SAERA, Spanish university offering online training in neuropsychology , other subjects

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by laferney, Apr 2, 2020.

  1. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    I just woke up, so I've been trying to decide what to do

    (Steve clearly doesn’t take this seriously and so I figure he won’t mind if I just keep on deleting his posts, since he doesn’t really care about any of it)
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 2, 2020
  2. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    San Marino has one university (U. of San Marino), which I'm pretty sure is fully recognized as an Italian university.
    They also had an "International Academy of Sciences San Marino", which was an effort to run an academic society - and a University - on International basis, in Esperanto. This thing was wacky but legit enough, but looks like it might be defunct. At some point, it admitted a bunch of "honorary members", including the late Soviet crooner Iosif Kobzon, sometimes called "Russian Frank Sinatra". Kobzon listed a metric ton of awards on his web site, including this, and "honorary citizenships" of territorial and municipal entities big and small. It was comical, especially for a guy who did hold People's Artist of Soviet Union (a big deal) and a Hero of Labor of Russia (highest civilian award). He was also a member of Russian Parliament, pro-Putin, and active supporter of the terrorists in Eastern Ukraine, so f*** him even in death. Still, interesting tidbit.
    There were some other reports of illegitimate schools being associated with AIS San Marino; my best guess is that their identity (and claim to San Marino degree-granting power) was hijacked by some unknown group of people, John Kersey-style. Last entry at their official site is announcement of a gathering in 2010. I bet that's what Adam Smith University touts as "San Marino accreditation".
  3. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    Ok, this would mean then that the Groupon deal for $269 MBA or $299 dual MBA/MS is worth gradual credits? Cool, very cool. Still doesn't mean degrees on their own are useful though.
  4. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Cheap spanish MBAs that are not official have little use (even in Spain) other than showing some expertise in a field and getting some credits to qualify as a low paid adjunct. With the huge amount of MBA programs being offered in the market, if your MBA is not from a top school, it is really just dressing in a resume and don;t expect it to get you a 200K consulting gig. I know few people in Spain that have more than 10 of these masters propio in their resume, they are cheap and not so hard to get, they are legal but everyone knows that are not considered rigorous or game changers in a CV.

    However, my guess that a Nicaraguan accredited degrees have also little use other than qualifying for some low paid adjunct positions or show a PhD in a business card for a self employed counsellor or financial consultant that needs to impress customers. It might also be a cheap way to qualify for some self employment professions that don;t require a fancy degree but just a license such as a licensed counsellor, a CPA or a CFP.

    But again, if my dream is to teach a couple of classes at a local university and write a book, why not get a 5K PhD and accomplish your dream? otherwise, it will stay as a dream that would never happen. Some people that I know spend 5 years full time in a residential program and still end as adjuncts getting low paid salaries, they might get the respect from this board but still getting the same income as a PhD from Nicaragua.

    At least with the PhD from Nicaragua, there are no high expectations and you know that it is just to get few gigs as an adjunct and to use the title in a book that you want to write.

    By the way, adjunct instructor and adjunct professors are not the same thing, the latter gets a better salary and usually more respect in the academic community, At least you can legally call yourself a professor. Not a big deal but again, the OP might want just a sense of accomplishment and be called a professor, Why not? he earned.
  5. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    Given how many big countries have overtly corrupt policy makers, it's interesting that anyone would summarily presume that being small is a sign of national corruption. It's also interesting how no one questions that basically any jurisdiction, however small, can competently oversee primary and secondary education, but for some reason tertiary education is magically three orders of magnitude more difficult.
  6. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    To regulate universities, you need university sector. San Marino has one school integrated into Italian system. Also, we are talking a school chartered in Mariana Islands and ran from New York waving some document from what is a village in Italy as "accreditation" - does anyone in actual Serene Republic of San Marino knows about that? My guess is no.
    Not that San Marino isn't cool. It's constitution was written in Latin in 1600, heads of state are two Captains Regent (yay), serving 6 month terms unpaid, and until recently the Parliament had like 30 parties. Oh, and they have Crossbow Corps. Very, very cool.
  7. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    That's true of most MBA programs, and no, a Groupon degree for $300 bucks won't get you a lucrative gig.

    True. Also, it might (not by itself, need to hustle) get someone a full-time gig at a community college, or promotion if already there. Yeah, UCN PhD CAN have utility; I hope they won't blow it.

    This is one of those things that are probably very school-specific. When I was part-time at Humber College, I think I "earned" a promotion from CE instructor to CE "professor" simply by seniority.
  8. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    It is a personality defect on my part, no doubt. In my own defense I can only say that Adam Smith has been seen by virtually everyone in the entire world as being a degree mill. Anyone can easily see this is true, just by googling it. ASU has moved here, it has moved there and wherever it goes and whoever assesses it's value the results are the same - degree mill. And now it is in little San Marino. Of all places in the world for it to land it has landed in this tiny little country. And you would have me believe that somehow this degree mill has seen the light, come to its senses and become a legitimate university. Coming to San Marino was just a happy accident. It's not that Adam Smith actively sought out a place where it could operate with impunity. Instead we are to believe that Adam Smith was just on vacation, fell in love with San Marino and decided to stay. And its not just that Adam Smith is located there, it's accredited there. So if a degree mill is accredited, either the degree mill is no longer a degree mill or the accreditor is not really an accreditor. Your logic is sound but you've omitted one factor. That is that Adam Smith is a known degree mill. Not just in the past but right now. Unless you are maintaining that it is not a degree mill, in which case I'd have to ask you why you think this leopard has changed its spots. So, you see I don't think badly of San Marino because it's small and I don't think they are incapable but I think Adam Smith University is a degree mill and San Marino has accredited it so San Marino must therefore be, umm, what's the right word . . . ?
  9. asianphd

    asianphd Member

    That's why I called them as certificate rather than degree.
    I list them as "MBA Certificate"
  10. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Not a game changer but it might provide you with an opportunity to expand your portfolio of teaching. If you have already have an accredited MBA in HR but now want to teach finance, you can do one of these for $299 MBA in Finance and then qualify to teach finance. There also some Masters in fields for self improvement such as music, arts, etc that can be just for personal development.

    You will end with a certificate from a real school with a real campus that did not cost you a fortune.

    Again, I am thinking of the typical adjunct that needs to survive by teaching 10 classes per term at $2K each. The typical guy that teaches Finance, Psychology, Theology and Biology at few Universities just to make a living.

    I hire sometimes part time faculty and many teach a large variety of fields and hold masters from several countries. I believe that a professional adjunct can benefit from low cost MBA certificates that have credit value for teaching purpose.
  11. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Adam Smith might be a degree mill but I doubt that nowadays with so many cheap and flexible options people might be interested in San Marino degrees (no offence). The OP selected Adam Smith because at the time it was affordable and provided to him a perfect solution to transfer credit that at the time was not possible otherwise so please forgive him. I remember quite few adjuncts in the 90s with PhDs from Columbia State University, these degrees were quite common in the 90s to boost adjunct CVs but nowadays nobody uses these degrees as they are tagged all over the internet as frauds and it makes more sense to do a PhD from a Nicaraguan school that costs less and it is a legal accredited school.

    We are in different times with so many affordable options that are accredited, at the end of the day it comes to return of investment, many of the online schools with no ranking such as Walden, Capella, Trident, Kaplan are quite expensive for a school that will give you a degree that might lead to a low paid adjunct job or just a little pay increase as a high school or community college teacher. It makes more sense for a person looking for an adjunct career or a little pay bump just to do a Nicaraguan degree and fill your CV with masters propios from Spain, the total investment would be like 5K rather than 100K at the result would be the same.
  12. laferney

    laferney Member

    I believe as Kizmet says that Adam Smith is now a degree mill and has been for years. I was honest in telling readers about my experience - it was a new program, Dr Bear felt it had value and I used RA graduate credits to obtain it. For those old enough to remember there was a lot of excitement with Bear's guides in the 80s and nineties as new models of education, new areas of study and interesting programs were springing up. I couldn't wait for each edition - it was interesting stuff. The early model used by ADAM Smith U was similar to The University of the State of New York. -convert RA courses, tests, portfolios into a degree. A recent degreeinfo member posted a question on how to convert some RA graduate level courses into a degree. There is no program that allows this. So Adam Smith,s initial concept was g0od. They however never sought real accredit ion, and changed this model which turned into a diploma mill. I don't feel bad about it. It was learning experience. I hope this aids others, esp. regarding new programs.
  13. AsianStew

    AsianStew Active Member

    @RFValve , thanks for all the good info in this thread! @laferney , thanks for the details about UNC! @asianphd , for myself, I would have it listed as a PDG or Graduate Diploma instead of a Masters Certificate, I think a Masters Diploma may work as well. I think having the word Masters confuses people... I recall Graduate/Masters certificates are generally 12-18, up to 21 credits and Graduate/Masters diplomas are 24-30 credits.

    I am currently doing the Universidad Isabel I as I think of them like MOOC courses such as the ones from coursera, edx, futurelearn, udacity and upgrad... some may be used for a mini credential and ladder up towards a Masters program, but for me, it's just used as a preview/overview of a Masters program, I am using it like a Post-Graduate Diploma. Anyone else think of doing things this way?

    This is what I believe and gather these Spanish credentials to be, they're considered equivalent to a Graduate Diploma vs a Masters because it is a set of courses that total roughly 30 credits when translated from 60 ECTS and come without a graduate capstone, project, or thesis. The main difference with a Masters is just that, I am curious if there is an option to change or upgrade these to an "oficial" from the "propio" by just taking the final capstone, project or thesis if the courses are exactly the same. Someone should send a message to Universidad Isabel I and find out, heck, i'll just do that for the sake of knowing...
    SteveFoerster likes this.
  14. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Yes, it is possible but a bit expensive. As you are getting ECTS credits, you can try to transfer them to a British School that allows ECTS credit transfer. I tried myself the program below but it is a bit expensive, you can get a Masters degree for 5K USD. You are required to complete some credits with them and for this reason the price.

    Not all the NACES accredited evaluation services are the same. I used WES but this is the most strict one, WES wouldn't evaluate for example a PhD from UCN because according to them Nicaragua does not qualify for doctoral degrees equivalency and they wouldn't also evaluate degrees from Azteca or other schools discussed here. However, the PhD from UCN was evaluated with positive results from another NACES accredited service.

    So a cheap way to do this is by trying few NACES accredited services and see who can give you the master's equivalence. Technically, 30 graduate credits could be equivalent to a US degree so it is a subjective matter. If you spend few hundred dollars and get it recognized this way, it will be the cheapest option.

    The fact that the master propio lacks a thesis, might not be an issue for some foreign evaluation services as many schools in the US grant Masters degrees without a thesis so you might want to try this route.
  15. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    By the way, I believe this is the future of graduate education, courses from coursera, efx, udacity etc. Graduate education is expensive because the human element, if you automate education with online platforms, one professor can teach thousands and reduce cost.

    I work in education and most of our masters programs have almost no enrollment other than the MBA that it is still popular because it has no thesis and because it has a lot of employment support for graduates so you are buying the right to use placement, coaching, etc with the degree.

    Our PhD programs have little enrollment as the placement rate is only 50%, this is for business doctorates so you can imagine placement rates for Arts, Education, etc. Salaries are only about 10% higher than masters graduates so the PhD is not a good option from the ROI perspective.

    Some Canadian schools are now offering DBAs and targeting professionals rather than prospect academics but I am not so sure if the market cares about DBA graduates. So far. DBA graduates are welcome in Administration in academic settings but not so much in the private industry that does not seem to care much about the DBA.

    The future of the education is uncertain but the trend of graduates is to look for cheaper options for continuing education and employers are supporting the use of online education from coursera, edx, etc that seem to be doing a good job.

    The $299 Spanish MBA is not so different from some of the no name schools in the US that offer online MBAs with little instructor interaction and rely mainly on online exams. To me, it is comparable to Kaplan, Aspen, or any semi automated school that just uses the instructor as the TA for a canned course that runs like a factory machine. The difference is price, no American school even unaccredited ones can beat the $299. It is like Dr Matta from the Sipmsons, the Mexican Dr that performs the same surgery for $199 that costs thousands of Dlls in the the US.
  16. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I’d assume that most of the people in the business doctorate program had jobs at the front end. How do you measure “placement?”
  17. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    The OP is a Psych Nurse Practitioner and adjunct professor, and his PhD was accepted by his employer, a RA school. That's a win, no matter what Levicoff wants to stir up.
    One thing that ought to be clear: there is nothing wrong with Sammarinese degrees; the only University there IS an Italian public university with commensurate EU recognition. Adam Smith is NOT a San Marino school; they spin a tale based on some meaningless pieces of paper. More likely than not these are derived from an empty husk of AIS San Marino, which may have had some sort of degree-granting authority but no one in San Marino could remember they existed - even when it still did.
  18. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    The number of graduates that find jobs within 3 months. Many PhD graduates have to do post doctoral work before landing a full time position. I cannot share the link because this would be bad publicity for my school. MBA placement rate is close to 100% and only 10K less on average less than PhD graduates.

    Many end as adjuncts or administrators in academia. Others find jobs in industry or government. At the end, all PhDs find some sort of work but placement is not fast.

    There is also an over supply of pychologist and counselors, I believe a psychiatric nurse most likely makes more money and is more busy than a psychologist so OP is busy and the PhD is just for another part time career as an adjunct.
  19. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    These sorts of schools cause problems for me because I'm unaccustomed to the non-US higher education systems along with the governmental counterparts re accreditation, etc.. Still, it's good to learn something about these systems. As it becomes more common for people to cross boundaries to acquire their education it's good to know more about the similarities and differences.
  20. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    Saera appears to be connected to Universidad Isabel I. Interesting because ENEB seems to be connected to Universidad Isabel I as well and offering $300 Masters programs. Universidad Isabel looks to be legitimate as it looks like it's approved by Spain's Ministry of Education (someone can correct me if I'm wrong). So if Saera is actually working with Isabel, then they are offering a legitimate program.

    I've learned that the American concept of accreditation and legitimacy is not shared globally so I'm keeping that in mind. In other parts of the world, an unrecognized school can be legitimized by being partnered with a recognized school, in fact much of the text you find calls these associations "accreditation". The unrecognized school is "accredited" by the recognized school. A student studies at the unrecognized entity and then receives a degree from the recognized entity. To American ears this sounds shady, but internationally this appears to be normal, so we need to adjust our thinking to international concepts in this situation and not be handcuffed entirely by American thinking.

    Getting all of that out of the way, expecting a foreign degree to align with the American system is not being reasonable, and I see reviews on ENEB where people are yelling "scam! It's not accredited in America!" It's pure ignorance because there shouldn't be any expectation that a foreign school be accredited in the United States. Sure, there are some international schools that have U.S. accreditation, but that's extremely rare.

    What I'm looking forward to seeing is how a degree from this association shakes out after a degree equivalency evaluation.
    SteveFoerster likes this.

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