Skip to main content
Login to CatLink
Future Students

Apply online or check the status of your Admissions application:

Admission Portal

State Authorization of Distance Education

NC-SARA_Approved_Institution_logo.jpgCatawba College is approved by SARA-NC to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA). NC-SARA is a voluntary, regional approach to state oversight of postsecondary distance education. A “State authorization reciprocity agreement”, SARA, is an agreement between two or more States that authorizes an institution located and legally authorized in a State covered by the agreement to provide postsecondary education through distance education or correspondence courses to students in other States covered by the agreement.

Supervised Field Experience

Courses and programs incorporating a “supervised field experience” are covered by the provisions of SARA. Under SARA a “supervised field experience” means a student learning experience under the oversight of a supervisor, mentor, faculty member or other qualified professional, located in the host state, who has a direct or indirect reporting responsibility to the institution where the student is enrolled, whether or not credit is granted. Examples include practicum, student teaching, or internships. However, see below regarding programs for licensed professions.

Professional Licensure

Disclaimer Statement:  NC-SARA does not deal with professional licensing board approval for any courses or programs leading to professional licensure. If you are not a resident of North or South Carolina, and you are taking an online course or program leading to professional licensure, Catawba College cannot guarantee whether the course or program meets requirements for professional licensure in your state. Prior to beginning your course of study, please consult with the academic department offering the program to receive individualized assessment and advice.

For information regarding licensure programs in Teacher Education:
Dr. Jim Stringfield, Dean of School of Education
2300 W. Innes St., Salisbury, NC  28144
(704) 637-4337

For information regarding licensure programs in Nursing:
Dr. Valerie Rakes
2300 W. Innes St., Salisbury, NC  28144
(704) 645-4860

Grievance Resolution

As required by Federal regulations, Catawba College provides for current and prospective students the contact information for filing complaints with the appropriate agency in the state where the student resides.  For grievances involving any aspect of your online educational experience:

  1.  Catawba College strives to providing quality and supportive learning environments, and is committed to responding to complaints promptly.  We encourage students to utilize our Academic Grievance Procedure, as outlined in the Catalog (Undergraduate Catalog, page 66; Graduate Catalog, page 11). This process asks that you first try to reach a resolution with the instructor or other party involved in the issue, before taking the issue to the department chair, immediate supervisor, and, finally, the Provost’s Office. For questions or more information, please contact:

    Dr. Jeff Bowe, Dean of Distance and Online Education
    2300 W. Innes St., Salisbury, NC  28144
    (704) 637-4463 (Office)

  2. If Catawba College’s resolution procedures does not lead to a satisfactory resolution of the grievance, students may utilize the:

    1. NC Independent Colleges & Universities Complaint Process by following the instructions in of Consumer Protection Division of the North Carolina Department of Justice. Grievances can be submitted electronically or by mail:

      File Compliant Electronically
      Or, mail to: 
      Consumer Protection Division
      Attorney General’s Office
      Mail Service Center 9001
      Raleigh, NC 27699-9001
      Telephone for NC Residents: 877.566.7226 
      Telephone for Outside of NC: 919.716.6000
      En Español: 919.716.0058

    2.  SACSCOC Student Complaint Process
      Catawba College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Students may follow the SACSCOC Complaint Procedure. The contact information for SACS is:

      Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
      1866 Southern Lane
      Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097
      Telephone: 404.679.4500

    3. SARA-NC Complaint Process
      Catawba College is a member of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement – North Carolina (SARA-NC) which is the portal for the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority. Students may follow the SARA-NC Complaint Process and use the SARA-NC Complaint Form (PDF). SARA-NC does not resolve complaints about student grades and student conduct violation. These complaints fall under the jurisdiction of institutional policy. The contact information for SARA-NC is:

      SARA North Carolina
      North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority
      P.O. Box 14103
      Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
      Telephone: 855.SARA.1.NC (727-2162)
      Telephone: 919.549.8614, ext. 4667


If a student wishes to contact the state portal entities for his or her home state, contact information for state authorization liaisons in each SARA state can be found on the NC-SARA website. State by state contact information for agencies responsible for receiving student consumer complaints is available online.


Related Information