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The Complete Guide to Online MBA Accreditation

One of the most important factors to research when checking out online schools is proper accreditation. Accreditation means that your online MBA will be recognized as legitimate by employers, other universities, and the general public. It also means that you'll be attending a program that is recognized as one that will consistently deliver a high quality of education, and ensures that you're dealing with an educational organization that you can trust.

Without proper accreditation, you will have no guarantee that the MBA you've worked so hard for is worth anything more than the paper it's printed on and the knowledge you've taken out of it. In addition to legitimacy and quality, studying with a properly accredited online MBA program ensures that you will be able to easily transfer your credits, degrees, and diplomas should you decide to continue your education elsewhere. In short, it is absolutely essential that you attend an online MBA program that is recognized by a legitimate accreditation agency.

Becoming accredited is a major step to being a legitimate MBA school. To become accredited, the school must be evaluated by the accreditation agency, which is always a third party. In this process, the accreditation agencies will investigate the school for quality of education and sound business practices. The process of accreditation is important, as it guarantees to students that the school being accredited should be able to provide a high quality of education.

Most accreditation agencies for MBAs are legitimate, however, there are a number of organizations that operate as fronts to sub-par schools frequently known as "diploma mills," which generally grant worthless degrees in return for a specific amount of money. Just about anyone can set up a fake accreditation agency like this, so it's important that you carefully evaluate an accreditation agency before you trust its seal of approval on an MBA program.

Follow these guidelines to ensure that you're dealing with a legitimate accreditation agency:

  • Carefully evaluate the schools that the agency grants accreditation to. When checking out an online MBA accreditation agency, be sure to take a look at the schools they've stamped their seal of approval on. If you don't get a good feeling from the schools they support, chances are you're dealing with a phony. Another way to check out schools is to look into neutral, third party organizations. Most legitimate schools will be listed by authoritative organizations like the International Handbook of Universities, the Commonwealth Universities Yearbook, and the US Department of Education's College Navigator.
  • Seek a higher authority. Did you know that accreditation agencies often belong to organizations and directories? These higher authorities are an excellent resource for investigating the legitimacy of an online MBA accreditation agency. Two excellent organizations to use are the Council on Higher Education Accreditation and the US Department of Education. Through the Council of Higher Education, you can find a directory of trusted organizations for quality assurance, accreditation, and Ministries of Education all over the world. In the United States, the US Department of Education maintains a list of organizations that are recognized as legitimate accreditation agencies.
  • Consider regional, specialized, and distance learning accreditation. There are different types of accreditation agencies: those that cover regional, specialized, and distance learning. Regional agencies are the most common and widely accepted. They are generally based in the area of the United States in which your online MBA program is based. Specialized, or professional accreditation agencies focus on a specific field of work. In the case of MBA programs, a good example would be the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Finally, there are accreditation agencies that focus completely on distance learning and online programs. They are generally not as influential as regional and specialized agencies, but organizations like the Distance Education and Training Council are gaining in status.

Using this knowledge, you should be able to evaluate your online MBA accreditation agency that supports an online MBA program that you can trust. A legitimate online MBA accreditation agency is an excellent tool for finding an online MBA program that will deliver upon its promise to provide you with a high quality of education and legitimate recognition of your hard work.

Featured Online Business Schools & MBA Programs

Capella University – Master’s Degrees. An ideal choice for working adults, Capella University is dedicated to providing quality learning environments for all students. With business degree options that are affordable, Capella lets the student choose when and where to take classes.

More Info on the Capella University

American InterContinental University – Associate’s & Bachelor’s Degrees. With multiple business concentration degrees, American InterContinental University is ideal for any student looking for a degree focusing on Accounting, Marketing, Finance, International Business, or Management. Their flexible programs also allow students to engage in other responsibilities while earning their degree entirely online.

More Info on the American InterContinental University

Kaplan University – Associate’s & Bachelor’s Degrees. As one of the largest and most prolific online universities, Kaplan University provides numerous MBA & Bachelor of Science Degrees in Business at their campus and online locations. Full-time and part-time students will be satisfied with the business degree plans offered by Kaplan.

More Info on the Kaplan University

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