On the DLTruth bulletin board, when they’re not busy attacking me, there is some interesting and useful information posted. Randall Flagg reported that he had searched through the literature of 550 schools, and found 50 that had a process to consider unaccredited degrees: about 9%. I asked for some details, and he wrote as follows, giving permission to post it here. There is good information here. Wouldn’t it be great if someone did the same research with the remaining 4,000-or-so schools that have recognized accreditation . . . as well as whether they distinguish among the kinds of unaccredited schools they will consider: California-approved vs. Alabama-licensed vs. St. Kitts-accredited, and so on.
Here’s what Mr. Flagg wrote, unedited:
I searched through 550 schools to find 50 that had a process to consider unaccredited degrees–9%. Maybe beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Had I checked with first tier schools (only) perhaps the acceptance rate would have been worse or even better if only at the fourth tier schools. I guess one man’s poke in the eye with a sharp stick is another’s eye massage. Or perhaps it mostly depends on what we want to find or where we hunt.
From what I could tell mostly case by case. _Here are a few examples:__
University of Hawaii at Manoa:_”Degrees from unaccredited institutions will be evaluated on a case by case basis.”__
Phoenix Seminary:_”Graduates of Unaccredited institutions, when accepted, are placed on academic probation for their first year of study at Phoenix Seminary……..etc.” __
Ohio State University: “This classification is assigned for one or more of the following reasons. The applicant has:_”1-A baccalaureate or professional degree from an unaccredited college or university.”__
Beacon University: “Graduates from unaccredited institutions may be accepted conditionally.”__
University of Idaho:_”GRE general appitude scores if bachelor’s degree is from an unaccredited institution.”__
Seattle Pacific University:_”SPU will therefore, review credentials from unaccredited institutions at the students request.”__
Liberty University:_”Applicants who hold a bachelor’s degree from an unaccredited institution may be admitted to some master’s degree programs on Academic Probation Status.”__
Arkansas State University:_”Or whose baccalaureate degree is from an unaccredited institution, may be granted Conditional Admission Status after…..etc.” __
Florida State University:_Unaccredited Undergraduate Degree:_”If you have your undergraduate degree from an unaccredited institution, but your GRE scores meet the “Minimum” requirement, we can consider your application.” __
American Indian University:_”Transfer of credit from non-accredited colleges will be awarded under the following conditions….etc.”__
University of Oregon:_”A student from an unaccredited institution, or one that offers the equivalent of bachelor’s degree instruction but not the degree itself, may be consdiered for admission under special procedures.”
Auburn University:_”Students transferring from an unaccredited institution may be granted provisional credit. When such credit is allowed, the final amount of credit will be determined upon completion by the student of one year of work at Auburn University….etc.” __
Eastern Oregon University:_”Course work taken at a non-accredited institution will be evaluated but not applied until the completion pf 35 EOU credits.” __
Troy State University, Dothan AL.:_”Students transferring from unaccredited institutions who have earned an overall grade point average of 2.0 (4.0 scale) or better may be granted provisional admission…etc.” **Troy also said it will not accept DETC accredited degrees but would work with me on an unaccredited degree. (strange that) __
Some of the schools don’t say no–but say send the transcripts and and xxxx number of dollars and we will let you know. So who really knows–9% — 15%– 20%– no way to know. Union Institute and University said they would have to see the details first.
I transferred credits from a state approved school to two DETC accredited schools. They asked no questions and I didn’t argue with them. My wild guess?? maybe as many as 20% of accredited schools would consider the transfer–but that’s just a guess. Many seem to be willing to listen–especially if you are serious–willing to pay and send them some signed papers. The final answer I don’t know–but if you look long enough you can find one who will. And one is all you need.
What is a Non-Accredited Degree?
Before diving into the specifics, it’s crucial to understand what a non-accredited degree is. Accreditation is a process in which an external agency evaluates and certifies the quality of an educational institution and its programs. Non-accredited degrees are typically offered by institutions that haven’t undergone this rigorous evaluation process or have failed to meet the established standards.
Colleges That Accept Non-Accredited Degrees
While non-accredited degrees may not be widely recognized, some colleges and universities are willing to accept them. These institutions often have more flexible admission policies, which can be beneficial for individuals with non-traditional educational backgrounds or those who have pursued non-accredited programs. However, it’s essential to note that acceptance of non-accredited degrees is not uniform across all colleges and universities. Here are a few things to consider:
- Community Colleges: Some community colleges may be more lenient in accepting non-accredited degrees, especially for transfer students. It’s best to check with the specific college you’re interested in.
- Private Institutions: Some private colleges and universities have more flexible admission policies and may consider applicants with non-accredited degrees. However, they might have stricter criteria for certain programs or majors.
- Online Schools: Many online schools offer programs that may accept non-accredited degrees, as they cater to a diverse range of students with varying educational backgrounds.
- Non-Degree Programs: Some institutions may offer non-degree programs or certificate courses that can be an alternative route to earning a recognized credential, even if you have a non-accredited degree.
What Can You Do with a Non-Accredited Degree?
Having a non-accredited degree doesn’t mean your educational journey ends there. There are several paths you can explore:
- Pursue Additional Education: One option is to enroll in an accredited program to earn a recognized degree. Many colleges and universities offer admission to individuals with non-accredited degrees, provided they meet specific admission requirements.
- Develop a Portfolio: If your non-accredited degree is in a creative field, such as art, writing, or design, you can build a strong portfolio to showcase your skills and work experience. Some employers value talent and experience over formal education.
- Gain Relevant Work Experience: Focus on gaining practical work experience in your chosen field. Networking and building a strong professional reputation can open doors even without a formal degree.
- Self-Education: The rise of online courses, workshops, and self-paced learning resources allows you to continue your education independently, often earning certificates to bolster your qualifications.
Is a Non-Accredited Degree Good?
The value of a non-accredited degree depends on your goals and the specific circumstances. While non-accredited degrees lack the automatic recognition and credibility of accredited ones, they can still be beneficial in certain situations:
- Personal Fulfillment: If your primary goal is personal growth and acquiring knowledge rather than seeking traditional employment, a non-accredited degree may be a satisfactory choice.
- Entrepreneurship: Non-accredited degrees can be suitable for entrepreneurs or individuals starting their businesses. Practical skills and experience often matter more in such cases.
- Specific Industries: Some industries, like the arts, may prioritize portfolios and talent over formal education. A non-accredited degree can serve as a stepping stone to gain access to these fields.
Accredited Degree vs. Non-Accredited Degree
To help you make an informed decision, let’s compare accredited and non-accredited degrees:
- Recognition: Accredited degrees are widely recognized and accepted by employers and other educational institutions. Non-accredited degrees lack this universal recognition.
- Career Opportunities: Accredited degrees open up more job opportunities and career advancement options, while non-accredited degrees may limit your choices.
- Transfer Credits: Accredited degrees are more likely to have transferable credits, making it easier to switch institutions or pursue further education.
- Financial Aid: Accredited degree programs are eligible for federal financial aid and scholarships, which may not be available for non-accredited degrees.
- Quality Assurance: Accreditation ensures that educational institutions meet certain quality standards, providing assurance of a high-quality education. Non-accredited institutions may lack this oversight.
Non-accredited degrees can be a viable option for some individuals under specific circumstances. However, they come with limitations and challenges, particularly in terms of recognition and career prospects. When considering a non-accredited degree, it’s crucial to research your options, set clear goals, and explore alternative pathways to achieve your educational and career objectives. Always consult with academic advisors and admissions departments to understand the acceptance policies of specific colleges and universities. Ultimately, your choice should align with your long-term aspirations and the industry you wish to enter.