Avoiding Online Degree Mills

Every student that is looking to obtain his or her Master’s degree online has to be aware of fraudulent online universities that are known as “degree mills”. The main focus of degree mills is the fast production and distribution of phony diplomas. Instead of requiring practical education experiences, they offer you credit for your life experiences. As long as you pay their required fees you will get your diploma.

Earning your Master’s degree online from degree mills might initially look like a good idea. The schools are very savvy with their advertising and making themselves look legit. Degree mills might offer you your Master’s degree online in a much shorter time or for less cost than a traditional university. For a slight extra cost, you can even be considered to graduate with honors.

The problem with degree mills often comes long after the student has paid his or her fees for a Master’s degree online and goes to look for a job. Life experiences may not be acceptable by state and federal laws, making it difficult to find a job that is acceptable. Plus, the prevalence of degree mills has made some employers wary of online degrees in general, making it difficult for any student who has not attended a traditional university to gain employment.

A student looking to gain a Master’s degree online needs to be aware of online degree mills. With a little research, you should be able to spot them through the many fronts that they put up to try and look legitimate. Start by looking at the web address for the university. Those from accredited schools will have .edu in their designation. You can also check the U.S. Department of Education’s list of accredited universities.

It also helps to be aware of the wording that degree mills use. They may claim to be “nationally accredited” or “accredited worldwide.” The importance is who they are accredited by. Some degree mills will set up phony accreditation agencies to look more legitimate. In the United States, you can check to see if the accrediting agency is recognized with the Council for Higher Education. They will also be able to tell you if the school’s accreditation status is current.

Another thing to be aware of is that the amount of advertising does not affect the authenticity of a school. Degree mills may appear on every search engine on the Internet, but this does not make them any more believable. All it means is that they have a large budget for advertising. So when looking for a Master’s degree online, remember to look into all of the schools, not just those that come up first.

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