Programs & Services

Benefits of Higher Education

ACPE programs and services are designed to increase Alaska citizens' access to the benefits of higher education:

For Individuals
  • increased personal income
  • increased employment opportunities
  • increased ability to pursue leisure activities
  • increased access to healthcare and longer lifespan
  • increased satisfaction with life
  • increased likelihood that children are more likely to be healthy and economically successful
For Communities
  • increased workforce pool for resident hire
  • lower unemployment rates
  • lower crime rates
  • decreased demand for public assistance
  • ability to attract new businesses and investments
  • economic base to support better healthcare infrastructure and school systems

Our Services

The new Alaska Performance Scholarship is an invitation to excellence for Alaska students and schools. Proposed by the Parnell Administration and supported by the Alaska Legislature, the program aims to improve high school performance and encourage Alaskans to better prepare for postsecondary education and career success.

Starting with the high school graduating class of 2011, Alaska Performance Scholarship awards will be available for postsecondary education and training to qualifying students who pursue a rigorous high school curriculum and perform well on a college- or career-readiness assessment.

The Alaska legislature created the Alaska Education Grant to provide need-based financial assistance to eligible Alaska students attending qualifying postsecondary educational institutions in Alaska.

The Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education provides:

ACPE’s Outreach team develops and makes available to the public:

All postsecondary educational providers in Alaska, and the programs they offer, must be authorized in accordance with law as set forth in AS 14.48, or be formally determined by ACPE to be exempt from authorization. ACPE's authorization process is designed to ensure postsecondary education providers and programs meet minimum standards set out in law, relative to:

  • institutional financial soundness
  • ethical business practices
  • educational program quality 
  • administrative capacity 

Review schools authorized to operate or exempt from authorization in Alaska.

Consumer Protection and Student Complaints

Read more about authorization, the authorization process, and exemption.

Distance education and online program institutions that deliver instruction to Alaskan residents but do not have a physical presence within the state may be recognized in an exempt status by applying for exemption from authorization to operate a postsecondary institution in Alaska.  Physical presence in Alaska means the presence of a facility, equipment, faculty or staff within the state.

A distance education or online program exempt from authorization requirements must include a conspicuous statement on the institution’s marketing in the state indicating that the program is exempt from authorization under AS 14.48 and 20 AAC 17.015.

Alaska is a member of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE), a regional, multi-state non-profit organization whose purpose is to leverage regional education resources to the benefit of each member state's residents. Through WICHE, Alaska participates in student exchange and access programs to provide higher education opportunities while improving the variety of courses available to Alaskans. ACPE certifies Alaska students' eligibility for these programs and offers program-specific loans for some exchange programs.

  • Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE)
  • Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP)
  • Professional Student Exchange (PSE) Loan Program

Read more about exchange programs.

The Alaska WWAMI (Washington, Wyoming, Alaska,  Montana, and  Idaho) program operates as Alaska's medical school, and is a collaborative program of the University of Washington School of Medicine and the University of Alaska Anchorage. The program admits 20 Alaska students per year. For more information, visit biomed.uaa.alaska.edu/. ACPE administers the provisions of the WWAMI education loan, which is a condition of WWAMI participation. Program graduates may discharge the loan obligation by practicing medicine in Alaska for a period of time.

Alaska has been awarded a 2012 Institute of Education Sciences (IES) $4 million grant to create a statewide longitudinal data system (SLDS) with a focus on inclusion of postsecondary education and workforce data. By linking K-12, higher education, and employment data, with personally identifiable information removed, the SLDS can deliver critical information to Alaska’s policymakers, educators, and general public about Alaska’s education pipeline, including student transitions and performance in postsecondary education and workforce systems, while ensuring individual privacy protection.

Read more about Alaska's Statewide Longitudinal Data System (SLDS)

ACPE maintains academic records for closed postsecondary institutions in Alaska, including Sheldon Jackson College and Alaska Junior College. Former students and graduates of closed postsecondary schools may request transcripts and/or diplomas using the transcript request form.

For more information about Alaska school records, including information on how to find secondary school records, visit the State of Alaska archives.

The Alaska Student Loan Corporation is a public corporation and government instrumentality within the Department of Education and Early Development with a legal existence independent of and separate from the State of Alaska. Its primary purpose is to finance state education loans. A combination of proceeds generated from the issuance of bonds and loan repayments fund its education loan programs. Learn more: