Out of State Authorization


The U.S. Department of Education has released amendments to the Higher Education Act of 1965 that may impact online, distance, and print-based education providers. §600.9(c) State authorization states:

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.

Shippensburg University is working with the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE), and has developed a strategy for applying for the necessary authorizations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. Territories. Specific information on each state is listed below, and will be updated here as it becomes available. Shippensburg University is actively engaged in the following general activities to ensure compliance with the state authorization regulations:

  • Tracking prospective and current students’ programs, online and off-campus classes, internships, student teaching, practica, field placements, service learning activities, and state of residence.
  • Monitoring marketing and recruiting efforts. (Many states require additional authorization paperwork or fees for distance education programs that market directly to students in their state.)
  • Monitoring the state residence of faculty, staff, and administrators that support distance education. (Some states include out-of-state residency as a physical presence trigger.)
  • Working to achieve authorization for all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. Territories.
  • Staying abreast of federal and state regulations, policies, and practices related to the state authorization requirements.

Below is the status of Shippensburg University's applications to obtain the necessary state authorizations from all US states and territories.

Approved (including exempt and no authorization required based on current activities):

Applied (and waiting to hear from the state):

  • Alaska
  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia

Preparation of applications is in progress:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Indiana
  • Minnesota
  • New Hampshire
  • Vermont

If you are interested in an online program at Shippensburg University and your state is not listed, please contact our office for an update at pcde@ship.edu, or check back for frequent updates.

Shippensburg University encourages all current, former, and prospective students, regardless of their residency, to submit any grievances, complaints, or concerns directly to Shippensburg University on the Online Education Complaint Process web page, http://www.ship.edu/PCDE/Online/Complaint_Process/