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New York Institutions

SARA Application Process

The State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) is an agreement among member states, districts, and territories that establishes comparable national standards for the approval of interstate postsecondary distance education courses and programs. New York State institutions approved to participate in SARA are authorized to conduct distance education activity in other SARA member states under the terms and provisions of SARA. 

Institutions wishing to participate in SARA must first obtain approval from the New York State Education Department. The process for applying for approval is different for State University of New York, City University of New York, and independent institutions. Instructions for each of these groups are available below. Please send any questions relating to the SARA application process to IHEauthorize@nysed.gov

SARA applications are accepted on a rolling basis and the submission and review processes are the same for both first-time and renewal applications. Applications should be downloaded from the NC-SARA website.

State University of New York (SUNY) Institutions
  1. Application submission
    1. Institutions download and complete a new participant or renewal application as appropriate.

      NOTE: Any questions related to the SARA application process should be directed to the SUNY campus reviewer and copied to program.review@suny.edu.

    2. Institutions submit their completed SARA applications to the SUNY System Academic Program Planning Office at program.review@suny.edu.

      NOTE: SUNY Institutions MUST submit applications to the SUNY System Academic Program Planning Office.  Applications submitted directly to NYSED will be returned to the institution.

    3. The Academic Program Planning Office will review the application and follow-up with the institution to resolve any questions or errors.
    4. Once approved, the Academic Program Planning Office will send the institution’s SARA application to NYSED.
  2. Payment to NYSED

    At the start of the application process institutions initiate an interagency transfer of state fees to NYSED using the State Financial System (SFS). Community colleges must pay by check.

  3. Payment to NC-SARA

    After the application is approved and the state fees have been processed by NYSED, NC-SARA will send an invoice to the institution for the annual participation fee.  NC-SARA fees must be processed no later than 60 days after state approval to participate.

    NOTE: Do NOT send NC-SARA fees to NYSED as this may result in a significant delay in application processing.

    SARA membership commences or renews once NC-SARA has processed the Institution’s payment; institutions are then eligible to operate under the terms and provisions of the SARA agreement.

City University of New York (CUNY) Institutions
  1. Application submission
    1. Institutions download and complete a new participant or renewal application as appropriate. 
    2. Institutions submit their completed SARA applications to the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs.

      NOTE: CUNY Institutions MUST submit applications to the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs.  Applications submitted directly to NYSED will be returned to the institution.

    3. The Office of Academic Affairs will review the application and follow-up with the institution to resolve any questions or errors.
    4. Once approved, the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs will send the institution’s SARA application to NYSED.
  2. Payment to NYSED

    At the start of the application process institutions initiate an interagency transfer of state fees to NYSED using the State Financial System (SFS).

  3. Payment to NC-SARA

    After the application is approved and the state fees have been processed by NYSED, NC-SARA will send an invoice for the annual participation fee.  NC-SARA fees must be processed no later than 60 days after state approval to participate.

    NOTE: Do NOT send NC-SARA fees to NYSED as this may result in a significant delay in application processing.

    SARA membership commences or renews once NC-SARA has processed the Institution’s payment; institutions are then eligible to operate under the terms and provisions of the SARA agreement.

Independent Institutions
  1. Application submission
    1. Institutions download and complete a new participant or renewal application as appropriate. 
    2. Institutions submit their completed SARA applications to IHEauthorize@nysed.gov.
  2. Payment to NYSED

    At the start of the application process institutions pay state fees by sending a check and a Payment Form to NYSED.

  3. Payment to NC-SARA

    After the application is approved and the state fees have been processed by NYSED, NC-SARA will send an invoice for the annual participation fee.  NC-SARA fees must be processed no later than 60 days after state approval to participate.

    NOTE: Do NOT send NC-SARA fees to NYSED as this may result in a significant delay in application processing.

    SARA membership commences or renews once NC-SARA has processed the Institution’s payment; institutions are then eligible to operate under the terms and provisions of the SARA agreement.