Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. (ECE®) now offers online training, E-Learning!

Back in the fall of 2000 the Office of International Affairs at the University of Chicago took a chance and hired me as an Assistant Director. I was immediately thrust into one of my primary roles as the Fulbright Program Adviser for the U.S. Student Program and three weeks after I started my position the campus application deadline was upon me! While the Fulbright was (and continues to be) a significant part of my work at Chicago I was also charged with issuing visa eligibility documents to all international students admitted to the University and evaluating all academic credentials for every international graduate student admitted to the University. I was fortunate to register for an introductory credential evaluation workshop at the NAFSA Region V conference held that November and the workshop was lead by Marybeth Gruenewald of Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE). That workshop is perhaps one of the best workshops I have ever attended and formed the foundation for my knowledge of credential evaluation and of education systems across the globe! Since that workshop I have paid close attention to ECE and what they are all about and I must say that they are the first company that comes to my mind when I think of evaluating academic credentials. ECE was founded in 1980 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin by James Frey (I’ve read his dissertation entitled The development of a criterion instrument for evaluating agency-sponsored study abroad program (1976) from Indiana University) and someday I will visit their office with the hope of sneaking a peak at their reference library that houses more than 35,000 volumes related to international education! ECE is a charter member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) and NACES is an important stop when selecting credential evaluation services.

ECE has launched a new E-Learning training program and I’m very excited about this new professional development opportunity for the field. The following is more information about their new training program:

E-Learning is an online training program for international admissions professionals, recruiters, credential evaluators, and anyone interested in education completed outside of the United States. Part lecture, part interactive, and very practical, our sessions will be facilitated and taught by the experienced, knowledgeable, and trusted evaluation staff of ECE. All that is needed are a computer and a telephone.
Questions? contact Christina at

India Practical Grade and Credit Conversions
10 March 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
The determination and reporting of student academic achievement in India
Reading and understanding Indian documentation, with sample educational documents
Ensuring complete, correct documentation
Converting Indian marks to U.S. semester hours of credit
Converting Indian marks to U.S. grades, and GPA calculation

Introduction to Credential Evaluation Practices and Resources
17 March 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
Basic Principles of Credential Evaluation
Accreditation and Institutional Recognition
Levels of Education with Benchmarks
Documentation Issues
Resources: Fee-based, Free, Print, Online

Advanced India Credential Evaluation
14 April 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
Non-university education in India
Exceptions to the “rules” of Indian credential evaluation
Evaluating post-graduate diplomas and other atypical credentials
Current trends and changes in Indian education

The Basics: Learning to Read Chinese Educational Credentials
28 April 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
Biographical Data
Basic Educational Terms
Language Assistant Resources
Practical Exercises with sample credentials

Credit and Grading Practices Worldwide
12 May 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
U.S. Credit System
Different Types of Quantifying Reporting Outside of the United States
Overview of Grading Systems Worldwide
Examples of Credit and Grade Conversions with sample exercises

Advanced: Evaluating Chinese Credentials
19 May 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
Identifying Levels of Education
Institutional Recognition
Analyzing Educational Programs and Grade Reports
Authenticity Issues
Transnational Programs
Practical Exercises with Sample Credentials

Authenticity and Fraud
9 June 2010
1:00-2:30 p.m. CST
$150 USD
What is Fraud?
What are Red Flags?
Document Safety Features
Dealing with Suspected Fraud


  1. David-

    Thank you for the heads up. ECE is a great company!

  2. I am curious since this blog began, how have the e-learning trainings been going? I am working on a project for a class comparing web based learning to traditional classroom learning to determine if one approach is more effective. Would you care to comment?

  3. @Anonymous ~ Many thanks for your question. I don't know if web based learning is more effective than traditional classroom learning environments. I believe that this is much value in online learning and more credit should be given to it. I'm in a doctoral program and I would say many of my classes (traditional classroom environment) were not great and it would be interesting to see what the course would have been like in an online environment.

  4. Sharon from NJ, USA, has a question:

    David, I am the Principal of a CTE post secondary program and find the course alignment with the local community college is difficult at times. Would the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) be helpful in evaluating the CTE program and aligning it with equivilent credits?

  5. Dear Sharon, Thanks for your message. I don't think that NACES would be the one to do such a project but perhaps one of the member organizations would be possible. Sincerely, David