Filing a Complaint against a CEA Accredited Program

A program or institution that is accredited by the Commission on English Language Program Accreditation must continue to meet the CEA Standards for English Language Programs and Institutions throughout its period of accreditation. To ensure such compliance, CEA provides the public the opportunity to report any evidence that the standards are not being met.

Why to file:

  • An accredited program must continue to meet the CEA Standards. Complaints may be filed for non-compliance.
  • An accredited program must report any substantive change that affects its eligibility for accreditation. Complaints may be filed for failure to report substantive change.

Who may file:

Students, faculty members, staff members, and others outside the program who may have knowledge of an alleged failure by an accredited program to maintain the CEA Standards, may file.

How to file:

An accredited site must have a copy of the CEA Standards available for public view. If you have a concern, ask the site for a copy. The CEA Standards are also available at

  • Complaints for non-compliance with the CEA Standards must be written and signed, must refer to a specific standard, and must document the nature of the non-compliance.
  • Complaints for failure to report a substantive change must be written and signed and should explain how, in process or content, the program has substantively changed from when it was accredited.

Adjudication of complaints:

CEA sends a copy of the complaint to the program for response. The complaint is adjudicated by the CEA Standards Compliance Committee, which reviews the complaint and the program’s response. Complaints must contain the name, address, and telephone number of the complainant on a separate page and should be mailed to the address below. If you have questions, please contact CEA.

Commission on English Language Program Accreditation
1001 North Fairfax Street, Suite 630, Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 665-3400