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Minnesota Office of Higher Education

Home > School Licensure & Registration


School Licensure & Registration

Institution Registration and Licensure


The Office of Higher Education provides consumer protection for students and prospective students. Two state laws require private and out-of-state public postsecondary educational institutions to meet state standards to operate legally in Minnesota.

Private and out-of-state public institutions should review the standards and application procedures to determine their legal obligations before advertising or offering postsecondary education in Minnesota.

Which Institutions Must Be Licensed?

Private Career School Licensure is required for most private schools and training firms that offer occupational programs below the associate level in Minnesota.

Which Institutions Must Register?

Degree-Granting Institutional Registration is required for most postsecondary institutions that are:

  • private institutions or
  • out-of-state public institutions or
  • grant degrees exclusively at the associate level or above or
  • use the terms "academy," "college," "institute," or "university" in their names.

Degree Standards

Degree Standards have been established for both associate degrees and baccalaureate degrees offered by private and out-of-state public institutions in Minnesota.

Student Academic Records

Licensed and registered institutions must make arrangements to preserve student academic records. The Office of Higher Education maintains a list of the location of student records from private institutions that have closed, changed their names, relocated, or are otherwise difficult to locate or contact.


The Office of Higher Education addresses complaints that registered and licensed institutions have not met legal requirements.



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