Program locations are sites where a nursing program is delivered, in whole or part, including the main location for the nursing program (nursing education unit), off-campus instructional site(s), and branch campus(es).

Note: All new off-campus instructional sites for the nursing program (where 25% or greater of the nursing credits are offered) must be reported whether or not a focused visit is required. If the program has already been approved for 2 or more additional locations that have been visited by the ACEN (excluding the main campus), then a letter of notification is sufficient for any subsequent locations in lieu of a substantive change report. New locations meeting this criteria may be submitted as a Non-Substantive Change using the Non-Substantive Change Portal.

See Policy #14 Reporting Substantive Changes and Policy #19 Focused Site Visit for more information.

The ACEN reviews substantive changes related to the following types of locations:

Branch Campus

Although an institution may call a location “a campus,” most additional locations are actually off-campus instructional sites, in accordance with U.S. Department of Education regulations.

A branch campus is defined as a location of a governing organization that is geographically apart and independent of the main campus of the institution.

A location is independent of the main campus if the location:

  • Is permanent in nature;
  • Offers courses in educational nursing programs leading to a degree, certificate, or other recognized educational credential;
  • Has its own faculty and administrative or supervisory organization; and,
  • Has its own budgetary and hiring authority.

Note: Most institutional accreditors specify in their accredited institution directory listings whether an instructional site is considered a branch campus or an additional location (off-campus instructional site).

Templates for Reporting: New Branch Campus (Non-Title IV Program) (.docx) New Branch Campus (Title IV Program) (.docx)  Inactivating an Instructional Site (.docx)
Reactivating an Instructional Site (.docx) Closing an Instructional Site (.docx)

Off-Campus Instructional Site

An off-campus instructional site is any location that is physically apart from the main campus (nursing education unit) of the governing organization where a nursing program is offered, in whole or part.

If 25% or greater of the nursing credits/clock hours (not including general education/prerequisites) will be offered at a location, a substantive change is required.

Note: Once approved to offer any nursing program at an off-campus instructional site within the nursing education unit (NEU) per ACEN records, approval is not required to offer any subsequent nursing program(s) within the NEU at the off-campus instructional site.

Templates for Reporting: New Off-Campus Instructional Site (50% or greater) (.docx) New Off-Campus Instructional Site (25-49%) (.docx) Relocating an Off-Campus Instructional Site (.docx)  Inactivating an Instructional Site (.docx)
Reactivating an Instructional Site (.docx) Closing an Instructional Site (.docx)

Relocating the Nursing Education Unit

When referring to location, the nursing education unit is the main campus for the nursing program. This location may be different from that of the main campus for the governing organization.

Note: This does not include moving to another building on the same campus or a change in mailing address in which the physical location has not changed. (To update a mailing address, see Reporting Non-Substantive Changes.)

Template for Reporting: Relocating a Nursing Education Unit (.docx)

Adding a Teach-Out Site

Adding a permanent branch campus or off-campus instructional site at which the governing organization is conducting a teach-out for students of another governing organization that has ceased operating before all students enrolled in an accredited or non-accredited nursing program have completed the nursing program of study.

Templates for Reporting: Adding a Teach-Out Site (.docx)