US-Based or Affiliated Unaccredited Institutions in Vietnam

Consider the following list of (22) U.S.-based or affiliated unaccredited schools that have entered the higher education market in Vietnam as a dishonor roll of sorts.  Most are “online universities” and some are diploma mills, defined  as “a usually unregulated institution of higher education granting degrees with few or no academic requirements.”

For information about New Typologies for Crossborder Higher Education, please refer to this 2005 article by Jane Knight, an internationally-renowned expert in the field.

If you know of other unaccredited schools that have set up shop in Vietnam or have enrolled Vietnamese students, please contact me.  Keeping track of them is akin to hitting a moving target.

Globalization, ignorance and the desire for a US higher education credential, any credential, are the keys to their success.  Most have more lives than a cat and are able to relocate at the drop of a hat to a more “business-friendly” environment, when the need arises.  In a country with 50 states and no national policy related to unaccredited institutions of higher education there are lots of choices.

Speaking of states, if you’d like to see “where the operation of poor quality unaccredited degree suppliers is easy because of state laws that are poor, poorly enforced, or obscure” check out the map on the Oregon Office of Degree Authorization website.  You’ll find out why so many are based in California.

Adam International University (GA)

Akamai University  (HI)

American Heritage University (of Southern California)

American Pacific University – International (NM/CA)

Atlantic International University (HI)

Berkeley International University (DE)

California South University (CA)

CapStone University (CA)

Corllins University (MI) Corllins’ “international administrative office” is located in Grandville, MI in the same complex as Access One Mortgage, Inc., InkIQ Resume Service‎, Jermyn Church, Simulacra Translation‎, and Work At Home Jobs‎.

Cosmopolitan University  (MO?)  The administrative contact is in Treuchtlingen, Germany and the technical contact is in Boca Raton, Florida, so I’m not sure where “Cosmopolitan” is based.  Missouri, last I heard.

Delta International University of New Orleans (LA)  Interesting fact:  This rogue provider is located in Baton Rouge not New Orleans.

Frederick Taylor University (CA)

Honolulu University (HI)

Irvine University (CA)

International American University (CA)

Paramount University of Technology  (CA)

Pebble Hills University  (PA?)  This website is registered in Auckland, New Zealand.  The “US Office” has a Pennslvania fax number.

Preston University (CA)

Southwest American University (CA)

Southern Pacific University  (DE)  This “university” has a website that is registered in St. Kitts and Nevis, a “Southern Pacific Distance Learning Center” at 1133 Boardway, Suite 706 in New York, NY and a “USA Recruitment Center” in Wilmington, DE.

Washington International University (PA)  Like SPU, WIU has an office in Wilmington, Delaware (same road), in addition to an “adult higher education center” in Washington, D.C.

Washington Institute of Technology (DE/TN)

Click here for a list of known nationally accredited US higher education institutions with a presence in Vietnam and stay tuned for a list of regionally accredited US colleges and universities active here…

Updated:  11.2.11

NOTE:  I have removed American Pacific University  (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam) from this list.  Until last summer, APU described itself as “the first American owned, MOET approved, American style university in Vietnam.”   After a series of articles about unaccredited schools appeared in Vietnam, including APU, APU changed its URL to  and its name to “APU International School.”  An APU campus is under construction in Danang.  APU remains on the Oregon Degree Authorization’s (ODA) list of Unaccredited colleges.  APU became AUVN (American University of Vietnam).

I have also removed American City University (CA) from this list because a representative from that institution sent me an email confirming that ACU is not recruiting Vietnamese students.

Status:  13 February 2012

30 thoughts on “US-Based or Affiliated Unaccredited Institutions in Vietnam

  1. This is a very good sharing. Many VN students want to know whether or not a university is legal or accredited. I am following AHU study and I don’t know what to do now. Continue or just quit, that is not a problem anymore. The cheapest the dearest! C’est la vie and sometimes we have to face choices, just pick up one and get ready to confront it…

    • Griggs is indeed accredited by DETC, an agency recognized by the US Department of Education

    • Hi Thao,

      There are many hucksters and others trying to cheat you online offering diplomas by mail, but Griggs is not one of them. They are accredited the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC), in Washington, DC, which is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Commission on Recognition of Postsecondary Accreditation (CORPA).

      It takes a minimum of 3 years to complete the program and you must attain a minimum of 2.0% in line with US standards. Courses are taught in English and all students must meet a minimum competency in English prior to receiving their diploma.

      Good luck in your studies.

      Michael Ballantine
      Griggs, USA

  2. This is really a problem for Vietnam. Thanks for a good post. May I have your permission to post this to Facebook? Many people need to know about this. Thanks.

  3. Đừng bào giờ để mình phải bị hiểu nhầm rằng University lúc nào cũng có nghĩa là trường Đại Học. Không phải như vậy đâu nhé!

  4. A university that was in a blacklist because of bad operation in the past may aslo improve its operation and get accreditted. Then is it fair that we judge a university solely based on its past operation? How can we keep our judgment on a university in line with its current operation?

    • The answer is simple: we applaud that university for its commitment to upgrading the quality of its programs and remove it from whatever lists of unaccredited schools it happens to be on. This is, in fact, what happens. For example, the Oregon Office of Degree Authorization (ODA: maintains such a list. When a school becomes officially accredited, it is removed from the list.


  5. Hic, Không Gian or Premier đều chơi với thằng Irvine….. thế là bây giờ đã biết bằng CPE của mình chẳng có giá trị nào…… nhưng kiến thức thì chẳng bao giờ mua đc bằng money!!!
    Certificate chỉ là 1 tấm giấy thôi, mỗi người phải biết kiến thức mới là cái giúp mình vươn cao hơn!

  6. Unaccredited schools come in all shapes and sizes. Some are seeking official accreditation, are “accredited” by accreditation mills, have no intention of seeking official (i.e., legitimate) accreditation while others are in the very profitable business of selling diplomas. One such “school” is Corllins Uinversity. Someone from Africa recently e-mailed to say that he got a degree in Marketing Management and Business Administration from “Corllins University” that “cost me $400 and it was a Prior Learning Degree.”

  7. Thanks for the interesting post!

    Since you posted that list there’s been many claims by MoET about closing down low-quality transnational programs in Vietnam. So far the only criterion in place to evaluate the “quality” of those programs is accredited/non-accredited, and VIED is acting tough on that. That, by the way, is probably an issue for American universities: with European universities they are adamant about wanting nationally recognized degrees and even though autonomy is not as high in Europe as it is in the US, some quality programs just don’t award national degrees. Anyway, have you seen some action from VIED or more generally MoET about the programs on that list?


  8. Yes, MoET’s been very responsive. I haven’t checked on all of them because of a lack of time. (This blog is a volunteer activity and a public service; it’s not my day job. :-))


  9. I wish that journalists and fellow bloggers would use updated information when referring to this post, which was last updated in February 2012. For example, Apollos University ( no longer appears on the list because it is nationally accredited, i.e,. by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (, formerly the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC). It recently appeared on this blog: Kim Dung/Kỳ Duyên (


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