Cheating, Credentials Fraud and Misrepresentation in the Academic Space

June 16th, 2016


In the past couple of weeks, there has been a flurry of news reports on widespread cheating by international students at U.S. institutions. News reports also speak of unethical recruitment practices by agents overseas who for large sums of commissions recruit unqualified international students and even go as far as falsifying their paperwork to ensure admission to a U.S. college.

In this week’s blog, we would like to highlight these latest reports on cheating and misrepresentation with links to actual articles so you can read more.

 USA: Cheating at Public Universities

According to a recent Wall Street Journal analysis, public universities in the U.S. recorded 5.1 reports of alleged cheating for every 100 international students, versus one report per 100 domestic students.

 Western Kentucky University: Student Recruitment Problems

An article in Inside Higher Education reported that Western Kentucky University removed a number of its graduate students in computer science who were recruited from institutions in India. The students were determined to have been under qualified and their prior academic learning was brought under question. WKU is blaming the recruitment agency it had contracted and is now requiring its graduate faculty to travel to India and vet the students as part of the recruitment process.

University of Iowa: Chinese Students and Cheating   

The University of Iowa suspects at least 30 Chinese students of having used ringers to take their exams. The case offers a look inside a thriving underground economy of cheating services aimed at the hundreds of thousands of Chinese kids applying to and attending foreign colleges.

 CHINA: Jail sentences for students who cheat 

Students who cheat during this year’s university entrance exams in China risk for the first time being jailed, state media said on Tuesday, as the government tries to crack down on a pervasive problem for the highly competitive exams. Cheaters will face up to seven years in jail and be banned from taking other national education exams for three years under an amendment to the Criminal Law, the official Xinhua news agency said.

Policy: Reporting Fraud in USA

Question: If you are an admissions officer, advisor or faculty at a U.S. college, an evaluator at a credential evaluation company, an examination officer at a state regulatory board, or HR manager, what is your institution/organization policy concerning cheating on examinations and/or counterfeit credentials (transcripts and/or degrees that have been falsified)? Do you have a mechanism in place in reporting fraud to law enforcement, USCIS/DHS, FTC, professional boards/associations?

We’d love to hear from you. Let us know of your experiences with credential fraud and how you address this problem.

ACEI Logo with Slogan - FINAL

The Academic Credentials Evaluation Institute, Inc. (ACEI), was founded in 1994 and is based in Los Angeles, CA, USA. ACEI provides a number of services that include evaluations of international academic credentials for U.S. educational equivalence, translation, verification, and professional training programs. ACEI is a Charter and Endorsed Member of the Association of International Credential Evaluators. For more information, visit

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