ERIC Number: ED483250
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Sep-23
Diploma Mills: Diploma Mills Are Easily Created and Some Have Issued Bogus Degrees to Federal Employees at Government Expense. GAO-04-1096T.
Cramer, Robert J.
US Government Accountability Office
GAO investigations revealed the relative ease with which a diploma mill can be created and bogus degrees obtained. Records obtained obtained from schools and agencies likely understate the extent to which the federal government has paid for degrees from diploma mills and other unaccredited schools. Many agencies have difficulty in providing reliable data because they do not have systems in place to properly verify academic degrees or to detect fees for degrees that are masked as fees for training courses. Agency data obtained likely do not reflect the true extent to which senior-level federal employees have diploma mill degrees. This is because the agencies do not sufficiently verify the degrees that employees claim to have or the schools that issued the degrees, which is necessary to avoid confusion caused by the similarity between the names of accredited schools and the names assumed by diploma mills. It was found that there are no uniform verification practices throughout the government whereby agencies can obtain information and conduct effective queries on schools and their accreditation status.
Descriptors: Academic Degrees, Federal Government, Government Employees, Higher Education, Deception, Credibility, Investigations, Expenditures
U.S. Government Accountability Office, 441 G Street NW, Room LM, Washington, DC 20548. Tel: 202-512-6000; TDD: 202-512-2537; Fax: 202-512-6061.
Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: US Government Accountability Office