There is an important distinction between foreign institutions and agencies that accredit foreign institutions. The U.S. Department of Education does not recognize foreign accrediting agencies, however, accrediting agencies that have been recognized by the Secretary of Education may accredit foreign institutions. There are also foreign institutions that market their degrees in the United States, and foreign education ministries may recognize these institutions.

Tip: Look out for foreign diploma mills selling their degrees in this country.

Some of these foreign diploma mills claim to have approval from the education ministry of their country to offer degrees, when, in reality, they’re operating without the knowledge of the country. Often foreign diploma mills will use the name of the foreign education ministry in their marketing material to make them seem more legitimate. The institution is trying to make students incorrectly believe that its programs have been reviewed and meet some level of quality.

Earning a degree from a foreign institution that is not accredited by a nationally recognized agency can be problematic. To learn more about the issues and problems that may arise from pursuing an unaccredited degree, read over the frequently asked questions found at this site: http://www.degree.net/guides/accreditation_faqs.html.

Tip: Before enrolling in a foreign institution, find out as much as you can about the accreditor and the institutions it accredits, as well as the recognition process of the foreign education ministry. This information will give you a better picture of the institution and its reputation.

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