Is My Online Degree Valid?
It is a known fact that over the last decadeonline education has fast gained popularity.Online education makes a viable option for working professionals and adults with work or family commitments to pursue higher education without really having to alter their current lifestyles.Employers too have become more accepting of online degrees and have started giving employees with online degrees the recognition they deserve.
Today, a large number of well-reputed colleges offer online degrees, but there is always the fear of getting scammed by a diploma mill. How can you tell if a college is a diploma mill? How can you be sure of the validity of your degree?
What is a diploma mill?
A diploma mill is a fraudulent organization that hands out academic degrees and diplomas to students with very little or no academic study for a certain sum of money. The organizations hold accreditation by unrecognized accreditation bodies and hence, degrees or diplomas earned from these organizations hold no value.
How can you tell if a college is a diploma mill?
● ● ● ● ● ● ●
If the college has a name closely resembling another well-known university If they provide you with the name of a fake accrediting organization If they fail to provide you with an address If they offer no interaction with the professors or faculty If the degree requirements are ambiguous (with respect to credit hours, course descriptions, assignment patterns etc) If the degrees can be earned in far less time than normal. (For example: 15 days) If there is very little or no study required to obtain the degree
How can you be sure of the validation of your degree?
Do a background check on the accreditation. A legitimate accreditation agency will be recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and/or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and both these organizations maintain databases of legitimate accrediting agencies on their websites. Independence University is an example of a distinguished online university that offers associate, bachelor and master level degree programs in healthcare and business. Independence University accreditation is that of the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) recognized by U.S. Department of Education. Check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to make sure that the college is operating legally and to gain an insight into the complaints filed against the college. Read student and alumni reviews about the college and the programs they offer.
Question the college about its faculty, their level of expertise, their educational qualifications etc. Inquire about financial aid and student services.
A well-reputed, accredited college, (online or on campus), will offer its students career services, tutoring, financial aid, access to the collegeâ€™s library system, advising and many other such services to help make education fruitful and wholesome; but most of all, it will provide you with a degree that is valid. Do your research well and pick a college best suited for you.