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How to convert CATS to U.S. credits

by Rita 26. January 2011 15:39

CATS, Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme, is a university system for awarding course credit in the United Kingdom. It can be easily converted to both U.S. credits and ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System).

4 CATS credits are equivalent to 2 ECTS credits or 1 U.S. credit, so CATS credits must be divided by 4 to convert to the U.S. system.

1 CATS credit is also equal to 1 SCQF (Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework) credit.

Some universities in the U.K. use a different system. For example, Open University, a popular distance learning school, uses CATS for undergraduate courses and Open University credits for Master's programs. In that case, 60 Open University credits = 40 CATS = 10 U.S. credits. This translates to 2.5 U.S. credits per course, which is close to a typical 3.0 credit U.S. university course.

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College credits

International GPA Calculator Gets a Huge Update

by Rita 26. December 2010 17:51

If you have used our International GPA Calculator in the past, you may have noticed that it didn't have every grading scale for every country. However, that is precisely our goal, and we are working very hard to make it a reality. To show you that we are serious about this goal, we have added 30 more countries and 70 additional grading scales in the last 3 months. This means the GPA calculator now works for 150 countries and 200 scales.

That's not all. We have also improved the algorithm that searches the grades, so the results are now better and more accurate than ever. You can now search by letter grades, points, percentages, grade names, and even grade descriptions. The best part–it is still free. We are not asking you for a dime to use it, and you don't have to click on ads because there aren't any.

Why would we want to offer it for free? Are we crazy? Yes. Of course, we do hope that you take a moment to look at our other services such as document translation and credential evaluation, but you don't have to. Honestly. We are just happy to have you on our website. You can always help us by telling us how we can improve and by pointing out any mistakes or inaccuracies. Thank you in advance.

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GPA | Grading

Unaccredited Colleges and Universities

by Rita 3. July 2010 10:33

Are you worried about diploma mills and other unaccredited institutions issuing fake degrees? We sure are. Over 100,000 fake degrees are issued every year in the United States alone, making this a multi-million dollar industry. What's even worse is that many fake degrees are never investigated, and no one is punished for them. Some diploma mills do eventually get shut down, but by that time they have already issued thousands of diplomas. Some individuals even sell fake diplomas and marksheets that look like they are from a prestigious university, but they are usually easier to spot because the university will not be able to verify the credentials.

We want to help with identifying unaccredited institutions, which is why we published a list of unaccredited colleges and universities on our website. It has 250 institutions from over 20 countries so far, but more will be added as we become aware of them. We want you to know that we will never evaluate academic credentials issued by any institution on that list, or any credentials that we find suspicious for other reasons. There are a few similar references online, so our goal is to gather all available information in one place. We also want you to tell us if you find an unaccredited institution that's not on that list, and we will add it. If you find a mistake, we would like to know as well. No list such as this is complete, but we hope to make it more so with your help.

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Do schools inflate their GPA?

by Rita 24. June 2010 06:28

Some do. The New York Times recently reported that schools like Loyola Law School Los Angeles added 0.333 points to every grade going back several years. Their rationalization? They have a mean first-year grade of 2.667 when other California schools have 3.0 or higher. This is due to the difference in the grading curve, which is less forgiving at Loyola, according to faculty and students. Georgetown and New York University law schools have also made changes to their grading systems making them more competitive (as long as the recruiters are not aware of the changes). Harvard, Stanford, Yale, and Berkeley law schools do not even have grades anymore and, instead, use achievement systems that award honors, pass, fail, or similar recognition.

This presents a problem when evaluating foreign credentials because grading systems already vary significantly from country to country. Should foreign grades be ever converted to the Harvard's grading system or the Loyola's? Is it fair to convert letter grades to pass/fail? Do recruiters still want to see a GPA based on the letter grades? Let us know. There is a new section on our website where you can convert grades from other countries to grades in the US. It's free, and you can access it here. We will be adding more countries in the next few weeks and keep them updated as time goes by.

Being able to convert grades, however, is only half the work. What about the GPA? In most US schools, chromatic variants (+ and -) are quantified as x.3 and x.7. For example, an A- would be equivalent to 3.7 and B+ would be equivalent to 3.3. However, some schools only use a mid-point, so both A- and B+ would be converted to 3.5. In addition, some schools assign 4.5 to 5.0 GPA for honors and advanced placement classes while others allow an A+ letter grade and interpret it as 4.3 GPA. This is not fair to schools that don't allow an A+ or interpret it as only 4.0. 

While it is sometimes not obvious how foreign grades should compare to the US grades, we hope we can make this process easier. A good recruiter or an admission officer must understand that the GPA is just one aspect of student's performance.

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Welcome to the Foreign Credits Community Blog!

by Rita 23. June 2010 12:33

Hi. We are the team of professionals behind everything you see on this website. This blog is long overdue not only because we want to let you know what we are working on, but because we want to know what you expect from our website and from our company. So we are going to blog. This will be the place where we let you know what's happening in the world of international education and how it may affect you. We will also blog about upcoming changes and improvements to our website and services. Thank you for reading!



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