Lesley University was founded in 1909 and is recognized as a nonprofit organization under Massachusetts law and as a tax-exempt organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Lesley University is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. Many individual programs are also accredited or endorsed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and other organizations.

The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education has granted Lesley University degree-granting authority for: Bachelor of Fine Arts, Bachelor, Master, Master of Fine Arts in Visual Arts and Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study, education leading to the degree of Associate in education and human services, and Doctor of Philosophy in: Expressive Therapies, Educational Studies, and Counseling and Psychology. See school-by-school accreditation information below.

State Approvals

Lesley University has received authorization to offer post-secondary programs in the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Idaho, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, South Carolina, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Each state's educator licensure regulations are subject to change. Educators seeking an endorsement or addition to their current certification/license should verify with the appropriate state educator licensure authority that a program meets state requirements.

State-by-State Information

  • Alabama

    The Alabama Commission on Higher Education, and the State of Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education have licensed Lesley University pursuant to the Alabama Private School License Law, Code of Alabama, Title 16-46-1 through 10 to offer instruction in the following programs:

    • Autism Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Mathematics Education Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Online Teaching Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Science in Education Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (Bachelor's completion program) (online)
    • Bachelor of Science in Business Management (Bachelor's completion program) (online)
    • Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, Specialization in Integrated Teaching through the Arts
    • Master of Education in Educational Technology (offered online)
    • Master of Education: Individually Designed Program for Educators (online)
    • Master of Education in Mathematics Education (1-8) (online)
    • Master of Education in Science in Education (online)
    • Master of Science in Ecological Teaching and Learning (low-residency)
    • PhD Educational Studies: Adult Learning Specialization (low-residency)


    Alabama Students: Contact the Teacher Education and Certification Division of the Alabama State Department of Education at 334.242.0035 or www.alsde.edu to verify whether these programs qualify for teacher certification, endorsement, or salary benefits.

    Access the Alabama consumer complaint process.
    Alabama Department for Post-secondary Education
    135 South Union Street, Montgomery, AL 36104-4340
    P.O. Box 302130, Montgomery, AL 36130-2130
    Phone: 334.293.4500; Fax: 334.293.4504

  • Arkansas

    Lesley University has been granted initial certification of the following degree programs by the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board certification does not constitute an endorsement of any institution, course or degree program. Such certification merely indicates that minimum standards have been met under the rules and regulations implementing institutional certification as defined in Arkansas Code §6-61-301. Transfer of Course/Degree Credit to Other Institutions: The student should be aware that these degree programs may not transfer. The transfer of course/degree credit is determined by the receiving institution.

  • California

    Lesley University is exempt* pursuant to California Education Code (CEC) section 94874.1, which exempts Lesley University due to its accreditation by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
    Access the California consumer complaint process.

    California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education
    P. O. Box 980818
    W. Sacramento, CA 95798-0818
    Phone: 888.370.7589 Fax: 916.263.1897

    2016 Performance Fact Sheet - Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (pdf)
    2016 Annual Report - Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (pdf)
    2016-2017 Lesley University Undergraduate Catalog
    2016-2017 Lesley University Graduate Catalog

    *Exemption based on NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges) accreditation.

  • Colorado

    Lesley University is recognized by the Colorado Commission on Higher Education under state statutes (23-1-101 et seq., C.R.S. 1973, amended 1981) to award degrees and degree credit in Colorado based on Lesley's ongoing accreditation by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. Please note: Authorization of fully online programs does not fall under the purview of and is not required by the Colorado Commission on Higher Education.

    • Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with a Specialization in Integrated Teaching through the Arts
    • Master of Education in Literacy for K-8 Classroom Teachers
    • Master of Education in Educational Technology (offered online)
    • Master of Education: Individually Designed Program for Educators (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Mathematics Education (1-8) (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Science in Education (offered online)


    Access the Colorado consumer complaint process

    Colorado Department of Higher Education
    1560 Broadway, Suite 1600
    Denver, CO 80202
    Phone: 303.866.2723; 303.866.4266

  • Idaho

    Lesley University holds a Certificate of Registration certifying that it is registered, as required by law, with the Idaho State Board of Education as an accredited postsecondary institution to offer the following programs. Please note: Authorization of fully online programs does not fall under the purview of and is not required by the Idaho State Board of Education.  

    • Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with a Specialization in Integrated Teaching through the Arts
    • Master of Education in Educational Technology (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Mathematics Education (1-8) (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Science in Education (offered online)


    Access the Idaho consumer complaint process.

    Idaho State Board of Education
    PO Box 83720
    Boise, ID 03720-0037
    208.332.1587

  • Maine

    The Maine State Board of Education has approved authorization to Lesley University to offer the following programs. Please note: Authorization of fully online programs does not fall under the purview of and is not required by the Maine State Board of Education.

    • Autism Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Online Teaching Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Graduate Certificate (online)
    • Master of Education in Literacy for K-8 Classroom Teachers
    • Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, Specialization in Integrated Teaching through the Arts
    • Master of Education in Educational Technology (online)
    • Master of Education in Individually Designed Program for Educators (online)
    • Master of Education in Mathematics Education (1-8) (online & face-to-face)
    • Master of Education in Science in Education (online)
    • Master of Science in Ecological Teaching and Learning (low-residency)
    • PhD Educational Studies: Adult Learning Specialization (low-residency)


    Access Maine consumer complaint information.

    Maine Department of Education Attention: Complaint Investigator
    23 State House Station
    Augusta, ME 04333-0023
    207.624.6846

  • Maryland

    Lesley University is registered with the Maryland Higher Education Commission to enroll Maryland students in fully online distance education programs. Lesley University offers the following programs:

    • Autism Graduate Certificate
    • Mathematics Graduate Certificate
    • Science in Education Graduate Certificate
    • Navigating Our Digital World Graduate Certificate
    • Special Education Graduate Certificate
    • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages Graduate Certificate
    • Teaching Online Graduate Certificate
    • Individually Designed M.Ed.
    • Science in Education M.Ed.
    • Mathematics Education M.Ed.
    • Educational Technology M.Ed.


    Access the Maryland Consumer Complaint Process (PDF).

    Maryland Attorney General
    Consumer Protection Division
    200 St. Paul Street
    Baltimore, MD 21202
    410.528.8662 or 888.743.0823 (toll free) 

  • Massachusetts

    Access Massachusetts consumer complaint process.

    Massachusetts Department of Higher Education
    One Ashburton Place, Room 1401, Boston, MA 02108
    617.994.6913

  • Minnesota

    Lesley University is registered with the Minnesota Office of Higher Education pursuant to sections 136A.61 to 136A.71. Registration is not an endorsement of the institution. Credits earned at the institution may not transfer to all other institutions.

    Minnesota Office of Higher Education
    1450 Energy Park Dr., Suite 350
    St. Paul, MN 55108
    www.ohe.state.mn.us - 651.642.0567

  • Montana

    The Montana Board of Regents grants Lesley University exemption* due to accreditation by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

    Access Montana consumer complaint process.

    Montana Board of Regents, Office of Commissioner of Higher Education
    Montana University System, 2500 Broadway Street
    PO Box 203201
    Helena, MT. 59620-3201
    406.444.6570 

    *Exemption based on NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges) accreditation.

  • New Hampshire

    The State of New Hampshire Higher Education Commission authorizes Lesley University continuing approval to offer post-secondary programs to any educator at any school site in the State of New Hampshire. All site locations must be approved by the Executive Director based on compliance with all regulations and requirements of the Commission. Please note: Authorization of fully online programs does not fall under the purview of and is not required by the New Hampshire Higher Education Commission.  

    • Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with a Specialization in Integrated Teaching through the Arts
    • Master of Education in Literacy for K-8 Classroom Teachers
    • Master of Education in Educational Technology (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Advanced Teaching Practices (offered online)


    Access the New Hampshire consumer complaint process.

    New Hampshire Division of Higher Education
    101 Pleasant Street, Concord, NH 03301-3493
    603.271.2555 ext. 350

  • South Carolina

    Licensed by the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education, 1122 Lady Street, Suite 300, Columbia, SC 29201, Tel. 803.737.2260. Licensure indicates only that minimum standards have been met; it is not an endorsement or guarantee of quality.

    Access to the South Carolina consumer complaint process.

    South Carolina Commission on Higher Education
    1333 Main St., Suite 200, Columbia, SC 29201
    Phone: 803.737.2260 | Fax: 803.737.2297

    Please note: The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education does not authorize fully online programs if an institution is already authorized to operate in the state.

  • Washington

    Lesley University is authorized by the Washington Student Achievement Council and meets the requirements and minimum educational standards established for degree-granting institutions under the Degree-Granting Institutions Act. This authorization is subject to periodic review and authorizes Lesley University to offer specific degree programs. Authorization by the Council does not carry with it an endorsement by the Council of the institution or its programs. Any person desiring information about the requirements of the act or the applicability of those requirements to the institution may contact the Council at P.O. Box 43430, Olympia, WA 98504-3430. For information about educator certification, visit the Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction.

    Access to the Washington consumer complaint process.

  • Wisconsin

    The State of Wisconsin Educational Approval Board approves Lesley University to do business in Wisconsin as a private institution subject to the provisions of Wisconsin Statutes 45.54, and to offer the following degree programs:

    • Master of Education in Educational Technology (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Advanced Teaching Practices (offered online)
    • Master of Education: Individually Designed Program for Educators (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Mathematics Education (1-8) (offered online)
    • Master of Education in Science in Education (offered online)


    Access Wisconsin consumer complaint process.

    431 Charmany Drive, Suite 102
    Madison, WI 53719
    608.266.1996 

  • Wyoming

    The State of Wyoming grants Lesley University exemption* due to accreditation by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

    Access to consumer complaint information.

    Exemption based on NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges) accreditation.

Complaint Process for Online and Low-Residency Students

At Lesley, we attempt to resolve student complaints within our academic and administrative departments. If you have a complaint about a University process or procedure, submit a written complaint at online.resolution@lesley.edu. We'll forward the complaint to the appropriate academic or administrative department, and email you to let know that the issue is being reviewed. We'll attempt to resolve the complaint quickly.

Many agencies require that students use the internal complaint process at their institution before filing a complaint with the agency. If your complaint is not resolved internally, you may file a complaint with these agencies:

School-by-School Accreditation Information

  • Graduate School of Education

    All programs are accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

    Our Educator/Counselor Preparation and Professional Development Program is accredited under the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) Quality Principles through the CAEP Accreditation System through 2021. We will seek accreditation under the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standards in Fall of 2021. Formed in 2013, CAEP is the single specialized accreditor for educator preparation, and administers TEAC accreditation.

    The Graduate School of Education is also affiliated with:

    • American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education
    • National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification Interstate Agreement
  • Graduate School of Arts and Social Sciences

    All programs are accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

    Our Educator/Counselor Preparation and Professional Development Program is accredited under the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) Quality Principles through the CAEP Accreditation System through 2021. We will seek accreditation under the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standards in Fall of 2021. Formed in 2013, CAEP is the single specialized accreditor for educator preparation, and administers TEAC accreditation.

    Expressive Therapies is also accredited by:

    • American Art Therapy Association
    • American Music Therapy Association
    • American Dance Therapy Association
  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

    All programs are accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

    Our Educator/Counselor Preparation and Professional Development Program is accredited under the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) Quality Principles through the CAEP Accreditation System through 2021. We will seek accreditation under the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standards in Fall of 2021. Formed in 2013, CAEP is the single specialized accreditor for educator preparation, and administers TEAC accreditation.

    Our Business Management program is a candidate for accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.

  • College of Art and Design

    Accredited by both the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

    Member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design.