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Degree Mills & Accreditation Mills
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Degree Mills & Accreditation Mills

In their quest for higher education and training, students and the public in the United States sometimes encounter “degree mills” – dubious providers of educational offerings or operations that offer certificates and degrees that may be considered bogus. They may also encounter “accreditation mills” – dubious providers of accreditation and quality assurance that may offer a certification of quality of institutions without a proper basis.

Degree mills and accreditation mills mislead and harm. In the United States, degrees and certificates from mills may not be acknowledged by other institutions when students seek to transfer or go to graduate school. Employers may not acknowledge degrees and certificates from degree mills when providing tuition assistance for continuing education. “Accreditation” from an accreditation mill can mislead students and the public about the quality of an institution. In the presence of degree mills and accreditation mills, students may spend a good deal of money and receive neither an education nor a useable credential.

The CHEA Website contains five major sections:

  • The first section provides links to information about institutions and programs that are accredited by recognized U.S. accrediting organizations.
  • The second section includes links to material on how accreditation operates and how to look for organizations that may be accreditation mills.
  • The third section focuses on degree mills: links to potentially pertinent information and information on how degree mills may be identified.
  • The fourth section provides links to state-by-state information on institutions and programs authorized to operate in the respective states. Some of these states also provide information about entities they believe to be degree mills.
  • The fifth section contains links to international directories of higher education institutions.

For more information about this, please visit the CHEA website, click here. 


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