Home Education Options Bogus Online Bachelor’s Degrees: How Can You Tell?

Bogus Online Bachelor’s Degrees: How Can You Tell?

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By: Mary Jackson

woman-home_confusedAlong with the growing popularity of obtaining online bachelor degrees, many bogus schools have cropped up to cash in, taking advantage of potential students seeking a genuine education to maintain their current level of employment, or achieve specific career goals. Unfortunately, the sales pitch attracts many students who do not possess the time, or the finances, to gain a college education. The main selling points may include easy graduation, no tests or end of semester exams, credit for life experiences, and lower tuition fees. Some diploma mills even have the audacity to make money through bulk emails offering to sell university degrees.

So, how do prospective students determine whether an online college is accredited or only offering bogus online bachelor degrees? Especially for International students, it can be very difficult to determine a school’s validity. In most cases it is impossible for distance learners to visit the campus, so the website is the only point of contact before making the choice and enrolling, which makes it hard to determine credibility.

One of the best ways to determine credibility is to pay close attention to how the credentials are stated. For example, if an educational institution claims to have nationwide or worldwide accreditation, without revealing which government agency provided the accreditation, it’s possible the college or university probably does not possess the necessary seal of approval to provide legitimate online bachelor degrees.

In the U.S., college accreditation is awarded by one of the following six accreditation agencies which are all appointed by the National Board of Education – New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), North Central Association of Schools and Colleges (NCA), Middle States Association of Schools and Colleges (MSA), Southern Association of Schools and Colleges (SACS), Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges (NWCCU). Each agency has been allocated responsibility for providing accreditation for schools in specific states. Therefore, it would be best to run checks on a particular online degree institution with the agency offering college accreditation for the state in which the college is registered in.

If a university sends out mass e-mailings offering on online bachelor degrees, master’s degrees, and even doctorate degrees for a fixed rate, it is a sure sign the result will be a bogus degree. Course credits for such a degree may include such strange elements as: credit for life experiences, work experience, previous educational background, workshops, community services, travel, and books read in the past. To further confuse the issue, fake accrediting URLS are set up to prove accreditation, but unless it is from one of the 6 agencies endorsed by the Department of Education, the award is most likely phony. The unscrupulous institutions depend on the desperation of people who do not have the time, or the money, to earn a valid degree. Nevertheless, without that all-important diploma, good jobs are impossible to find.

In short, with the plethora of bogus degrees already causing employers to question online education, make sure your online bachelor degree is earned from a college or university accredited by one of the six agencies endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education.

Article Courtesy of ezine Article Group

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