The following words and terms, when used in this subchapter,
shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates
(1) Academic Associate Degree Program--A grouping of
courses designed to transfer to an upper-level baccalaureate program.
This specifically refers to the associate of arts and the associate
of science degrees.
(2) Accreditation--The status of public recognition
that an accrediting agency grants to an educational institution.
(3) Accrediting Agency--A legal entity that conducts
accreditation activities through voluntary peer review and makes decisions
concerning the accreditation status of institutions.
(4) Agent--A person employed by or representing a postsecondary
educational institution that does not have a Certificate of Authorization
or Certificate of Authority, within or without Texas who:
(A) solicits any Texas student for enrollment in the
institution (excluding the occasional participation in a college/career
fair involving multiple institutions or other event similarly limited
in scope in the state of Texas);
(B) solicits or accepts payment from any Texas student
for any service offered by the institution; or
(C) while having a physical presence in Texas, solicits
students or accepts payment from students who do not reside in Texas.
(5) Alternative Certificate of Authority--A type of
Certificate of Authority for approval of postsecondary institutions,
with operations in the state of Texas, to confer degrees or courses
applicable to degrees, or to solicit students for enrollment in institutions
that confer degrees or courses applicable to degrees that is governed
by flexible, streamlined procedures, emphasizing the importance of
innovation, consumer choice, and measurable outcomes in the delivery
of educational services.
(6) Applied Associate Degree Program--A grouping of
courses designed to lead the individual directly to employment in
a specific career and that includes at least fifteen (15) semester
credit hours or twenty-three (23) quarter credit hours of general
education courses. This specifically refers to the associate of applied
arts and the associate of applied science degrees.
(7) Associate Degree Program--A grouping of courses
designed to lead the individual directly to employment in a specific
career, or to transfer to an upper-level baccalaureate program. This
specifically refers to the associate of arts, the associate of science,
the associate of applied arts and the associate of applied science.
(8) Board--The Texas Higher Education Coordinating
(9) Board Staff--The staff of the Texas Higher Education
Coordinating Board including the Commissioner of Higher Education
and all employees who report to the Commissioner.
(10) Career School or College--Any business enterprise
operated for a profit, or on a nonprofit basis, that maintains a place
of business in the State of Texas or solicits business within the
State of Texas, and that is not specifically exempted by Texas Education
Code §132.002 or §7.4 of this chapter (relating to Standards
for Operations of Institutions), and:
(A) that offers or maintains a course or courses of
instruction or study; or
(B) at which place of business such a course or courses
of instruction or study is available through classroom instruction,
by electronic media, by correspondence, or by some or all, to a person
for the purpose of training or preparing the person for a field of
endeavor in a business, trade, technical, or industrial occupation,
or for career or personal improvement.
(11) Certificate of Approval--The Texas Workforce Commission's
approval of career schools or colleges with operations in Texas to
maintain, advertise, solicit for, or conduct any program of instruction
in this state.
(12) Certificate of Authority--The Board's approval
of postsecondary institutions (other than exempt institutions), with
operations in the State of Texas, to confer degrees or courses applicable
to degrees, or to solicit students for enrollment in institutions
that confer degrees or courses applicable to degrees.
(13) Certificate of Authorization--The Board's acknowledgment
that an institution is qualified for an exemption from the regulations
in this subchapter.
(14) Certificate of Registration--The Board's approval
of an agent to solicit students on behalf of a private postsecondary
educational institution in the State of Texas.
(15) Certification Advisory Council--
(A) Council to advise the Board on standards and procedures
related to certification of private, nonexempt postsecondary educational
institutions, and to assist the Commissioner in the examination of
individual applications for Certificates of Authority, and to perform
other duties related to certification that the Board finds to be appropriate.
(B) The council shall consist of six members with experience
in higher education, three of whom must be drawn from exempt private
postsecondary institutions in Texas.
(C) The members shall be appointed for two year fixed
and staggered terms.
(16) Change of Ownership or Control--Any change in
ownership or control of a career school or college or an agreement
to transfer control of such institution.
(A) The ownership or control of a career school or
college is considered to have changed:
(i) in the case of ownership by an individual, when
more than fifty (50) percent of the institution has been sold or transferred;
(ii) in the case of ownership by a partnership or a
corporation, when more than fifty (50) percent of the institution
or of the owning partnership or corporation has been sold or transferred;
(iii) when the board of directors, officers, shareholders,
or similar governing body has been changed to such an extent as to
significantly alter the management and control of the institution.
(B) A change of ownership or control does not include
a transfer that occurs as a result of the retirement or death of the
owner if transfer is to a member of the owner's family who has been
directly and constantly involved in the management of the institution
for a minimum of two years preceding the transfer. For the purposes
of this section, a member of the owner's family is a parent, sibling,
spouse, or child; spouse's parent or sibling; or sibling's or child's
(17) Cited--Any reference to an institution in a negative
finding or action by an accrediting agency.
(18) Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP)
Code--The four (4) or six (6)-digit code assigned to an approved degree
program in accordance with the CIP manual published by the U.S. Department
of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. CIP codes
define the authorized teaching field of the specified degree program,
based upon the occupation(s) for which the program is designed to
prepare its graduates.
(19) Clinical Internship--This learning method, also
known as "clinicals," encompasses all site-specific health professions
experiential learning. Clinicals include site experiences for medical,
nursing, allied health, and other health professions degree programs.
(20) Commissioner--The Commissioner of Higher Education.
(21) Concurrent Instruction--Students enrolled in different
classes, courses, and/or subjects being taught, monitored, or supervised
simultaneously by a single faculty member.
(22) Degree--Any title or designation, mark, abbreviation,
appellation, or series of letters or words, including "associate,"
"bachelor's," "master's," "doctor's" and their equivalents and foreign
cognates, which signify, purport to signify, or are generally taken
to signify satisfactory completion of the requirements of all or part
of a program of study which is generally regarded and accepted as
an academic degree-level program by accrediting agencies recognized
by the Board.
(23) Educational or Training Establishment--An enterprise
offering a course of instruction, education, or training that is not
represented as being applicable to a degree.
(24) Exempt Institution--An institution that is accredited
by an agency recognized by the Board under §7.6 of this chapter
(relating to Recognition of Accrediting Agencies), is defined as a
"private or independent institution of higher education" under Texas
Education Code, §61.003(15), or a career school or college that
applies for and is declared exempt under this chapter, by the Texas
Workforce Commission as described in Texas Education Code, §61.303(a),
or Texas Education Code Chapter 132, respectively. Exempt institutions
may still have to comply with certain Board rules.
(25) Experiential Learning--Process through which students
develop knowledge, skills, and values from direct experiences outside
an institution's classrooms. Experiential learning encompasses a variety
of activities including, but not limited to, internships, externships,
practicums, clinicals, field experience, or other professional work
(26) Fictitious Degree--A counterfeit or forged degree
or a degree that has been revoked.
(27) Fraudulent or Substandard Degree--A degree conferred
by a person who, at the time the degree was conferred, was:
(A) operating in this state in violation of this subchapter;
(B) not eligible to receive a Certificate of Authority
under this subchapter and was operating in another state in violation
of a law regulating the conferral of degrees in that state or in the
state in which the degree recipient was residing or without accreditation
by a recognized accrediting agency, if the degree is not approved
through the review process described by §7.12 of this chapter
(relating to Review and Use of Degrees from Institutions Not Eligible
for Certificates of Authority); or
(C) not eligible to receive a Certificate of Authority
under this subchapter and was operating outside the United States,
and whose degree the Board, through the review process described by §7.12
of this chapter, determines is not the equivalent of an accredited
or authorized degree.
(28) Internship--This learning method encompasses all
non-clinical site experiential learning.
(29) Occasional Courses--Courses offered not more than
twice at any given location in the state.
(30) Out-of-State Public Postsecondary Institution--Any
senior college, university, technical institute, junior or community
college, or the equivalent which is controlled by a public body organized
outside the boundaries of the State of Texas.
(31) Person--Any individual, firm, partnership, association,
corporation, enterprise, or other private entity or any combination
(32) Physical Presence--
(A) While in Texas a representative of the school or
a person being paid by the school who conducts an activity related
to postsecondary education, including for the purposes of recruiting
students (excluding the occasional participation in a college/career
fair involving multiple institutions or other event similarly limited
in scope in the state of Texas), teaching or proctoring courses including
internships, clinicals, externships, practicums, and other similarly
constructed educational activities (excluding those individuals that
are involved in teaching courses in which there is no physical contact
with Texas students or in which visiting students are enrolled), or
grants certificates or degrees; and/or
(B) The institution has any location within the State
of Texas which would include any address, physical site, telephone
number, or facsimile number within or originating from within the
boundaries of the State of Texas. Advertising to Texas students, whether
through print, billboard, internet, radio, television, or other medium
alone does not constitute a physical presence.
(33) Postsecondary Educational Institution--An educational
(A) is not a public community college, public technical
college, public senior college or university, medical or dental unit
or other agency as defined in Texas Education Code §61.003;
(B) is incorporated under the laws of this state, or
maintains a place of business in this state, or has an agent or representative
present in this state, or solicits business in this state; and
(C) furnishes or offers to furnish courses of instruction
in person, by electronic media, by correspondence, or by some means
or all leading to a degree; provides or offers to provide credits
alleged to be applicable to a degree; or represents that credits earned
or granted are collegiate in nature, including describing them as
"college-level," or at the level of any protected academic term.
(34) Private Postsecondary Educational Institution--An
(A) is not an institution of higher education as defined
by Texas Education Code §61.003;
(B) is incorporated under the laws of this state, maintains
a place of business in this state, has an agent or representative
presence in this state, or solicits business in this state; and