Both SCHEV and SACSCOC have specific reporting requirements for off-campus instructional locations. These requirements are related to how much of a degree program is offered at the site, adequacy of full-time faculty at the site, and access to appropriate facilities and learning resources. Note that offering credits at an off-campus location includes both face-to-face instruction with a faculty member at the site as well as online delivery to students seated in a classroom at the off-campus location.
If 25-49% of the credits for a degree or certificate program are offered at an off-campus site, Longwood must notify SACSCOC of the address prior to reaching the 25% mark. If 50% or more of the credits for a degree or certificate program are offered at an off-campus site, Longwood must submit a prospectus to SACSCOC for approval prior to reaching the 50% mark. For SACSCOC reaffirmation and the Fifth-Year Interim Report, Longwood must also demonstrate that all standards are met at each off-campus location where 50% or more of a degree program is offered.
SCHEV must approve “relatively permanent locations at which institutions offer for-credit courses and programs (degree programs and certificates) to address community, regional, and state needs.” The Southern Virginia Education Center in Emporia has been approved by SCHEV as a partially exempt off-site location. As of July 2015, SCHEV does not require approval of local schools, government facilities, centers that conduct only research, locations in which the institution does not maintain a permanent or on-going presence, and higher education centers such as New College Institute in Martinsville and the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center in South Boston.
Offering Courses at an Off-Campus Instructional Site
The Office of Accreditation and Compliance and the College of Graduate and Professional Studies maintain lists of all off-campus locations. If you plan to offer courses at an off-campus location, please see the list of Active Off-Campus Instructional Sites (SACSCOC) and complete an Off-Campus Reporting Form on Curriculog as soon as you know any of the following:
- Your program will offer courses at an off-site location that you are not using now and that is not on the list of active locations.
- Your program will start a new cohort at a site that is on the list of active locations.
- There is a change in the physical address for a cohort at a previously reported location.
- Your program will offer 25% or more of the coursework for a degree or certificate program at an off-site location.
You will be contacted if there are any questions about what you plan to offer and when, as well as whether there are any lease or articulation agreements involved. Note that an Off-Site Course Locations Form must also be completed. Please see the Criteria and Procedures for Establishing Off-Campus Locations for more information.
Crossing the 50% Mark at an Off-Campus Instructional Site
Offering 50% or more of the credits for a degree program at an off-campus site is a substantive change that requires a prospectus and prior approval by SACSCOC. The Office of Accreditation and Compliance will work with you early on to determine when you will cross the 50% mark and will facilitate the prospectus preparation process. A site visit is typically required as part of the approval process. If you believe such a transition will occur, you should fill out the Academic Initiatives Planning Checklist.
Closing an Off-Campus Instructional Site
Longwood must seek approval from SACSCOC when an off-campus instructional site is permanently closed. This applies to both approved sites (where 50% or more of a program has been approved) and to notified sites (where 25-49% of a program is offered). In these cases, a teachout plan must be provided. Note that after 5 years of no students enrolled and no courses offered at an approved off-campus site, SACSCOC requires re-submission of a full prospectus for approval of the off-campus site in order to offer 50% or more of any educational program at the location.