Department of Education Complaint Process
Online and distance education is an important part of Hardin-Simmons University's program offerings, with many students participating in federal financial aid. Recent amendments to the Higher Education Act of 1965 include changes in regulation for State Authorization that may impact online, distance, and correspondence education providers. The relevant language includes:
If an institution is offering postsecondary education through distance or correspondence education to students in a State in which it is not physically located or in which it is otherwise subject to State jurisdiction as determined by the State, the institution must meet any State requirements for it to be legally offering postsecondary distance or correspondence education in that State. An institution must be able to document to the Secretary the State's approval upon request.
(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1001 and 1002)
The first step in the complaint process, is to address the issue internally with Hardin-Simmons University. The HSU complaint process can be viewed here. If for some reason the complaint is not satisfactorily resolved internally, the next steps would be to file the complaint with the accrediation agency listed below. Students attending classes through distance or correspondence should file with the appropriate regulatory agency for the state where the student resides. Students attending face-to-face classes should file with the Consumer Protection Division at the Office of the Attorney General of Texas not in their state of residence.
In compliance with the language passed in the Higher Education Opportunities Act of 2008, the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) conducted a Negotiated Rule Making Process in 2010, institutions offering distance education must provide enrolled and prospective students with contact information for filing complaints with its accrediting agency and with the appropriate state agency for handling complaints in the student's state. Below is information on Hardin-Simmons' accreditation agency, followed by a state-by-state list of the agencies in each state responsible for complaints regarding out-of-state distance education programs.
Hardin-Simmons University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Information regarding complaint processes can be found on the SACSCOC website.
Complaint resolution contacts by state
These new regulations require us to provide prospective and current students with contact information for filing complaints with the appropriate agency in the state where the student resides. Please click on your state to be connected to the contact form should you have a complaint about Hardin-Simmons University.