First, please let me address the way you explained accreditation because the way it reads now, it's a bit unclear. The U.S. Department of Education is not, as you state, an accrediting body. It is the United State's Federal agency with the AUTHORITY to grant the right to organizations to become an accrediting body.
It has rigorous standards that each organization must meet or exceed before being granted the privilege of providing accreditation to schools, colleges, universities, trade schools, vocational schools, etc.... There are many legitimate accrediting bodies (agencies) operating in the United States with the U.S. Department of Education's full blessing. In other words, these agencies have passed the application process and been awarded the right to accredit.
There are also types of accreditation which, sadly, this allows a bit of academic snobbery to come in to play. First, there is Regional accreditation and second, there is National accreditation. Regional accreditation is usually given to city and state run schools (non-profit) and for-profit institutions that meet the requirements of the regional accrediting agencies (there are seven if memory serves). National accreditation is usually given to schools that specialize in areas the regional accreditation bodies do not - and therefore do not provide accreditation for - which is where the academic snobbery I mentioned comes in.
Both types of accrediting agencies - regional and national - must meet the same standards required by the U.S. Department of Education which means that credits from both types of agencies are just as good, but for some odd reason, the regional agencies think they're better than anyone else.
Full Sail's accreditation is national mainly because it falls into the specialized education arena. Regional agencies do not accredit the types of programs Full Sail offers. The only degree program at Full Sail that I am aware of that might qualify, is the Masters of Science in Education Media Design and Technology program - of which I am a proud graduate. Was the degree expensive? Yes, it was when compared to state-run schools. Was it worth it? You tell me.
As a direct result of my Full Sail education, I was hired into a position as a Federal contractor that allows me to manage one of the largest divisions of courseware developers, instructional designers, and learning professionals within the United States government sector. I am also three quarters of the way through my Ph.D. program from a well respected REGIONALLY accredited university - a university that accepted ALL of my credits from Full Sail University.
Was it easy to find such a university? Not at first, no. I ran into academic snobbery from both non-profit and for-profit universities, but in the end, I found two regionally accredited universities that accepted Full Sail's credits based on Full Sail's reputation.
A reputation, I might add, that is highly regarded even by Full Sail's accrediting agency itself, based on the phone conversations I had with the director of the agency and one of the accrediting reviewers who visited Full Sail - a reviewer who was no longer with the accrediting agency when I spoke with her and therefore had no reason to lie or feel that she had to support Full Sail in any way. After I found these two universities, I stopped looking as one had the program I wanted.
Now, I am three quarters of the way through the coursework and should be ABD (all but dissertation) by the last quarter of this year. Am I happy with my Full Sail degree? YOU BETCHA!
Dr. M. Commini, Th.D., Ph.D. Learner, MS EMDT, CKMP, CKM, Security+, Network+
Reply from TheBestFilmSchools.com
I appreciate your lesson on Accreditation but from the moment I began reading your post, I felt a distinct agenda.
The first was a contradiction. You said:
"The U.S. Department of Education is not, as you state, an accrediting body. It is the United State's Federal agency with the AUTHORITY to grant the right to organizations to become an accrediting body."
Then you said:
"Both types of accrediting agencies - regional and national - must meet the same standards required by the U.S. Department of Education"
Isn't that a contradiction? The US Department of education must first recognize or 'Accredit' the Accrediting agency before it can hand out Accreditation. Does the USDE not then decide who has the right to hand out accreditation?
By default the USDE recognizes whoever their accrediting Agency grants accreditation to. Don't forget the yearly reviews of accrediting bodies called "Recognition".
"Recognition" is a process of review of the quality and effectiveness of accrediting organizations. This review is carried out either by CHEA (a private body) or the federal government through the US Department of Education.
My research combined with deduction tells me that the US Department of Education is very actively involved in the "Which schools get what Accreditation" Game.
It is a confusing argument that is quite pointless. The point remains that it is nearly impossible for Students to transfer credits earned at Full Sail to Regionally Accredited, Traditional Colleges and Universities.
That affects students and that's all I and this business care about. We provide information that’s both reliable and unbiased.
If you are stuck with National Credits and want to continue your education at a Regionally Accredited school then this free Ebook will help you. It's called "Don't take no for an answer when trying to transfer your credits or degree".
Then I noticed your wild enthusiasm for Full Sail University but you failed to provide the names of either of the 2 Regionally Accredited schools you claim have accepted your Full Sail Credits at face value.
Why? That information was the only thing that would have been helpful to students and parents coming here for some information. Could you write back and tell us the names of these 2 schools?
I hope so. Otherwise your post just reads like some sales copy promoting Full Sail. I have held back a ton of heavy Rants about Full Sail because they had no merit.
I posted yours this time. Thank you for the post. We'll leave it and let others decide. It sure would be great if you could mention the names of those 2 schools, though.
As I have said before, Full Sail University is not a scam. I never said it was and I have not changed my mind. I dare anyone to post something damning about the school.
They won't because they can't. I will take it very seriously if they do and delete what is of no help to students.