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Office for Career and Technical Schools

The administrative arm of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development responsible for regulating non-credit bearing, non-degree granting postsecondary proprietary schools pursuant to (-IC-22-4.1-21-10).

For-profit vocational training provider open to the public and charge a fee or tuition for education and/or training.

Offer education and training in a specific skill set that leads to a career in a specific occupation.

If you want to advertise, recruit and/or enroll students within the state of Indiana.

If you offer courses/training in a location (owned or leased) within or outside of Indiana with a desire to advertise, recruit and/or enroll students within Indiana.

The Why of Regulation: The mission and purpose of OCTS is to protect students, educational institutions, the general public, and honest and ethical operators of private schools from dishonest and unethical practices.

If you represent a credit-bearing / degree-granting institution seeking authorization, contact the Indiana Commission for Higher Education, Board for Proprietary Education (BPE).

IMPORTANT: It may be a violation of Indiana Code for you to offer to the public for a fee, tuition or charge educational and/or training services without authorization.

If you have any questions, please contact the Office for Career and Technical Schools at

Office for Career & Technical Schools

Institutions Seeking Initial Authorization

If an institution is seeking initial authorization for a non-credit-bearing / non-degree-granting career or technical school, please continue reading and follow the instructions prior to completing any documents.

Please read and follow the instructions prior to completing any documents. Note that not all documents and/or forms are compatible with every internet browser. The documents and/or forms are not compatible with mobile devices. If you are unable to send any documents using the built-in submit button, please download or print and scan the documents and send to

  1. Prior to submitting an applications, proprietors need to complete the Determination of Status Questionnaire and review the OCTS Policy and Procedures document.
    • If authorization is required, you will receive an identification number needed for orientation.
  2. After receiving the identification number, complete the New Institution Orientation and submit the verification page. The orientation provides an overview of both the regulatory process and application requirements.
  3. The Application Checklist contains the steps needed to complete an application.
    NOTE: DO NOT complete and submit the application before receiving notification from OCTS. Fees paid by institutions are non-refundable.

Institutions with Full Authorization or Seeking Authorization Renewal

Institutions must ensure continual compliance by submitting the Authorization Renewal Application located on the OCTS Documents tab. Institutions that do not remain in compliance are subject to suspension, revocation and/or closure.  Please send any questions regarding due dates and authorization renewals to

Student Assurance Fund Payments and Quarterly Student Data are due each quarter

Quarter Payment Due Date
January 1 - March 31 May 15th
April 1 - June 30 August 14th
July 1 - September 30 November 14th
October 1 - December 31 February 14th
  • Institutional Surety Bonds must be obtained annually.  The renewal expiration date should be no later than twelve months from the issue date, continuation certificates are NOT acceptable.
  • A passing Fire Inspection (performed by the local municipal fire department), and a Certificate of Liability Insurance is due annually.
  • The Application for Annual Renewal, renewal fee and accompanying documentation is due annually no later than thirty 30 days before the expiration date.

Please view the entire Due Date resource guide for more details.

Attend an Upcoming Webinar!

We are happy to share the schedule for the 2023 OCTS Quarterly Webinars. The dates are listed below.

Planning Ahead: Please add the following dates to your calendar and keep an eye out for email invites to the webinar.

2023 OCTS Webinar Dates

  • Q2: Thursday, May 11th @ 2 PM EST
  • Q3: Thursday, August 10th @ 2 PM EST
  • Q4: Thursday, November 9th @ 2 PM EST

Review previous recordings of Quarterly OCTS webinars.

Consumer Information

OCTS is charged with protecting students, educational institutions, the general public, and honest and ethical operators of post-secondary proprietary schools that are non-credit bearing and non-degree granting from dishonest and unethical practices. OCTS maintains and updates a list of authorized and closed/defunct institutions for the public (see below):

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) - Title III Information
Proprietary institutions most likely fall under Title III of ADA. Please review the informational document that outlines some provisions of Title III. We recommend that you consult an attorney for specific questions or concerns.

Student Protection Fund

IC 22-4.1-21-15 and IC 22-4.1-21-18 requires each educational institution authorized by OCTS to submit  an institutional surety bond and contribute to the Career College Student Assurance Fund which will be used to pay off debt incurred due to the closing of a school, discontinuance of a program or loss of authorized by an institution.  To file a claim, each student must submit a completed “Student Complaint Form” below.

Student Complaint Process

OCTS is responsible for reviewing and responding to student claims for monetary reimbursement against post-secondary proprietary schools that are non-credit bearing and non-degree granting. OCTS adjudicates only claims for monetary reimbursement and cannot adjudicate claims involving programmatic content.  Monetary claims for reimbursement are limited to tuition and fees paid out of pocket by the student. OCTS does not have jurisdiction to adjudicate claims for reimbursement of scholarships, financial assistance, or fee reductions.  OCTS cannot offer legal advice or initiate civil court cases.

Students filing claims must meet these requirements:

  1. Be a current or former student in a program at a school regulated by OCTS (see List of Authorized Institutions).
  2. Follow and exhaust the school’s complaint resolution process with the school directly; or provide a detailed explanation (see Complaint Form in step 3) as to why the school’s complaint process was not completed.
  3. File a formal claim with OCTS by completing the online Student Complaint Form, and attaching the following documents:
    1. A statement of the facts supporting the claim and outlining the problem, and
    2. A copy of the enrollment agreement signed by the student, and
    3. Copies of all receipts for tuition paid by cash, check, money order or credit card, and
    4. Any other material which substantiates the claim.

OCTS will review the claim and contact the claimant if additional information or clarification is needed.  When the student’s initial claim is determined valid by OCTS, OCTS will forward a copy of the claim to the school, and the school will have three (3) weeks to respond. Upon receipt of the school’s response, OCTS will adjudicate the claim and issue a final determination. Both the student and the school will receive notification of the OCTS final determination. The determination by OCTS is final and is not appealable through the Department.

NOTE: If you believe a school has acted in a discriminatory manner, you may wish to contact the Indiana Civil Rights Commission using the ICRC’s complaint form.

Background Check

Barada Inc. provides background check services for OCTS at no charge to the institution.

Any questions regarding the background check process should be directed to OCTS at

Additional Resources

Visit Brighter Futures Indiana for additional social, economic, educational, career training, and heath resources.

If you want even more to support you and your family, visit our additional resources page for more information.

Education and Training Resources

Indiana Career Explorer

Indiana Career Explorer logo that takes you to the website

Indiana Career Explorer (INCE) users can search educational programs throughout Indiana to find necessary training and certifications, and Indiana’s in-demand jobs are highlighted throughout INCE to support users through all stages of planning.


Image that takes users to the INTraining page

Programs that meet additional demand and credential requirements will be placed on the Eligible Training Provider List (ETPL) allowing eligible participants the opportunity to receive WIOA funding for training services

Institution Resources

Image that takes users to the recruitment page

Schools, institutions and providers are encouraged to use the resources on this page to help with student recruitment. The guides and videos are free for use.

Equal Opportunity is the Law. (La Igualdad De Oportunidad Es La Ley.)
Equal Opportunity Employer/Program Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.