State Licensed or Authorized Institutions
State information on Higher Education Institutions Licensed or Authorized to Operate
The state links provide information about institutions and programs approved to operate in a particular state in the United States. State approval and accreditation are not the same. State approval to operate signifies that institutions have satisfied certain minimum requirements established by a state. Accreditation signifies that an institution has attained a threshold level of academic quality. In most states, approval to operate does not require accreditation. Please use all available resources, including checking with the particular institution and its accrediting organization, to determine if a particular institution meets anticipated needs.
Some states, such as California, Oregon, and Minnesota, maintain Websites about degree mills and accreditation mills. Some states, including Oregon and Michigan, provide specific lists of non-accredited schools and non-approved accrediting organizations. Other states, such as Hawaii, Michigan, and Maine, have passed specific regulations or legislation to address the issue of degree mills. These links have been included to help in an investigation of degree mills and accreditation mills.
The Alabama Commission on Higher Education (ACHE) is the coordinating board for higher education in the State of Alabama.
A complete list of schools authorized to operate or exempt from authorization in Alaska is provided by the Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education (ACPE).
The Arizona College and Career Guide published by the Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education provides information about Arizona’s universities, colleges, and career schools.
The Arkansas Department of Higher Education’s list of four year public universities, two-year public colleges, and independent colleges and universities located in the State of Arkansas.
The Guide to Colleges and Universities is provided by the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU). The Guide helps counselors, students, and families learn about higher education options offered by the state's private nonprofit colleges and universities.
- Search the Database to California Colleges & Universities
It contains detailed information about 145 public colleges and universities, 128 WASC-accredited non-public institutions and 253 state-approved or exempt private postsecondary and vocational institutions.
- Search the Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education approved schools
This information is provided by the California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE).
Maintained by the Colorado Commission on Higher Education, this site lists 4-year public, 2-year public and authorized non-public institutions approved by the State of Colorado.
- Degree/Diploma Mills and Accreditation Mills
The Colorado Commission on Higher Education provides information on Degree/Diploma Mills and Accreditation Mills.
This student and parent Website, developed by the Connecticut Board of Regents for Higher Education, includes links to approved Connecticut colleges and universities and private occupational schools.
- List of Institutions licensed to operate in Connecticut
Provided by the Connecticut Office of Higher Education
The Delaware Higher Education Commission provides contact information for state-approved colleges and universities.
The Board of Governors State University System of Florida provides information about independent and state institutions, Florida law schools and university distance learning links.
The Georgia Student Finance Commission (GSFC), the agency responsible for administering student financial aid programs provided by the State of Georgia, lists in-depth information about Georgia colleges, universities and technical colleges.
The website of the Hawaii Post-secondary Education Authorization Program (HPEAP), provides a list of schools authorized to operate in Hawaii.
- Unaccredited Degree Granting Institutions
This State of Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs site includes an explanation of state regulations regarding unaccredited degree granting institutions. The site also includes a list of institutions that have been sued by the State of Hawaii.
This site, maintained by the State of Idaho, lists Idaho state colleges and universities and private colleges and universities.
The Illinois Board of Higher Education provides links to public universities, independent colleges and universities and community colleges.
- State Approval, Accreditation, and Licensure
The Illinois Board of Higher Education provides consumer information about state approval, accreditation, and licensure.
The Indiana Commission on Higher Education maintains this site entitled "The Learn More Resource Center." It allows users to access specific details on over 80 Indiana colleges and universities.
The Iowa College Student Aid Commission provides information on Iowa state universities, independent colleges and universities, community colleges, and professional business and technical colleges and universities.
This site provides a list of Kansas universities, community colleges, technical schools and colleges, private and out-of-state and degrees and programs governed or supervised by the Kansas Board of Regents.
The State of Kentucky, Council on Postsecondary Education provides multiple resources for higher education, including listings of state colleges and universities, independent colleges and universities, and community college, trade and technical schools.
The Louisiana Board of Regents provides lists of the Louisiana state university system, community and technical colleges and private institutions.
The Department of Education for the State of Maine provides lists of Maine public colleges and universities, state training academies, community college systems and private colleges.
- Degree Mills and Accreditation Mills
The Department of Education for the State of Maine maintains this site.
- Maine Legislature: An Act to Prohibit and Provide Penalties for the Issuance, Manufacture and Use of False Academic Degrees or Certificates
L.D. 1317 was passed and signed into Public Law Chapter 429 by the 122nd Maine Legislature on June 23, 2005. A summary of the bill and an amendment thereto may be found using the above link to the Maine Legislature Website.
The Maryland Higher Education Commission Website lists four-year public colleges and universities, community colleges, four-year independent colleges and universities, two-year independent colleges and universities and distance education and academic programs by school.
- The Importance of Accreditation
The Maryland Higher Education System provides the importance of accreditation.
The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education provides links to Massachusetts state colleges and universities, independent colleges and universities and community colleges.
The State of Michigan provides lists of Michigan career and technical institutes, two-year colleges, four-year colleges and universities and community colleges.
- Michigan Legislature: Authentic Credentials in Education Act
Senate Bill 136 was passed into law by the 93rd Michigan Legislature on July 22, 2005. This bill prohibits the issuance or manufacture of a false academic credential. It also prohibits an individual from knowingly using a false academic degree.
- Non-Accredited Schools and Unapproved Accrediting Bodies
List of non-accredited schools and unapproved accrediting bodies by the State of Michigan.
The Minnesota Office of Higher Education provides information about institutions or campuses licensed by the State of Minnesota, Minnesota state colleges and universities and the University of Minnesota.
- Tips on How to Validate a School’s Claims
Developed by The Minnesota Office of Higher Education, this Website includes multiple resources on how to find out if a school is operating legally in the State of Minnesota, how to use special strategies to evaluate online education and how to check with potential employers before you enroll in a school.
The Mississippi Commission on College Accreditation provides a listing of all approved colleges and universities in the State of Mississippi. It also includes a listing of non-approved colleges and universities.
- Non-Approved Entities
Mississippi Commission on College Accreditation provides a list of non-approved entities.
The Missouri Department of Higher Education provides an institution and degree search engine as well as a complete list of institutions approved in the State of Missouri.
- MDHE Central: Diploma Mills
The Missouri Department of Higher Education’s Website provides this information.
The Montana University System, Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education, maintains a list of the University of Montana campuses, Montana State University campuses, community and tribal colleges and private institutions.
The Nebraska, Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education, provides links to lists of approved community colleges, independent colleges and universities, private career schools and state colleges.
The Nevada System of Higher Education provides links to approved public institutions in the State of Nevada.
The New Hampshire Division of Educator Support and Higher Education, provides a list of degree-granting institutions approved to operate in New Hampshire, as well as a directory of approved career schools.
The New Jersey Commission on Higher Education provides links to public research universities, state colleges and universities, community colleges, two-year religious schools, independent four-year colleges, proprietary institutions with degree-granting authority and rabbinical schools and theological seminaries.
- Accreditation & "Diploma Mills" Federal and State Resources
Maintains a web page entitled for accreditation & "diploma mills" federal and state resources.
The New Mexico Higher Education Department provides links to postsecondary schools.
The New York State Education Department Office of Higher Education, Office of Quality Assurance, provides a Directory of all Colleges and Universities in the State of New York.
The State of North Carolina provides multiple links to the University of North Carolina System, independent colleges and universities and community colleges.
- Guide to North Carolina Higher Education Web Sites
The University of North Carolina provides a guide to North Carolina higher education websites.
The State of North Dakota provides links to lists of state colleges and universities, private colleges, tribal colleges and vocational/technical schools.
- Is This a Real Degree? How to Avoid a Bogus Degree from a Diploma Mill
The North Dakota University System has developed this pamphlet.
The Ohio Department of Higher Education provides links to all four-year public colleges and universities, two-year public university branch campuses, two-year public community and technical colleges and independent colleges and universities approved in the State of Ohio. This site also includes a link to the Program Authorization Log a list of college institutions and programs authorized to operate in Ohio.
The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education provides links to approved colleges, universities and career training institutions.
The Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) provides links to the Oregon University System, independent colleges, community colleges and other ODA-approved campus-based degree programs.
- Diploma Mills
The Oregon Office of Private Postsecondary Education, Office of Degree Authorization maintains an extensive Website related to alleged degree mills.
Maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, this institution and program search includes programs at the College of Technology, community colleges, other approved schools, other colleges and universities, other postsecondary schools, private colleges and universities, private licensed schools, private two-year colleges, state-aided institutes, state-related commonwealth universities and state universities.
Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education lists institutions and organizations, including Rhode Island public higher education, independent colleges and universities and proprietary schools regulated by the Rhode Island Office of Higher Education
The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education lists public senior institutions, two-year regional campuses for the University of South Carolina, technical colleges, private senior institutions, private two-year colleges, proprietary colleges, and other degree-granting institutions licensed to operate by the Commission on Higher Education in the State of South Carolina.
The South Dakota Board of Regents maintains a list of postsecondary technical institutes, state universities, tribal colleges and universities and private colleges and universities.
The Tennessee Higher Education Commission & Student Assistance Corporation maintains a directory of Tennessee public universities, independent colleges and universities, community colleges and Tennessee Technology Centers.
The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board maintains lists of public universities, community colleges, health-related institutions, the technical college system and state colleges as well as independent universities, junior colleges, health-related institutions and chiropractic institutions.
- Fraudulent or Substandard Institutions with a Texas Connection
The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board provides a list of fraudulent or substandard institutions with a Texas connection.
The Utah System of Higher Education provides links to Utah public and private colleges and universities. The Website also links to the Utah Division of Consumer Protection that includes links to registered proprietary schools exempt from registration.
The Vermont Student Assistance Corporation provides a list of Vermont Education links, including colleges, universities and professional schools.
The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia provides links to public institutions, private vocational institutions licensed to operate in the State of Virginia and some private and out of state institutions.
The Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) provides links to public four-year colleges and universities, public community and technical colleges, tribally-controlled community colleges and private and out-of-state colleges and universities.
- Protecting Education Consumers
The Washington Student Achievement Council's Degree Authorization staff maintains this site.
This site provides links to the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission public colleges and universities, community colleges and technical institutions. It also provides links to West Virginia private colleges and universities.
The State of Wisconsin Website provides links to the University of Wisconsin System and state colleges, technical colleges, private colleges and universities and private postsecondary schools.
- Degree, Diploma and Accreditation Mills
The State of Wisconsin's Educational Approval Board maintains this site.
The State of Wyoming provides links to Wyoming colleges and universities and technical schools.