Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by Johann, Jan 11, 2017.
So much good news, I don't know where to start! Good to hear from you! I also noticed that QAHE is awarding honorary degrees itself. Something from its Facebook page:
"We are now inviting qualified candidates to apply for our Honorary Doctoral Award...." Oh boy! I'll have to start polishing up my CV!
For this relief, much thanks.
(Hamlet (1.1.10), Francisco to Bernardo)
QAHE is also an affiliate of California University FCE. So, it’s possible that a degree awarded by IICSE (in Wilmington, Delaware) may be evaluated by CUFCE as being equivalent to a degree awarded by a regionally accredited US University.
I emphatically agree, Johann. Accreditation is supposed to give recognition to institutions that meet established quality standards.
If a particular accreditor is accrediting "universities" that don't seem to have any academic substance at all, and might not even be operating legally where the "university" claims to be located, then one wonders what those "established quality standards" are and how the accreditor ascertained they were in fact satisfied.
My own belief is that people can learn the most about an accreditor by looking at the weakest schools that it accredits, since they illustrate the minimums that are necessary to acquire the accreditation. (In some cases, it seems to be little more than a check clearing.)
These universities and institutions you're mentioning are not on the UK's recognized list. Shouldn't that be cause for concern?
That's shocking, because Johann's position if done would cause much bigger problems which is why it isn't done that way to begin with. If it were done that way, we would be calling for every accreditor who has allowed schools who've done tremendous dirt to be shut down and that would be a number of them. I'm sorry, but that thinking is a road to destruction. It won't work. Instead, I think the level-headed approach that was already suggested would be to punish the school and/or accreditor and allow them to fix the situation, which is actually what is already the normal procedure anyway (for instance, the handling of the regionally accredited Dickinson State's international diploma mill scam) so the death penalty concept isn't even on the table as an option.
I don't think that Johann ever suggested that. Don't turn his and my remarks into caricatures.
I think that the level headed approach to unfamiliar and otherwise-unrecognized accreditors is to (1.) approach them with considerable caution, and (2.) look at the weakest schools that they accredit and endorse as having met their (unknown) standards. These weak schools might indicate what the minimum might be to achieve whatever accreditation it is. (Often just a check clearing the bank.)
If an accreditor has a history of 'accrediting' things that appear to consist of nothing but a website and don't even appear to operating legally wherever they claim to be located, things at award advanced (typically doctoral) degrees in multiple subjects but have no academic/research reputation in any of those subjects and no recognition in the respective professions, then the accreditor's "standards" would appear to be meaningless at best and intentionally misleading at worst.
My opinion: Don't waste a penny or another breath even discussing it! An unaccredited school would be better served with State approval and recognition to educate and award degrees than seek these ridiculous accreditations.
Pebble Hills, Kesmonds and IICSE are incorporated, licensed or whatever in the state of Delaware. Commonwealth University (aka Commonwealth Open University) is in either Panama or Belize, possibly both, and shares its offices in London with the London Graduate School. Neither CU nor LGS is a legitimate UK institution.
Aldersgate is somewhere in the Philippines, whereas St Clements is based in Switzerland nowadays, I believe. Many years ago, St Clements offices were located above Earl's Tavern, a pub in Adelaide, Australia, but St Clements has since been operating out of Niue and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Commonwealth University and the London Graduate School are not popular with authorities in Ghana and as far as St Clements is concerned, its campus in Ekiti has been declared illegal in Nigeria by the National Universities Commission. I assume Dr David Le Cornu, of St Clements, may disagree with that decision.
Dr Le Cornu is on LGS faculty, along with a graduate of St Regis University and Senator Dr David Iornem, a Nigerian, who is also a graduate of Commonwealth University as well as Aldersgate University. Dr Iornem and the National Universities Commission in Nigeria are not interpreting his credentials in the same way, so to speak, so there has been some disagreement between the two parties about the value of degrees from Commonwealth University. Dr Iornem is also, if memory serves me right, a graduate of St Clements University.
Sorry. Mbwa Shenzi beat me by about a minute. He is the most knowledgeable person I know on these things so - what he says goes. Here's my just-finished reply anyway.
I'd be REALLY concerned if they were ON the list! Something would be irretrievably wrong! Selinus says it's located in Bologna, Italy. St. Clement's has several "campuses" around the world, none in the UK. I'm sure any that have UK locations are smart enough not to print up any degree-looking papers that show "credentials" of UK origin. That would be against the Higher Education Act, 1988. UK faux-schools often have a captive unaccredited school located where such can operate legally - and issue all their "diplomas" from the offshore school, to get around British regulations. I remember a "law school" that might still be around. They issued LL.B degrees from an unaccredited school in the Southern US - one that had lost its accreditation and had been sold off at a fire-sale price.
More wrinkles than an elephant!
Then you misunderstood what he wrote. I never turn things into other things, I don't know what the point of doing that would be. I take comments for what they are as they are written. It's pretty clear that he suggested that once an accreditor does what ASIC did they should be shunned forever, or at least ASIC. That's simply irrational because it would be only fair to apply this to all accreditors, and the obvious outcome of that would be a disaster because a number of accreditors have made some serious mistakes. I don't known what's being misunderstood about that...
This is straw man because no one suggested that a person should do otherwise. That's not the argument.
It's obvious that ASIC made a terrible mistake there. The problem with the death penalty approach to dealing with them based on that mistake is we don't know what lengths the scammers went to fool ASIC. Schools have pulled elaborate scams to appear legitimate and have hidden all kinds of violations for years on end and have fooled accreditors before. Who is to say it didn't happen here?
And here is the issue I have:
The UK Government itself maintains a list of schools they officially recognize and says specifically that "If your degree is not from an officially recognised UK university or college, there’s no guarantee it’ll count when you’re looking for a job." Now, schools on that list may be the absolute worst/shady schools on the planet and I don't doubt a single thing you've said about the ones you've focused on, but at the end of the day they are still being officially recognized by the UK Government. Outside of that, I see a number of UK groups claiming to do quality assurance for schools, none of which appear to be operating with any sort of official UK Government recognition, and from an American perspective quality assurance is not the same as official recognition or accreditation.
That has me asking two questions:
- In the UK's case, is official government recognition unimportant? And if so, what is its purpose?
- Can you give some insight on what I should be looking for that legitimizes UK schools that are not on the UK Government's own list of recognized schools?
Not sure that you're both on the same page. If you look closely, you'll notice that the schools he's mentioning are not on the UK's recognized listings. Take another look.
The bottom line is this, as I said before, if IICSE is recognized by QAHE (doubtful) then dandy, but IICSE is still not on any official UK Government list, and despite what people who haven't a clue would tell you, that list matters in the UK otherwise the UK Government would not be posting it and fielding calls and email inquiries from people wanting to know if their school is recognized by the UK Government or not. Think about it. They don't do that just for the hell of it.
Deal with a school not on that list at your own risk (just as the very Government authority themselves is telling us in easy-to-read black and white), end of story. As for state approval, whether this school is or isn't is unrelated to the main point that they are not accredited in the United States, not recognized by the UK Government, and not appearing on the list of the body they claim to be connected to.
The UK system is not like ours, but better judgement should prevail when you go to school sites claiming accreditation from places that aren't recognized by anybody on planet earth, or associations with recognized places but somehow are not on the list at those associations. Might you be able to have your degree evaluated by an evaluation service and have them determine some sort of legitimacy? Sure, but I also know of some students from Blue Marble University who did that successfully and Blue Marble University is nothing but questionable and that's putting it mildly, so that has to be taken into account.
No. It's very important. But let's limit our field to UK degree-granting schools. That's what the list is for - nothing else.
Very simple - if the school is on the list it's a UK school that can grant UK degrees (Recognised Body) or can tutor for another recognized UK school's degrees (Listed Body).
Not on the list - can't award a UK degree or tutor for another recognized school's UK degree.
No amount or type of other recognition alters this. For UK schools, go by the list.
Naturally, a lot of these other types of recognition pertain mostly to non-degree granting schools.
For UK evaluation, offshore degrees go through the official agency, UK-NARIC, which has pretty strict rules. For instance, they will not evaluate any US NA degree -period. RA or the M-1. (The Motorway, not the rifle - at least not yet.)
A UK university is not completely bound by UK-NARIC's assessment. If the Uni thinks a candidate has a good chance of success, it may admit him/her despite a NA degree - or whatever.
In the US, there are schools that are mills, accreditation mills, AND evaluation mills. Universities know who the evaluation mills are and that their documents are meaningless, but they sometimes fool employers. Perhaps that's how the Blue Marble guys got through. I'm sure any of the 20-or so "real" (NACES-member) evaluators would immediately spot a Blue Marble U. degree - it's an unaccredited school, registered as a business corporation on Dominica. (I used to include non-NACES member AACRAO in the "real evaluators " group but I believe that fine organization has discontinued its evaluation services.)
That interesting lot of "schools" mentioned by mbwa shenzi? As I said , they are not UK schools - although some of them sound British and most troll for prospects in the UK. As to their British or in the odd case British-sounding supporting organizations - well, let's just say that doesn't give them any official recognition as degree-granting schools from the British Government.
(1) UK and degree-granting - go by the list. If the school has UK government authority to grant degrees - it's on there. Nothing else matters. If schools award UK degrees and they're not entitled to - it's a criminal offense. As I said, some sleazy UK-based orgs get around this by printing their degree looking papers from a captive offshore school. If you GO BY THE LIST, you'll avoid these, too.
(2) Not UK and/or not degree-granting - sniff test, or whatever you usually do. If non-UK degree-granting, start with what degree-granting authority they have (or haven't) in their own country. And please remember, just because some government-sounding organization supports a school, it may be assuming Government authority it doesn't have. Bogus accreditors, bogus schools, bogus evaluators, bogus government-sounding orgs. It all happens. I don't see how the schools on mbwa shenzi's list are being "recognized by the UK government." I really don't.
I just realized that the QAHE that IICSE is claiming to be a part of is not the UK recognized one. This appears to be some fake entity masquerading as the real thing. Shame.
Yeah, I figured out after posting it that I had wrongly assumed Mbwa's response was directly addressing the schools in question. I felt pretty sure the UK list was important, but because I wrongly assumed the intent of his post and another post outside of that thereafter, it made me think there was some doubt about the list.
Looks like some of IICSE's coursework is showing up on Course Hero. This should be an interesting read...
Yes - Mbwa Shenzi made mention that this QAHE was somehow associated with a non-NACES member credential evaluator in California.
When I wrote some weeks ago that ASIC "made a mistake" accrediting some schools that they quickly yanked certificates for afterwards, Kizmet and Mbwa Shenzi were quick to say they didn't feel "mistake" was the word - and I believe they were right. I blurt out euphemisms like that sometimes when I think of lawsuits past ... Oh, never mind. But I'd have yanked the certificates too, if Axact were mentioned in the media along with those schools.
Fact is - I don't think ASIC has done anything illegal - nobody says you can't sell any outfit a certificate that is meaningless in the US, and call it accreditation. As long as you don't say it's CHEA or USDOE recognized when it isn't. If other outfits can deal in this stuff, then so can ASIC, whether I like it or not. I'd have a different take if it was a "mistake" by a recognized accreditor; if the school were a coupe of shades sneakier than the accreditor, it wouldn't change things very far in the accreditor's favour, either. The damage is usually done by the school that buys the accreditation. The school convinces prospects that their unrecognized accreditation really means something and takes students to the cleaners. The unrecognized accreditors are, I think, facilitators - but I'm sure they could rely in any court on their insistence that schools are not to construe their accreditation as degree-granting authority.
Dears, I have finished my BSc @ IICSE, sent my thesis project and final exam in at least 1 month ago, without response.
Their phone # appears to be always busy. Does anyone have any alternative number, different from +1 302-597-9017?
Your help will be highly appreciated.
Separate names with a comma.