Jisc's graduate careers advice and information service, Prospects, is uniting the higher education community and employers in the fight against degree fraud with the launch of a week-long campaign.
Degree Fraud Awareness Week will take place from 6 - 10 July 2020, with a series of virtual events, competitions and content to inform higher education institutions, employers and screening agencies about the risks and preventative actions.
Prospects, which runs the Hedd degree fraud reporting service on behalf of the Office for Students, will kick off the week by bringing together universities to unify policy across different institutions by committing to a Degree Fraud Charter.
On Tuesday, a global webinar will see Prospects Hedd, the Office for Students and the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education discuss aligning degree fraud strategies internationally, academic integrity and essay mills.
Fraud prevention service Cifas will host a webinar on the risks of fraud inside organisations on Wednesday. This session aimed at employers will cover the risks of improper degree verification, while the Screening Agency Forum on Thursday with PwC will share degree verification best practice and how to protect businesses now and in the future.
Chris Rea manages Prospects Hedd at Jisc. He said:
“Sadly, there are many instances of fake degree certificates, embellishment of grades and misrepresentation of universities in the UK and globally. Bringing the higher education community and employers together is critical to stopping degree fraud.
“If a candidate lies about their qualifications it can be a disaster for organisations. Reputations can be damaged as well as resources wasted. Degree fraud also devalues our higher education system as well as the investment made by genuine students. We hope to raise awareness and educate all those affected by degree fraud to go some way to stamping out the problem in the future.”