Student Assistance Commission to terminate activities of diploma mills and operation of post-secondary accrediting bodies not recognized by United States Department of Education; defines diploma mill; removes the authority of the commission to subst...

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TXSigned into law 06/2007Postsec.Independent Law School Accreditation
S.B. 480
Adds the American Bar Association as a recognized accrediting agent in Texas under Section 61.003 (15) of the Education Code. This is the only accrediting body for law schools in the United States. This addition will have no negative effects on the accreditati...

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IDTemporary Rule Adoption - Concurrently Proposed 08/2006Postsec.Registration of Postsecondary Institutions and Proprietary Schools
IDAPA 08.01.11
Repeals existing section 08.01.11 in its entirety. Sets forth the registration requirements for postsecondary educational institutions that are required to register with the Idaho State Board of Education ("Board") under Section 33-2402 and -2403 of Idaho Code...

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IAAdopted 07/2006Community College
Postsec.
Community College Accreditation
IAC 281-Chapter 24, 281-24.1(260C) through 281- 24.4(260C), 24.4(1)through 24.4(5), 281-24,5(260C), 24.5(1) through 24.5(4), 281-24.6(260C),24.6(1) through 24.6(4)
Relates to the evaluation of the colleges' institutional effectiveness in a framework of CQI standards and benchmarks. Creates a new chapter 24 with a discrete set of regulations for accreditation and aligns the state accreditation process more closely with th...

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MDSigned into law 04/2006Postsec.Transfers from Unaccredited Higher Education Institutions
S.B. 270
Requires an institution of higher education that does not possess regional accreditation to require its students to sign a letter of acknowledgment that the transfer of credits may be difficult if the student intends to transfer the credits to an institution o...

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WASigned into law 03/2006Postsec.
Community College
False Academic Credentials
H.B. 2507
Declares that a person is guilty of issuing a false academic credential if the person knowingly: (1) Grants or awards a false academic credential or offers to grant or award a false academic credential in violation of this act; (2) Represents that a credit ear...

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TXAdopted 02/2006Postsec.Fictitious, Fraudulent or Substandard Degrees
19 TAC 1.7.A.7.3
Adds new definitions pertaining to "fictitious degree," "fraudulent or substandard degree," "protected term." TEXAS 98741...

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MISigned into law 07/2005Postsec.Authentic credentials in education
S.B. 136
Prohibits the issuance or manufacture of false academic credentials.

http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2005-2006/publicact/pdf/2005-PA-0100.pdf...

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ORSigned into law 07/2005Postsec.Disclaimers for Degrees from Non-Approved Institutions
S.B. 1039
Allows a person who holds a degree from a post-secondary institution that is not accredited or approved by the Office of Degree Authorization to claim or represent that a person has an academic degree if a disclaimer is included. Directs that Oregon Student As...

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TXSigned into law 06/2005Postsec.
Community College
Fraudulent or Substandard Degrees
H.B. 1173
Adds Sec. 61.3021. Requires Texas Higher education Coordinating Board (board) by rule to establish a process for reviewing and approving a degree conferred by a person described by Section 61.302(11)(B) or (C). Requires the review process to include a determi...

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NDSigned into law 04/2005Postsec.
Community College
Private Postsecondary Institution Operations
S.B. 2120
Relates to fees provided to the state board for career and technical education for authorizations to operate private postsecondary institutions; relates to the authorizations to operate private postsecondary institutions and use of false academic degrees; prov...

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CAVetoed 09/2004Postsec.Private Postsecondary Education Reform
A.B. 711
Relates to the Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education Reform Act of 1989. Defines nationally accredited institution to mean an institution that provides a degree, diploma or certificate and that is accredited by a recognized national institutional accr...

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ILSigned into law 06/2004Postsec.Private Business and Vocational Schools
H.B. 3088
Amends the Private Business and Vocational Schools Act. Provides that certain educational institutions that enroll students in one or more bachelor-level programs and are accredited by a national accrediting agency that is recognized by the U.S. Department of ...

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TNSigned into law 06/2004Postsec.
Community College
Higher Education False Credentials
H.B. 433
Prohibits the use of false credentials in higher education. http://www.legislature.state.tn.us/bills/currentga/Chapter/PC0825.pdf...

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TNSigned into law 05/2004Postsec.False Academic Degrees
S.B. 2305
Concerns criminal offenses; creates Class A misdemeanor for person who knowingly issues, sells or manufactures false academic degree; creates Class C misdemeanor for individual who knowingly uses or claims to have false academic degree to obtain employment, pr...

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WASigned into law 03/2004Postsec.Degree Granting Institutions
H.B. 2381
Ensures the quality of degree-granting institutions of higher education; relates to the accreditation of and site inspections of such institutions; requires public dissemination of information regarding entities that sell or award degrees without requiring app...

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ORRule Adoption 10/2003Postsec.Definitions of School Types
OAR 583-050-0006, -0011, -0016, -0031, -0040, -0021
Revises definitions of school types to classify degree-issuing entities as standard, substandard, or diploma mill. Establishes fee schedule for degree validations and school information. OREGON REG 24799 (SN)...

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CASigned into law 09/2003Postsec.Private Postsecondary Institutions
S.B. 967
Defines non-Western Association of Schools and Colleges regionally accredited institution under the Private Postsecondary and Vocational Educational Reform Act of 1989. Provides such institution meet certain requirements before issuing degrees. Requires the bu...

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ILSigned into law 07/2003Postsec.False Academic Degrees
H.B. 1448
Provides it is unlawful for a person to knowingly manufacture or produce a false academic degree or for a person to knowingly use a false academic degree for the purpose of obtaining employment or admission to an Illinois institution of higher learning or admi...

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NDSigned into law 04/2003Postsec.False Academic Credentials
H.B. 1068
Relates to the issuance, manufacture, and use of false academic degrees or certifications; provides a penalty....

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SDSigned into law 03/2001Postsec.Accreditation
S.B. 160
Prohibits the offering of postsecondary education credit or degree by non-accredited institutions....

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KYSigned into law 04/2000Postsec.Defines College
H.B. 44
Relates to the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority; expands the definition of college to include postsecondary educational institutions accredited by all regional accrediting associations....

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