I hope everyone is staying safe in the time of Coronavirus. At Transcript Research, we are continuing to work diligently at helping our students and institutions with their credential evaluation needs. We are working our normal business hours and have no significant delays in service.
We know that a lot of educational institutions in particular are struggling with making admissions decisions for their international students and applicants, and we want to help ease that burden. In addition to conducting international transcript evaluations, Transcript Research offers online training and e-publications for credentials evaluators.
In early March, we offered a webinar on fraud and verification tools. A recording of that webinar is available for on-demand purchase for institutions here. We also offered a free webinar on Researching Grading Scales and Degree Plans that is still online.
I also contributed an article on Chinese verification tools for the upcoming edition of the TAICEP Talk Newsletter. Here's an excerpt of that article:
In China, we are working with two government agencies under the auspices of the Ministry of Education: the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Center (CDGDC) and the China Higher Education Student Information and Career Center (CHESICC). Both of these institutions verify different elements of Chinese educational records.
It is important to note that China awards dual credentials upon completion of academic programs. In China, qualifications and degrees are separate types of credentials that lead to separate documents. They are also verified by separate government institutions. In other countries, “qualifications” and “degrees” may be used interchangeably, but in the Chinese education system, they refer to two different documents that represent different points of completion for levels of study.
Certificates of Graduation are qualifications awarded upon completion of a recognized educational program at a defined level, ranging from primary school to doctoral study. Degree certificates are only awarded to graduates of Bachelor, Master, and Doctoral programs. Qualifications are awarded upon completion of coursework at a particular academic level, while degrees certificates are awarded upon completion of additional requirements beyond just completion of the coursework. These additional requirements may include a Chinese College English Test (CET), a final paper, minimum grades in the major or minimum grade point average, and other requirements. In addition, students cannot have received any disciplinary actions for political reasons.
Among its other duties, CDGDC verifies degree certificates for Bachelor, Master, and Doctoral degree programs. CDGDC used to verify some high school transcripts, university transcripts, and other educational records, but they currently only verify degrees. There is no fee to students or evaluators for this service. While the CDGDC has an English version of its website, students apply using the Chinese language version. After communicating directly with CDGDC in March, we were able to determine that they are still open for business and working as normal. There may be delays for some degree verifications, especially for older graduation dates, but they have not closed. The main CDGDC website is http://www.cdgdc.edu.cn/ and is only available in Chinese, but the verification site was available in both Chinese and English as recently as last month.
Evaluators check the validity of the CDGDC degrees https://www.chinadegrees.cn/cqva/gateway.html. Evaluators will enter the report number and the on-screen Captcha into the Chinese language website.
That's just a taste of what's to come in the upcoming TAICEP Talk Newsletter. Members get access to all of the newsletters, but if you're not a member, you can take a peak at the first edition for free.
If you're not already a member of TAICEP (The Association for International Credential Evaluation Professionals), I recommend it highly. The TAICEP Talk Newsletter is a fabulous resource, as is the verification database, which I administer. The verification database has approximately 1500 entries for secondary schools, colleges & universities, examination boards, and other educational institutions around the world.
Whether you're a member of TAICEP or not, though, I recommend you check out the TAICEP At Your Desk (TAYD) series of free webinars coming on Thursdays for the next month. Last week's entry into the TAYD series focused on a European Perspective of Covid-19 and higher education. Transcript Research is proud to help offer sessions on credentials evaluation resources this Thursday and two other sessions on electronic verification tips and tricks and digital academic records in May. Other sessions in the series will include a credential doctor session to examine specific documents and lessons learned about working remotely in international education during a pandemic. These are free webinars by senior credentials evaluators.
It's a wild time right now, but the international education community is doing what we can to ensure that we can continue to help current and former international students.