The Academic and Regulatory Affairs department collaborates with UNC System institutions to shape future academic programs, faculty development, and research across the state. The department leads special projects that represent innovative collaborations within the UNC System and with other constituencies.

Academic Program Planning

The Academic Program Planning section of this site describes the procedures for planning and obtaining authorization to establish new degree and distance learning programs and to discontinue existing programs.


In 2023, the North Carolina General Assembly implemented new institutional accreditation requirements for UNC System institutions and North Carolina community colleges. Visit the Accreditation page for important information and resources related to institutional accreditation.

Learning and Technology

The Learning and Technology office coordinates and leads Systemwide efforts to expand digital assets and uncover new strategies that will maximize the impact of technology-enhanced instruction across North Carolina.

State Authorization Unit

The State Authorization Unit of the UNC System is responsible for carrying out the licensing responsibility of the Board of Governors, working with non-public and out-of-state institutions seeking to offer post-secondary degree programs in North Carolina through the state authorization and licensure process for degree programs. They also receive complaints concerning post-secondary institutions.