Regionals vs. DETC - A Real Turf War

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by russ, Feb 19, 2005.

  1. russ

    russ New Member

    There is no doubt that the regionals are in a battle with DETC over their accredited degrees. This is not about whether to accept a particular class or not, but about whether or not to accept an individual's entire accredited bachelors degree.

    There are masters programs by the regionals that will not accept DETC accredited bachelors degree for entry into the program. For those of you who argue "as long as you have an accredited degree, you are OK." Baloney. This is not just a particular masters program, it is any masters program in that region.

    What we really have is "accredited vs. accredited" in addition to unaccredited or state approved. The more you find out about this stuff, the crazier it gets. Why would a regional accrediting body tell the RA schools in their region that if they let a DETC bachelors degree into their masters program, they can lose their accreditation?

    So, if you really want to be able to attend this masters program in your region and you have a DETC BA/BS you will need to register at a RA school and start all over again as a freshman. This is brilliant. What sense does that make other than a turf battle?
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2005
  2. DaveHayden

    DaveHayden New Member

    Ummm Russ,

    There are MANY situations in both employment and academia where ONLY an RA degree will suffice. I imagine that is why many people suggest an RA degree if at all possible.

    I am unsure if you are familiar with the DETC but until the 70s all they did was accredit correspondent type trade school programs. At that time they started accrediting just a couple of college like programs. A few years ago they chose to accredit a couple of schools that were very questionable. Only recently have they really turned the corner and started to become a truely reputable accreditor.

    As to your suggestion about a turf battle, hogwash. I doubt the RAs even notice DETC. For the most part different market, different game.
  3. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    Hi Russ,

    It sure appears to be another example of you making a false statement, attributing it to others just so you can tear it down. I consider this an untruth. You keep making this same false argument OVER and OVER and OVER again. You use this silly strawman argument technique so often that it indicates intellectual dishonesty to me. Although I do recognize that perhaps you are unfamilar/unpracticed in accurately expressing yourself and have not yet learned how. If the latter is the case then I strongly suggest that you try harder because it has a tendency to make you look unintelligent. Perhaps a way to do this is to never attribute any statement to anyone else unless you provide an exact quote.

    On the other hand point out where ANYONE has ever said on this board that "as long as you have an accredited degree, you are OK", besides you, and I'll apologize.

    This statement is just plain stupid, "as long as you have an accredited degree, you are OK". I have a degree from UC Berkeley. This is an accredited school with a good reputation. No way do I believe that it means that there aren't situations where someone might hire someone with a degree from a different school because the other school has a better reputation in that particular discipline.

    The rest of your post makes statements that don't seem to even follow your false arguments! There are people rejected for graduate school all the time that have RA degrees. Does that mean that the school is battling with the school that bestowed the undergrad degree? No.

  4. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    There is no battle. Either a school is regionally accredited or it is not. Period.
  5. russ

    russ New Member

    Re: Re: Regionals vs. DETC - A Real Turf War

    Hi Bill, sorry to sound so unintelligent but I don't have much to work with. I am trying to learn.

    The big difference is that the RA bachelor was allowed to apply for the program (with the possibility of being rejected) where the DETC bachelor is rejected outright simply because it is a DETC degree. Why would the regionals throw out an entire accredited degree as worthless and should they have that power?

    Frankly, the more I learn about this the more it seems that national or federal standards would be better than our current system.
  6. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    Re: Re: Re: Regionals vs. DETC - A Real Turf War

    A regionally accredited school will "throw out" (to use your term) a degree that is DETC accredited because it is not regionally accredited. At the RA-level, RA and DETC degrees cannot be mixed and matched. To attempt to mix and match these two different accreditations is like mixing apples and oranges. It cannot be done.

    However, if we take a step-down to the DETC level, then a DETC school will always accept a RA degree (although the applicant might be rejected); but a RA school will never accept a DETC degree. RA is the gold standard and the silver DETC degrees cannot be put into the mix. :eek:
  7. russ

    russ New Member

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Regionals vs. DETC - A Real Turf War

    We are not violating the laws of physics here. Regional accreditation is not the second law of thermodynamics. They can be mixed, they should be mixed, and accreditation should equal accreditation.

    We are talking about six different RAs with six different criteria which are not separate from the schools they accredit but are owned and managed by the schools they accredit. Where is the independence and objectivity?
  8. Casey

    Casey New Member

    The Republicans are in charge now....

    It can be done and it is done. RA and DETC degrees are “mixed and matched” all the time. Many traditional RA schools do discriminate against DETC, but there are plenty (some top tier) that will gladly accept DETC credits and degrees.

    Can you direct me to an official statement declaring that RA is the gold standard? The United States Department of Education and the Council on Higher Education Accreditation do not rank accreditors. They do not make “gold” and “silver” distinctions. All accreditors they recognize are considered to be equal.

    In any event, the process of eliminating this type of academic elitism has been set into motion. See HR 4283 will prevent RA schools from arbitrarily rejecting DETC or other NA applicants. From what I understand, the proposal should pass the U.S. House with ease sometime during the next several months. Then, it will be up to the Senate majority to ram the proposal down Drunk Teddy Kennedy’s throat, and send it up to the great President G.W. Bush for signature.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2005
  9. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Re: The Republicans are in charge now....

    I think you've made good argument for government butting out. HR 4283, as stated, is something I oppose. Any school should be free to reject any degree they deem unsuitable by whatever are their standards..
  10. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    Re: The Republicans are in charge now....

    ...such agency or association shall--

    `(B) not adopt or apply standards, policies, or practices that restrict or deny the transfer of credits earned by a student completing courses or programs at other eligible institutions of higher education solely on the basis of the agency or association that accredited such other eligible institution if that agency or association--

    `(i) is recognized by the Secretary pursuant to this section to be a reliable authority as to the quality of the education or training offered; and

    `(ii) is currently listed by the Secretary pursuant to section 101(c)...

    Very intersesting stuff.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2005
  11. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    words from DETC

    Distance education courses also vary greatly in scope, level, and length. Some have a few assignments and require only a few months to complete, while others have a hundred or more lesson assignments requiring three or four years of conscientious study.

    Since 1890, more than 130 million Americans have studied at DETC member institutions, including Franklin D. Roosevelt, Walter P. Chrysler, Walter Cronkite, Barry Goldwater, Charles Schulz, and many other distinguished alumni of DETC members.

    Q. Is DETC accreditation equal to “regional” accreditation?
    A. In every measurable way, yes! DETC accreditation is just as valid as any regional accreditation, and the Secretary of Education has officially recognized DETC since 1959 and by the Council for Higher Education and its predecessors since 1975. We meet the precisely same standards as do the regionals, and we would hasten to add we have vastly more experience and tougher, more stringent standards for distance learning than any other agency in the U.S. Distance learning is our only business.

    Q. Will the credits I receive from a DETC-accredited institution be accepted by a traditional college or university?
    A. Our 2001 survey of DETC graduates showed that of those who attempted (and only 1 of 3 did attempt) to transfer credits and degrees, 2 of 3 were successful.
    Acceptance of degrees or credits from DETC-accredited institutions is largely determined by the policy of the "receiving organization," e.g., an employer, a college registrar, etc. DETC accreditation is not a guarantee that credit will transfer to any college or university. You should always check with the college or university that you wish to transfer your credits to before you enroll in a course. The American Council on Education reviews courses of DETC-accredited institutions and makes credit recommendations that are published annually in "The National Guide to Educational Credit for Training Programs" or call Oryx Press at 1-800-279-ORYX.

    Q. If my credits do not transfer to a regionally accredited college, is my DETC credential useless?
    A. No! The sine qua non of an institution’s quality is not if its credits transfer: this is a false premise. The fact that regionally accredited colleges refuse to accept credits from another school because it is not regionally accredited flies directly in the face of national policies advocated by American Council on Education (ACE), the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), et al. The real issue here has less to do with the academic quality of the sending institution, and more to do with anti-competitive business practices of the receiving institution. Competition is heating up in higher education, and there are forces at work to control the inroads being made by “upstart” operators. Congress, the Department of Education, and the Department of Justice have been looking into this anti-competitive practice by higher education, and we suspect we will see significant activity in the coming months on this matter.

    DETC accreditation is founded on these philosophic principles:

    • Accreditation is purely voluntary. The applicant institution voluntarily elects to apply for accreditation and it voluntarily agrees to comply with all standards and policies of the Commission.

    • Accreditation is a non-governmental peer review process in which the integrity and good faith of an institution and its officers are essential.

    • The burden of proof in demonstrating compliance with standards rests with the institution, not with the Accrediting Commission. The institution must prove to the Accrediting Commission that it meets or exceeds the standards.

    • The Accrediting Commission considers information about an applicant institution from any source in reaching its conclusion.

    • Accreditation is by its nature a formal, but nonetheless, collegial process. It works best when there is a common agreement that the chief purpose for seeking accreditation is the identification of soundness, honesty and quality in the practice of distance education.
    See "Benefits of Accreditation."

  12. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    DETC makes it sound as if it was TURF war:

    The real issue here has less to do with the academic quality of the sending institution, and more to do with anti-competitive business practices of the receiving institution. Competition is heating up in higher education, and there are forces at work to control the inroads being made by “upstart” operators. Congress, the Department of Education, and the Department of Justice have been looking into this anti-competitive practice by higher education, and we suspect we will see significant activity in the coming months on this matter.



    Maybe because they accredit schools like AICS?

    To be fair we need to hear RA side of the story.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2005
  13. pugbelly

    pugbelly New Member

    I've got to be honest and say that I'm usually not one for government stepping in and involving itself in educational matters, but in this case I'm all for it. As a Christian I can tell you first hand that Bible colleges are typically viewed by secular colleges as being inferior, even if accredited by reputable accreditors like the ABHE. This will hopefully end some of the nonsense.

    How will this impact state government policies, like Maryland, that currently stipulate that one needs a regionally accredited BA to qualify for employment with the state (including teaching positions)?

  14. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I never did understand why all the concern regarding acceptance of DETC bachelor's into RA master's programs.

    Why not just continue with DETC schools? There are numerous DETC schools that offer excellent master's degrees and, a few even offer doctorates.

    As far as employers, how many ask "Is your degree accredited by DETC or is it RA?" I would think if the subject came up at all, one would simply be asked if the degree is accredited or not.
  15. Casey

    Casey New Member

    Re: Re: The Republicans are in charge now....

    Very true! But for good cause, not just because they dislike certain, equally recognized, accrediting agencies.

    Arbitrarily rejecting credits and degrees, only on the basis of accreditation, is unfair and discriminatory. It also forces students to waste money repeating coursework, and leads to higher levels of student loan debt. This benefits no one. For these reasons, I firmly believe HR 4283 will become law.

    In my view, institutional autonomy flies out the window when Federal Student Loan money is invloved. Therefore, I think an opt-out provision for schools willing to drop their Title IV participation would be a fair compromise.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2005
  16. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Re: The Republicans are in charge now....

    Ah, you're a man after my own heart! Love the way you think!

    Here is more info on the bill.
  17. BillDayson

    BillDayson New Member

    Re: The Republicans are in charge now....

    What official agency do you think has the authority to make such a statement?

    If RA is the "gold standard", and I think that it probably is, then that's because of the bottom-up facts of the educational system, not because of top-down edicts from government agencies.

    There are several thousand RA schools, as opposed to several dozen degree granting DETC schools. Every state university in the US is RA (or is a new school pursuing RA). Virtually all of the country's academic research institutions are RA. Almost all of the schools that have built reputations because of their academic accomplishments are RA.

    The Accrediting Commission for Cosmetology Arts and Sciences? Cal Tech needs to accept beauty college credits?

    Isn't it a contradiction for an organization to say that all accreditors are equal if it doesn't rank them?

    Wouldn't it make more sense for the organization to simply say that it has no official opinion on which accreditors are better than others and leave that judgement up to community to make?

    Why does somebody who uses the screen name 'Bush04' favor the goverment taking away the existing rights of individual schools to decide for themselves what credits and degrees they choose to accept or reject, and handing the Department of Education the power to define still more 'lowest common denominator' federal regulations that all schools will apparently be obligated to obey?

    I certainly hope not.

    Frankly, I can't understand why the (supposedly) small government Republicans would favor a measure like this. If Kennedy by some chance opposes it, then I'll definitely side with Kennedy.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2005
  18. decimon

    decimon Well-Known Member

    Re: Re: Re: The Republicans are in charge now....

    Disliking, in this regard, is making judgment about particular courses or particular schools or schools with particular accreditation. That's what they do. It's what they're supposed to do to maintain whatever they consider to be their standards.

    Should Liberty be forced to take my DETC degree from the Wicca School of Horns and Tails? What is "good cause" can't be determined by diktat.

    Possibly unfair. Discriminatory? It's supposed to be discriminatory.

    It forces students only to plan properly.

    I think I might agree with this but have scant knowledge of the matter. Do you know if Hillsdale is an example?
  19. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Regionals vs. DETC - A Real Turf War

    With respect (and I have a lot for "me again"), this is not true. There are a growing number of RA schools that will accept DETC bachelors into Masters and transfer credit.

    No doubt, that the most utility is obtained from an RA degree.

    As to Russ(??) and the issue of a turf war. I do not believe this to be the case in the larger sense. In a certain sense this is frequently the case. My local state university would not accept RA credits from the local RA community college. The state U was tired of losing first and second year students to the local CC. Eventually, they worked it out....sort of. Local university was also apparently none too happy with the local RA U of Phoenix (again over taking students away).

    Will be interesting to see if there are ever DETC doctorates and the issue that creates with regard to people who do RA doctorates to get a title and boost at work (ie non academia). I cannot forsee DETC doctorates making a dent in RA academia at all. But they could make some sort of dent in the market for folks who do part time doctorates to position themselves better at work, etc. This may create some interesting minor tension.

  20. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    The government will never be able to legislate equality across the academic landscape. That is because not all schools are made equal. It will always be true that some schools have a better reputation than other schools.

    Regarding the fact that someone posted that 130 million Americans have taken classes at DETC schools, first I question the accuracy of the figure, e.g., perhaps it means 130 million students in classes rather than 130 million different Americans. Second, I believe that most DETC classes have not been general college education classes.

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