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The University is also approved by the Louisiana Higher Education Board, the Wisconsin Educational Approval Board, and the Iowa Department of Education (for teacher education in Iowa only). Programs offered are approved by the states of Iowa, Kansas (restricted), Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Wisconsin for veterans’ benefits.

Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500
Chicago, IL 60604

Complaints Against an Affiliated Institution

Each year, the Commission receives a number of complaints about institutions from faculty, students and other parties. The Commission has established a clear distinction between individual grievances and complaints that appear to involve broad institutional practices. Where a complaint does raise issues regarding the institution’s ongoing ability to meet the Criteria of Accreditation, the Commission forwards the complaint to the institution and requests a formal response.

Complainants with specific claims related to the Americans with Disabilities Act or employment discrimination should seek prior review of such claims by the appropriate federal agencies. The Commission may ask for the report or record of such review in determining whether it can proceed to consider the claim as a complaint related to compliance with the Criteria for Accreditation.

Instructions for filing a complaint via the Higher Learning Commission are available at

Program Accreditation/Approvals

ProgramAccrediting AgencyLast RenewalNext RenewalApproval Documents
BusinessAssociation of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs – (ACBSP)In CandidacyIn CandidacyACBSP Seal
NursingCommission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)11/14/20222033CCNE Approval Letter
NursingIowa Board of Nursing02/05/20202026Iowa Board Nursing Approval Letter
Teacher Preparation ProgramIowa State Board of Education2/1/20182023-2024Iowa Board Education Approval Letter
Sources: Dept. of Education, Dept. of Nursing

State Approvals

State ApprovalsAccrediting AgencyLast RenewalNext RenewalApproval Documents
All ProgramsIowa College Student Aid CommissionAugust 20228/4/2024IA Approval Letter
All ProgramsLouisiana Board of RegentsAugust 2022August 2024LA Approval Letter
Select ProgramsOklahoma State Regents for Higher EducationOctober 2022August 2024OK Approval Letter


  • Upper Iowa University is currently licensed by the Board of Regents of the State of Louisiana. Licenses are renewed by the State Board of Regents every two years. Licensed institutions have met minimal operational standards set forth by the state, but licensure does not constitute accreditation, guarantee the transferability of credit, nor signify that programs are certifiable by any professional agency or organization.
  • Upper Iowa University has membership in the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA).
  • Upper Iowa University is a nonprofit organization founded in 1857. It has no shareholders or private ownership but is controlled by a board of trustees.

State Authorization for Distance Learning

Every U.S. state has enacted laws and regulations governing activities by educational providers in their jurisdiction, and each individual state has its own standards of when an educational provider has crossed a statutory threshold into regulation. Many of these state laws and regulations also apply to online, distance and correspondence educational instruction offered in that state.

UIU’s Office of the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs at Upper Iowa University is actively monitoring the status of federal and state regulations pertaining to the delivery of distance education and is coordinating UIU’s efforts to work with state agencies where authorization is required to ensure compliance with relevant distance education regulations. Applicants who reside outside Iowa will only be admitted to online degree completion programs, certificate programs or individual online courses offered by Upper Iowa University if the university has secured authorization from the applicant’s state of residence, when required.

Seal for NC-SARA participating institutions like Upper IowaIn September 2016 Upper Iowa University was approved by the Iowa College Student Aid Commission (ICSAC) to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements. NC-SARA is a voluntary, regional approach to state oversight of postsecondary distance education; it allows UIU to offer programs and courses to residents of member states without seeking state-by-state approval, and is intended to make it easier for students to take distance education courses offered by postsecondary institutions based in another state. A list of participating states and institutions can be found at National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements.

Persons seeking to enroll in an Upper Iowa University distance education program residing outside the state of Iowa, but within the United States, District of Columbia, or U.S. Territories, should check the University’s authorization status below or contact Distance Education at [email protected] or 1-800-553-4150 regarding enrollment.  UIU continues to serve out-of-state students while working with individual state agencies to meet and maintain institutional authorization requirements, unless otherwise indicated.

The table below indicates state authorization status for each state in relation to online and self-paced programs offered by UIU’s Distance Education.

  • A = approved/authorized
  • E = exempt (authorization not required)
  • IP = In Process (authorization or exemption is being sought; applications currently accepted)
  • N = NOT approved/authorized (applications not accepted)
  • S = NC-SARA member state
StateStatusState Regulating Agency(ies)
AlabamaSAlabama Department of Education
Alabama Commission on Higher Education
AlaskaSAlaska Commission on Postsecondary Education
ArizonaSArizona State Board for Private Postsecondary Education
ArkansasSArkansas Department of Higher Education
CaliforniaECalifornia Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education
ColoradoSState of Colorado Department of Higher Education
ConnecticutSState of Connecticut Office of Higher Education
DelawareSDelaware Department of Education
District of ColumbiaSDistrict of Columbia Education Licensure Commission
FloridaEFlorida Commission for Independent Education
GeorgiaSGeorgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission
HawaiiSHawaii Postsecondary Education Authorization Program
IdahoSIdaho State Board of Education
IllinoisSIllinois Board of Higher Education
IndianaSIndiana Commission for Higher Education
IowaSIowa College Student Aid Commission
KansasSKansas Board of Regents
KentuckySKentucky Council on Postsecondary Education
LouisianaSLouisiana Board of Regents
MaineSMaine Department of Higher Education
MarylandSMaryland Higher Education Commission
MassachusettsEMassachusetts Department of Higher Education
MichiganSMichigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs
MinnesotaSMinnesota Office of Higher Education
MississippiSMississippi Commission on College Accreditation
MissouriSMissouri Department of Higher Education
MontanaSMontana University System
NebraskaSNebraska’s Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education
NevadaSNevada Commission on Postsecondary Education
New HampshireSNew Hampshire Department of Education Division of Higher Education - Higher Education Commission
New JerseySNew Jersey Higher Education
New MexicoSNew Mexico Higher Education Department
New YorkS(New York) Office of College and University Evaluation
North CarolinaSThe University of North Carolina Board of Governors
North DakotaSNorth Dakota University System
OhioSChancellor of the Ohio Board of Regents
OklahomaSOklahoma State Regents for Higher Education
OregonSOregon Office of Degree Authorization
PennsylvaniaSPennsylvania Department of Education
Rhode IslandSRhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education
South CarolinaSSouth Carolina Commission on Higher Education
South DakotaSSouth Dakota Secretary of State’s Office
TennesseeSTennessee Higher Education Commission, Division of Postsecondary School Authorization
TexasSTexas Higher Education Coordinating Board & Texas Workforce Commission
UtahSUtah Division of Consumer Protection
VermontSVermont State Board of Education Through the Vermont Agency of Education
VirginiaSCommonwealth of Virginia State Council of Higher Education for Virginia
WashingtonSState of Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board
West VirginiaSWest Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission
WisconsinSWisconsin Educational Approval Program
WyomingSWyoming Department of Education
Note for Prospective Students: If you are considering an online academic program that will lead to a professional license in your state, it is highly recommended that you seek guidance from the appropriate licensing agency in your home state before beginning a program at Upper Iowa University. Student complaint procedures include a link to a list of each state’s complaint agency.

SAA Approvals

SAA ApprovalsAccrediting AgencyLast RenewalNext RenewalApproval Documents
Iowa: Fayette, Online and Iowa ExtensionsState of IA; Dept. of ED2022-08-29 00:00:00Change in statusIowa Approvals
Kansas: Fort RileyKansas Commission on Veterans’ Affairs2022-08-29 00:00:00Change in statusFort Riley Approval
Louisiana: AlexandriaState of LA; Dept. of VA2023-10-09 00:00:00Change in statusAlexandria Approval
Louisiana: Baton RougeState of LA; Dept. of VA2023-10-09 00:00:00Change in statusBaton Rouge Approval
Louisiana: DeRidderState of LA: Dept. of VA2023-10-09 00:00:00Change in statusDeRidder Approval
Louisiana: Fort JohnsonState of LA; Dept. of VA2023-10-09 00:00:00Change in statusFort Johnson Approval
Louisiana: New OrleansState of LA; Dept. of VA2023-10-09 00:00:00Change in statusNew Orleans Approval
Oklahoma: Fort SillState of OK; State Accrediting Agency2022-08-29 00:00:00Change in statusFort Sill Approval


Upper Iowa University is a member of the following educational organizations:

  • American Library Association
  • Council for the Advancement and Support of Education
  • Council of Independent Colleges
  • Iowa Association of Colleges for Teacher Education
  • Iowa College Foundation
  • National Collegiate Athletic Association
  • University Continuing Education Association