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195 votes

Has anyone, based on great performance, ever been awarded a higher degree than the one they enrolled for?

Although a bit old, there's the case of Luzin's Master's thesis: . . . he completed his thesis The integral and trigonometric series which he submitted in 1915. After his oral examination he was ...
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149 votes

Has anyone, based on great performance, ever been awarded a higher degree than the one they enrolled for?

Donald Knuth: When Donald Ervin Knuth was a college student at Case Institute of Technology in Cleveland, Ohio, in the 1950s he showed such intelligence and talent that the faculty voted to award ...
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  • 107k
125 votes

Can public political criticism of my alma mater result in my BA being revoked 35 years later?

I've been working in Academia for the past ten years. The only cases of degree revocation that I am aware of were due to severe cases of academic misconduct such as plagiarism, fraud, or large-scale ...
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  • 34k
111 votes

What consequences are there if, having already graduated and received my degree, I do not pay up my tuition fees?

Some universities (perhaps most) will refuse to provide transcripts for students who owe money. Example. This can be a serious problem for you. Some employers insist upon an official transcript as a ...
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97 votes

Dates on degrees don’t make sense – will people care?

Different countries have different conventions around the résumé / CV, and you might want very different versions of your résumé for applying for jobs in academia or industry. That said, at a general ...
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  • 3,373
94 votes

Can my university revoke my degree after it was granted due to (corporate) data having changed?

Revoking a degree is rarely done and, then, only for the most extreme reasons such as explicit dishonesty and such. Any results in any thesis are subject to revision as new information becomes ...
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  • 270k
93 votes

Is a university that grants me a PhD for $1000 and a copy of my unpublished book fake?

You have lost the money whether or not the "university" gives you the degree. You have given your money to what is known as a diploma mill. A long time ago (nearly two decades!), I received an email ...
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  • 172k
86 votes

Has anyone, based on great performance, ever been awarded a higher degree than the one they enrolled for?

The famous Polish mathematician, Stefan Banach, famously received his PhD in 1920 without having had a college degree. In fact, its a pretty famous story, he did not want to get any sort of degree as ...
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  • 941
74 votes
Accepted

Dates on degrees don’t make sense – will people care?

I suggest you list the years you were studying/enrolled, not the years degrees were conferred, i.e., 2015–2017 Master’s, Second Grade, Second University. 2012–2015 Bachelor’s, First Grade, ...
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  • 40.2k
72 votes

Is it reasonable to have concerns about the recognition of Russian degrees given the war in Ukraine?

Disclaimer: I did my BSc, MSc and PhD in Russia and I was Russian citizen from birth up until 2020. You ask about the recognition of degrees, and thus your question sounds as if it was about the ...
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70 votes

What consequences are there if, having already graduated and received my degree, I do not pay up my tuition fees?

For example, can they (or will they) revoke my degree? I am surprised that you were issued a degree without having paid tuition for your last semester. In most cases I am familiar with, ...
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66 votes

Is a university that grants me a PhD for $1000 and a copy of my unpublished book fake?

In case there was any doubt, I have asked them. This is the conversation I had with them (some irrelevant parts omitted): Albert: Hello, I have written a book on Mathematics that I would like to ...
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  • 21k
65 votes

Can public political criticism of my alma mater result in my BA being revoked 35 years later?

I sit on our university's Senate which is the body that would have to deliberate a degree revocation. Even a straight-forward case of plagiarism in a degree requires a long, drawn-out and surprisingly ...
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62 votes
Accepted

Can I claim to have completed my degree on my résumé, prior to convocating and receiving the physical diploma?

You can use the formulation Degree to be conferred MM/YYYY to indicate that you have passed all degree requirements, but are waiting for the degree to be officially awarded. This occurs fairly ...
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  • 172k
58 votes

Can you get a PhD based on work or life experience?

Ph.D.s and other academic titles and degrees awarded for "work experience", "life experience" and so on are products of diploma mills. You pay a lot of money (thousands of USD) for a piece of paper ...
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53 votes

What is a good etiquette to correct a person using wrong title for me?

I would say this depends on context. When contacting academics, it is common to assume they all have a doctorate. A mass email (or mail-merged etc.) is therefore likely to use Dr. even for a PhD ...
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  • 15.7k
53 votes

Can a department revoke a degree, once granted by the university?

Absent plagiarism, fraud, or other academic sanction, it would be difficult to revoke an awarded degree. There would have to be strong evidence for doing so, and it’s not often attempted, in part ...
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  • 172k
52 votes

What is the basic structure of American higher education?

This flow chart, from the National Center for Education Statistics, summarizes it better than any explanation I can think of. https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d01/fig1.asp Everywhere you see an ...
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51 votes

Is it reasonable to have concerns about the recognition of Russian degrees given the war in Ukraine?

It seems risky to go to Russia at the moment for lots of reasons, but I think that recognition of a degree is probably lower on the scale than many others. Academics are generally more open to dealing ...
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  • 270k
49 votes

Is there any point in keeping the paper versions of one's college diplomas?

Keep all paper certificates always. Depending on what job(s) you apply for, and whether they require a certain degree, you may be asked to present the paper version. I have been asked in my last few ...
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  • 4,291
47 votes

Can I pursue a bachelor degree at 42? What should I consider when deciding whether to do so?

Firstly, to answer the actual question at the top: yes, absolutely. There is no age limit on doing a degree. It is not at all unusual for people significantly older than you to complete degrees. My ...
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  • 1,112
46 votes
Accepted

Why didn't more people graduate with a college degree when it was "affordable"?

There are many factors! In the past there was much less demand for highly educated people, as there were many more jobs that were mostly manual labour. Technology is largely to blame for this, as ...
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  • 15k
46 votes
Accepted

Can a university revoke my degree for not attending classes?

It is part of the cultural norms of American universities that your attendance or lack thereof is an issue for each individual course instructor to pursue or not pursue as they choose. At my ...
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45 votes

I graduated with 1st class honours - do I add it to the letters after my name?

No. The class of a degree is not written in your post-nominal qualifications. You can add it in he educational details on your CV.
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43 votes

Can my degree be revoked if my relationship with my advisor sours post-defense?

Once a degree has been conferred, it is exceedingly difficult to retract at without clear evidence of misconduct. Having a souring of relations with your advisor definitely does not rise to the level ...
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  • 172k
43 votes

Is there any point in keeping the paper versions of one's college diplomas?

An former instructor of mine once told a story about the school where he earned his undergraduate degree. A decade or so after he graduated, the school completely ceased operations after enrollment ...
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  • 1,495
42 votes
Accepted

Should a degree in an unrelated field be included in CV?

While there are some circumstances in which is it appropriate to use a "shortened" C.V. that does not include everything that you have done, I have never heard of a circumstance under which it is ...
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  • 182k
42 votes

Can a university revoke my degree for not attending classes?

Assuming you haven't been awarded a degree yet, you can't have your degree revoked. As for whether the university can refuse to award you a degree because you didn't attend class - key point to note ...
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  • 105k
42 votes

Is it reasonable to have concerns about the recognition of Russian degrees given the war in Ukraine?

Russia has a mathematical culture that is among the best in the world, so the mathematics that you will be taught in a Master’s program at a good Russian university will be of a very high level, and ...
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  • 171k
39 votes

Why is it customary to call people with doctoral degrees doctors but not people with masters degrees masters?

If you're talking about the use of doctor as a title, as in "Dr. Smith", I doubt there's any compelling explanation. Most degrees don't come with titles: nobody say Master Smith or Bachelor Smith or ...
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