On-line Credits issues and challenges:
UNESCO Emphasizes on Availability of On-line Education (Click here)
UNESCO Discourages Degree Mills (Click here)
UNESCO Portal to Recognized Higher Education Institutions (click here)
Why degree mills are a problem (click to source)
Fraudulent and low quality providers, popularly known as ‘degree mills’, threaten the credibility of the online provision of courses internationally by offering credentials and degrees that are costly but of dubious educational value. Electronically-delivered degrees are largely unregulated and pose serious challenges in many countries in the world. Although comprehensive and reliable data on degree mills are not available, thousands of degree mills are estimated to operate world wide. The growing demand for higher education has created a significant market for such providers but few governments or organisations are positioned to take needed steps to educate and protect the public.
Degree mills are a special threat to eLearning because some jurisdictions, in an attempt to choke off the bogus web-based operations, have put an outright ban on the recognition of qualifications gained online.
How can you tell the difference between a diploma mill and a legitimate college?
Spotting diploma mills can be difficult. Below are 10 warning signs. If you see two or more of these warning signs, you may be dealing with a diploma mill.
1. You can earn degrees in significantly less time than at a traditional college or university.
2. The college places a heavy emphasis on offering college credits for life experience.
3. The college sends you a diploma if you pay a fee.
4. The college lets you “buy” a grade point average and academic honors.
5. The college charges tuition by the degree, or offers discounts if you enroll in multiple degree programs. (Traditional colleges generally charge by the credit hour, course, or semester, although some vocational schools charge tuition per program.)
6. The college’s address is a post office box or suite number.
7. The college’s Web site does not include information that a traditional college Web site might include, such as a mission statement, course requirements for specific programs, library resources, and faculty information.
8. The college provides only vague information about its faculty or has no faculty, only “evaluators,” “mentors” or “counselors.”
9. The college claims to be accredited by an association that either does not exist or is not recognized by accreditation bodies.
10. A name has been chosen that is uncomfortably close to a well-known and well-respected college.