UNC Charlotte joins State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement

UNC Charlotte is now a participant in the nationwide State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA). This benefits the University in terms of regulatory compliance and students in terms of quality and consumer protection.

SARA is an agreement among member states and territories in the United States that establishes comparable national standards for interstate offering of postsecondary courses and programs. It simplifies the regulatory process both for member states and participating institutions by providing a simpler, uniform list of activities to be regulated and by reducing the required number of agency contacts from 50+ to just one.

“SARA is just like a driver’s license,” explained Steve Carter, senior program manager in the Distance Education Office. “If the DMV in North Carolina issues me a license, I can drive in any state. Same with SARA. If SARA North Carolina determines that UNC Charlotte meets SARA’s expectations for quality and student consumer protection, all the other member states recognize us as a legitimate educational provider for their citizens, too.”

At present, California and Massachusetts are the only states that have not joined SARA, so participation in this agreement represents a significant expansion of what UNC Charlotte can do and where the institution can do it beyond the borders of North Carolina.

Most importantly, because it sets minimum standards for educational quality, SARA benefits UNC Charlotte students, Carter added.

More information about SARA and state authorization, in general, is available on the Distance Education website.