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The Official Web Site of the State of South Carolina

For Institutions and Educators


Winthrop AerialInstitutions of higher education in South Carolina can be categorized into four sectors: research institutions, four-year comprehensive teaching institutions, technical colleges and independent institutions. 

The CHE coordinates and conducts oversight of these sectors to advance South Carolina’s economic development and general welfare, in support of the mission for the state’s postsecondary education system set by the General Assembly.

The CHE’s primary functions related to the operations of institutions of higher learning include:

  • Review and approval of proposed academic programs at public four-year and research institutions
  • Licensure of non-public postsecondary institutions’ in-state operations and solicitation
  • Assistance with transfer and articulation agreements
  • Overseeing interstate reciprocity agreements, among others.
Academic Programs and Program Approval Information 

Inventory of Academic Programs (As of February 17, 2023)

Program Approval Process for Public Institutions


Additional materials for Teacher Education programs

Academic Program Inventory 


    Academic Policies and Guidelines


    Guidelines & Principles

    REACH Act

    REACH Act Guidelines 2021 (PDF)

    REACH Act Approved Course List 2022

    Articulation Agreements & Academic Transfer

    CHE sets procedures for course transferability at the undergraduate level between two- and four-year public institutions. By enhancing credit transfer, articulation agreements allow students to seamlessly transition from one institution to another. 

    SC Transfer and Articulation Center (SC TRAC) - Public Institutional Transfer Agreements, and Institutional Transfer Offices (External link):

    Link to SC TRAC



    For information on our 2023 South Carolina Transfer and Articulation Action Plan and other initiatives to improve transfer in our state, visit our Transfer page.

    Transfer Information:

    Transfer Block / Transfer Guide Information (Revised March 2009)

    Institutional Data Reporting (CHEMIS and IPEDS)

    Commission on Higher Education Management Information System (CHEMIS)

    Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS)


    The CHE reviews and makes recommendations related to facility project plans proposed by public institutions of higher education.

    The facilities staff considers all aspects of institutional permanent improvement projects including the acquisition of land and buildings, regardless of cost; work on existing facilities including their renovation, repair, maintenance, alteration, or demolition in which the total cost is $1,000,000 or more; architectural and engineering and other types of planning and design work, regardless of cost, which is intended to result in a permanent improvement; capital lease purchase of a facility acquisition or construction in which the total cost is $1,000,000 or more; equipment that either becomes a permanent fixture of a facility or does not become permanent but is included as a part of a project in which the total cost is $1,000,000 or more; and new construction of a facility that exceeds a total cost of $500,000. Also included are leases and lease renewals above the exemption level of $100,000 per year.

    Facilities staff responsibilities include:

    • Prepare and present proposals and respective recommendations on behalf of the institutions for renovation, repair, and maintenance projects costing more than $1,000,000, new construction projects costing more than $500,000, and leases which commit $1,000,000 or more in a five year period to the Committee on Finance and Facilities on a monthly basis. The Committee on Finance and Facilities, in turn, presents its recommendations to the full Commission at its monthly meetings.  
    • Meet with the Facilities Advisory Committee, consisting of institutional representatives, on an as-needed basis in order to consider new policy, policy revisions, or other pressing facilities-related issues.  
    • Work with the CHE Management Information System staff (CHEMIS) to audit and ensure the accuracy of institutional reporting of facilities building inventories and room use data. This data is a component in the calculation of annual funding calculation, specifically for the maintenance and operation of physical plant. This data is also applied to classroom and laboratory utilization and other quantitative reports for consideration in the approval process of permanent improvement requests.

    Commission approvals are subject to adoption by the statutory approval process of the Joint Bond Review Committee (JBRC) and the Budget and Control Board (BCB). Commission approvals are also required for Master Land Acquisition Plans (MLAP) and the Comprehensive Permanent Improvement Plans (CPIP).

    State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) for distance courses and programs

    SARA sets comparable standards for interstate offerings of postsecondary distance courses and programs. Member states recognize each other’s participating institutions as eligible to enroll students in distance education programs. The CHE handles South Carolina’s participation in SARA. Visit our SARA page for more information and instructions.

    Residency Guidelines

    Visit our SC Residency Information Page

    Licensing of Non-Public Postsecondary Institutions

    The CHE authorizes licenses for non-public postsecondary institutions operating and soliciting in South Carolina. Licensure is required for both sites and programs. Also, the CHE licenses degree- and non-degree-granting institutions.

    Visit the Licensing Page

    Scholarship Policies and Regulations

    Policies and Instructions for Applications for Academic Program and Course Eligibility for Scholarship Enhancement (PDF)

    Policy for the Addition and Removal of Programs to the List of Programs Eligible for Scholarship Enhancements (PDF)

    Palmetto Fellows Scholarship Regulations (PDF)

    LIFE Scholarship Regulations (PDF)

    SC HOPE Scholarship Regulations (PDF)

    SC Need-based Grant Regulations (PDF)

    Lottery Tuition Assistance Program Regulations (PDF)

    Free Tuition for Residents Over 60 (PDF)

    Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) Programs

    The CHE manages South Carolina’s participation in two SREB programs: the Academic Common Market and the Regional Contract Program. The programs permit South Carolina residents to enroll in select programs at participating states’ public institutions and pay in-state tuition, so long as the program isn’t offered in South Carolina. Click here for course and program submission information.

    Academic Common Market (ACM) Program Nomination Form (PDF)

    SREB Academic Common Market Program Search

    South Carolina Military Credit Mobility Task Force

    South Carolina Military Credit Mobility Task Force

    Partnership Among South Carolina Academic Libraries (PASCAL)

    The CHE serves as the fiscal agent for the Partnership Among South Carolina Academic Libraries (PASCAL). This consortium of South Carolina’s academic libraries and state agency partners, fosters cooperation for shared licensing of electronic resources, universal borrowing, ILS hosting, and affordable learning.

    CHE Education Stabilization Fund for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Grants

    The CHE administers grants using Education Stabilization Fund for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Funding and the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding provided through the South Carolina Department of Education. CHE awards funding to South Carolina public universities who create collaborative summer projects or summer programs between with partner school districts to address student learning loss resulting from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. A request-for-proposals to the CHE is required for institutions to apply for the ESSER funding.

    Education Improvement Act South Carolina Centers of Excellence for Teacher Education

    Research has shown that the single greatest factor influencing student achievement is teacher quality.

    The South Carolina Centers of Excellence program is a competitive grant program that enables eligible institutions, or groupings of such institutions, to serve as state-of-the-art resource centers for the state in a specific area related to the improvement of teacher education with a concentration on assisting rural, underperforming schools and districts. These resource centers develop and model state-of-the-art teaching practices, conduct research, disseminate information, and provide training for P-12 and higher education personnel in a center's specific area of expertise.

    FY 2021-22 EIA Centers of Excellence Guidelines (PDF)

    FY2022-2023 Centers of Excellence and Points of Contact (PDF)

    Relationship Violence and Sexual Assault Prevention Resources for Educators and Institutions

    In 2020, the South Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (SCCADVASA) created a comprehensive prevention website for teens and college students, parents, educators and community partners to promote healthy relationships and provide strategies to help prevent sexual violence.

    Visit to access resources and find more information.

    SCCADVASA’s College Consortium serves institutions of higher education and off-campus service providers working with on-campus populations to discuss issues related to sexual and intimate partner violence, Title IX, and sexual and intimate partner violence prevention work on campuses. The consortium meets quarterly on a hybrid or virtual bases. More information about the consortium can be found here:

    Image removed. South Carolina College Consortium on Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence info sheet.docx (External .doc link)

    SCCADVASA’s Legal Assistance Program can provide technical assistance and support for colleges and universities that have legal questions related to interpersonal violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, stalking/harassment, and Title IX.  Additionally, legal services (including consultations)  are available to survivors at no cost throughout the state. More information about the Legal Program can be found here: 

    Image removed. One Page - Legal Services for Survivors (003).docx (External .doc link)

    SCCADVASA and its 22 member organizations across the state can offer technical support, programming, and direct services to campuses, student organizations, and any person who is experience interpersonal and/or sexual violence or any person supporting someone who is experience violence. 

    Click here to access an interactive map to locate the local service provider in your area.

    Confidential Help is Available:

    24/7 help is available through SCCADVASA's 22 independently operated 501(c)(3) non-profit member organizations. These organizations provide confidential, direct services to survivors of domestic violence, relationship violence, and/or sexual assault.

    On-Campus Support:

    It is critical that students have access to on-campus support, resources, and prevention education. We encourage institutions to make it easy for students to access their services and to proactively provide opportunities for prevention education and training. SCCADVASA can help with technical assistance and capacity building.

    Confidential support is also always available from the national hotlines below.

    • Rape Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN): 800-656-HOPE (4673) or contact their live chat through their website
    • Love is Respect: Text LOVEIS to 22522 or 1-866-331-9474 or contact their live chat through their website
    • National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), TTY: 1-800-787-3224 or contact their live chat through their website
    AmeriCorps College and Career Opportunity Coach Program

    Visit our College and Career Opportunity Coach Program page

    Veteran’s Education / GI Bill® Program Administration Information for Schools and Employers 

    The CHE is South Carolina’s State Approving Agency (SAA) and must approve programs at in-state postsecondary institutions and career training centers that offer education and training to veterans and their eligible dependents under the Veterans Education Assistance Program. 

    Veteran’s Education and Training at CHE is designated as the SAA responsible for approving and supervising Veteran’s Education programs in South Carolina. The SAA is a part of the National Association of State Approving Agencies (NASAA) which is comprised of state agencies that have responsibility for the approval and training available through the GI Bill®. The SAA acts on behalf of the federal government to evaluate educational/vocational institutions and training establishments. The SAA approves programs where veterans and those eligible for VA education benefits (under Title 38, US Code, Chapters 30, 32, 33, 35, 36, and Title 10 US Code, Chapter 1606 and 1607) can achieve quality training in either an educational, professional, or vocational objective. The focus of the SAA is the review, evaluation, and approval of quality programs under both the state and federal criteria.

    Coordinators are assigned to various areas throughout the state and are responsible for a variety of duties. The area coordinators visit institutions and training establishments seeking initial approval to evaluate the appropriateness of the programs being offered and to ensure that these programs meet the standards of state and federal guidelines. Area coordinators also evaluate curricula, training outlines, student training records, physical facilities, and equipment used in training programs. The coordinators, in evaluating institutions and programs, meet with faculty/trainers, administrators, and agency directors seeking a willingness to establish training approval for GI Bill® recipients. Approval may be granted for the following:

    • On-Job-Training (OJT) establishments (6 to 24 months training programs)
    • Apprenticeship (APP) establishments (more than 24 months and annual related training)
    • Flight Training Schools (for pilot licenses and aviation employment)

    Upon approval, the SAA provides continuous oversight by conducting annual on-site supervisory visits. Technical assistance visits are conducted when deemed necessary by the SAA or at the request of the certifying official. The SAA also conducts outreach activities to foster usage of the GI Bill.

    Veteran's Education Resources for Institutions                                                                        

    GI Bill® Approval Forms

    Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL)        

    IHL Catalog Approval Packet 2022 (For Profit) (PDF)

    IHL Catalog Approval Packet 2022 (Not For Profit) (PDF)

    IHL New Facility Approval (PDF)

    IHL Programs Currently Approved (PDF)

    IHL - Teach Out Program(s) (PDF)

    IHL - Deleted Program(s) (PDF)

    IHL - New Program(s) (PDF)

    IHL - Program Revision(s) (PDF)

    Dual Major Request (PDF)

    3675 Under_Grad_Checklist (PDF)

    Practical Training / Independent (PDF)

    Request for Approval (PDF)

    Example of Attendance Policy (PDF)

    Example of Standards of Progress (PDF)

    IHL- Application 3675 (PDF)

    Education and Training GI Bill 

    Education and Training GI-Bill Feedback 

    Yellow Ribbon Schools 






    Non-College Degree (NCD) Institutions 

    NCD 3676 Academic Catalog / Student Handbook Checklist and Certification (PDF)

    Application Form 3676 (PDF)

    Application Form 3676 Worksheet (PDF)

    NCD Catalog Approval Packet (PDF)

    Catalog Qualification Statements / Requirement Verification Checklist (PDF)

    38 U.S. Code § 3696 -Erroneous, Deceptive and Misleading Statement (PDF)

    Non-Accredited Educational Institution 24 Months Catalog (PDF)

    Practical Training / Independent Study Course Checklist (PDF)

    Pro-Rata Refund Policy (PDF)

    Request for Approval Action (PDF)

    VA Form 22-1919 Conflicting Interests Certification for Proprietary Schools (PDF)

    VA Form 22-8794 Designation of Certifying Officials (PDF)

    VA Pending Payment Compliance Addendum 3679(e) (Rev. 2020) (PDF)

    VA Form 20-8206 Statement of Assurance of Compliance with Equal Opportunity Laws (PDF) 

    Request for New NCD Facility Approval (PDF)

    NCD Teach Out Program(s) (PDF)

    NCD - Deleted Program(s) (PDF)

    NCD - New Program(s) (PDF)

    NCD - Program Revision(s) (PDF)

    NCD - Programs Currently Approved (PDF)

    Example of Attendance Policy (PDF)

    Example of Standards of Progress (PDF)

    Licensing and Certification

    SC Application and Assurances Form (Application for VA reimbursement of licensure test fees) (PDF)

    Using VA Benefits to cover test fees (PDF)