Substantive Change

As a member institution of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), KSU is required to notify the Commission of any proposed substantive changes in accordance with SACSCOC policy and, when necessary, obtain approval prior to the initiation of the changes.  SACSCOC defines substantive change as a significant modification or expansion in the nature and scope of an accredited institution.

The types of substantive change and the procedures for addressing them can be found in the SACSCOC Policy Statement for Substantive Change for SACSCOC Accredited Institutions.  This policy requires one of three different procedures for processing/reporting a substantive change.  The procedures vary in complexity and time required for processing based on the specific nature of the substantive change involved.  These procedures are detailed in both the SACSCOC and the KSU Substantive Change Policies. 

All SACSCOC member institutions are required to have a policy and procedure to ensure that all substantive changes are reported to the Commission in a timely fashion.  The links to KSU’s Policy and Procedure can be found in the Policy Portal.

The first step is to determine the precise nature of the substantive change.  Many changes require that SACSCOC be notified at least 6 months prior to implementation.  An example of this is when KSU enters into an educational program partnership with another institution.  See the "Timeline for Completion of Tasks and Documentation" that SACSCOC requires for approval of a dual degree program with a partner university.  Implementation of substantive changes cannot occur until SACSCOC notification is given and/or approval is obtained.  Failure to comply with reporting requirements may cause KSU to lose its Title IV funding or be required by the U.S. Department of Education to reimburse it for money received by the institution for programs related to the unreported substantive change.  In addition, the institution's case may be referred to SACSCOC Board of Trustees for the imposition of a sanction or for removal from membership.

Contact Danielle Buehrer, Executive Director of Institutional Quality and Accreditation, Office of Accreditation and Policy, early in the process to discuss the proposed change, the procedure that will be required, and the time frame involved. 

Office Telephone:  470-578-4426