Nothing, Regionally accrediated schools will try and say they are better, but there is no actual difference in the quality of the education. It still will depend on the quality of the institution and their instructors, the student support system before, during, and after the student graduates. It comes down to simply a state of bias without any substantial proof or reason.
The main difference is where their funding comes from. Pubic means government aided while private is privately funded by groups or individuals. Both kinds need accreditation-which can be national or regional. Online colleges and other special institutions are usually nationally accredited like Independence College is accredited by the ACCSC. It's crucial to always enroll in a school that has either regional or national accreditation, no matter where the funding comes from.
Yes, a nationally accredited doctorate degree is recognized as a fully legitimate degree just as nationally accredited bachelors and masters are. Nonetheless, they are fairly new to the educational world and some may question their validity. The only doctorates that are currently approved for national accreditation are the professional doctorates such as Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) or Doctor of Education. The research doctorates (PhDs) are not currently being offered by nationally accredited universities. The US Department of Education treats national and regional accreditation the same and makes no distinction between them. It is the unfortunate "turf" war between regional and national accreditors that causes a few of the regionals to occasionally not recognize the degrees of a national accreditor. There may also be some professional associations or licenses which may not recognize certain degrees. You should check with any professional organization that is in your industry to be certain there will not be any problems. If you earn a nationally accredited doctorate you will have the legitimate title of "Doctor" in the profession of your choice.
According to the Department of State, in the US, accreditation is voluntary, so an institution can choose whether it wishes to be regionally or nationally accredited - or not accredited at all. (In some states, I could put a box on a street corner, call it a university, and hand out degrees.) Students at institutions that do not hold some form of recognized regional or national accreditation are likely to encounter problems in obtaining scholarships, transferring credits, having their credentials recognized by employers, etc
There are a great many differences in collegedegrees; however, one of the most noticeable differences is accreditation. If a degree is nationally accredited, it has some value but may not transfer to other colleges. If it is Regionally credited, it has far more value and is extremely likely to transfer to any college of your choosing. Be careful when choosing to attend a college or university. It is far wiser to choose a school that is regionally accredited vs. one that is nationally accredited. Choose wisely!
A regional accreditation is the most critical accreditation for colleges and universities to have. With a regional accreditation you can be confident that the course work and degree you complete is recognized by all other accredited schools and employers. To gain a better understanding of the regional accreditation standards and agencies who grant such accreditations, and the difference between other accreditations (such as national), click on the related links section indicated below (Wikipedia). Best wishes!!
Without going into the actually history of the two accrediting agencies, there are a few issues that should concern individuals when choosing between regionally and nationally accredited colleges and universities.For one, the regional accreditation standards are higher than that of the national accreditation agency. Thus, the regional accreditation is preferred by colleges and universities who wish to be recognized as institutions that possess excellence within higher education.Second is the issue of transferability of credits. Nationally accredited institutions typically accept credits from regionally accredited colleges and universities, where regionally accredited colleges and universities will not accept credits from nationally accredited institution. This means if you have a coursework and/or a degree from a nationally accredited institution, it would be like starting all over again should you decide to transfer to a regionally accredited school (which most all recognized colleges and universities are). This should also be a great concern should you plan on pursuing advance degrees (master's, doctorate) at a later date. The degree from a nationally accredited school would not be recognized.Third, employers who are aware of the difference in regional and national accreditations may not recognize your education that was completed at a nationally accredited institution.Personal OpinionWhen choosing a college or university, make sure the institution has a regional accreditation. With a regional accreditation you can be assured the coursework and degree you complete will be recognized by all other colleges and universities as well as employers. Below I have listed the six accrediting agencies and their geographical areas of responsibility. I am disclosing the below so you do not become a victim of educational scams, and institutions that are nothing more than diploma mills, where they are eager to take your money for a degree that is worthless. Make sure the institution is accredited by one of following responsible agencies.Regional Accreditation Agencies· Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools - Educational institutions in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands, as well as schools for American children in Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.· New England Association of Schools and Colleges - Educational institutions in the six New England states (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont).· North Central Association of Colleges and Schools - Educational institutions in Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, New Mexico, South Dakota, Wisconsin, West Virginia, and Wyoming.· Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities - Postsecondary institutions (colleges and universities) in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.· Western Association of Schools and Colleges - Educational institutions in California, Hawaii, Guam, American Samoa, Micronesia, Palau, and Northern Marianas Islands.· Southern Association of Colleges and Schools - Educational institutions in Virginia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Tennessee and Texas.
Regional accreditation is done within specific geographic areas of the country. It is important when looking at school to go to because often it may mean you can only transfer credits over to a school with the same accreditation. Regional accreditation is the most common form. Either way it is important to research whether the school you are planning to attend is accredited in some form.
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