Hundreds of diploma mill "schools" offer fake degrees in exchange for cash payments. Others offer a substandard education with a minimal work load. Before enrolling in any online program, make sure that it is properly accredited. Here's how.
1. Check online college accreditation status via the web.
So many new diploma mill programs begin each year that it’s hard to keep up. If you’re concerned about a college’s accreditation, your best bet is to check its status from the United States Department of Education. Their Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs
will let you look up any legitimately accredited online college. If the online college of concern isn’t listed in the database, it isn’t accredited.
2. Review Oregon’s list of unaccredited programs.
Oregon’s Office of Degree Authorization
does a good job of keeping track of unaccredited colleges. If you want to find out the truth about a diploma mill program, you can learn more about it on their website. Find out where these businesses are based and what trouble they’ve encountered with the government. Use this option only after you’ve checked a college’s accreditation status with the USDE – not all diploma mill programs will be listed.
3. Double check with Michigan’s diploma mill list.
Michigan also keeps an updated list of unaccredited colleges. Take a look at their PDF document
to review hundreds of unacceptable online colleges. If you want your online degree to be accepted in academia and the workplace, steer clear of these unreliable programs.