Policy II.2001.A, Substantive Change


The Policy on Substantive Change outlines requirements for the College to comply with the Southern Association of College and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) substantive change policy.


The College will notify SACSCOC of changes or seek approval prior to the initiation of changes in accordance with the SACSCOC substantive change policy and procedures. The College will develop and maintain procedures to ensure that substantive changes are reported in a timely manner to SACSCOC. The procedures will include methods for proactively monitoring and evaluating changes within the College relative to the requirements of the SACSCOC substantive change policy.

The Strategic Leadership Team or its designees is responsible for the development, dissemination, implementation, monitoring, and regular evaluation of procedures to ensure compliance with this policy. The accreditation liaison is responsible for monitoring College activities and informing the chancellor of the possible need for a notification of substantive change to SACSCOC and program developments in accord with the substantive change policy. The Board of Trustees will be notified of substantive changes submitted to SACSCOC. Compliance with the policy and associated procedures is mandatory.


Substantive change: a significant modification or expansion of the nature and scope of an accredited institution. The SACSCOC’s substantive change policy includes the following as institutional changes that must be reported:

  • any change in the established mission or objectives of the institution;
  • any change in legal status, form of control, or ownership of the institution;
  • the addition of courses or programs that represent a significant departure, either in content or method of delivery, from those that were offered when the institution was last evaluated;
  • the addition of courses or programs of study at a degree or credential level different from that which is included in the institution’s current accreditation or reaffirmation;
  • a change from clock hours to credit hours;
  • a substantial increase in the number of clock or credit hours awarded for successful completion of a program;
  • the establishment of an additional location geographically apart from the main campus at which the institution offers at least 50% of an educational program;
  • the establishment of a branch campus;
  • closing a program, off-campus site, branch campus or institution;
  • entering into a collaborative academic arrangement that includes only the initiation of a dual or joint academic program with another institution;
  • acquiring another institution or a program or location of another institution;
  • adding a permanent location at a site where the institution is conducting a teach-out program for a closed institution, and 
  • entering into a contract by which an entity not eligible for Title IV funding offers 25% or more of one or more of the accredited institution’s programs.

The Authority, Applicability, Sanctions, Exclusions, and Interpretation do not differ from Policy II.2000.A, Policy and Procedures Development, Review, Revision, and Rescission.


Procedure II.2001.A.a, Monitoring Substantive Change
Procedure II.2001.A.b, Reporting Substantive Change

Date of Board Approval

November 6, 2017

Effective Date

November 7, 2017

Primary Owner

Deputy Chancellor and President

Secondary Owner

College-designated liaison to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)