Student Grievance Procedure

State Authorization

All colleges and universities are required to follow the laws and regulations of each state and territory in which they operate. Columbia College is currently working to gain exemption or authorization to offer distance learning to students in as many states as possible; however, some state authorization processes limit our ability to offer courses to residents of those states.

Columbia College is applying to become a member of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), which authorizes Columbia College to offer distance learning in any state that is also a member of SARA.

Columbia College seeks to resolve all student complaints regarding online programs in a fair and expedient manner. Students wishing to file a formal complaint must first seek resolution through Columbia College’s institutional grievance procedures.

If the complaint cannot be resolved internally, students may also file a complaint with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC), our accrediting body.

In addition, each state has a mechanism in place for state residents to lodge complaints against postsecondary educational institutions, especially as they relate to online learning. In South Carolina, a students may contact the Commission of Higher Education’s Student Complaint and Procedures Form.

Please be aware that SACSCOC and state agencies will expect the student to have exhausted Columbia College’s internal grievance policy before filing a complaint.