Interesting article on Internet ad placement for online diploma mills

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by AuditGuy, Jan 3, 2008.

  1. AuditGuy

    AuditGuy Member

    Trends in Life Experience, Novelty and Replica Degrees

    Who’s Shopping and Who’s Selling? Advertising and Search Trends

    The Internet not only provides a safe haven for bogus degree suppliers, but it has also become quite accessible for the study of search data. The business of Internet search and paid advertising offers up a candid, and at times confusing, glimpse into the search habits of online users and the marketing strategies of online businesses of any kind, including real and fake colleges degree programs.
  2. AuditGuy

    AuditGuy Member

    Integrity and Online Advertising Strategies

    With all this brouhaha over educational integrity, however, it’s at least interesting to note that as part of KWU’s online marketing strategy, keywords associated with defunct diploma mills comprise part of the paid advertising campaign.

    Search Google for Pickering University, an unaccredited college and alleged diploma mill that was closed by the Hawaiian government, and at the top of the Google search page is a sponsored ad by KWU using the keywords “pickering university” to net customers. KWU also holds a top spot with the term “brighton university,” yet another unaccredited degree supplier that was closed by Hawaiian authorities.

    KW also shows up in the first 10 sponsored ads for searches related to “novelty degrees,” “life experience degrees,” and “fake college degrees
  3. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Wow. Incredibly revealing. I'm in the business of attracting web traffic, but you have to attract the right people. If you're in the business of attracting people who are looking for milled degrees, you must also be in the business of accommodating them. Why else would you want to attract them? To convert them? Uh, huh.

    We try to attract people, too, based upon Search Engine Optimization techniques. But we don't want to attract people interested in buying a fake degree. We're too hard and long for that. K-W must think they can sell to people conducting such searches. Again, wow.
  4. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    Based on the WNU ads, it appears that Warren National University may still be giving generous credit for "work experience". How can they possibly become accredited under these conditions! Can the leadership be so delusional that they think this is academically standard? Are they just stalling for time? It really doesn't make sense to me.
  5. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    Are they even still in the running for legitimate accreditation? The DETC website doesn't list them as an applicant.
  6. AuditGuy

    AuditGuy Member

    The importing of KWU degrees into Warren National degrees, regardless of the date issued is most troubling to me.

    "Are they even still in the running for legitimate accreditation? The DETC website doesn't list them as an applicant."

    They are an applicant for Regional Accreditation, last time I heard. I don't think there has been any new developments on that front.
  7. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Being an "applicant" doesn't mean anything. I suspect they're just doing it to buy some time in Wyoming.

    The RA's, IIRC, have a category called "correspondent," where they've decided to engage a school in the accreditation process. This, of course, after determining that the school in question might be one to consider. Then candidacy can occur almost right away, or might take several years.

    It does not appear WNU/K-WU is in any such a status. I suspect they've not even submitted an application.

    Schools truncate their offerings to get ready to pursue accreditation, then expand them again when they drop the effort. We saw this with SCUPS. Will Warren/Kennedy follow that path?
  8. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    December 14, 2007 WNU apparently closed down their operation in California. I can only assume they did this in preparation for the accreditation evaluation.

    Based on their advertisements, WNU is still offering life experience credit. e.g.,

    So are they just buying time as suggested by Rich? Or, is WNU leadership so delusional that they think that such behavior will be acceptable? I find the later very difficult to believe. Or, perhaps they have cleaned up their act and are just using misleading advertising (as I'm sure the WNU aplogists would love to argue). That may be easier to believe than the delusional theory but Rich's suggestion makes the most sense to me. Just stretch it out enough to soak up the full 5 year deadline to get accredited, probably?

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