Non-SARA Members

Joining SARA

Institutions must make the decision of whether or not to join SARA. This decision must be made on an individual basis after careful review of local factors such as student enrollment, faculty, advertising, service providers, etc. The information in this document should be used to help evaluate those local factors and make an informed decision on how to comply with state authorization regulations.


The SREB Electronic Campus Regional Reciprocity Agreement (SECRRA) will be discontinued on June 30, 2017. Consequently, institutions using this resource to conduct post-secondary activity beyond the borders of North Carolina will need to seek State Authorization in those states where they currently conduct activity.

To determine if State Authorization is an issue on your campus, answer the following questions:

  • Where are students participating in online courses? This is not residency, but where the student is physically located when they are completing coursework. (Reported on IPEDS-Part Ai “If there are students reported as enrolled exclusively in distance education courses, further data on the location of these distance education students will need to be reported. Report, by degree/certificate-seeking status, the number of exclusively distance education students that are located in the same state/jurisdiction as the institution, in a different state/jurisdiction than the institution, in the U.S. but the state/jurisdiction is unknown, and residing outside the U.S.Location for those students enrolled exclusively in distance education should be their physical location or current address, as of the institution’s Fall reporting date.”
  • Where are students participating in field experiences (clinical, internships, service learning, etc.)? Consider also those field experiences that may stem from face to face programs in a home state where students may be completing field experiences in another state.
  • Does the institution market or advertise out of state?
  • Does the institution hire faculty who provide online services from another state?
  • Does the institution have a physical location in another state for instruction, administrative offices, or other support services?
  • Do you enroll military members or their dependents?
  • Is your institution planning to expand online offerings and advertise outside of NC?

If students are located outside North Carolina or the answer to any of the other questions is “yes,” the institution needs to address State Authorization. The institution should determine the best way for it to meet State Authorization, obtaining authorization as necessary from individual states or joining SARA. Colleges bordering other states are more likely to be impacted by most of these triggers and have a higher likelihood of needing authorization. Other colleges must adopt processes to evaluate these triggers and work with administration to determine the cost benefit of joining or not joining SARA.