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State Authorization for Distance Education

Western is UNABLE to offer online courses to students residing in 
Alabama and Maryland.

States Authorized and Not Authorized

Western Oklahoma State College continues to evaluate state authorization regulations and will provide up-to-date information as it becomes available.


Oklahoma State CapitolDistance education has been an important part of Western's program offerings. Recent amendments to the Higher Education Act of 1965 include changes in regulation for State Authorization that may impact online, distance, and print-based education providers. The related regulations include:

If an institution is offering postsecondary education through distance or correspondence education to students in a State in which it is not physically located or in which it is otherwise subject to State jurisdiction as determined by the State, the institution must meet any State requirements for it to be legally offering postsecondary distance or correspondence education in that State. An institution must be able to document to the Secretary the State's approval upon request. (Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1001 and 1002)

In compliance with the new regulations, an institution offering distance education must provide enrolled and prospective students with contact information for filing complaints with its accrediting agency and with the appropriate state agency for handling complaints in the student’s state.

While Western strives to provide the highest quality education opportunities available, conflicts may arise. It is our aim to resolve any grievances, complaints, and concerns in an expeditious, fair, and amicable manner. If an issue cannot be solved by Western’s internal processes (How to file a complaint?), you may choose to file a complaint with your state of residence. (Click here to see the complaint process for your state)

Western has been approved by Oklahoma 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.


*Only students residing in a SARA state are allowed to enroll in our online Child Development programs since they require field experience. For more information please contact Jacque Bellamy at


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