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Protection from Unaccredited or Diploma Mill Schools

Posted in News & Events, News Articles on 08/02/2007

With the advent of the internet, there has been an explosion in the number of unaccredited or diploma mills schools.  With the proliferation of sites on the internet promising “degrees for life experience”, “degrees without setting foot inside of a classroom,” “earn the degree you deserve in six weeks,” and others, it has become easier for people to simply buy a college degree without having the skills or qualifications necessary.  How can you be sure that your applicant has attended an accredited school?  BackTrack has created a database of schools used by our investigations staff which identifies those schools that are considered suspect and helps protect your hiring process from under-qualified applicants.  We are committed to helping our clients determine if the degrees their applicants are claiming are indeed accredited by nationally recognized agencies.  When an applicant claims a degree from a school that is suspect, our staff will let you know so that you can be more informed in your hiring decision.

What are some clues that a school is a diploma mill?

  • Is the degree awarded mainly for life experience with minimal or no class work?  Legitimate schools may award a few credits for prior experience, but the bulk of the degree is earned through class work.
  • Is there a flat fee for a degree?  Legitimate schools offer prices based on credits taken, not a flat fee.
  • Are exams taken only online?  Legitimate schools may allow class work to be done online, but exams are given in proctored settings.
  • Does the school claim accreditation in a suspect organization or make claims to justify why they are not accredited by a traditional organization?  Legitimate schools make a brief mention by whom accredits them, but they do not spend time explaining the accreditation source.

For more information on diploma mills or to check if a school is traditionally accredited, click here.