State Authorization and Professional Licensure Requirements

State Authorization refers to the requirement that institutions of higher education obtain authorization for their distance education offerings from individual states, in accordance with each individual state’s laws and regulations. The State of Texas and Rice University are members of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), which allows students in 49 states (all but California), District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands to take Rice University courses in an online or distance format. California is not currently part of SARA, however, Rice University distance education programs are not subject to approval or exemption by California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (and therefore students in California may also take Rice University distance education courses).

For information regarding student complaints, please see Rice University Policy 701, Written Student Complaints, or NC-SARA at: For information on refunds see:

Upon registration for courses, individuals will be asked to provide the state or location where they will physically be taking the majority of the course. This may be the same or different than that individual’s permanent residence, or legal state of residence.

Requirements for licensure can vary by profession and state. Prospective and current students are encouraged to research the requirements in their current or intended state of residence to ensure that their intended enrollment in a program will meet the requirements of their state’s licensing agency. It may be necessary to reach out to state agencies with questions or for clarification.

Rice University has not evaluated or made a determination that its curriculum meets the educational requirements for licensure or certification in any state or territory other than the State of Texas.