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Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) participates in the National Council State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (NC-SARA).


  • Pertains to approval of distance education courses and programs offered across state lines by postsecondary institutions that already have degree authorization in at least one state.
  • Centralizes the authorization process.
  • Is intended to be consistent with federal law and there is subject to change based on federal rulemaking.

NC-SARA also provides additional resources for students who are unable to resolve complaints through the university.

Complaint Procedures for Online Students

Complaints must go through WPI’s own procedures for resolution of grievances first.  The specific course of action depends on the nature of the complaint or grievance. Students should first speak with a Student Success Team Member for the particular course/program (either via telephone or email). The Student Success Team will either take the appropriate steps to assist the student or advise the student on how to proceed.  Student Success team members also reach out to each individual online student by phone once per semester to offer support and guidance.  Policies and procedures that may apply to a particular grievance include but are not limited to:

Every online student, regardless of location, is entitled to the services provided by our Online Success Team Members, including assistance with the above mentioned complaint procedures.

What to do if WPI cannot resolve your complaint

If you are a resident of an NC-SARA participant state, you may be entitled to additional complaint resolution services. Grading and/or student conduct violations are governed entirely by WPI’s institutional policy and the laws of Massachusetts; NC-SARA does not provide any additional support for these concerns. For all other types of student complaints and concerns, the student may appeal to the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education’s NC-SARA Portal Entity within two years of the incident if they have exhausted all other avenues for corrective actions.

For online students who are Massachusetts residents, you may file a complaint with the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education here.