State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA)
Complaint Procedures

The University of Kentucky has taken steps to address student complaints related to online education and distance learning activities, which include educational activities occurring outside of Kentucky or occurrences related to or stemming from these activities. Such activities including online education are governed by the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), which sets forth uniform standards and guidelines for offering education across U.S. states and territories. 

As a result, the University has a legal and regulatory obligation to track student complaints to help monitor the quality of our operations and services.  

Examples of complaints might include: 

  • Allegations that a current or prospective student was not adequately informed about whether a program meets professional licensure requirements in another state; 
  • Allegations of curriculum or evaluation violations for an online course or program; 
  • Allegations of inaccurate information regarding online tuition, fees or financial aid; 
  • Allegations of misleading accreditation information for an online program; 
  • Allegations of misleading information about credit transfers for online programs; and or 
  • Allegations that the university has violated any other policy described in the SARA Policy Manual or the SACSCOC standards of accreditation 


How Can I File a Complaint? 

If you are a current or prospective distance learning student, you may file a complaint at any time using the process and steps outlined below. 

Initiate Your Complaint  

STEP 1.  Initiate the complaint resolution process by filing your complaint with the appropriate office or department listed on the Dean of Student's website.  

STEP 2.  Once your complaint is filed, follow all instructions provided to you including completion of any procedures and collaboration with the appropriate office or department needed to resolve your complaint. 

Unresolved Complaints 

STEP 3.  If your complaint remains unresolved after you have completed all necessary procedures, in most cases, you may be able to escalate your complaint to another University office or department and appeal the complaint decision. 

STEP 4.  If your complaint is still unresolved after exhausting all internal procedures the University has available, students enrolled in distance learning courses, activities, and operations located in other SARA states may file their complaint with the Kentucky Sara Portal entity. The entity will investigate and make an independent determination. Complaints must be submitted within 2 years of the incident which led to the complaint.  

Resolving Complaints with Other State Entities 

In addition to filing a complaint with the Kentucky SARA Portal entity, as a non-resident, distance learning student, you may also file a complaint with the state entity where you are permanently or temporarily residing or located while enrolled and receiving instruction at the University. 

Please click below to view more information on the portal entity for the state you are interested in.

State Portal Entities

Alabama - Alabama Commission on Higher Education

Alaska - Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education

Arizona - Arizona State Board of Private Postsecondary Education

Arkansas - Arkansas Department of Higher Education

California (Non-SARA state) - State of California Department of Consumer Affairs

Colorado - Colorado Department of Higher Education

Connecticut - State of Connecticut Office of Higher Education

Delaware - Delaware Department of Education

District of Columbia - Office of the State Superintendent of Education

Florida - Florida Commission for Independent Education

Georgia - State of Georgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission

Hawaii - Hawaii Post-secondary Education Authorization Program

Idaho - Idaho State Board of Education

Illinois - Illinois Board of Higher Education

Indiana - Indiana Commission for Higher Education

Iowa - Iowa College Student Aid Commission

Kansas - The Kansas Board of Regents

Kentucky - Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education

Louisiana - Louisiana Board of Regents

Maine - Maine Department of Education

Maryland - Maryland Higher Education Commission

Massachusetts - Massachusetts Department of Higher Education

Michigan - Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs

Minnesota - Minnesota Office of Higher Education

Mississippi - Mississippi Commission on College Accreditation

Missouri - Missouri Department of Higher Education

Montana - Montana University System

Nebraska - Nebraska’s Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education

Nevada - Nevada Commission on Postsecondary Education

New Hampshire - New Hampshire Department of Education

New Jersey - The State of New Jersey Office of the Secretary of Higher Education

New Mexico - New Mexico Higher Education Department

New York - New York Office of College and University Evaluation

North Carolina - The Licensure Division of the University of North Carolina General Administration

North Dakota - North Dakota University System

Ohio - The Ohio Department of Higher Education

Oklahoma - Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education

Oregon - State of Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission

Pennsylvania - Pennsylvania Department of Education

Puerto Rico - Consejo de Education de Puerto Rico

Rhode Island - Rhode Island Office of the Postsecondary Commissioner

South Carolina - South Carolina Commission on Higher Education

South Dakota - Attorney Office of the General Division of Consumer Protection

Tennessee - Tennessee Higher Education Commission

Texas - Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board

Utah - Utah System of Higher Education

Vermont - State of Vermont Agency of Education

US Virgin Islands - University of the Virgin Islands ; Contact Camille McKayle at

Virginia - Virginia State Council of Higher Education

Washington - Washington Student Achievement Council

West Virginia - West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission

Wisconsin - Wisconsin Educational Approval Board

Wyoming - Wyoming Community College Commission