Initial Authorization

Institutions applying for an Initial Authorization to operate in Alaska must meet minimum standards, as established in Alaska Statute (AS) 14.48 and Section 20 of the Alaska Administrative Code (AAC) Chapter 17. The minimum standards are outlined in the Initial Application for Authorization to Operate a Postsecondary Institution.

The completed application, non-refundable application fee, and all supporting documentation outlined in the packet, in one mailing, should be returned to ACPE, P.O. Box 110505, Juneau, AK, 99811-0505, or emailed to EED.ACPE-IA@alaska.gov If emailing in the application, the application fee will need to be mailed to the address above. All initial authorizations require Commission approval and must be submitted at least 90 days before the Commission meeting at which the request is to be considered.

The application process is follows:

  • The institution submits the appropriate application, forms, and supporting materials to ACPE, including payment of fees.
  • Staff reviews the submitted documentation in three review stages:
    • Initial- Ensuring the completeness of the application. If the application is incomplete or additional information is requested, staff will contact the institution. Staff may establish a deadline to submit additional materials. Failure to meet this established deadline may result in a late fee and/or application deferral to the next scheduled Commission meeting.
    • Compliance- Ensuring compliance with applicable Statues and Regulations.
    • Site Visit- On-site evaluation for compliance.
  • Staff forwards a recommendation to the Commission for consideration at the next scheduled Commission meeting.
  • The Commission reviews the institutional information and staff recommendation at the quarterly meeting. Institution staff may comment on the information and recommendation at the meeting.
  • The institution be invited to the Commission meeting, and a representative for the institution should be prepared to speak on behalf of the institution. A presentation by the institution or its representative may be requested.
  • The Commission takes action on the application (approval, conditional approval, denial, or continuation of application). Initial authorizations may not exceed 18 months.
  • Staff notifies the institution of the Commission's action.

Once an institution is authorized, any amendments to the items submitted in support of the application for Authorization must be submitted to ACPE for approval, including but not limited to policies, procedures, published documents, physical plant, faculty or staff.

In addition to Authorization, institutions receiving Initial Authorization must continue meeting compliance standards with future Renewals of Authorization and Annual Reporting.