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  1. #1
    Lerner is offline Registered User
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    The University for Peace, San José, Costa Rica

    The University for Peace, San José, Costa Rica

    European Center for Peace and Development (ECPD) University for Peace Established by the United Nations - Establishment, Status and Development of the ECPD

    I met a person with degree of Dr. Science, Management from this university.
    I maybe wrong but this looks to me something unrecognized?

  2. #2
    Johann is offline Registered User
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    Well, at least some of their degrees seem to have good approval. My suspicions were aroused, too, but the Wiki says it has SINAES approval for at least some of its programs. That's the gold standard for Costa Rica, as far as I know. Here's the relevant statement:

    "The University has "unique world-wide authorization to award academic degrees, recognized by all countries which are members of the General Assembly".[7] In addition, its MA programs in the Department of Environment, Peace and Development, received official accreditation from SINAES (the national Costa Rican accreditation body) in 2014.[8] Similarly, the MA programme in International Law and Human Rights, and the MA programme in International Law and the Settlement of Disputes received accreditation from SINAES in June 2016.[9] On the other hand, the fact that UPEACE offers unique MA programs that cannot be found anywhere else in the world means that it is the best and only choice for those who want to study the specific fields of Peace Education; Gender and Peacebuilding; Media, Peace and Conflict Studies; Responsible Management and Sustainable Development; etc."

    Here's the whole thing: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/University_for_Peace

    We're dealing with a school that operates from Serbia and Costa Rica. At the European end, the school claims three successive governments have undertaken to keep the original resolution: the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, then the Yugoslav government that replaced it, and now the Government of Serbia.

    I'd say that if you earn a Costa Rican degree from this school - one that has SINAES approval, you're on firm ground. Anything else - I wouldn't know. I checked an the school did not appear in a list of Universities in Serbia. SINAES - Sistema Nacional de Acreditación de la Educación Superior: Acreditación de carreras universitarias | SINAES

    J.
    Last edited by Johann; 04-30-2017 at 09:52 AM.

  3. #3
    Johann is offline Registered User
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    BTW: Lerner, I did not see anywhere that this school's Doctoral programs, such as the one you mentioned, have SINAES approval.

    So...

    J.

  4. #4
    heirophant is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johann View Post
    "The University has "unique world-wide authorization to award academic degrees, recognized by all countries which are members of the General Assembly".[7]
    That sentence concerns me.

  5. #5
    b4cz28 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by heirophant View Post
    That sentence concerns me.
    It is a UN Chartered University.
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  6. #6
    Neuhaus is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by b4cz28 View Post
    It is a UN Chartered University.
    That would be the ultimate "state approval."

    But seriously, while the UN charter thing is neat and certainly lends to the school's credibility, the U.N. is not an accreditor of schools. Having a UN charter does not mean the degrees are worth anything.

    SINAES accreditation is what makes the degrees recognized in other countries and by other educational institutions, at least that's what we speculate would be the determining factor if someone got a credential evaluation for a degree from this school.

    UPeace hasn't been secretive that their SINAES accreditation applies only to their M.A. The doctorate is likely newer and still going through the steps. And, as UPEace notes on their FAQ, accreditation is not retroactive.

    At the same time, we know this school is legitimate and recognized by relevant authorities. While we have been treating SINAES as an institutional accreditor, it seems this is likely a scheme more closely resembling programmatic accreditation.

    Costa Rica isn't a Mad Max style badlands of academic lawlessness. If UPeace is offering the degree, in any form, on the ground in CR then they likely have the necessary approval just not the added layer of accreditation.

    Could it affect utility? Perhaps. Unless, of course, there is more to the accreditation situation in Costa Rica than we are giving it credit for. I'm not saying it's a good or a bad choice. But I think this is one school that we can, at a minimum, not label a scam or a mill. Even if the doctoral program is lacking accreditation for a broader level of recognition this just isn't Columbia Pacific.
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  7. #7
    heirophant is offline Registered User
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    "The University has "unique world-wide authorization to award academic degrees, recognized by all countries which are members of the General Assembly".[7]

    That sentence concerns me.

    Quote Originally Posted by b4cz28 View Post
    It is a UN Chartered University.
    So what does the phrase "UN Chartered University" actually mean?

    Does it mean that UPaz has the legal right to set up an operation and award degrees in the territory of any UN General Assembly member? (That's what the Wikipedia quote seems to suggest.) I don't think so. If UPaz wanted to set up a campus and award degrees legally here in California, it would still have to be approved by the BPPE. Just as it would have to conform to the education laws of whatever jurisdiction it proposed to operate in. I don't see what a "UN Charter" adds to that.

    Does it mean, even more vaguely, that employers and licensing bodies of every UN General Assembly member are somehow obligated through their country's UN membership to recognize UPaz degrees? The Wikipedia quote, when spun another way, seems to be suggesting to prospective students that UPaz degrees will have universal world-wide recognition, due to the UN thing. Again, I don't think so.

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  9. #8
    Phdtobe is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by heirophant View Post
    "The University has "unique world-wide authorization to award academic degrees, recognized by all countries which are members of the General Assembly".[7]

    That sentence concerns me.



    So what does the phrase "UN Chartered University" actually mean?

    Does it mean that UPaz has the legal right to set up an operation and award degrees in the territory of any UN General Assembly member? (That's what the Wikipedia quote seems to suggest.) I don't think so. If UPaz wanted to set up a campus and award degrees legally here in California, it would still have to be approved by the BPPE. Just as it would have to conform to the education laws of whatever jurisdiction it proposed to operate in. I don't see what a "UN Charter" adds to that.

    Does it mean, even more vaguely, that employers and licensing bodies of every UN General Assembly member are somehow obligated through their country's UN membership to recognize UPaz degrees? The Wikipedia quote, when spun another way, seems to be suggesting to prospective students that UPaz degrees will have universal world-wide recognition, due to the UN thing. Again, I don't think so.

    My guess, if it was chartered by the UN then that should be easily verifiable, and the degrees may be useful for government employment. Also, operating in the U.S out of embassies, consulates, and UN’s properties could be fine because those are foreign properties.

  10. #9
    Johann is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neuhaus
    While we have been treating SINAES as an institutional accreditor, it seems this is likely a scheme more closely resembling programmatic accreditation.... Costa Rica isn't a Mad Max style badlands of academic lawlessness...
    Well no, not Mad Max, but there are schools which are said to do controversial things. Schools like Universidad Empresarial de Costa Rica. It was approved by CONESUP (see below) to offer precisely three degrees - two bachelor's and a Master's, all on-ground, no DL whatsoever. It has, however, conferred many kinds of distance degrees, including Doctorates, over the years. Some of the school's activity is said to centre on Poland or, at times, a location in Arizona...

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Univer..._de_Costa_Rica

    As you said, SINAES approval is by degree program. It's voluntary and 19 of 58 Costa Rican universities have taken it up. CONESUP is the Government body that regulates Private Universities. CONESUP = Consejo Nacional de Educación Superior Privada - CONESUP | Ministerio de Educación Pública

    You guys please go ahead and discuss UN approval, if you like. I know nothing about it. Maybe if you don't get a good degree evaluation, you have to appeal to the Security Council -- and Russia vetoes it!

    J.

  11. #10
    b4cz28 is offline Registered User
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    I think you'd be very safe with this degree. I think its for the crazies but that does not change the fact it seems legit.


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  12. #11
    Johann is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neuhaus
    While we have been treating SINAES as an institutional accreditor, it seems this is likely a scheme more closely resembling programmatic accreditation.
    It seems to be very like the Mexican Reconocimiento de Validez - in that each RVOE applies to a particular degree program. It's perfectly legal for a school to award some degrees that carry the RVOE and others without. Universidad Azteca is an example of a Mexican school that does this. Same holds true in Costa Rica for SINAES accreditation.

    My take: If your Mexican degree carries an RVOE or your Costa Rican credential carries SINAES accreditation - you know you're safe. You may very well be fine if it doesn't, too - but in some circumstances, YMMV.

    J.
    Last edited by Johann; 05-05-2017 at 11:11 AM.

  13. #12
    Johann is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by b4cz28 View Post
    It is a UN Chartered University.
    Reminds me somewhat of Dr. John Bear's brilliant, perfectly executed prank: The successful registration of his "Totally Fraudulent University" with the United Nations. Yeah, that was the name!

    IIRC, the only problem encountered was some difficulty in the subsequent DE-registration of this animal. Totally Fraudulent University (that's the name), recognized by the United Nations

    I'm not equating UPaz with Totally Fraudulent University. Just pointing out - it is/was possible for a total concoction to get on the UN roster. I note also that Dr. Bear's prank "school" had neither CONESUP nor SINAES approval. I guess perhaps he could have gone for a bunch of Reconocimientos de Validez, but time was likely of the essence...
    Last edited by Johann; 05-12-2017 at 01:48 PM.

  14. #13
    Neuhaus is offline Registered User
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    Just a point of order...

    Totally Fraudulent University was added to the UN's list of Higher Education Institutions. That is not the same as being "chartered" by the UN.

    The UN actually passed a resolution to create UPeace. Totally Fraudulent University was just added to a big list of schools.

    At issue, in both matters, is that the U.N. is not an educational institution. They aren't an accreditor. They aren't even an association of accreditors. Their mission, while it tangentially loops in education , has nothing to do with higher education . They aren't in the business of chartering universities. They did it, as far as I can tell, just that one time.

    It isn't a pass to forego accreditation. Nor is it like those fraudulent schools that claimed legitimacy by alleging that their school was "chartered" by a state and displayed incorporation documents to back that up. The school is legitimately accredited in its own right and has the imprimatur of the UN. We know, then, that the school is legitimate. We can't say how useful it is in the working world. But we know, at a minimum, that this isn't an Almeda like scam.
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  15. #14
    Johann is offline Registered User
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    Totally correct, Neuhaus. As I said before (maybe a little late) I'm not equating Totally Fraudulent University with Upeace. All the story demonstrates is that back then (2003 or before) some illicit outfit could have got its name on a UN list and dazzled some uninformed people into thinking they were great, just for being on the list. Whether that could still happen nowadays - I don't know.

    You were right to caution against assuming any similarities. Thanks - and sorry if my remarks misled anyone. Dang, it was a great prank and a good story, though.

    J.

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  17. #15
    Neuhaus is offline Registered User
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    Oh sure, and it's a good lesson in looking for real signs of legitimacy rather than made up things. That's what led so many schools down the apostille path. I still remember Trinity Seminary (Newburgh) plastering low res scans of their University of Canterbury seals all over the website. Even an actual charter, UN or by US Congress, as well intentioned as it may be is not a substitute for accreditation. Sadly, I've run into a lot of people who fall for that sort of thing.

    Just the other day I asked a prospective candidate why he opted to attend Full Sail University . His reasoning? "It has to be a pretty good school. It's featured in the Princeton Review."
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