Types of Schools in Massachusetts, Oversight, and State Complaints

In Massachusetts, two different state agencies regulate and oversee post-secondary schools.  The Massachusetts Board of Education oversees degree-granting institutions: colleges and universities that award degrees such as associate’s, bachelor’s, or Ph.D’s. The Division of Professional Licensure oversees and regulates non-degree-granting institutions: private occupational schools that provide career training and can award certificates, but do not award degrees.

Complaints to Massachusetts about For-Profit Schools

Each for-profit school is either a degree-granting institution or non-degree-granting institution. As described above, complaints about degree-granting schools (including for-profit colleges and universities) may be submitted to the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education, and complaints about non-degree-granting schools (including for-profit private occupational schools) may be submitted to the Division of Professional Licensure.

In addition, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office takes complaints about for-profit schools. The Attorney General encourages anyone who has complaints about a for-profit school to call 617-727-8400 or submit online at https://www.eform.ago.state.ma.us/ago_eforms/forms/piac_ecomplaint.action.

The Attorney General’s website also has resources for consumers about for-profit schools, available at  http://www.mass.gov/ago/consumer-resources/consumer-information/schools-and-education/for-profit-schools.

Complaints about Degree-Granting Colleges and Universities

The Massachusetts Board of Higher Education oversees a complaint process for two types of degree-granting schools:

  • All public (state) colleges and universities.
  • Some private colleges and universities.

Students may submit complaints to the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education about any school in either of these two categories at http://www.mass.edu/forstudents/complaints/complaintform.asp.

Students may also submit complaints about any school directly to the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office by calling 617-727-8400 or at https://www.eform.ago.state.ma.us/ago_eforms/forms/piac_ecomplaint.action.

Complaints about Non-Degree-Granting Schools

The Division of Professional Licensure licenses and regulates private occupational schools. Private occupational schools offer courses to train students for a business, trade, technical, or industrial occupation. These sometimes grant certificates for the completion of a program, but do not grant degrees. A list of licensed private occupational schools is available at http://www.mass.gov/ocabr/government/oca-agencies/dpl-lp/schools/licensure/listings.html.

Complaints to the Division of Professional Licensure about private occupational schools must be submitted in writing. The complaint form is available at http://www.mass.gov/ocabr/docs/dpl/complaint.pdf. To talk to an investigator about the complaint process, call (617) 727-7406.

Any student may also file a complaint about a private occupational school directly with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office by calling 617-727-8400 or  at https://www.eform.ago.state.ma.us/ago_eforms/forms/piac_ecomplaint.action.

A list of the Massachusetts private colleges and universities that the Board of Higher Education takes complaints about is available here. As of November 2015, they were:

  • Anna Maria College
  • Assumption College
  • Atlantic Union College
  • Babson College
  • Bay Path College
  • Bay State College (private two-year college)
  • Becker College
  • Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology (private two-year institution)
  • Bentley University
  • Berklee College of Music
  • Blessed John XXIII National Seminary, The
  • Boston Architectural College
  • Boston Baptist College
  • Boston Conservatory of Music
  • Boston Graduate School for Psychoanalysis
  • Cambridge College
  • Charles Sposato Graduate School of Education, Inc.
  • Conway School of Landscape Design
  • Curry College
  • Dean College
  • Eastern Nazarene College
  • Emerson College
  • Endicott College
  • FINE Mortuary College (private two-year college)
  • Fisher College (private two-year college)
  • Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering
  • Gordon College
  • Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
  • Hampshire College
  • Hebrew College
  • Hellenic College
  • Hult International Business School
  • ITT Technical Institute
  • Laboure College, Inc.
  • Lasell College
  • Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts
  • Lesley University
  • Marian Court College
  • Massachusetts School of Law at Andover
  • William James College *previously Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology
  • Merrimack College
  • MGH Institute of Health Professions
  • Montserrat College of Art
  • Mount Ida College
  • National Graduate School of Quality Management
  • New England College of Business and Finance
  • New England College of Optometry
  • New England Conservatory of Music
  • New England Institute of Art
  • New England Law Boston
  • New England School of Acupuncture
  • Newbury College
  • Nichols College
  • Pine Manor College
  • Quincy College
  • Regis College
  • Salter College
  • Simmons College
  • Springfield College
  • Stonehill College
  • Tufts University
  • The Urban College of Boston: A Two-Year College, Inc.
  • Wentworth Institute of Technology
  • Western New England University
  • Wheelock College
  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute
  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute
  • Zion Bible College

A list of licensed private occupational schools is available here. As of November 2015, these schools were:

  • 3 DIMENSIONS HEALTH SERVICES LLC, DRACUT
  • 3 DIMENSIONS HEALTH SERVICES LLC, WORCESTER
  • A BETTER TOMORROW SERVICES HEALTH TRAINING, EVERETT
  • ACADEMY FOR HEALTH CARE TRAINING, MALDEN
  • ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE TRAINING CENTER, NEWTON
  • AMARAL AUTO & TRUCK DRIVING SCHOOL, NEW BEDFORD
  • AMARAL AUTO & TRUCK DRIVING SCHOOL, WESTPORT
  • AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PERSONAL TRAINING, LLC, BOSTON
  • AMERICAN CENTER OF CORRECTIVE EXERCISE AND PERSONAL TRAINING, BOSTON
  • AMERICAN GRAPHICS INSTITUTE, WOBURN
  • AMERICAN HEALTHCARE DOCUMENTATION PROFESSIONALS GROUP (AHDPG), SHREWSBURY
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, WORCESTER
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, LEOMINSTER
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, SPRINGFIELD
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, PITTSFIELD
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, CAMBRIDGE
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, PEABODY
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, BROCKTON
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, BRAINTREE
  • AMERICAN RED CROSS OF MASSACHUSETTS, LAWRENCE
  • ASIAN AMERICAN CIVIC ASSOCIATION, BOSTON
  • B. SULLIVAN NURSE ASSISTANT TRAINING SCHOOL, HYANNIS
  • BANCROFT SCHOOL OF MASSAGE THERAPY, WORCESTER
  • BAY STATE SCHOOL OF TECHNOLOGY, CANTON
  • BCI, INC., BROOKLINE
  • BCI, INC., MALDEN
  • BOSTON BARTENDERS SCHOOL OF AMERICA, TEWKSBURY
  • BOSTON BARTENDERS SCHOOL OF AMERICA, SAUGUS
  • BRANFORD HALL INSTITUTE, SPRINGFIELD
  • BRANFORD HALL INSTITUTE, SPRINGFIELD
  • BROCKTON EDUCATIONAL CENTER FOR ADULTS, BROCKTON
  • C&S HEALTHCARE TRAINING AND STAFFING, LLC., HYDE PARK
  • CAMBRIDGE SCHOOL OF CULINARY ARTS, CAMBRIDGE
  • CAPE COD ELECTRICAL SCHOOL, SOUTH DENNIS
  • CASS SCHOOL OF FLORAL DESIGN, WATERTOWN
  • CATHOLIC CHARITES LABOURE CENTER, SOUTH BOSTON
  • CATHOLIC CHARITIES SOUTH, BROCKTON
  • CENTER FOR DIGITAL ARTS, WALTHAM
  • CENTER FOR MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY, WOBURN
  • CENTRAL MASS TECHNICAL SCHOOL, AUBURN
  • CENTRAL MASS TECHNICAL SCHOOL, DEDHAM
  • CHARLES RIVER PUBLIC INTERNET CENTER, WALTHAM
  • CHELSEA JEWISH ACADEMY, CHELSEA
  • CLIVY’S LEARNING CENTER, DORCHESTER
  • CNS ACADEMY FOR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS, HOLYOKE
  • COASTAL CAREER ACADEMY, FALL RIVER
  • COMMONWEALTH NURSING SERVICES, LOWELL
  • COMMUNITY ACTION, INC., HAVERHILL
  • COMMUNITY ACTION, INC., LAWRENCE
  • COMMUNITY WORK SERVICES, BOSTON
  • COMPUTER LEARNING RESOURCES, BOSTON
  • COMPUTER SYSTEMS INSTITUTE, CHARLESTOWN
  • COMPUTER SYSTEMS INSTITUTE, WORCESTER
  • COMPUTER TRAINING OF AMERICA, INC., PALMER
  • CONNECTICUT SCHOOL OF BROADCASTING, NEEDHAM
  • CORTIVA INSTITUTE – BOSTON, WATERTOWN
  • DENTAL CAREERS OF THE NORTH SHORE, SWAMPSCOTT
  • DRINKMASTER BARTENDING SCHOOL OF BOSTON, BOSTON
  • DRINKMASTER BARTENDING SCHOOL OF BOSTON, FRAMINGHAM
  • DRINKMASTER BARTENDING SCHOOL OF BOSTON, WORCESTER
  • ELIZABETH GRADY SCHOOL OF ESTHETICS AND MASSAGE THERAPY, MEDFORD
  • EMERSON’S NURSING ASSISTANT TRAINING SCHOOL, WEST YARMOUTH
  • EMERSON’S NURSING ASSISTANT TRAINING SCHOOL, SAGAMORE BEACH
  • EMMAUS INC. BETHEL BUSINESS CENTER, HAVERHILL
  • FRENCH RIVER EDUCATION CENTER, INC., NORTH OXFORD
  • FUTURE MEDIA CONCEPTS, CAMBRIDGE
  • GENERAL ASSEMBLY, BOSTON
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, WOBURN
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, ANDOVER
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, CANTON
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, SPRINGFIELD
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, NORTH ADAMS
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, S. HADLEY
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, BROCKTON
  • GOULD CONSTRUCTION INSTITUTE, FRANKLIN
  • HALLMARK INSTITUTE OF PHOTOGRAPHY, TURNERS FALLS
  • HALLMARK INSTITUTE OF PHOTOGRAPHY, TURNERS FALLS
  • HANDS ON TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER, INC., CHELMSFORD
  • HAROLD BROTHERS TRAINING INSTITUTE, LLC., WEYMOUTH
  • HEALTH AND HOME CARE TRAINING CENTER OF MASSACHUSETTS, LLC, BURLINGTON
  • HEALTH CARE TRAINING SERVICES, INC., FALL RIVER
  • HEALTH TRAINING CENTER, A DIVISION OF ROSS MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTER, NORTH ATTLEBORO
  • HEALTH TRAINING CENTER, A DIVISION OF ROSS MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTER, BRAINTREE
  • HEALTH TRAINING CENTER, A DIVISION OF ROSS MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTER, CAMBRIDGE
  • HEALTH TRAINING CENTER, A DIVISION OF ROSS MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTER, CHELMSFORD
  • HEALTH TRAINING CENTER, A DIVISION OF ROSS MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTER, STOUGHTON
  • HEALTH TRAINING CENTER, A DIVISION OF ROSS MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTER, WORCESTER
  • HEALTHCARE TRAINING CENTERS OF AMERICA, INC., TEWKSBURY
  • HEMINGWAY ENGLISH INSTITUTE, FALL RIVER
  • HOLYOKE WORKS, HOLYOKE
  • HOME CARE PLUS – HCP TRAINING, PLYMOUTH
  • HOME CARE TRAINING CENTER, BROCKTON
  • HOME HEALTH CARE CONNECTION, AMESBURY
  • HORIZON LEARNING CONNECTION, MATTAPAN
  • INTERNATIONAL HEALTH CARE TRAINING AND SERVICES, ATTLEBORO
  • INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE OF BOSTON, BOSTON
  • J&J DRIVING SCHOOL & LOGISTICS, INC, NEW BEDFORD
  • JEWISH VOCATIONAL SERVICE, INC., BOSTON
  • JOHN A. DEGUTIS JR. CONSULTING SERVICE, QUINCY
  • K&K HEALTHCARE TRAINING CENTER, BROCKTON
  • KAREN PRYOR CLICKERTRAINING (KPCT), WALTHAM
  • KAREN PRYOR CLICKERTRAINING (KPCT), FRANKLIN
  • LARE TRAINING CENTER, ANDOVER
  • LARE TRAINING CENTER, CHELSEA
  • LIFESTREAM, INC., NEW BEDFORD
  • LINCOLN TECHNICAL INSTITUTE (BROCKTON), BROCKTON
  • LINCOLN TECHNICAL INSTITUTE (BROCKTON), BROCKTON
  • LINCOLN TECHNICAL INSTITUTE (LOWELL), LOWELL
  • LINCOLN TECHNICAL INSTITUTE (SOMERVILLE), SOMERVILLE
  • MA TRADE & TECHNICAL SCHOOL, LLC, BROCKTON
  • MARISBO TRAINING CENTER, ASSONET
  • MARTIN ELECTRICAL & TECHNICAL SCHOOL, NORWOOD
  • MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. BUSINESS EMPOWERMENT CENTER, WORCESTER
  • MASSACHUSETTS SCHOOL OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY, TAUNTON
  • MASSACHUSETTS SYSTEMS CONTRACTORS ASSOCIATION, INC., WEST SPRINGFIELD
  • MASSACHUSETTS SYSTEMS CONTRACTORS ASSOCIATION, INC., LOWELL
  • MASSACHUSETTS SYSTEMS CONTRACTORS ASSOCIATION, INC., SHARON
  • MASSACHUSETTS SYSTEMS CONTRACTORS ASSOCIATION, INC., WORCESTER
  • MASSAGE INSTITUTE OF CAPE COD, HYANNIS
  • MASTERS PLUMBING & GAS SCHOOL, HYANNIS
  • MASTERS PLUMBING & GAS SCHOOL, WEYMOUTH
  • MEDICAL CAREER CENTER, WALTHAM
  • MEDICAL CAREER CENTER, WORCESTER
  • MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL INSTITUTE, MALDEN
  • METROWEST HEALTHCARE ACADEMY, FRAMINGHAM
  • MILDRED ELLEY, PITTSFIELD
  • MILLENNIUM TRAINING INSTITUTE, INC., WOBURN
  • MILLENNIUM TRAINING INSTITUTE, INC., MILTON
  • MORGAN MEMORIAL GOODWILL INDUSTRIES, INC., BOSTON
  • MOTORING TECHNICAL TRAINING INSTITUTE (MTTI), SEEKONK
  • MOTORING TECHNICAL TRAINING INSTITUTE (MTTI), SEEKONK
  • NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF POWER ENGINEERS NAPE MA #4, CHICOPEE
  • NATIONAL AVIATION ACADEMY – NEW ENGLAND, BEDFORD
  • NATIONAL AVIATION ACADEMY – NEW ENGLAND, CONCORD
  • NATIONAL PERSONAL TRAINING INSTITUTE, WALTHAM
  • NETWORK TECHNOLOGY ACADEMY INSTITUTE, SOMERVILLE
  • NETWORK TECHNOLOGY ACADEMY INSTITUTE, MALDEN
  • NEW ENGLAND BUSINESS EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS, INC., WORCESTER
  • NEW ENGLAND BUSINESS EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS, INC., REHOBOTH
  • NEW ENGLAND BUSINESS EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS, INC., ANDOVER
  • NEW ENGLAND BUSINESS EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS, INC., BRAINTREE
  • NEW ENGLAND BUSINESS EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS, INC., SPRINGFIELD
  • NEW ENGLAND CENTER FOR ARTS AND TECHNOLOGY, BOSTON
  • NEW ENGLAND DENTAL ASSISTANT SCHOOL, WORCESTER
  • NEW ENGLAND DENTAL ASSISTANT SCHOOL, WOBURN
  • NEW ENGLAND INSTITUTE OF HVAC, INC., LOWELL
  • NEW ENGLAND SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURAL WOODWORKING, EASTHAMPTON
  • NEW ENGLAND SCHOOL OF PHOTOGRAPHY, BOSTON
  • NEW ENGLAND SCHOOL OF PHOTOGRAPHY, BOSTON
  • NEW ENGLAND SCHOOL OF THERAPEUTICS, NEWTON CENTER
  • NEW ENGLAND TRACTOR TRAILER TRAINING SCHOOL, NORTH ANDOVER
  • NEW HORIZONS COMPUTER LEARNING CENTERS, WALTHAM
  • NORTHEAST MARITIME INSTITUTE, FAIRHAVEN
  • NORTHEAST MARITIME INSTITUTE, FAIRHAVEN
  • NORTHEAST MARITIME INSTITUTE, FAIRHAVEN
  • NURSE AIDE TRAINING, WOBURN
  • OCEANVIEW DOG GROOMING SCHOOL, REVERE
  • OPERATION A.B.L.E. OF GREATER BOSTON, INC., BOSTON
  • PAGE SCHOOL OF ELECTRICAL TECHNOLOGY, TYNGSBORO
  • PARKER PROFESSIONAL DRIVING SCHOOL, INC., AVON
  • PEAK MEDICAL ACADEMY, WORCESTER
  • PEOPLE FOREVER COMPUTER TRAINING, WORCESTER
  • PILLARELLA SCHOOL FOR ELECTRICAL CODE & THEORY, ASSONET
  • PLS ELECTRONIC TRAINING PROGRAM, TYNGSBORO
  • PORTER & CHESTER INSTITUTE – CANTON, CANTON
  • PORTER & CHESTER INSTITUTE – CHICOPEE, CHICOPEE
  • PORTER & CHESTER INSTITUTE – CHICOPEE, CHICOPEE
  • PORTER & CHESTER INSTITUTE – CHICOPEE, CHICOPEE
  • PORTER & CHESTER INSTITUTE – WOBURN, WOBURN
  • PORTER & CHESTER INSTITUTE – WORCESTER, WORCESTER
  • PROFESSIONAL CARE ACADEMY, AGAWAM
  • PROFESSIONAL SCHOOL OF BARTENDING, BROCKTON
  • QUALITY & PRODUCTIVITY SOLUTIONS, INC., MARLBOROUGH
  • RITTNER’S SCHOOL, BOSTON
  • SARAH V. BOSTON SCHOOL, RANDOLPH
  • SCHOOL OF FASHION DESIGN, BOSTON
  • SER-JOBS FOR PROGRESS BUSINESS SCHOOL, FALL RIVER
  • SHANG SHUNG INSTITUTE IN AMERICA, CONWAY
  • SMITH & WESSON ACADEMY, SPRINGFIELD
  • SPA TECH INSTITUTE, IPSWICH
  • SPA TECH INSTITUTE, PLYMOUTH
  • SPA TECH INSTITUTE, WESTBORO
  • SPECTRUM HEALTHCARE TRAINING CENTER, INC., LYNN
  • SPECTRUM HEALTHCARE TRAINING CENTER, INC., LOWELL
  • TECHNOLOGY LEARNING CENTER, OXFORD
  • TEOMA WELLNESS CENTER, QUINCY
  • THE DAPPER DAWG SCHOOL OF PROFESSIONAL DOG GROOMING, STONEHAM
  • THE FARM SCHOOL, ATHOL
  • THE FIELDSTONE SCHOOL, WORCESTER
  • THE FURNITURE INSTITUTE OF MASSACHUSETTS, BEVERLY
  • THE MASSAGE SCHOOL, EASTHAMPTON
  • THE MASSAGE SCHOOL, BOSTON
  • THE PETERSON SCHOOL, WOBURN
  • THE PETERSON SCHOOL, WESTWOOD
  • THE PETERSON SCHOOL, WORCESTER
  • THE SALTER SCHOOL (FALL RIVER), FALL RIVER
  • THE SALTER SCHOOL (MALDEN), MALDEN
  • THE SALTER SCHOOL (NEW BEDFORD), NEW BEDFORD
  • THE SALTER SCHOOL (TEWKSBURY), TEWKSBURY
  • TRAINING RESOURCES OF AMERICA, INC., FITCHBURG
  • TRAINING UNLIMITED, INC., LOWELL
  • TRAINING UNLIMITED, INC., LAWRENCE
  • TRI-STATE CDL TRAINING CENTER, INC., SPRINGFIELD
  • UNITED TRACTOR TRAILER SCHOOL, INC., CHICOPEE
  • UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE CENTER, MALDEN
  • UNIVERSAL TECHNICAL INSTITUTE OF MASSACHUSETTS, INC., NORWOOD
  • VETERANS INC. TRAINING ACADEMY, WORCESTER
  • VETERANS INC. TRAINING ACADEMY, SHREWSBURY
  • WELLSPRING COMMUNITY EDUCATION, SALEM
  • WILLIAM GEORGE ASSOCIATES, BURLINGTON
  • WOBURN ELECTRICAL SCHOOL OF CODE & THEORY, WOBURN
  • WORCESTER ELECTRICIAN SCHOOL, WORCESTER
  • YMCA TRAINING, INC., BOSTON

A few private occupational schools are exempt from licensure by the Division of Professional Licensure. As of September 2015, the following private occupational schools are not required to be licensed by the Division of Professional Licensure:

  • Aging Right
  • Boston Academy of English
  • Boston Ballet School
  • Boston Bartenders of New Bedford
  • Boston Bartenders School Associates, Inc.
  • Co-op Power/Good Green Jobs
  • Corporate Education Group f/k/a Tech Skills
  • EMGC Training, Inc.
  • Exhale Spa
  • Hazmateam
  • Holistic Energy School
  • Institute for Environmental Education
  • The International Language Institute of Massachusetts
  • Just-A-Start
  • Karuna Center for Yoga and Healing Arts
  • Kripaulu Center for Yoga & Health
  • LAL Boston
  • Lawrence Training School, Inc.
  • Magic Touch Spa
  • MassMEP
  • MedTech (JTC Holding)
  • Ned Gandevani
  • New England Institute of Reflexology & Universal Studies
  • Perkins International
  • Pro EMS Center for Medics
  • Quest Connect
  • Rhys Thomas Institute of Energy Medicine
  • Signature Healthcare/Brockton School of Nursing
  • SpaTech Institute
  • Tanglewood Music Center
  • Teacher House, Inc. at the International House Boston