If you are worried about distance learning scams, you aren’t alone. It can be difficult to know who to trust nowadays. The internet means that almost anyone can open a website and start selling things, including courses. However, there are ways to protect yourself and ensure that you’re getting a safe, high quality course experience. This article will hopefully reassure you that UKDLP are on the level, and give you a few tips on how to spot the scammers.
One way that distance learning scams try to fool students is with reviews. They will often have lots of reviews on their own site, usually all with five stars. The problem with this is that they have control over their own web page and can put as many fake reviews as they want. To find out if the company you are looking at is part of a distance learning scam, try searching for reviews on an independent site like Review Centre. UKDLP has over 900 reviews on this site alone, with an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars. We have no control over who leaves a review and no way to put up fake reviews. Even if we tried to, the site would remove us.
Another way distance learning scams operate it with dodgy accreditation. This applies to lots of different areas of the company, but mostly to certificates. First, look at the qualification information of the course and do some research. Most of UKDLP’s courses are exam prep courses for A-Levels and GCSEs. We also have full national qualifications from awarding bodies like AAT and NCFE. Some of our courses do not result in national qualifications, but are useful for CPD or skills training. We always explain which kind of course it is in the qualification information section. You will always know exactly what kind of certificate you are getting from us.
Distance learning scams on the other hand will often advertise courses as if they are all national quals. Or they will tell you that their course is something that it’s not. The best way to beat this kind of scam is to do two things. One: ring the company and ask questions. You can usually tell pretty quickly if someone doesn’t know what they are talking about. Two: do your own research. Never just trust what you are told about a course. Find out what you need and look for a company that offers exactly what you want.
This one can be tricky but is still useful. Obviously a company has a lot of control over their own social media profiles, but on sites like Facebook it is still very hard for someone running distance learning scams to hide. The public are free to comment, and the scammer can’t delete their comments. You will also find that real distance learning companies take the time to regularly post on their social media pages. A scam company will usually just have a few old posts and maybe a couple of fake reviews. UKDLP has a Facebook page you can check out here.
Know your rights
Distance learning scams often rely on people not knowing their rights. In the UK, you have the right to return anything you buy within 14 days and get a full refund. This includes distance learning courses. So, if you get a course from a scammer and it doesn’t match what you expected, then ask to return it straight away. If they say they don’t do refunds and you are in your 14 days then they are breaking the law.
Finally, trust. Even with all the tips we have given you here you can never be totally sure if something is a scam. At some point you are going to have to trust someone. But trust doesn’t have to be blind. Before you enrol on a course, send a couple of emails to the company, or give them a call. If the answers you get don’t satisfy you, then walk away. UKDLP offers a free consultation service through our website, where we let students state their needs and ask questions. We will never pressure a student to enrol, but we will give the best advice we can. We want our students to trust us.