Transfer Coursework: Is it Accredited?

August 11th, 2008

I stumbled across a fascinating article from the Idaho Statesman today about Canyon College (ID) courses and degrees not being accepted in transfer or by employers.

Janet Killen invested $5,500 and four years of her life getting what she thought was a master’s degree in nursing education from a Caldwell online college.

When she presented her degree in 2007 to Lane Community College in Eugene, Ore., where she teaches nursing, she was dumbfounded when administrators told her it was worthless in her state.

Moreover, Oregon state officials told her she must stop touting the diploma she received from Canyon College or she could face civil and criminal penalties for using an invalid degree. She has to notify a hospital where she works that her degree is not recognized in Oregon.

The Canyon College case actually provides a perfect transition to a discussion of why unaccredited work isn’t accepted in transfer here at OSU and at other regionally accredited colleges and universities. The regional accreditation bodies are critical to the functioning of our Education system because they are responsible for ensuring that the quality of education is consistent across their member institutions.

In order to protect the quality of education at the institution OSU can only accept credit/degrees in transfer from other regionally accredited institutions. It is important to note that the refusal to accept transfer work from unaccredited institutions doesn’t necessarily mean that the quality of education at those schools is substandard. However, we simply will not accept credit that we cannot verify is up to the standard of quality for regionally accredited schools.

The reality is this: there are a ton of diploma and accreditation scams out there designed to take advantage of folks who are seeking to better themselves with a college degree. The only way to protect yourself is to do independent research with the U.S. Department of Education.

If you are planning to complete work at another institution that you intend to transfer to OSU and are unsure as to whether the school is regionally accredited, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here at the Office of Admissions.

Leave your comments and questions below!


7 responses to “Transfer Coursework: Is it Accredited?”

  1. BV says:

    Nice post, JM. A clean description of how accreditation works (and a nice segue to your soon-to-be new role.

  2. Ty says:

    Transfering credits period is rough… I applied to OSU a few years ago from a highly accredited four year in McMinnville. After looking at the number of credits that tranfered I decided against OSU. It was roughly 70% of my credits, equivilant to thousands of dollars. I love the school, the teams etc, but I couldn’t afford to throw aways so many credits.

  3. James says:

    @ Ty,

    Sorry to hear that. Just underscores the point, though. Highly accredited does not equal regionally accredited. OSU will usually accept most credit that is academic in nature and college level unless, again, the accreditation isn’t right. I hope you will find a way to attend OSU sometime in the future.

  4. Ty says:


    I ended up graduating from Linfield, and now I live in North Albany. However, I may pursue an MBA from OSU… It is probably a couple of years away however.

    Thanks for the return reply.

  5. Hypotheek berekenen says:

    Strange situation your in, after infesting four years and 5 thousand dollars.

  6. James says:

    Point of clarification:

    It has been brought to our attention that the progression of this conversation between Ty and myself might suggest that Linfield College isn’t regionally accredited. This isn’t the case. Linfield is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities as is OSU:

    Don’t hesitate to leave any other comments or questions about accreditation on this post!


  7. cppp999 says:

    I transferred credits from Canyon College to Cal State Los Angeles which is a CA state university without any problem and they were graduate classes.

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