Accreditation FAQs

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley was notified on December 6, 2016 that it was being placed on a 12-month probation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). UTRGV worked closely with SACSCOC throughout the year to resolve the issues leading to this action.

As part of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) probation review process, a Special Committee comprised of peer reviewers visited UTRGV’s campuses in Brownsville and Edinburg in October 2017. The Special Committee met with students, faculty, staff, and administrators. The result of that visit was the Report of the Special Committee.

On December 5, 2017, the SACSCOC Board confirmed that UTRGV had successfully addressed the concerns cited in its probationary letter of January 11, 2017. However, UTRGV will remain on probation pending the completion of the FY 2017 Statewide Single Audit by the Texas State Auditor’s Office, scheduled to be released in February 2018. UTRGV will continue to work closely with SACSCOC to review the FY 2017 audit once available and to address any concerns. The SACSCOC Board will then review UTRGV’s resolution of any findings at its December 2018 annual meeting.

UTRGV remains an accredited university by SACSCOC. UTRGV’s probationary status does not change anything at the student or faculty level.

  • Why was UTRGV placed on probation?

    As we previously reported, the original concerns were related to the complexity of a transition that involved the separation of UTB/TSC, the separate accreditation of TSC, and the formation of UTRGV. The official letter from SACSCOC detailing the areas of concern, can be obtained by clicking here.

  • Why will UTRGV’s probation continue?

    As shared previously, we are pleased to report that UTRGV successfully addressed the concerns cited in the January 11, 2017 letter. The continuation of probationary status is related to SACSCOC standard FR4.7, a standard not initially cited in the January 11, 2017 letter. To ensure compliance with this standard, UTRGV must have a completed Statewide Single Audit from the State Auditor’s Office for FY 2017. This will be finalized in February 2018. The SACSCOC Board will review UTRGV’s resolution of any findings in the audit at the December 2018 annual meeting.

  • What is the university doing to address the probation?

    The university worked with SACSCOC since the announcement in January 2017 to address each of the issues cited through communication with our internal and external stakeholders, review and revision of processes/procedures/policies, training of staff, and intervention and support of affected students. We will continue to work closely with SACSCOC to resolve any issues identified in the FY 2017 audit.

  • What are the next steps for the university and SACSCOC with regard to the probation?

    SACSCOC arranged for a visiting team of peers to visit the campus and work with administrators, faculty, staff, and students to verify that the institution has addressed each of the areas of concern. The focus was on addressing the issues identified and putting policies and procedures in place to ensure that the same issues cannot recur. This process will be repeated to review any issues that may be identified in Statewide Single Audit due to the university in February 2018.

  • When will we know if UTRGV is removed from probation?

    UTRGV will learn of the decision by the SACSCOC Board of Trustees in December 2018.

  • What can I do to help ensure the university is compliant with SACSCOC standards now and in the future?

    As a public, state-funded institution, UTRGV strives to share relevant information with internal and external audiences. Therefore, it is imperative that we provide university information that is both accurate and consistent to avoid misunderstanding, misinterpretation, or confusion. To achieve this accuracy and consistency, and to comply with SACSCOC standards, the University Marketing and Communications has implemented policies and procedures that must be followed by all university stakeholders. One aspect of these policies and procedures is that information shared on behalf of the university should be reviewed and approved by University Marketing and Communications prior to release. In addition, it is imperative that when describing the history of UTRGV, all university stakeholders use the official history statement.

  • Why was the History page updated?

    The institutional history page has been updated to accurately reflect the accreditation status of UTB/TSC, UTPA, and now UTRGV.

  • Why does the UTRGV web site now show The University of Texas at Brownsville/Texas Southmost College (UTB/TSC) instead of UTB?

    UTB/TSC refers to the partnership that was accredited by SACSCOC. Neither UTB nor TSC was separately accredited until December 2015 when TSC became separately accredited. Therefore, every reference to UTB on the UTRGV website is a reference to the UTB/TSC accredited partnership and the website has now been revised to more clearly show this partnernship.

  • Will UTRGV continue to expand educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley?

    YES. UTRGV’s current plans to develop new academic programs are not impacted.

  • Will my current research grants or ability to get research grants be affected?

    NO. Our research grants and eligibility for more grants continue to operate as they have in the past.

  • Is the School of Medicine or other Colleges affected?

    NO. The School of Medicine and other Colleges continue to be accredited as UTRGV remains accredited by SACSCOC.

  • Will my financial aid be affected?

    NO. UTRGV’s ability to award financial aid is not impacted.

  • Will my scholarships be affected?

    NO. UTRGV’s scholarships and ability to award them are not impacted.

  • Will my degree earned be accredited?

    YES. UTRGV remains accredited, therefore degrees earned during the probationary period and degrees already earned are accredited.

  • Will a probation status affect me if I plan to transfer to UTRGV or from UTRGV?

    NO. Your courses are transferable just as they have always been.

  • Why did I receive an updated transcript in the mail?

    Students who attended UTB/TSC are transfer students to UTRGV but the UTRGV transcript did not clearly show this. To correctly show all coursework, transcripts were revised and a new transcript with an explanatory cover page was mailed to every affected student.

  • Why does my prior coursework now show as transfer credit?

    Students who attended UTB/TSC are transfer students to UTRGV so the coursework must be shown as transfer credit on your UTRGV transcript.

  • I am a transfer student from UTB/TSC and I understand I need to pay attention to my “hours in residence.” What does that mean?

    According to UTRGV policy and SACSCOC guidelines, every undergraduate student must complete 25% of their coursework with UTRGV and every graduate student must complete one third of their coursework with UTRGV to be eligible to receive a UTRGV degree. These “hours in residence” are required for all students and are important for transfer students to be aware of as they make progress towards their degrees. Undergraduate students with questions about hours in residence are welcome to contact the Academic Advising Center and graduate students should contact the Graduate College.

  • Who can I contact if I have questions about my transcript?

    University Registrar: registrar@utrgv.edu | 888-882-4026
    Undergraduate Advising: academicadvising@utrgv.edu | 956-882-7362
    Graduate College: gradcollege@utrgv.edu | 956-882-6552