South Building on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill.

UNC Under Fire, Accreditation at Risk

UNC Chapel Hill is being investigated by its accreditor, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, after SACS found that controversial “paper courses” are now being credited towards graduation.

According the (Raleigh) News & Observer, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools first confronted UNC over allegations of the questionable classes in 2013, when the school claimed it would not honor the classes towards a degree. For students to receive credit for said classes, the university claimed that students would have to take another course altogether to make up the credits. By agreeing to not recognize “paper” classes, UNC was able to hold off sanctions from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Released last month, the NCAA’s final report on the scandal contradicts what the university initially told its accreditor with, “Despite the fact that the courses failed to meet, involved little, if any, faculty engagement, and were often graded by the secretary, UNC argued the courses violated no UNC policy. UNC further claimed that work was assigned, completed and graded, and the grades counted towards a UNC degree.” UNC officials previously called the classes “academic fraud” but recently reported the phrase as “a typo.” With UNC up for accreditation next month, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools is investigating the NCAA’s final report and UNC’s lack of transparency.

 

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