How to Avoid Diploma Mills and Find Accredited Online Colleges and Universities
A Guest Post By Michael L. Moss
As the job market grows more and more competitive, employers are looking to find applicants who possess a minimum of a college degree. Other more specialized jobs require a master's education and certification from an accredited institution. Unfortunately, with the rising cost of tuition and the time constraints that come with being a conventional student, pursuing this type of degree may be financially and physically impossible. However, many prospective students are turning to online colleges and universities as a way to earn a degree in a timely and convenient manner. This in turn has also created a large market for profit based online universities, which has also fostered an environment for scams.
While traditional universities try to sell students on the myth of prestige and campus life, there is technically little to no difference in the education amassed at a university. The quality of the courses are the same, gleaning information from the same textbooks and curriculum. Research has shown that graduates from these colleges are as well trained and effective in the workforce as their traditionally schooled counterparts. Yet many online colleges are pure scams, with no academic standards or accountability.
The key to differentiating between proper and scam online colleges comes down to accreditation. Accredited schools will have more money at their disposal for instructional and technological advancements. They will have standards as to the quality of student admitted. They will have limits on the size of enrollment and the number of students per class. While it is difficult for an individual to decipher this particular data, many regulatory bureaus have been set up for this purpose, certifying and accrediting schools that meet these standards. Before you enroll, it is critical you research whether the college has been independently reviewed by a local or federal accreditation board. Many schools will claim to be accredited simply as a sales tactic. Not only will an independent review board give a school accreditation, but will grade the college in comparison to both conventional universities and online universities.
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