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The Official Web Site of the State of South Carolina

For Institutions and Educators

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Each of the 33 public institutions of higher education in South Carolina can be categorized into one of four sectors: research institutions, doctorate professional universities, four-year comprehensive teaching institutions, and technical colleges.The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education 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. A fifth sector, independent institutions, is comprised by the state’s 20 private, nonprofit colleges and universities.

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.

Institutional Administration

Academic Programs and Program Approval Information 

Inventory of Academic Programs (As of June 18, 2024)

Program Approval Process for Public Institutions


Additional Materials for Teacher Education Programs

Academic Program Inventory 


Academic Policies and Guidelines


Guidelines & Principles

REACH Act Guidelines and Course List

REACH Act Guidelines 2021 (PDF)

REACH Act Approved Course List (September 2023) (PDF)

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).

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

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.

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)

FY 2023-24 COE Grant Proposals Accepted through February 2, 2024

The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education reopens Request for Proposals for the Centers of Excellence Grant Programs for FY2023-24.

Important Dates:   

Intent to Submit Due:                   December 15, 2023

Technical Assistance Workshop: December 18, 2024

Proposal Deadline:                         February 2, 2024

Program Contact: Dr. Lishu Yin ( or 803-856-0512)

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.

Veteran’s Education and Training / State Approving Agency (GI Bill® Administration Information for Schools and Employers)

CHE Veteran's Education and Training is designated by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as South Carolina’s State Approving Agency (SAA) for veteran's education programs at in-state postsecondary institutions and career training centers that offer education and training to veterans and eligible dependents under the Veterans Education Assistance Program. 

Visit our Veteran’s Education and Training page for additional information.

SC Higher Education Nursing Initiative

Visit our Higher Education Nursing Initiative page to learn more about faculty salary supplements and tuition reimbursement programs for nursing educators.

Advising, Counseling and Financial Aid 

Articulation Agreements and Academic Transfer

The 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. 

South Carolina Transfer and Articulation Center (SC TRAC)

SC TRAC was created as a one-stop shop for transfer students, administrators and advisors/faculty. It is designed to facilitate student transitions between and among South Carolina’s institutions of higher education. 

CHE Transfer Excellence Center

A central resource for all involved in the statewide efforts to improve the transfer and articulation student experience. This page includes the 2023 South Carolina Transfer and Articulation Action Plan, as well information about ongoing initiatives and events to improve transfer in our state.

South Carolina Military Credit Mobility Task Force 

This task force reviews transfer and articulation agreements to help servicemembers use transferable credit toward degree completion and explores ways to increase the use of military credits that will transfer to academic credits.

Army Cyber Centers of Excellence Articulation Agreements

The CHE and the U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence at Fort Gordon, Ga., maintain a continuing education degree program articulation agreement and academic partnership allowing soldiers to receive course credit from CHE-recognized cyber and computer science-related programs at participating South Carolina institutions.

Transfer Information:

Transfer Block / Transfer Guide Information (Revised March 2009)

State Scholarship (LIFE, HOPE, Palmetto Fellows) Regulations, Administration and Trainings

Scholarship Regulations

Scholarship Administration

Related Trainings

South Carolina Residency Guidelines

Visit our SC Residency Information Page

High School Counselor Resource Center

High School Counselor Resource Center

Interstate Reciprocity Agreements for In-State Tuition

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 administers South Carolina’s participation in SARA. Visit our SARA page for more information and instructions.

The CHE manages South Carolina’s participation in two SREB programs that 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. 

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