Accreditation is not just a problem in the martial arts. Since more and more people have started saving for their retirement and want to invest the money wisely, many people are seeking assistance from financial advisers. If you do some looking around, you will find that every person who has some investment to sell has an acronym behind his or her name that signifies accreditation from some financial organization. Most of the designations are as easy to attain as a black belt certificate and thus are useless. In January 2007, Nebraska's Department of Banking and Finance began cracking down on the practice. After a thorough review of all the designations and the qualification required to earn them, the department and found only five that were acceptable; all of which are limited in scope and difficult to attain.
Accreditation is a voluntary, independent review of educational programs to determine that the education provided is of uniform and sound quality and adheres to academic standards. Being awarded accreditation ensures that an institution has been evaluated and that it has met set standards of quality determined by the organization granting the accreditation. Accreditation also determines a school's eligibility for participation in federal (Title IV) and state financial aid programs and is important for the acceptance and transfer of college credit. Accreditation is maintained by continued adherence to the set criteria.
The most recognized and accepted type of accreditation in the United States is regional accreditation. Generally, college credits or degrees received at a regionally accredited institution are accepted by other regionally accredited institutions. However, this acceptance is not guaranteed; each institution establishes its own policies on what credits it accepts. The United States Department of Education, recognizes six organizations as accrediting agencies. You may check to see if an institution is regionally accredited by visiting the Web site for the regional accrediting board that covers the state in which the institution is located.