Minnesota Office of Higher Education
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Welcome to the Minnesota Office of Higher Education’s (OHE) Institutional Registration and Licensing portal.

The portal will facilitate the needs of the following constituents:

  • New and renewing institutions that fall under the jurisdiction of the Minnesota Private and Out-Of-State Public Postsecondary Education Act (Registration) Minn. Stat. 136A.61 - 136A.81 and the Private Careers School Act (Licensing) Minn. Stat. 136A.82 - 136A.834.
  • Institutions seeking an exemption from OHE's regulation of registration or licensing statutes.
  • Minnesota institutions seeking to apply or renew participation in SARA (State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement) NC-SARA Homepage | NC-SARA.
Private and out-of-state public institutions should review the standards and application procedures to determine their legal obligations before advertising or offering postsecondary education in Minnesota.

Institution Registration and Licensure:

The Office of Higher Education provides consumer protection for students and prospective students. Two state laws require private and out-of-state public postsecondary educational institutions to meet state standards to operate legally in Minnesota.

Private and out-of-state public institutions should review the standards and application procedures to determine their legal obligations before advertising or offering postsecondary education in Minnesota.

Which Institutions Must Register?

Degree-Granting Institutional Registration is required if you are a private college or university or an out-of-state public postsecondary educational institution that offers postsecondary degree programs to Minnesota residents. This includes any:

  • Institutions located in Minnesota that seek to offer distance education degree programs to non-Minnesota residents.
  • Institutions located in Minnesota that seek to offer degree programs to Minnesota residents.
  • Institutions located outside of Minnesota that seek to offer distance education programs to Minnesota residents *.
  • Businesses that offer career training must have approval to use "academy", "college", "institute", or "university" in your name.

Out-of-state institutions that seek to send students to Minnesota for an internship, externship, clinical placement, or field experience do not need to seek approval from our office.

Degree-Granting Institutional Registration requires institutions to have:

  • Academic degrees meet state standards.
  • Financial resources sufficient to meet the school's financial obligations.
  • Appropriate faculty.
  • Sound institutional policies and practices.
  • Accurate and useful information about programs, tuition and fees, admissions, evaluation, dismissal, and refunds for students.
  • A plan for preservation of student records.

First time users should complete the following documents in the portal:

  • Initial Inquiry document.
  • Initial Application document (which will be made available after the Initial Inquiry has been approved by our office).
  • New Location document.
  • New Program documents for each proposed degree program

Renewing institutions should complete the following documents in the portal:

  • Initial Inquiry document.
  • Renewal Application document (which will be made available after the Initial Inquiry has been approved by our office).
  • New Location document.
  • New Program documents for each proposed degree program

Which Institutions Must Register?

If you are a private school or training firm that offers occupational programs below the associate degree level in Minnesota, you must be licensed by the Office of Higher Education unless you meet an exemption under Minnesota Statute 136A.833.

Licensure requires institutions have:

  • Certificates or diplomas that meet state standards.
  • Student records that are protected and accessible to former students.
  • A statutory refund policy.
  • Financial resources sufficient to meet the school's financial obligations.
  • Appropriate faculty.
  • Accurate and useful information about programs, tuition and fees, admissions, evaluation, dismissal and refunds for students.

State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA)

Minnesota is a participant in the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA). If you are a Minnesota-based institution and have questions about SARA, please contact the Office of Higher Education (Betsy Talbot at 651-259-3965, betsy.talbot@state.mn.us or Kate McCartan at 651-259-3912, kate.mccartan@state.mn.us) for additional information. Institutions applying for initial participation or renewing their participation in SARA must complete the NC-SARA institutional participation application and OHE SARA Supplemental Form for Institutions and submit to Kate McCartan at kate.mccartan@state.mn.us. Institutions may submit payment electronically to OHE for Minnesota's SARA participation fee via the link below. https://www.ohe.state.mn.us/ssl/SARASupplementalForm You may also contact the Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC) for additional information and assistance with the institutional application (Emily Jacobson 612-677-2771 or Jenny Parks 612-677-2779).