This article introduces Bircham International University legal history and provides important concepts about its legitimacy.
AN IDEA IS BORN. Form, research & development.
A company was incorporated in Madrid, Spain with the name "Alternatives for Higher Education" at the Official Companies Registrar on date July 1, 1992. Registry Data for reference: "tomo 2856, libro 0, folio 21, sección 8, hoja M-49113". This company starts researching and testing different pedagogical approaches to distance learning worldwide. The research and development of Bircham International University learning methodology and administrative structure took five years.
This European initiative merges with the Bircham International College (BIC) incorporated and founded by Deric Bircham in 1989 in New Zealand. Bircham International College had the commitment to fulfill the needs of the adult professional student from all cultural backgrounds. This interaction gave birth and final form to Bircham International University.
THE COMMONWEALTH LEGAL STATUS. UK & The Bahamas.
Bircham International College was incorporated in the UK at the Companies House with number 3656298 on date October 26, 1998. According to the "Education Reform Act 1988" and the "Further and Higher Education Act 1992", Bircham International College UK was authorized to issue higher certificates and diplomas but not university degrees.
On February 1, 2000, Bircham International University got authorization to incorporate as Bircham International University Ltd., according to the "IBC Act 1989" at the British Commonwealth of the Bahamas, being legalized and registered as University in the General registry of the Bahamas with the number 103326B.
In the year 2003, Bircham International University ceased its activities in the Commonwealth of the Bahamas and focused its legal status both in Spain, European Union and the USA, as a non profit organization.
THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA LEGAL STATUS. Delaware, USA.
On February 1, 2000, Bircham International University Inc. was formally established and registered as a non-profit organization in the State of Delaware, USA with the Registry number 001051898-3169257 with the purpose of providing higher education and degrees.
Education in the USA is decentralized by the Constitution, so each State holds the legitimacy to incorporate educational institutions. Accreditation is a voluntary and non governmental regulatory process to ensure academic quality and mobility.
In 2010, The USA IRS (Internal Revenue Service) approved the Non Profit 501c3 status of Bircham International University.
THE EUROPEAN UNION LEGAL STATUS. Spain.
On February 18, 2000, the Official Companies Registrar of Madrid, Spain incorporated Bircham International University S.L. as a private non-formal provider of higher education. BIU registry: "folio 75 y siguientes del tomo 15568, hoja M-262038".
Bircham International University became a provider of non formal education programs and was authorized to issue private independent diplomas not leading to official or homologated degrees by virtue of the Laws: "Ley 7/1986, de 23 de Mayo, L.O.D.E. - Ley Orgánica Reguladora del Derecho a la Educación (BOE 4 Julio 1985), Capitulo III, artículos 21, 22, y 24.2., LEY ORGÁNICA 2/2006, de 3 de mayo, artículos 66.4, 114 y 115 y la L.O.U. - Ley Orgánica de la Universidad (BOE 24 Diciembre 2001), Disposición Sexta".
The Ministry of Economy approved Bircham International University educational activity under section 932.2: Non formal Higher Education.
The Spain Ministry of Consumer Affairs monitors Bircham International University activity. The applicable law is Decreto 84/2004 de 13 de Mayo (Enseñanza General).
The European Commission launched Open Education Europa in September 2013 as part of the Opening up Education initiative to provide a single gateway to European Open Education Resources. In 2014, Bircham International University has been admitted into the Open Education Europa as a private and independent institution of distance learning higher education at university level.
10 IMPORTANT LEGAL CONCEPTS:
Bircham International University (BIU) is a private and independent provider of non formal higher education that offers degree programs at professional, undergraduate and graduate levels through distance learning with a focus on the adult professional student.
2. E.U. Recognition:
Bircham International University is a provider of non-formal education and as such no further authorization from a Ministry of Education is required. The Spain Ministry of Consumer Affairs monitors BIU activity. The applicable law is Decreto 84/2004 de 13 de Mayo (Enseñanza General).
3. Education Quality:
Bircham International University is accredited, recognized or member of several international bodies and meets the quality standards of such organizations in different countries. None of these international bodies are recognized by CHEA USA (Council of Higher Education Accreditation).
4. USA Accreditation:
The process of accreditation is non-governmental and voluntary. There are no worldwide accreditation standards. Accreditation is not equivalent to legality or recognition, it is a non-governmental and voluntary quality standard. Accreditation (including CHEA) does not provide automatic acceptance and validation of the credits earned at other institutions, nor does it guarantee the acceptance of graduates by employers.
Acceptance of Bircham International University credits and degrees is always the prerogative of the receiving institution or employer. There are institutions reluctant to accept credits obtained through distance learning, from non-formal education or from non-CHEA accredited institutions. In some cases, partial credit transfer may be accepted.
Bircham International University degrees and transcripts meet the current higher education guidelines set forth by the European Union (European Credit Transfer System [ECTS]) as well as the USA (Generally Accepted Accrediting Practices [GAAP]).
7. International scope:
Bircham International University degrees are legal and valid. They can be internationally legalized with The Hague Apostille Certificate or Consulate Legalization (for non-Hague signatory countries) for their use and validation in many countries.
8. Ministry of Education:
In Spain, non-formal education programs do not follow the contents and requirements established by a Ministry of Education, thus Bircham International University non-formal education programs can not lead to degrees officially recognized by a Ministry of Education.
9. Legal Guarantees:
Bircham International University is an institution registered simultaneously in two countries: the European Union (Spain) and the USA (State of Delaware). This double registration Bircham International University BIU to not depend exclusively on one country's legislation thus providing a better legal guaranty to all of its students and graduates. Bircham International University degrees and transcript specify the country where they are issued from.
10. Degree Guarantees:
All Bircham International University degrees are signed by a Doctor from a formal traditional university, the President and Registrar of the University. The BIU degree and transcript do not specify distance learning information. The Bircham International University transcript identifies and differentiates the credits transferred from previous education, credits granted for professional experience, and the credits earned at BIU.
Bircham International University Legal History
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