The Planning, Research and Academic Affairs (PRAA) Division is responsible for licensure/authorization of proprietary schools, academies, and degree-granting institutions. The division is headed by Dr. Larry Tremblay, Deputy Commissioner for Planning, Research and Academic Affairs.
The State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA)
Louisiana became a member of SARA on December 1, 2014. SARA is a national initiative which seeks to establish comparable national standards for the interstate offering of postsecondary distance-education courses and programs. SARA is a voluntary agreement among regional compacts (SREB, NEBHE, MHEC, and WICHE) and member states. Each member state approves their in-state institutions for SARA participation. Institutional membership is voluntary and open to accredited, degree-granting institutions from all sectors of postsecondary education (proprietary, public, private). Once approved, SARA member institutions may offer distance education programs in other SARA member states without additional authorization. For more information on SARA, and for the latest listing of participating states and institutions, visit www.nc-sara.org
For postsecondary institutions located in Louisiana:
Accredited, degree-granting institutions located in Louisiana seeking SARA membership should do the following:
1) Read the following document: Louisiana SARA Institutional Application Process
2) Complete the Application for Institutional Approval to Participate in SARA
3) Attach the following documents to the Application for Institutional Approval to Participate in SARA: (1) A copy of the institution’s student complaint process; and (2) documentation explaining the institution’s policies and practices addressing catastrophic events and continuity of operations
4) Enclose a check or money order in the amount of $1,500, made payable to the Louisiana Board of Regents
5) Submit the above items to:
The Louisiana Board of Regents
P.O. Box 3677
Baton Rouge, LA. 70821-3677
Attention: Ms. Emily C. Saleh
Applications are reviewed and approved on a rolling-basis. Applications will be reviewed and submitted to the Board of Regents for consideration within 60 days of receipt.
If you have questions regarding the SARA institutional application process, please contact Ms. Emily C. Saleh at Emily.Saleh@la.gov.
For SARA-approved postsecondary institutions located outside of Louisiana:
SARA-approved postsecondary institutions listed on the NC-SARA website’s listing of approved institutions (www.nc-sara.org) may operate within Louisiana without additional authorization, unless the institution offers courses or programs which require clinical experiences in the State of Louisiana and such clinical experiences place 10 or more students from each program in Louisiana or involve any multi-year contracts between the institution and a field site in Louisiana.
Teacher Education and Educational Leader Courses and programs may warrant additional requirements and approvals. For more information please contact Dr. Jeanne Burns at Jeanne.Burns@la.gov or Ms. Linda Marino at Linda.Marino@la.gov.
Academic Degree-Granting Institutions Seeking Licensure in Louisiana
Louisiana RS 17 1808 requires all academic degree-granting institutions operating in the State of Louisiana to register with the Board of Regents and be licensed unless otherwise exempt.
Religious Exemption and Registration:
Exemption from licensure is restricted to institutions named in law and religious institutions that grant religious degrees exclusively. The degrees must be religious in nature by title and content. While religious institutions are exempt from licensure, registration is mandatory. Academic degree-granting religious institutions seeking to register in Louisiana should complete the New Institution Registration Form. Currently registered academic degree-granting religious institutions seeking annual renewal should complete the Renewal Registration Form. If you have questions regarding religious exemption and registration, please contact Ms. Nancy Beall at Nancy.Beall@la.gov
Licensure Process for Institutions Operating in Louisiana:
For institutions domiciled in Louisiana, the term operating applies to the offering of courses and programs through any modality. For institutions domiciled outside Louisiana, the term operate shall mean the offering of courses that are physically delivered in the State of Louisiana and/or require clinical experiences in the State of Louisiana.
The term clinical experiences shall mean site-based learning activities (e.g. clinical, internships, student teaching, practicum, filed-based experiences, etc.) in settings (e.g. hospitals, schools, businesses, etc.) in which students are working with patients, children, teachers, principals, etc. in Louisiana and are observed/assisted/evaluated by supervisors, preceptors, coaches, teachers, principals, or other individuals to determine that course and program requirements have been addressed. SARA-approved institutions which offer interstate supervised clinical experiences in Louisiana are exempt from licensure if the interstate supervised field experiences place fewer than 10 students from each program in Louisiana and do not involve any multi-year contract between a sending institution and a field site.
For more information on the licensure process, please see the Compiled Rules and Regulations.
Academic degree-granting institutions seeking licensure should complete the License Application for Postsecondary Academic Degree-Granting Institutions
Currently licensed institutions seeking annual renewal should complete the Renewal License Application.
If you have questions regarding the registration or licensure process, please contact Ms. Nancy Beall at Nancy.Beall@la.gov
Teacher Education and Educational Leader Courses and Programs:
Teacher Education and Educational Leader courses and programs may warrant additional requirements and approvals. For more information please contact Dr. Jeanne Burns at Jeanne.Burns@la.gov or Ms. Linda Marino at Linda.Marino@la.gov