Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by TeacherBelgium, Dec 2, 2020.
Not in me ;-)
The spirit of Dude crosses all gender and / or orientation lines. This is The Way.
Dudeism is quite fascinating.
I prefer Buddhism though ;-)
I don't think they have to be separate or mutually exclusive. Take their best - build on that.
Ha. I wouldn't like to say too much on a public forum, but at least a few of these colleges in Canada are currently trying to become degree-awarding - the belief is that the actual universities are cruelly trying to keep the colleges out because the universities don't want to share.
It'll be interesting to see whether the Ministry does bow down to pressure (read: $$$), and allow these colleges to start awarding degrees. If it does . . . well, my sincerest condolences to Canadian tertiary education.
I do find the US system slightly more transparent - or perhaps I just understand it better - when it comes to reputable higher education. Canada feels a little confused and unsure of itself and who it wants to be, as though it wants the free and open market for higher education in order to attract foreign investment, but also the good reputation that comes with close government monitoring and strict accreditation.
Except this isn't true. There are more than twice as many tertiary schools in the US that do not award degrees (vocational or trade schools) as there are that do. Secondly, these are two different segments of the marketplace with almost no overlap (except for community colleges, but even their academic and vocational operations are separate).
According to the US Department of Education, about 35% of post-secondary students are enrolled in vocational education programs. But many of these are in academic (degree-awarding) institutions.
There is no reason to conflate these two forms of tertiary education.
That's not "belief" - It's bullshit. Put out by the private colleges. They don't want to face the fact that the public colleges are doing a stellar job of this type of education - AND charging students far less - AND making Provincial Aid available in many cases.
Some of the Private Colleges here are American chains which award degrees in the States. They're likely the ones who want to award degrees here, as they do there - bumping the average "take" from maybe $15K per student to perhaps $40K. I don't think we have any use for that.
I don't think your remark about the "transparency of reputable higher education" in regard to US schools, applies at all to these largely vocational chains. Some definitely never should have been accredited. But they were - in the US - and sometimes, they were allowed to keep that accreditation, despite murky circumstances. In their own country, some of them have been known to lose accreditation and/or run aground financially, leaving thousands of students in the lurch. We don't need that here. The home-grown variety of private vocational schools is, in general, quite bad enough. You have pointed that out yourself.
Look at all the schools here, Everest, CDI etc., that closed amid the US Corinthian debacle alone. We have threads. We don't need any more of that - or schools like them, here.
In Canada there had been a suspicion of US degrees because of a perceived lack of "standards". Of course there are great universities in the US, some of the best in the world, but there are also other dismal institutions which appear to offer the same credential (i.e. an "accredited degree').
Even Canada has changed in this regard. Everyone needed a degree so now "degrees", which used to be the right of a "University", is granted by what used to be the technical schools (e.g. applied degrees). Are these equal? Interesting question.
The public colleges that grant these, I have no problems with. Here in my province, Ontario - the same Ministry has oversight - Ministry of Colleges and Universities. Most of those degrees are awarded to grads of Public colleges who have then completed their degree studies at a University. I'm not worried about them - or any students in newer degree programs that might be completely delivered by the Public College itself. I know Public Colleges. They're good. I'm a four-time grad. Bin ta Uni too. That was also good. Known quantities/qualities - both.
My prob. is any possibility of these proven-shady private schools getting into the act. That's just simply not acceptable. Their diplomas aren't equal in standing to those of public Colleges and they shouldn't be granting any sort of degrees. Glad that we don't have an ACICS or similar accreditor here to give them that kind of permission. ACICS was on the verge of being made to go away at one point, then Trump revived it via Betsy DeVos.
At least the schools in Canada that went down in the Corinthian debacle weren't granting degrees here, or the effects in Canada would have been worse. I don't want to see students in Canada accessing low-quality degree programs at money-hungry private schools that have already proven their low worth. The grads will never get jobs with those "degrees". They'll have more problems, including severe financial hardship, likely for the rest of their lives.
If "everybody needs a degree" then they need a good one. A bad one is worse than none. Junk diplomas shouldn't be allowed to morph into junk degrees. As Dr. Levicoff frequently says -- I have spoken.
I really question the need for institutional accrediting agencies beyond the regional associations and the few, specialized accreditors focused on a particular topic (like TRACS). (ACICS and DEAC are certainly not that.)
There was a time when I cheered DEAC's (then the NHSC) accreditation efforts with DL schools. The RAs were being so difficult--both with DL schools and traditional schools trying to deliver DL programs. But I just don't think current conditions justify it. (There are a few unaccredited, nontraditional schools in California that are being pressured by the state to get recognized accreditation, but the RAs still won't deal with them. It's sad.)
I've mentioned on this board that I'd like to see the DEAC become a programmatic-style accreditor. Instead of focusing on institutional accreditation (like now), or subject-based accreditation (like most of the programmatic accreditors), DEAC could be a specialist in program delivery (DL) instead. I think that higher education can get a lot better at it (based on my experience and my certificate in this subject from the University of Wisconsin-Madison).
An interesting question is, "Who decides?"
@GregWatts Greg - If you can keep your head while all around are losing theirs - then you clearly don't understand the seriousness of the situation.
All I can say is that they are trying, and they will use whatever connection/nepotism/cronyism it takes to make it happen. Most people who are involved in post-secondary education know it's a racket and that these institutions are really offering something else to students under the guise of 'education', but are powerless to do much (unless they want to sacrifice their livelihoods and never work in the industry again).
It's really just a question of whether Canadian governments are willing to sacrifice the long-term reputation of Canada against short-term financial gain. I think I know where the odds are on that one.
Unfortunately, so do I.
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