State Authorization

State authorization is a legal issue regarding an educational institution’s adherence to the requirements necessary to secure authorization to offer instruction in a particular state. Compliance with individual state requirements is now part of the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008, Amended 2010. In satisfaction of these requirements, Wake Forest University has been approved by North Carolina to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements. NC-SARA is a voluntary, regional  approach to state oversight of postsecondary distance education.

Colleges and universities offering distance education courses or programs are required to provide current and prospective students with the contact information for filing complaints with the educational institution, with its accrediting agency, and with the state agencies that handle complaints in students’ states of residence.

Wake Forest University undergraduate students who wish to resolve an academic grievance or complaint should first follow the university’s Student Complaint Process, as detailed on pages 46-47 of the Student Code of Conduct.

Students enrolled in courses through the School of Law should follow the process detailed on pages 58-59 of the Law Student Handbook.

Students in the graduate counseling or human services programs should refer to pages 19-23 of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Student Handbook.


North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaint Information

If the grievance cannot be resolved within the university, students may contact the Licensure Division of the University of North Carolina General Administration, which serves as the official state entity to receive complaints concerning post-secondary institutions that are authorized to operate in North Carolina. After reviewing the complaint policy, students can complete a complaint form and submit it either to or via mail at:

North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaints
c/o Student Complaints
University of North Carolina General Administration
910 Raleigh Road, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2688
(919) 962-4550
Post-Secondary Education Complaints in North Carolina


Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges Student Complaint Information

In the event that a complaint still has not been satisfactorily addressed, a complaint may next be filed with the university’s accrediting agency. Wake Forest University is accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. After reviewing the complaint policies, procedures, and form, complainants may contact SACSCOC at:

1866 Southern Lane
Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097
(404) 679-4500


State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement – North Carolina Complaint Information

Students may also contact the offices of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement – North Carolina (SARANC) via the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority (NCSEAA), North Carolina’s portal entity for the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA). Upon reviewing the complaint process, students may complete the complaint form and submit it either via or to:

SARA North Carolina Director
PO Box 14103
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
(855) 727-2162 – toll free
(919) 248-4667 – local
(919) 248-6667 – fax


State-By-State Complaint Information

Students may also be able to pursue a complaint via agencies in their states of residence. Refer to the below list of contact information for details.

State-By-State Contact Information


Professional Licensure

If you are considering an online program at Wake Forest University that leads to licensure or certification and you do not live in North Carolina, please contact the licensing board in the state where you reside and/or where you intend to practice before beginning the program. It is the student’s responsibility to contact the licensing board and verify licensing requirements and procedures.

  • The online Master of Studies in Law program does not currently lead to any professional licensure.
  • Information on professional licensing processes for the online Master of Arts in Counseling and Master of Arts in Human Services programs can be found in the program details and required state disclosures. The below resource provides additional information:

 American Association of State Counseling Boards State-By-State Contact Information