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.

National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement Approved Institution logo

Institutional Complaints

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 page 43 of the Undergraduate Schools Bulletin.

Students enrolled in courses through the School of Law should follow the process detailed on pages 90-91 of the Law Student Handbook.

Students in the graduate counseling or human services programs should refer to page 18 of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Student Handbook.

Students enrolled in courses at the School of Medicine, including the DNP, follow the process that begins on page 18 of their student handbook and may refer to page 18 of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Student Handbook for additional guidance.

Students in the School of Professional Studies should refer to pages 23-24 in their student handbook.

Students who are unsure about the correct path of inquiry may contact the Office of the Dean of Students.

Dr. Adam Goldstein

Dean of Students and Associate Vice President

Office of the Dean of Students
Box 7202 Reynolda Station
Winston-Salem, NC 27109-7202
(336) 758-5226
Office of the Dean of Students

North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaint Information

If the grievance cannot be resolved within the university, students may contact the State Authorization Unit of the University of North Carolina System Office, 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 and submit a complaint form online, or send relevant details and documentation via mail at:

North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaints
c/o Student Complaints
223 S. West Street, Suite 1800, Raleigh, NC 27603
(919) 962-4558
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:

North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority
c/o SARA North Carolina PO Box 41349
Raleigh, NC 27629
(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 a program at Wake Forest University of any modality (online or on-campus) that leads to licensure or certification and you do not live or intend to practice in North Carolina, please contact your program of interest prior to beginning the course of study. You may also contact the relevant state licensing boards to verify licensing requirements and procedures. Please refer to the below for additional information regarding licensure or certification in relevant programs.