The ODA validates individual claims of degree possession, enforces restrictions on use of an unapproved degree in Oregon and on substandard or fraudulent degree-granting activities, and provides degree evaluation services to individuals (and employers of these individuals) wishing to use an unaccredited degree from another state or country in Oregon.
Our office also provides updated information for prospective students and employers on suspected degree mills and unaccredited schools operating both inside and outside of Oregon. Our primary objective is to protect Oregon students and employers from individuals using fake or substandard credentials, and from schools operating without the appropriate legal status. As online education becomes much more common, it remains our goal to ensure both the quality of educational opportunities available to students in Oregon, and the qualification of employees hired to work in Oregon.
Some states, like Oregon, authorize degree programs from unaccredited schools after an extensive evaluation process. Other states required accreditation as a prerequisite for offering degree programs, and there are also many states that do not have an adequate process to provide oversight of degree-granting schools in their state, either because of their laws or because they lack appropriate enforcement agencies. Oregon’s Office of Degree Authorization has been recognized nationally and internationally for our work related to the legal basis for degree-granting authority, and for retaining records related to unauthorized, unaccredited and fake degree suppliers.
Our records are by no means exhaustive; however they are updated as information is shared via international networks of higher education professionals and organizations around the world.