What is a Diploma Mill?

Diploma Mill Infographic

There are many things that jobs can require of people. Whether it’s following a certain dress code, meeting deadlines and quotas, or putting in extra hours – these are all actions that can’t be faked. Dishonesty is a very dangerous quality to have in an employee, and hiring managers might be surprised to learn just how often deceit is used by hopeful applicants that inevitably become “promising” employees.

Sadly, and frequently, applicants do not always provide the truth when it comes to filling out job applications. Past employment dates are lengthened, former salaries are inflated, credentials are falsified, and the list goes on. One of the most commonly falsified qualifications is a person’s education history. Statistics show that nearly 40% of all applicants lie about their education. While enhancing your GPA is a terrible thing to do, many applicants are doing much worse by purchasing their “degree” from online diploma mills.

A diploma mill is a company or establishment that allows people to buy academic degrees and accomplishments. The catch; these “places of education” lack legitimate accreditations – meaning the degrees they offer are worthless. Diploma mills are crafty in the sense that they title themselves with genuine sounding university names, here are some examples below:

  • Foundation University
  • Luke School of Medicine
  • LaSalle University
  • Regis University

One thing is certain, it can be difficult to spot a diploma mill from just the name alone – luckily, there are other telltale signs that will help you uncover them.

  1. They claim you can earn a degree in just days, weeks, or months.
  2. Homework, exams, projects, and other schoolwork is not existent.
  3. “Life experience” can count towards your desired degree.
  4. A degree has a flat fee, rather than costs per credit hour, among other tuition rates.
    • The average college degree costs $37,000 and takes 4+ years to obtain.

One diploma mill operated by a Connecticut man offered Associate’s Degrees for $475, Bachelor’s Degrees for $495, Master’s Degrees for $525, and Doctoral Degrees for $550. Another mill, that operated in Europe, sold diplomas for $34,000. As you can see, their prices were very different, but their product was the same – worthless.

Employers and aspiring students alike can have a difficult time discerning diploma mills from legitimate universities. It is important to carefully research an establishment if you are looking to get a degree from there. If something sounds too good to be true, then it usually is. Fortunately, CompuFACT has the resources and experience necessary to uncover these diploma mills and fraudulent degrees. We’ve been helping professionals and individuals in this matter for the past 23 years.

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