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Warnborough College UK
Warnborough College Ireland
Established 1973, 1997, 2006
Type Private
President Brendan D. Tempest-Mogg
Vice-president Julian Ng
Provost Brendan D. Tempest-Mogg
Location Canterbury, Kent, UK
Dublin, Ireland
Warnborough UK logo.jpgWarnborough ie logo.gif

Warnborough College UK provides a variety of educational programs, both on-site in Canterbury, England, and by distance learning. Warnborough College Ireland offers distance-learning programs from Ireland. The name Warnborough is also associated with several related institutions of higher education existing from 1973 to the present, including Warnborough College Oxford and Warnborough University.

Alan Contreras, administrator of the Oregon Office of Degree Authorization, characterizes Warnborough College as "a diploma mill that has managed to move back and forth between Britain and Ireland for decades without either government's being able to put an end to it".[1][2]




1973–1996: Oxford

Warnborough College was founded in Oxford, England, in 1973 by Brenden Tempest-Mogg, an Australian[3] who had attended Hertford College in 1970.[4] In no way affiliated with the University of Oxford, it offered study abroad programs and catered largely to American undergraduate and graduate students who would spend a semester or year abroad as part of their academic program.[5] Other offerings included Warnborough College International Summer Schools,[6] and a venue for summer conferences.[7] It was founded on Warnborough Road in North Oxford in 1973 and moved to Yatscombe Hall, former home to the Greek scholar Gilbert Murray and Lord Shawcross, at Boars Hill about four miles from the city of Oxford in 1976.[4] The Boars Hill facilities included a lodge for the teaching staff and two Victorian Gothic mansions, one used as the women's dorm and one used as a men's dorm and for classes.[8]

In 1985, Warnborough College began offering a study abroad program in Sydney, Australia and later expanded to Brisbane.[9]

Notable former students of Warnborough College Oxford include former surgeon and businessman Kneeland Youngblood,[10]

In 1995 Warnborough College enrolled its first group of students on-site in a four-year academic program, misrepresenting itself as being related to Oxford University. When the students arrived to start classes, they discovered that Warnborough had no connection with Oxford University, withdrew from the school and demanded refunds.

Oxford University threatened Warnborough College with a lawsuit over these misrepresentations.[11] Warnborough was sued, together with its president and Mark Huck, its recruiting co-ordinator in Seattle, by the Washington State Higher Education Coordinating Board.[8][12] and by former students. The lawsuit by former students resulted in a judgment against Warnborough College by the Superior Court of King County, Washington of nearly $300,000.[13] In October 1995 the United States Department of Education suspended [14] and then, in 1996, terminated the eligibility of Warnborough College to participate in the federal student financial assistance programs under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 on the basis that (i) it was not a degree-granting institution, (ii) its credits were not freely transferable; and (iii) it had no eligible vocational programs. It also fined the college for (i) failing to make refunds to students in accord with Title IV and Warnborough's own refund policies; and (ii) responsibility for misrepresentations to students that it was a part of Oxford University and had degree-granting authority.[15]

These events created significant financial problems for Warnborough College. Hertford College was reported to be pursuing legal action against Warnborough College to recover a property rental debt of 6,000 pounds. Other creditors who were owed tens of thousands of pounds hired a private detective to track down the principals after they abruptly returned to Australia.[16] [4][17] [18] The Boars Hill properties were repossessed by creditors and its corporate owner, Oxford International Educational Enterprises Ltd, directed by brothers Brenden and Daryl Tempest-Mogg and their mother, Ethel Tempest-Mogg, wound up on a petition by Inland Revenue. In the summer of 1996, Warnborough relocated temporarily to offices rented from New Road Baptist Church in central Oxford. The Tempest-Moggs returned to Australia in July 1996 and the New Road office closed in August 1996.[4] In October 1996 Warnborough went into liquidation.[17]

1997-2005: London and Canterbury

In 1997 Warnborough University was registered as a limited company in Ireland, directed by Brenden Tempest-Mogg and Kee Guan Ng, a Malaysian national[3]and registered a branch office in the United Kingdom. It initially operated an office in London and later moved to Canterbury. It offered graduate and undergraduate residential and non-residential degrees in liberal arts, scientific and professional studies.[19]. In November 2005 the Department of Education and Science said that Warnborough University in Ireland was in breach of the Universities Act 1997 by calling itself a university and requested that they not use the word "university" to describe themselves.[20]

In the early 2000s Warnborough University generated controversy by issuing graduate and undergraduate degrees in Australia because neither Warnborough nor any of its consortium partners through which it was offering degrees were authorised or accredited to do so. [21] [22] The Australian state of New South Wales included Warnborough on a list of five “unrecognized universities”. [23] As of 2005, some Warnborough graduates were being denied employment in Australia because Warnborough was not on the list of recognised institutions in Australia.[24]

2006 - present

In January 2006 two separate companies were established, in Ireland and the United Kingdom respectively, under the Warnborough College name.

The Oregon Office of Degree Authorization says, "Also Warnborough College. 'Warnborough University is not a recognized institution in Ireland' - National Qualifications Authority of Ireland 'Not a UK degree-granter. Appearance on UK registry of training providers does not confer or represent authorization to issue degrees' - British Higher Education Governance office. Also operates jointly with St. Theresa's Medical University of St. Kitts."[25]

United Kingdom college

Warnborough College UK is located in Canterbury, Kent.


Warnborough College UK issues certificates and diplomas in a number of university foundational, short-course vocational and personal-enrichment subjects.[26] It does not offer and is not authorized to offer, British degrees.[27]

According to its website[28] university foundation programs are offered in the areas of:

  • marketing
  • business management
  • human resources management
  • travel, tourism and hospitality

Distance learning courses are currently offered in the following 15 general areas:

  • agriculture
  • business and management
  • ecotourism and adventure activities
  • education, training and research
  • environmental studies
  • health, fitness and recreation
  • horticulture
  • hospitality and tourism
  • information technology
  • landscaping
  • permaculture and self-sufficiency
  • photography
  • psychology and counselling
  • science
  • writing and journalism

Accreditation issues

According to its website, Warnborough College UK became accredited in 2008 by the Accreditation Service for International Colleges and is designated as an "ASIC Premier College". [29] Warnborough UK is an accredited training provider for distance-education and onsite bookkeeping courses leading to Level 1 and Level 2 certification from the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers.[30] Warnborough College UK is an accredited training provider for the Association of Business Executives (ABE)and offers certificate and diploma tuition services by distance-learning or onsite covering business management and tourism and hospitality. [31]

Warnborough College UK certificates and diplomas are not degrees[25] and are considered unaccredited as specified in the following government websites: Texas,[32] Oregon,[25] Michigan,[33] and Maine [34]. A Warnborough degree is not accepted in South Korea for purposes of obtaining an E-2 Visa.[35][36]

Irish college

Warnborough College Ireland is located in Dublin. From 2006 to 2008 it rented offices from All Hallows College in Drumcondra. In February 2008 the Irish Independent reported that All Hallows officials were concerned that the college had falsely represented itself as linked to All Hallows, which had no involvement in its academic programs or arrangements. At All Hallow's request, Warnborough removed photographs of All Hallows from its website. All Hallows said that it would not renew Warnborough's lease after August 2008.[3]


The college offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in a variety of disciplines, principally by distance learning. According to its website[37] it offers the following degrees:

Bachelors Masters Doctoral
Arts Arts Arts
Applied Science
Business Business Business
Fine Arts Fine Arts

Accreditation issues

Warnborough College Ireland courses are not recognized by Ireland's Department of Education, the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC) or the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI). In February 2008, Sean O'Foghlu, chief executive of NQAI told the Irish Independent that because Warnborough College is not a recognised higher education institution or awarding body, the qualifications are "effectively worthless". [3]

In July 2008, HETAC denied the college's application for accreditation because it had failed to agree to quality-control procedures, which were the first step in the accreditation process.[38] Warnborough sought leave to take judicial review of the denial [39] but withdrew its appeal in November 2008 after HETAC agreed to permit Warnborough to submit a new accreditation application.[40],

Warnborough College Ireland degrees are not accepted in Texas,[32] Oregon,[25] by Michigan civil service,[33] or Maine.[34] A Warnborough degree is not accepted in South Korea for purposes of obtaining an E-2 Visa.[35][36]

See also


  1. ^ Contreras, Alan, "The complexity of international quality control" International Higher Education No 54 (Winter 2009)
  2. ^ Contreras, Alan, "International quality control is no easy task" Chronicle of Higher Education (May 30, 2008)
  3. ^ a b c d Phelan, Shane; Walshe, John (2008-02-15), "College charges €18,000 fees for 'useless' degrees", Irish Independent, 
  4. ^ a b c d King, Tim (1996-10-25). Oxford College Sued in US is Repossessed. The Daily Telegraph(UK)
  5. ^ Queensland Courier-Mail, November 10, 1993, Residential Property section, p. 35
  6. ^ "Vacationing at an Overseas University", The New York Times, 1981-01-18, 
  7. ^ The Guardian, 1990-02-19 
  8. ^ a b "Students Find Warnborough Is Not A Part Of Oxford", Seattle Times, 1995-10-11, 
  9. ^ Warnborough College Overview (From Internet Archive)
  10. ^ Dr Kneeland Youngblood Biography (interviewed on 2004-10-28, The HistoryMakers website)
  11. ^ O'Leary,John and Charter, David, "US students say college misled them over link with Oxford" The Times (London) (October 3, 1995)
  12. ^ "Americans Say a College Near Oxford Duped Them" (), The New York Times, 1995-10-02, 
  13. ^ "News In Brief: State Capitols Roundup", Education Week (March 12, 1997)
  14. ^ In Re Warnborough College, US Dept of Education Docket No 95-146-EA ((Dec 6, 1995)
  15. ^ In Re Warnborough College, US Dept of Education Docket Nos. 95-164-ST, 96-60-SF (Aug 9, 1996)
  16. ^ Pritikin, Susan (1996-10-31) "College? What College?" Cherwell(Oxford, UK)
  17. ^ a b "College that lured U.S. students goes bust", The Times (London), 1996-10-29 
  18. ^ Phelan, Shane "Chequered history of controversial college" Irish Independent (February 15, 2008)
  19. ^ Bear, John,Bear's Guide to Earning Degrees by Distance Learning,15th Ed (2003) p.223
  20. ^ "Exposed: scandal of the bogus degrees", Irish Independent, 2005-11-14, 
  21. ^ Questions on Notice (April 3 2001)
  22. ^ Lawnham, Patrick, “Authorities plan crackdown on Clayton’s Degrees” The Australian Ed 1 p 31 (March 13, 2002)
  23. ^ Brown, George, “Protecting Australia’s Higher Education System: A Proactive versus Reactive Approach in Review (1999-2004) Proceedings of the Australian Universities Quality Forum 2004
  24. ^ Submission 96 (September 9, 2005)
  25. ^ a b c d Unaccredited Colleges, Oregon State Office of Degree Authorization
  26. ^ Warnborough College | Distance Education | Correspondence | Home Study Courses | e-Learning
  27. ^ Montell, Gabriela (2000-10-13), What You Need To Know Before You Work Abroad, The Chronicle of Higher Education,, retrieved 2007-12-26 
  28. ^ Courses Warnborough College UK
  29. ^ Accreditation Service for International Colleges Directory
  30. ^ Recommended Bookkeeping Courses
  31. ^ Association of Business Executives (UK) Short courses
  32. ^ a b Institutions Whose Degrees are Illegal to Use in Texas
  33. ^ a b Colleges and Universities Not Accredited by CHEA
  34. ^ a b Maine state law restricts the use of false academic credentials, including those granted by unaccredited institutions; Warnborough appears on the state's list of unaccredited institutions.[1]
  35. ^ a b ▒ ESL Teacher Placement Agency - EnglishWork ▒
  36. ^ a b ::Koreapot::
  37. ^ Degree Programs, Warnborough College (IE)
  38. ^ O'Sullivan, Sarah, "Authorities refuse to recognize web college" The Sunday Times July 18, 2008
  39. ^ Phelan, Shane and Walshe, John Legal war looms in college's battle for approvalIrish Independent, September 15, 2008
  40. ^ College Will Fight on for Recognition, Irish Independent, November 11, 2008

External links


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