Diplomas & degrees are investigated for a variety of reasons.
Many positions require a certain level of education. Processing education history checks will ensure that an applicant’s listed information is true and correct.
Our educational verification is used to verify colleges attended, duration of attendance, and if the applicant was issued a degree or diploma. Additionally, we can verify if the applicant graduated high school or virtually any trade school in the country.
Crimcheck will verify:
- Institution attended
- Date of graduation/dates of attendance
- Diploma earned
Many post secondary schools use special websites to house their education records, rather than releasing the information themselves. To use such websites, companies need to have a subscription or use a third party verifier.
What is National Student Clearinghouse?
The National Student Clearinghouse is a third party verification website, where over 3,000 universities and colleges across the United States provide their student and degree information. This cumulative reporting service is the leader in its industry of educational reporting. It is compliant with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act which protects the student’s privacy in regards to their education records.
Diploma Mills vs. Degree Mills
Although these two terms are used interchangeably, they really are two different things:
- Diploma Mills: Issues fake diplomas from a bona fide university. The schools these degrees come from are not accredited and therefore hold no value compared to degrees from accredited institutions.
- Degree Mills: Issues fake degrees from fictitious schools. Often times, these degree mills provide diplomas that look legitimate from schools that seem authentic and sometimes there even are call centers that answer inquiries regarding the validity of these degrees.
The truth of the matter is that a diploma or degree from these mills have no value and are worthless.
Accredited vs. Unaccredited Institutions
Accredited institutions follow a strict set of curriculum standards that must be maintained year to year. If a school is not accredited, they are not providing the same high level of academics as an accredited school nor do they provide their students with the skills and experience necessary for their careers.
The federal government does not regulate school accreditation; this is done by specific accreditation agencies. For a complete list of these agencies, you can visit the United States Department of Education or The Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
Red Flags to Look Out for:
- Degrees that were earned in a suspiciously short amount of time. It usually takes at least a couple years to earn a bachelor’s degree. If there is a short gap between the attendance start date and graduation date, it’s possible this could be a fake diploma.
- Credits that were earned based off “life experience”. Accredited colleges only offer course credits based off completed curriculum. When a credit is earned from “life experience” it usually means someone paid for those credits without doing any or very little work.
- University addresses that go to P.O. Box numbers or suites. A bona fide college will have its own address, with the potential of going to a specific college office.
Terms to Know
Accreditation: A strict set of curriculum standards which schools must maintain.
Diploma Mill: Issues fake diplomas from a legitimate university. The schools these degrees come from are not accredited and therefore hold no value compared to degrees from accredited institutions.
Degree Mill: Issues fake degrees from fictitious schools. Often times, these degree mills provide diplomas that look legitimate from schools that seem authentic and sometimes there even are call centers that answer inquiries regarding the validity of these degrees
Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA): US federal law which gives students access to their education records. It also allows the student to amend records, if incorrect and mandates that the student give consent for the school to release the records. For additional information, visit the U.S. Department of Education website.
GED: General Educational Development, a nationally recognized test for adults who did not complete high school to measure their skills and knowledge. If an individual passes the test, the GED is the equivalent to high school credentials.
National Student Clearinghouse: The National Student Clearinghouse is a third party verification website, where universities and colleges across the United States provide their student and degree information.