FAQs


Note: The FAQs below apply to postsecondary and professional certification verifications. For high school diplomas, see High School Diploma Verifications

> Registration & Log In

Why do I have to create a profile to request a verification?

Creating an account with the Clearinghouse allows us to verify that you have a valid and approved reason for using our Verification Services in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which protects students’ privacy rights in their education records.

What is multifactor authentication?

It is an authentication method that adds an additional layer of security to users for accessing National Student Clearinghouse services. In addition to using a user name and password, multifactor authentication prompts the user to enter a security code generated and sent to them based on the multifactor authentication option(s) they choose.

Can I update my multifactor authentication methods after I create an account?

Yes, if you need to, you can update any of your multifactor authentication methods after completing registration.


> Submitting a Verification Request

> On Behalf of a Company

Why do I need to provide all the requested details about my company?

In order to use the National Student Clearinghouse’s (“the Clearinghouse”) Verification Services on behalf of a company, we must credential you and your company to ensure that your company is registered to do business in your state or company, and that you are using the education records, and underlying personal data therein, provided through our services for a permissible purpose under our terms and conditions, as well as applicable statutes and regulations. Please find immediately below our Frequently Asked Questions regarding issues that may arise as we credential you and your company through our account creation website.

Why am I being prompted that my company does not exist?

The Clearinghouse’s credentialing process checks to ensure that your company is currently active, as registered in your state or country of incorporation. Therefore, we need for you to provide your company’s registered name, not a d/b/a (“doing business as”) name. For example, if your store is called “Mary’s Café,” but your company is registered in your state or country as MaryCorp, LLC, we need for you to provide the latter, your company’s registered name.

I am not using the Clearinghouse’s Verification Services for my company, so I do not have a company name. Can I still use these services?

If you are an individual using the Verification Services, as a student or alumni, and not in your capacity as an employee for a company, you can select “I’m submitting a verification request for myself.” However, you cannot use the Verification Services to verify another individual’s education credentials.

What should I enter as my company’s “country of incorporation?”

The country under whose laws your company is legally registered.

What should I enter as my company’s “state of incorporation?”

The state under whose laws your company is legally registered.

What should I enter as my “company website?”

Enter your company’s primary website address or URL. If your company does not have a website, enter the Clearinghouse’s website address (www.studentclearinghouse.org).

What should I enter as my company’s “main phone number?”

Enter the primary phone number associated with your company or another phone number belonging to your company.

What should I enter as my “work email address”?

Enter your corporate email address associated with your company.  Personal email addresses (Gmail, Yahoo, etc.) are not permitted unless your company utilizes them for official business.

What if I provided the incorrect information about my company or my company’s information has changed?

Our team will reach out to you if we cannot verify the information you originally provided.  At that time, your company information can be updated.

What happens if I cannot provide the requested company information?

Unfortunately, if you cannot provide the required details about your company for us to permit verifications, you will be unable to use our Verification Services.

I work as an attorney or other legal professional and am seeking the education records of an individual(s) for litigation purposes. Can I use Verification Services to obtain this information?

No. If you are seeking education records, and the underlying data therein, from the Clearinghouse for litigation purposes, please submit a document request, validly issued subpoena, or valid court order to the Clearinghouse’s Chief Legal Officer at legal@studentclearinghouse.org.

I am a member of the media and am seeking education records regarding the subject of a forthcoming publication. Can I use Verification Services to obtain these education records?

No. This is not a permissible purpose for using Verification Services. If you are a media member who is seeking education records, and the underlying data therein, from the Clearinghouse for litigation purposes, please submit a document request, validly issued subpoena, or valid court order to the Clearinghouse’s Chief Legal Officer at legal@studentclearinghouse.org.

I am a private investigator who is seeking education records regarding the subject of an investigation on behalf of a client. Can I use Verification Services to obtain these education records?

No. This is not a permissible purpose for using Verification Services. If you are a private investigator who is seeking education records, and the underlying data therein, from the Clearinghouse for litigation purposes, please submit a document request, validly issued subpoena, or valid court order to the Clearinghouse’s Chief Legal Officer at legal@studentclearinghouse.org.

> On Behalf of Myself

Why can’t I request verifications for someone other than myself or my dependent child/minor?

In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which protects students’ privacy rights in their education records, only a company with a permissible purpose can request verifications for others. If you do not represent a company with a valid reason to conduct verifications, you can only verify your own records or those of your dependent child/minor.

Why are you asking questions about my personal information?

In order to verify your identity; we use a third-party authentication service to generate questions only you should be able to answer.

I do not have a permanent U.S. address, what should I enter in the address fields during registration?

If your permanent address is located outside of the U.S., you should enter the address on your U.S. government-issued ID. If you do not have a government-issued ID, enter the address of the school you attended within the U.S.

What happens if I cannot answer the challenge questions to authenticate myself?

If you cannot answer enough questions to pass authentication, you can retry again after 24 hours has passed. The Clearinghouse cannot assist in answering these questions or unlock accounts for users who have failed authentication.

What if your authentication tool is unable to match my records to generate questions for me to answer?

Unfortunately, if our authentication service cannot locate your records with the information you provided, you will be unable to use our Verification Services.

What happens if I change my phone number or email address? Can I still retrieve my results?

Yes, but you should enter the email address originally used to locate your results.


> Order Payment/Transaction

Is my transaction secure?

Yes. All transactions meet the current Payment Card Industry – Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS). In addition, the information sent over the Internet, when using Clearinghouse applications, is encrypted using the latest Transport Layer Security / Secure Socket Layer (TLS/SSL) protocols. You can view our current PCI compliance status by selecting the Thawte® Trusted Site Seal on the Transcript Ordering Center page (the page where you select your school).

What schools/vendors can I verify?

The lists of participating schools and professional certification vendors are located on www.degreeverify.org.

What payment options are available?

Clearinghouse account holders have two payment options:

  • Monthly invoice: You will receive an invoice each month, subject to a minimum of $100*. Payment by check or credit card is due within 30 days of receipt of the invoice. Electronic payment via ACH (Automated Clearing House) is also available. Overdue payments will be assessed a late fee of five percent of the invoice amount or $10.00, whichever is greater.
  • Pre-authorized credit card payment: You can authorize the Clearinghouse to automatically charge your quarterly invoice payments to your credit card, ensuring uninterrupted access to Verification Services. There is no additional cost for this service, which you can initiate by contacting us.

Opening a Clearinghouse account is recommended for organizations that perform frequent verifications. Users that have only an occasional need to verify academic credentials can purchase academic verifications online via credit card.

The Clearinghouse accepts these major credit cards: Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover.

* The $100 minimum does not apply to accounts without activity.

Can I use a debit card to pay for my verification?

Yes. Verifications can be purchased with a valid MasterCard or Visa debit card.

What information is available through Transaction History?

Transaction History shows when each request was submitted and completed, the current status, and each verification’s fee. If you have a Clearinghouse account, you can view all requests made by each individual user at your organization. Additionally, you can use the monthly transaction summaries to reconcile your credit card statement or monthly invoice.

What is the cost to verify information?

Do you have a refund policy?

Refunds are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. To request a refund, by going here and completing the form. Please include your Verification Services transaction ID (located on your credit card receipt email).

Why am I being charged sales tax?

Verification Services transactions are classified by state and local tax authorities as Information Services, which are subject to sales tax if the customer’s billing address is in any of the following states: New Mexico, Ohio,  South Dakota, Texas, and West Virginia. If you are exempt from sales tax, you will NOT be charged sales tax for your order. In order to do so, you must complete a resale or tax exemption certificate and submit it to the Clearinghouse. Until your certificate has been reviewed and processed by the Clearinghouse, your transactions are still subject to sales tax.

If you are not located in one of the taxable states, you will not be asked to fill out a tax exemption certificate or be charged sales tax. However, if your billing address is in one of the taxable states, you will be charged sales tax. (Clearinghouse account holders will be charged sales tax if their billing contact’s address is located in one of the six applicable states.)

To claim exemption from sales tax, you must update your account and complete a certification using Avalara (AvaTax). For more, read the Sales Tax Exemption topic.


> Order Process

How does Verification Services work?

Schools participating in Verification Services provide the Clearinghouse with electronic copies of their historical degree and attendance records, as well as periodic updates. Employers and their agents request academic records at degreeverify.org, entering personal information about the subject of their search (e.g., subject’s name, Social Security number, birth date, etc.). The Clearinghouse uses this information to find the exact subject in question and provide the requestor with immediate verification of the subject’s academic credentials.

How do I use Verification Services?

Verifications can be obtained for a nominal fee at degreeverify.org via a major credit card or a Clearinghouse account. Requestors can submit as many verifications as they want from as many institutions as they want in a single session.

All users must create an account to use Verification Services. Creating an account allows us to verify that you have a valid and approved reason to use our services. You will be guided through a registration process, during which you will indicate how you plan to use our Verification Services. Find out more information about creating a profile.

The school I want isn’t listed, what can I do?

Try the following steps:

  • Enter more specific information, such as the school’s full name.
  • Use the “Advanced Search” option to enter a partial school name.
  • Many schools are similarly named. Use the location to narrow your search.
  • Review the participating school lists. If the school is not on this list, contact the school’s registrar’s office for assistance.

To review the participating school lists:

1. Visit degreeverify.org.

2. Under “Participants & Pricing,” select one of the links: Current Enrollment, Degrees/Past Attendance, or Professional Certifications/Licenses.

What’s Degree-Level Matching?

Degree-Level Matching allows you to request specific degree levels when you submit verification requests. To use Degree-Level Matching, select a degree level to ensure the degree(s) immediately confirmed for you include the degree level you’re seeking. You’ll still receive ALL degrees we have for the school selected, but we’ll also ensure the degrees returned include the degree level you specified. Selecting the “Unspecified” degree level will ensure you get any degree level the Clearinghouse currently has for the student and school you’ve selected.

Why don’t I always get an instant verification?

The record you requested may predate the school’s electronic records, you may have entered incorrect information, or the applicant may have falsified his or her credentials. If Verification Services cannot instantly verify your degree or dates of attendance verification request, you will be asked to provide additional information (e.g., birth date, year or approximate year of degree, etc.) and your research request will be immediately sent to the school. Schools prioritize verification requests from the Clearinghouse. You will receive an email with the verification results. Remember, the more identifying information that you can provide about the subject and his or her academic achievements, the faster the school can track down the applicable records or confirm a case of credentials fraud.

What is the status of my verification request?

To check the status of an outstanding verification request, log on to degreeverify.org (if you need assistance, please see Forgot User Name or Password?). Select “Find Past Verifications” from the right menu and complete the form to search for past transactions.

If the status is “Pending – School Research,” be assured that we are working with the school to obtain the verification as quickly as possible. The results will be sent to the email address you provided when you submitted your request. Older degree records may require additional research time in order to retrieve archived information.

If you were previously a guest (or unregistered) user, go to degreeverify.org and click “Verify Now” to access the service. Select “Find Past Verifications” from the right menu. Enter your email address and the order ID or transaction ID to locate the verification request.

How do I obtain attendance dates for a degree I already verified?

First, log on to degreeverify.org (if you need assistance, please refer to our troubleshooting topic, Forgot User Name or Password). Click Find Past Verifications under the right menu and complete the form to search for the transaction. If attendance information was provided as part of the verification response, it will appear when you click the “Show Details” link. If the attendance dates were not provided, submit a dispute request by going here and completing the form. We will research your request with the school and email the results to you.

I’ve gotten more information on the student, how do I resubmit my request?

If your verification request has already been completed and the result was “Unable to Confirm,” then you will need to resubmit your request, using the additional information on the student, as a new verification at degreeverify.org.

If your verification request is still in a “Pending” status or your request closed again as unable to confirm, submit a dispute request by going here and completing the form. A Verification Services representative will review the information and determine the next course of action.

Can I add my own tracking number to a verification request?

Yes. You can enter your own alphanumeric case or billing ID (which will appear on your verification results) for your organization’s internal tracking purposes in the “Your Reference ID” box. This option is located under the “Who Would You Like to Verify?” section of the Request a Verification page. Account holders now have the ability to search for past verifications using the Reference ID function.


Why do I need to fax a copy of the student’s consent?

In accordance with the Clearinghouse’s service terms and conditions, you can only submit an online verification request for a student who has applied for employment with the organization you represent or who has applied for a discount, product, or service dependent on their student status. In some cases, schools will not research their records for the student’s information until they see a signed and dated written consent from the student authorizing the release of the information to you. As the school’s agent, the Clearinghouse may require you to fax a copy of the student’s consent to us. Upon receipt of our request, you must fax a copy of the signed consent to us within two (2) business days. If we do not receive the faxed consent from you within two business days, your request will be closed without verification.

If you need a generic consent form, click Find Past Verifications under the right menu. Locate the request that is currently in “Pending” status. Click the “Show Details” link to expand the results of the transaction and select the “consent form” link.

Will the student be informed about my request?

By law, upon the request of a student, we must provide the identity of any requestor who requests or obtains the student’s information.

How do I use a promotional/coupon code?

If you’ve received a promotional or “coupon” code, you can apply this code to your total verification cost during the checkout process

On the Payment Information page, enter a valid promotional code in the “Coupon Code” field and click “Apply

  • If valid, you’ll see the value of the promotional code applied and the total due should reflect the adjusted amount.
  • If the promotional code is not valid, you’ll see an error indicating that it’s invalid. After adding your valid promotional code, you can proceed with completing your order as normal

> Verification Data

Why do you have my information?

Verification Services is provided by the National Student Clearinghouse, a nonprofit organization, which provides educational reporting, verification, and other services to colleges and universities throughout the U.S. As the authorized legal representative of its participating educational schools, the Clearinghouse is considered a primary source for enrollment, degree, and attendance data and confirms this data on behalf of its participating schools to requestors without additions or changes. Upon your written request, we will provide you with information on any requests we have fulfilled for your student record.

Can I verify the exact date of graduation?

It depends on how the school maintains the information. Many schools only maintain the month and year of the degree award date, particularly for older degree records. If your verification response only contains the month and year, then that is the format the school uses to maintain degree award dates and it should be considered complete information.

The student claims another degree from the same school, can you verify that?

Yes. A requestor can verify degrees for more than one school when they create a new verification request. On the Request a Verification page, check the “Degree or School Certificate” box and click the image17 button to add an additional school. If the results did not return all the claimed degrees at the requested school, submit a dispute request by going here and completing the form. We will research your request with the school and send you an update via email once more information is available.

Is grade point average (GPA) provided?

No. Schools do not provide GPAs to the Clearinghouse.

Is the Clearinghouse a “primary source” for education verifications?

Yes. As the authorized legal representative of its participating educational institutions, the Clearinghouse is considered a primary source for degree and enrollment data. This allows the Clearinghouse to supply student data to the U.S. Department of Education, state student loan guaranty agencies, and organizations performing verifications for professional licensing and credentialing. The Clearinghouse confirms the degree and enrollment records provided by schools to requestors without additions or changes. To comply with Department of Education requirements, the Clearinghouse is subject to an annual audit by an independent accounting firm, which it has never failed.

Is the Clearinghouse governed by any federal regulations?

Clearinghouse services are designed to facilitate an institution’s compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), The Higher Education Act, and other applicable laws.

Is the Clearinghouse approved for credentials verification by the Joint Commission?

Yes. The Joint Commission has approved the Clearinghouse to serve as an agent for colleges and universities participating in Verification Services, enabling them to use us as a primary source for academic credential verification.

Does The National Committee For Quality Assurance (NCQA) accept verifications performed by an agent, like the Clearinghouse?

You can verify credentials through an agent as outlined in CR 1: Credentialing Policies Standard to provide requested credentialing information. The Clearinghouse has a contractual relationship with each school that participates in Verification Services, appointing it as the school’s agent for the purpose of verifying degree or enrollment information.

 

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