Almost two-thirds (61%) of students and graduates have reported that the increase in tuition fees is putting people off university and making them more likely to lie about their qualifications on their CV to get work, which is an 18% increase since last year, reports Graduate Prospects.
As part of the Higher Education Degree Datacheck (HEDD) initiative – a government-backed online degree verification system launched to tackle degree fraud – Graduate Prospects surveyed 559 UK students and graduates about their views on fraud in light of the £9,000 tuition fees introduced last year.
Two thirds of respondents said they know someone who has lied or exaggerated about their qualifications. The most commonly reported CV lies are:
- Grade – give a higher class than they actually achieved (46%)
- Course completion – say they completed a course when only part was finished (28%)
- Qualification – say they have a degree when they don’t (15%)
- Subject – give a different course subject to suit a job’s requirements (11%)
Students and graduates were also asked for their opinions on fake degree certificates. Two-thirds reported that the increase in tuition fees is making buying fake degree certificates more tempting and 14% confirmed they knew someone who had bought one or were considering it. Thirty eight per cent stated that it is very likely or likely that someone would buy a fake degree certificate over going through university.
Jayne Rowley leads HEDD at Graduate Prospects. She said: “A tough jobs market coupled with high tuition fees may be making it more tempting for people to make false claims on their CVs, but organisations need to routinely verify qualifications as part of their recruitment process; if candidates knew that they would be checked it would make lies less likely.
“One of the biggest problems we face at detriment to the hundreds of thousands of genuine, hard-working students who have invested in a UK degree programme is the number of bogus universities – of which the UK remains their favourite domicile in Europe. We alone have identified more than 130 degree mills since we launched HEDD, but there is still a lot of work to be done.”
HEDD is a secure online degree verification system backed by the government and Universities UK to address fraud in higher education and streamline qualification authentication. It enables universities and employers to easily and efficiently check applications to employment or further study. Visit hedd.ac.ukfor further information.