Get an Accredited Online MBA | Why Accreditation Matters
As you search for online MBA programs in SC, you may be evaluating a number of regional and national institutions that promise to provide a high-quality, career-applicable education. There are a ton of variables to consider when deciding which program will be the right fit for you, but before you begin to weigh your academic concentration and financial aid options, it’s imperative to determine if the program you’re interested in is actually accredited.
What is an Accredited Online MBA?
Accreditation is the acknowledgment by a third-party governing body that a particular school has met and is maintaining a high level of educational standards in their program offerings. Schools earn accreditation through an ongoing series of evaluations that takes into consideration the program’s mission, resources, and achievements.
Various regional and national agencies accredit particular programs based on their location and subject matter. Similar to the presence of fraudulent online degree offerings, there are also fraudulent online accrediting agencies. The best way to ensure that the program you’re interested in has legitimate accreditation is to reference the definitive list of reputable agencies posted on the US Department of Education’s website.
Why does Accreditation Matter?
Though the concept of accreditation may seem inconsequential at the student level, the very opposite is true. When you graduate and submit your resume to potential employers, the presence of an unaccredited program will call into question not only the validity of your degree but the quality of training you received throughout your graduate academic career. Additionally, if you ever decide to pursue a more advanced degree, earning an unaccredited MBA will not allow you to enter the vast majority of doctoral programs.
On a more practical level, if you choose to pursue an education at an unaccredited school, you will not be eligible for federal financial aid, and you will not have the option to obtain any pertinent professional licensures, such as CPA certification.
Signs that an Online MBA Program in SC is not Accredited
How can you spot an online MBA program that may not be accredited? In most cases, if it sounds too-good-to-be-true, it probably is. If the price point is far outside the realm of other institutions, or if credits appear to be awarded without a reasonable investment of time and work, you may want to be especially diligent in seeking information about the institution’s accreditation.
Moreover, if students at the institution are not eligible for financial aid or if the accreditation agency listed for the institution is not also listed with the Department of Education, they are in fact not accredited by a reliable agency.
Finally, treat the college search process the same way you would treat any other investment. Do your research and see what former and current students are saying about their experience - also, pay attention to the careers that graduates from that school are actively involved in.
What Accreditation is Available for Online MBA Programs in SC?
While national accreditation is more common for technical or vocational schools, most non-profit schools strive for regional accreditation. For South Carolina, the most important regional accrediting agency is the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The mission of SACS is to assure the educational quality and improve the effectiveness of its member institutions. They focus on integrity, continuous quality improvement, peer review, self-regulation, accountability, student learning, and transparency.
If you’re interested in learning more about Limestone’s accredited online MBA, speak with one of our enrollment experts today.