LebGeeks

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#1 March 21

Tech Guru
Member

Cash-for-Degrees Scandal

You pay you get a degree , without attaining any form of degree persuation & hardwork  to graduate.

You can enter the Order of Enginners & be a registered Engineer through a fake degree without being tested of your real competences or skills

With in military you can jump ranks through fake degrees.

Etc..

Director-general of higher education at the Education Ministry Ahmad al-Jammal in custody now with other employees ( around 5) , an arrest warrant is issued against him.

Chairman & Founder of AUL ( Arts, Sciences and Technology University in Lebanon) - Adnan Hamzi in custody( along with four  & being university employees) & being questioned by the Lebanese Army Intelligence for selling degrees for military staff for internal ranks leveling up. The investigation started last October 2018.


The "snow ball" effect is becoming bigger & bigger , & pin-pointing the fingures towrard the founder of AUL for selling degress for cash  will have negative reprecussions & shaky perceptions of employers seeking new employees being AUL graduates.

Last edited by Tech Guru (March 22)

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#2 March 23

beezer
Member

Re: Cash-for-Degrees Scandal

I honestly wonder what happened for this to come out? Who pissed off who or who didn't pay who, because they were clearly being protected before.

On a sidenote I think this thread will close as it's kind of political hehe

Last edited by beezer (March 23)

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#3 March 24

eWizzard
Member

Re: Cash-for-Degrees Scandal

This thread, much like the news headlines of late, completely misses the big picture, which is that the entire Lebanese educational system, from top to bottom, public and private, is tainted with corruption. If you think AUL are alone and behind all of it, you're terribly mistaken.

Bribery is one way of illegitimately getting a degree. However, straight up buying a degree is rare and happens only at the highest levels of authority, where relations between the highest ranks are more direct and middle men (or wastas) are fewest, because they're not needed. It's hard to speak about this type of corruption without getting into trouble in this country, so let's just leave it at that. This isn't the right forum for the subject (not sure any Lebanese forum is) and there's nothing you can do about it anyway.

The next common mechanism, from what I've seen, is bribing teachers and professors to adjust grades, and this is in my opinion many times worse than the previous, because it affects many more people, knowing and unknowing. When a student doesn't have desirable grades, two things can happen:
1. The parents approach the teacher with an offer.
2. The teacher approaches the parents with an offer, but because the teacher is at risk, the method is more subtle.
The first is relatively straightforward. The second is a bit more ingenious, and it's where the teacher will offer private tutoring for the student for a fee, which will improve their grades (regardless of whether they benefit from the tutoring or not). And can you guess what happens when the parents decide that their child has had enough private tutoring? That's right, the grades somehow go down again. I know this because I've seen it first hand multiple times, heard loose-lipped people talking about it, and had others confirm it to me, albeit years later. And it's all illegal, by the way.
• Solution: if you're a parent, be extra vigilant with your child's homework, tests, and grades. If you don't know how to cross-examine them, get another teacher to do so. Help your child and don't humiliate them; it might not be their fault in the first place. If a teacher approaches you with suspicious offers, record the conversation and report it to the school. I know at least one teacher who got fired this way.

There's a third scenario, but it happens more in competitive settings (usually at university level) and it's when party A pay a professor to improve their grades while also diminishing the grades of their competitor(s) to improve their standing and worth. Subtly, of course. This one's also the most amusing, since you can have party A and party B (and probably C) going for the same tactic, but since party A has the better deal, the professor can snub the other parties under the pretense of being anti-corruption.
• Solution: not much. If you have reason to believe that you've received a blatantly unfair grade, you should try to have it appealed. If you ever find yourself around such conversations (especially with names) try to record them. It's generally in your interest to do so.

The third mechanism is the old "you scratch my back, I scratch yours" exchange. This one doesn't have a money trail, is more common among (normally abusive) bosses, and doesn't involve anyone at school or university. Basically, party A (the boss) makes a deal with party B (an educated employee) in exchange for party B doing their university assignments. The exchange doesn't leave a money trail, but since the boss usually enjoys abusive relationships even after the deal is concluded, it doesn't take long for the employee to spill the beans, especially if they've been betrayed, and risk getting fired. Needless to say, the employee is almost always the biggest loser. Again, I know this because I've seen it first hand and had the common sense to not engage myself with the idea.
• Solution: don't be an idiot and entertain your boss. Also, if your boss is an abusive asshole, quit your job.

As for a large scale solution, you need well-paid external examiners and auditors for all schools and universities. Pretty sure this concept is either poorly implemented to the point of being non-functioning or non-existent even today.

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#4 March 25

rolf
Member

Re: Cash-for-Degrees Scandal

It is nice to see that these persons are being charged. Everyone once in a while I read good news, and this is one of them.

There is the aspect of getting a degree as if it were a kilo of potatoes, some merchandise that can be bought and sold.
There is also the aspect of the experience of getting the degree, how enjoyable your way is, and what you learn on your way there.

eWizzard, some of the stories you tell are an obvious conflict of interest. This is something people are supposed to stay away from, teachers or students. However when you see people which are happy to go into situations where there is conflict of interest, and they cultivate the opportunity, you know something weird is happening.

beezer wrote:

On a sidenote I think this thread will close as it's kind of political hehe

This thread is about cheating, ethics, and education (specifically accreditation).
I can imagine that some will try to look at it from a different angle, but I hope that it will never become the main topic of the thread.

Last edited by rolf (March 25)

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