Busy spring


I hope you're adjusting to the new normal. I hate the slew of emails about "these trying times" or trying to tiptoe around the global pandemic that's upended everything from how we celebrate birthdays to how we grocery shop to how we work and learn and connect with family. Some of it has been a rousing success, while others have been a work in progress that hopefully gets refined as time goes by, but that's why we're a community: so we can learn from each other and lean on each other.

Transcript Research has been busy! We're happy that our customer base has been expanding, and we're so grateful for new institutions who are recommending us to their international students or setting up custom applications. I come from a background in university admissions, so all of our evaluation reports are tailored to that perspective since higher education institutions have more in-depth needs than many other types of institutions than may also utilize credentials evaluation assessments. But we've also been busy working on ways to help our fellow international credentials evaluators at educational institutions navigate this new-to-many landscape. (We've always been distance workers so we were able to devote that time to helping others try to keep their workflows going.)

And boy, have we been busy lately! Transcript Research celebrated our tenth anniversary this month, and we celebrated that milestone by giving back to our beloved international education community. The tenth anniversary is represented by tin and aluminum to symbolize a combination of durability and flexibility, and I can't think of anything more fitting for right now.

In March, the updated NAFSA Guide to Educational System: Taiwan profile that I wrote was published. One of our senior evaluators, Olivea, and I both contributed to the latest TAICEP Talk Newsletter, which was released in April. Olivea wrote Secondary Credentials with Undergraduate Credits to discuss how some upper secondary programs also incorporate post-secondary education in places like India and Russia. I was a co-author on Innovating the Old World: A Sampling of Digitization in Asia and Europe with my colleagues on the Digital Student Data Task Force and also wrote about Alternative Grading.

In April and May, Transcript Research kicked into overdrive to devote a lot of time to the new TAICEP At Your Desk (TAYD) series with colleagues at other institutions. For Resources at Your Desk, I coordinated a panel of experts at international credentials research, and we shared some of our favorite digital researching tools that would allow credentials evaluators and admissions folks to continue their credentialing work even if they weren't in their office. I also compiled a massive spreadsheet that updated our old publication, "Researching International Education Systems and Institutions." 

Because Transcript Research has long been proactive in both verification of academic records and acceptance of digital student documents, I organized and co-presented two more webinars for TAICEP: Introduction to Electronic Verification and Introduction to Digital Records. You can watch the recordings and download the conference presentation slides and spreadsheets on our website. I'm really proud of the work we did on these tools to help make a credential evaluator's life just a little bit easier immediately while still remaining useful in the future.

But wait, there's more! We've updated our e-publication "Bogus Institutions and Accrediting Bodies" with current websites and an extensive reading list to learn more about protecting your institutions from accepting documents issued by diploma mills or accreditation mills. And next week, we're offering our next installment of Transcript Research Presents, our quarterly web-based evaluator training series, Researching Credentials Online. You can find out more information, register, and pay here. Many spring conferences were cancelled, but newer evaluators can still learn the skills to research international educational credentials using the internet. 

So now it's almost time for summer and time to get cracking on those fall applications for evaluation!

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