Unaccredited Degrees Before Accreditation

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by russ, May 21, 2005.

  1. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Re: Re: Re: Shocked, disappointed, saddened

    Interesting thing: being lectured on courage by someone afraid to even post using his real name. 'Nuff said.
  2. uncle janko

    uncle janko member


    Trolls can't spell.
  3. Morgan Khanstein

    Morgan Khanstein New Member

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Shocked, disappointed, saddened

    Rich, the "all you Knights and Zealots...squealing" statement didn't actually refer to you. You, sir, are a citadel of courage and heroism. I do deplore the way you have been mistreated on other forums. My shock and disappointment with the "don't feed the troll" comment was precisely because it came from you.
  4. Ian Anderson

    Ian Anderson Active Member

    Re: Another non-issue from the "mill shills"

    Actually students at these new California schools earn credits/degrees from an accredited partner school.

    Many years ago I took quite a few units from the unaccredited Instutute for Professional Development, the forerunner of the University of Phoenix. At that time the courses/degrees were provided in an arrangement with the accredited University of Redlands.
  5. Morgan Khanstein

    Morgan Khanstein New Member

    Ian, this seems to illustrate quite well the entire "fog of accreditation."

    Bill, isn't it a bit unfair to ask that all UA schools (e.g. independent, private, expiremental and low funded) be placed on the same track as schools already ear marked as part of the CSU and UC system?
  6. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    Re: Another non-issue from the "mill shills"

    At least one Regional Accreditation agency, NEASC, does have a policy of retroactive accreditation, as per the following:
    I don't know if all regional accreditation agencies have this policy, but it seems like they should, because it's a reasonable way to address the concern raised in this thread. For example, the Olin College of Engineering (a new and innovative insitution in Massachusetts) anticipates retroactive accreditation from both NEASC and ABET. Thus, the accreditation system need not unfairly penalize graduates of newly-created institutions.
  7. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Shocked, disappointed, saddened

    Thank you. We disagree. But we can leave it at that.
  8. Morgan Khanstein

    Morgan Khanstein New Member

    Uncle Janko,

    I can’t believe you “trolled” me twice. Such “dissing” demands a response, lest my honor as an Esquire, and esteemed member of degreeinfo, be placed in jeopardy.

    Are you looking to rumble? Allow me warn you:
    While you bite like a flea, I sting like a bumble bee

    I may not be Ali, but I’ll dispatch you with glee
    – so don’t mess with me

    What, still want to rumble?
    Then be prepared to
    And tumble
  9. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    Fairness means treating one and all the same. I don't see how making them both become accredited is unfair?
  10. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    Besides, financial stability is an IMPORTANT factor in assuring a quality education. Financial failure can leave students stranded with incomplete programs. Unstable institutions won't attract qualified faculty. Institutions must have sufficient wherewithal to provide adequate facilities and library resources for the education on offer.

    Schools without a minimum adequate level of funding SHOULD be closed down.
  11. Morgan Khanstein

    Morgan Khanstein New Member

    Bill, let me restate that I am not against accreditation. Certainly, it is a secure means of communicating that minimum quality standards have been met to the general public.
    However, accreditation can stifle experimental models, wouldn’t you agree? For example, let us say, for arguments sake, that “hypothetical university XYZ” were to establish a learning model in which, in order to receive a degree:

    1. Students enter into an agreement with the college that they will complete X number of reading assignments, watch and listen to Y number of lectures, and perform Z amount of community service during a mutually agreed upon amount of time.

    2. Students must participate in X number of peer facilitated discussions with a cohort on a particular theme (proof of which is the number of posts)

    3. Students must maintain a log of reflections on the materials read, lectures watched or listened to, themes discussed and service learning engaged in.

    4. At the end of the designated period of time, students must complete a summative project, submit their log/diary and pass a comprehensive oral examination (in person) at the school.
    It should be noted that in this model there will be no ongoing process evaluations. All work will be on one’s own and in discussion with one’s peers. The only evaluation that will be conducted will be at the end of the proscribed period of time.

    Needless to say, such an experimental model would not be favorably received by one of the RAs. However, I would be interested to see how students would fare, and whether or not self-directed learning could work. If it were proven that the graduates did fare well in comparison to a traditional model, why not let the model stand, despite the fact that the RAs wouldn’t grant accreditation (because of a “culture” and commitment to a certain RA prescribed delivery system)?
  12. Morgan Khanstein

    Morgan Khanstein New Member

    Instead of closing low funded schools down, states could require that UA schools post a bond equal to the tuition of the number of students enrolled in any one semester. This would provide some security of reimbursement should a school go out of business. Your suggestion allows only the Donald Trumps of the world to open new schools.
  13. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Any school claiming that it's reason for not being accredited is that accreditation is too expensive is either (a) lying or (b) so financially unsound as to make it untrustworthy.
  14. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    It's not MY suggestion. The processes of accreditation and, in California, state approval, BOTH require a financial review.

    A bond might protect the student for his fees for a given semester against the school closing but it would do nothing to assure adequate facilities and library, attract and retain competent facilty, or even protect the long-term student from losing the value of his UNACCREDITED coursework completed in the years before the current semester.

    Yes, the result IS expensive. Running a college level educational institution IS expensive. Creating a substandard program that essentially cheats the student of the education he contracts to receive is certainly CHEAPER but that fact doesn't recommend the idea to ME.
  15. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    Yes, I would agree. Distance learning is just such an experiment, or at least it was 20/30 years ago. However, my view is that the explosion of diploma mills in recent years has laid barren the opportunity for bona fide unaccredited general education (meaning not specialized) schools of higher learning. Here's what I believe should be a very enlightening and frightening experiment for anyone considering getting an unaccredited degree. Do a Google search of how many times CCU was called a diploma mill by misinformed reporters/journalists.
  16. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    One of my many criticisms of the American Bar Association accreditation standards is that they stifle innovation in legal education.

    But I have never heard ANY evidence that would suggest that an "innovative" or "experimental" educational process would free a school of the need for adequate financial resources.

    "Innovative" or "experimental" programs call for GREATER scrutiny to be sure that these terms aren't just a smokescreen for "substandard".
  17. Morgan Khanstein

    Morgan Khanstein New Member

    The problem is that a very good UA school might have poor financial resources, whereas a bad school or even diploma mill might be rolling in $$$.

    I would suggest that good UA schools build slowly according to their resources so as not to put students at risk.
  18. BillDayson

    BillDayson New Member

    I agree.

    I don't think that the accreditors' requirements are impossibly demanding either.

    Intercultural Institute of California is a tiny school that operates out of an old Victorian house in San Francisco. They are currently a candidate for regional accreditation with WASC, despite having a full-time-equivalent enrollment of five, according to WASC.

    Their successful candidacy surprises me frankly, because the smallest WASC school presently has about 40 students. But whatever's happening, this clearly indicates that barriers to entry aren't so high as to make them impossible for small institutions to scale.



    Of course, the barriers might still be high enough to make it difficult for the sole-proprietors out there. And non-accredited universities almost always seem to be sole proprietorships. Some individual, whether he lives in Denmark or out on some small Pacific island, owns and operates his own personal "university".

    So yeah, it might be hard for that kind of individual school owner to get his school accredited, unless he is rather wealthy and willing to sink a significant amount of money into the operation.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 24, 2005
  19. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    IMHO, any school that has poor financial resources is a school that should be shut down. The impact to current students and alumni is disasterous when a school closes down. The way to minimize this terrible impact is to close the school down sooner rather than latter or the best is to not let it open in the first place.

    I think that your second paragraph is a potential consideration for avoiding a problem that we're assuming exists?
  20. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    A "very good school" CANNOT have inadequate financial resources and still be a good school.

    It may suffer a tight budget; it may have to retrench and forego captial improvements for a while, it may even have to discontinue some programs BUT by "inadequate", I mean "inadequate to provide necessary facilities and library or to attract and retain qualified faculty" for the programs offered.

    I will admit that I sometimes wonder if the accreditor's definition of "adequate" may in fact be excessive but I really am in no position to judge that. The accreditor's member schools are in a position to judge and that is what they do.

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