Question: DegreeInfo Investment

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by AsianStew, Jun 4, 2020.

  1. AsianStew

    AsianStew Moderator Staff Member

    Hmm, I've always wondered and wanted to know if there is an option to invest or to buy a percentage of the board/forum, like 25% up to 50% of the board. Besides Business & IT, Education is what I am interested in...
    For a couple of years now, a few investors and I have been looking out for schools to purchase and these type of boards/forums would be a big interest too. And then there's the option of creating a new school and getting a board setup for staff & students...
    Mac Juli likes this.
  2. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    You'll have to reach out to Chip for that one.
  3. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Why would you want to buy or buy into a board when you can set up your own with comparatively little investment? The software is relatively cheap. And you can run your own board any way you want - and nobody will squawk or leave, as some members who liked this forum under former management might, if you seriously change the style. Set up your own and run info on Shmoop sales, a light-speed ACE-credit supermarket, 8-day CLEP marathons - whatever you like. Or maybe you could own the other forum. Or have you accomplished that already?
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
  4. AsianStew

    AsianStew Moderator Staff Member

    Great idea! I actually emailed Chip on DegreeInfo and posted the same message at DF, the sister board. We will find out! *Fingers crossed I get both!*
  5. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    It's pretty common to buy businesses that are already successfully operating. Starting up something like this may be a small initial investment, but then you have to take into account the time-effort cost of getting it running well, then the ongoing costs over time to get it to where this site is now or beyond. Being able to buy into something with a long history and a well established user base can cut through all of the startup and slow growth hurdles associated with a new business.
    sideman likes this.
  6. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member

    Does this place even have a "well established" user base from a numbers perspective? Buying into a website that is a niche market that seems to run most new people off, based mostly on the personalities of users here, would probably put someone looking to grow it at a disadvantage based on reputation alone.

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    Is a profit company?
  8. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    I'm sure Chip would have a better view on this because he has direct access to all of the relevant data, but from what I can tell there are a lot of members here and I say that relative to this niche rather than in comparison to boards of other types. Many members have been here for a long time. I've noticed over the years that a lot of members have stopped posting but they still lurk and read. But yes, on the member end, you do make a good point:

    That's an issue. I don't think this board has a bad reputation, but I have seen many new members run off over the years. That can be rectified though. All it takes is a few bannings of the people who've been causing it, and new stricter, openly communicated policies against that behavior.
    RoscoeB, Mac Juli and JBjunior like this.
  9. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    My concern is - if DI comes under the ownership of a noted, bona-fide test-out expert and Big 3 guru, it will likely become a niche-within-a-niche and primarily serve that market. Nothing wrong with that if it did, I suppose, except that people with other interests might feel they had to leave. Testing-out and Big 3 are of no interest to me whatsoever, as testing out doesn't apply in Canada and I don't want any Big 3 education. As far as I know, NO university in Canada accepts CLEP credit - not even Athabasca, which is RA and therefore half-American, at least in my mind. CLEP, DSST, Shmoop, Aleks and the others are of no use to Canadians with academic aspirations. I eventually drifted away from one forum over this - I'd hate to have to leave DI for the same reason, but I'd go. No other choice.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2020
  10. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Nothing wrong with it - Big 3 degrees are all RA so they work in Canada. Just not my brand. Thought I should clarify.
  11. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I doubt if it is a separate company. Chip White owns it. I understand he has other commercial interests. This might fall under some larger structure.
  12. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    It's also boring to discuss. No nuance. No change. "Hey, I need 6 credits of _____________. Which test is easiest?" Yuch.
    Johann likes this.
  13. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Back a few years ago, before I lost interest in CLEP, I tried to find somewhere around here (S. Ontario) where I could write one. The nearest I could find was Talpiot College in Toronto - and they only administered CLEP exams for their own students. Talpiot is a religious school, strictly for Jewish women. So, with three strikes against me (a guy, a goy and no religion), I didn't enrol at Talpiot. I can speak the mamaloshen (i.e. Yiddish) a bit, but that wasn't going to be enough.

    I could have gone across the border and written a test in Buffalo NY - but I decided to lie down until the urge went away.
  14. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    The thing that bugs me about standardized testing--this applies to credit for testing AND admissions tests, is that they can be beaten. It is a quite straight-forward process to obtain a better score than your actual knowledge would indicate.

    I once sat for the GRE Subject exam in Sociology. I had never taken a sociology course. I did no reading about the subject. And since I was 20 years old, I hadn't exactly learned sociology from the "school of hard knocks," you know? But I passed it at the 68th percentile. That, and an upper-division CLEP test on analyzing literature--again, I didn't read literature and didn't know how to analyze it--got me my second bachelors (a BA with a concentration in Sociology). But how?

    I had gotten really, really good at taking these exams. (Almost all of my first bachelor's credit was earned by examination.) Remember, on a multiple-choice test, the answer is provided to you. The construct of each question is based on an effort to fool you into not picking it. (That's why the wrong answers are called "distractors.") But it's right there. The people who write the questions aren't exactly leading scholars, and they're certainly not skilled at psychometrics. But here's the trick: passing these exams is NOT about choosing the right answers. (If you can, fine.) They are about recognizing the WRONG answers and NOT choosing them. This bumps up your guessing odds tremendously. (Even if there is a so-called "penalty" for guessing, it is a break-even process. If you can eliminate just one of the distractors, the odds of successful guessing are now in your favor.)

    Now, here's the thing: passing these exams is NOT about getting a sufficient score. The cutoffs are determined by percentile; you're competing against your fellow test-takers. (Actually, a control group whose scores and their distribution set the passing mark.) You don't have to know the subject, you just have to score higher than the cut-off created by the control group. So these exams really work for schools wanting to award credit for them (or use them for admissions, like the GRE Subject exams), as long as people don't skew the curve with above-average test-taking skills.

    CLEP, DANTES, AP, GRE, LSAT, SAT, ACT, it doesn't matter. If there is multiple-choice test, you can earn higher scores than your knowledge of the subject would indicate.

    Essays? They can be beaten, too. Perhaps another post on another day.
  15. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    My understanding is that for CLEP, this group consists of college students who scored a C on the final exam of a course covering the same material.
  16. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    An accurate observation. I'll confess to having done this myself, in spades a time or two, when the need and opportunity arose. I'm thinking this is why Canadian universities (wisely, as I see it) don't accept the usual suspects ... er ...tests, that is.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2020
  17. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    @Rich Douglas

    I had a similar experience with my BA, and for quite some time, I had mixed feelings about the accomplishment. Case-in-point: I was apprehsensive about one of my exams, so I decided to crunch some numbers to help me better understand my odds of succeeding. I was able to calculate that I only needed to know the right answer to ~30 questions of a 100-question exam. If all the other answers were guesses, pure chance meant that I was likely going to choose enough correct answers to meet the minimum passing scaled score. I also found that if I could reduce a modest portion of those guessed responses to a choice between 2 answers, I could get an A.

    That did wonders for my confidence going into the exam, but not so much for my sense of accomplishment when I did end up getting an A after all. Exactly what did I excel at? How proud should I be of having completed a Bachelor of Arts in Multiple Choice Studies?

    Well, that's how I felt at the time, anyway, and have since learned to be more kind to myself and to recognize that, I did, in fact accomplish something big, even if it's not exactly what I thought I was accomplishing
    newsongs and Rich Douglas like this.
  18. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Well, part of the reason, anyway. I'm sure there are money reasons at work, too. There always are.
  19. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Congratulations. Be very proud. You earned a credential in Application of Inferential Statistics. List it as such on your CV.
    Maniac Craniac likes this.
  20. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I had ZERO concerns about earning my degree this way. Who's to say what is right or fair? A regionally accredited university said I could do these things to earn credits towards a degree, even the entire degree. So I did.

    For my AA: all 60 credits by testing (and other nontraditional forms of credit)
    For my BS: 115 of 120
    For my BA: all 120

    But I didn't just take tests. I would often take a night class in something, then parlay that knowledge on a test with more credits. I earned 15 credits in management that way (having taken Management 101 and a Stats course), and I earned 12 credits in Marketing after a 3-credit Marketing Management course. (Both of those were NY Regents exams and had essay components.)

    But here's the thing: it's boring to talk about. Well, generally anyway. Advising people on which exam to take to cover which Big 3 requirement is pretty straight-forward. I get that it is important to those people, but it really isn't as interesting as discussing accreditation, differences in degrees, negotiating at the doctoral level, etc.

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