Busted Myth of the Week: Only Accredited Colleges Offer Courses for Credit

Barry Lenson

Busted Myth of the Week: Only Accredited Colleges Offer Courses for Credit

There’s a common belief that only accredited colleges offer courses for credit. Not so!

It’s a logical mistake to make, since the word “accredited” contains the word “credit.” But nonetheless, it’s wrong.

A few words of explanation are in order.

When a college is accredited . . .

. . .  it means that its operations have been reviewed and approved by an accrediting agency, such as The Middle States Commission on Higher Education, The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools or another regional accrediting agency.  Colleges that have been accredited by such agencies are allowed to give degrees.

When a course has been approved for credit. . .

. . . it means that its content has been reviewed by an agency such as the American Council on Education Credit (ACE). That agency reviews the course and certifies that the credits that it earns may be transferred to any of the hundreds of colleges that accept ACE-recommended credits.

What this means for StraighterLine students . . .

All of StraighterLine’s courses can earn college credit, because they are ACE-recommended, meaning that students can transfer the credits earned in them to hundreds of American colleges. In addition, StraighterLine’s Partner Colleges (which accept StraighterLine's online college courses for credit) are regionally accredited, meaning that they grant degrees.

Why isn’t StraighterLine itself an accredited college? There are many reasons, including the fact that StraighterLine does not issue degrees. (If we did, we would have to dramatically raise prices.)

The bottom line is, almost all of StraighterLine courses have been judged credit-worthy by ACE and offer all the quality of other college courses, at a fraction of the price.

If you have another college myth you would like us to bust, please let us know! We’ve got our hammer ready, and we’re ready to go.

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