Best Selling Novel, Secret Daughter, reveals the “Two India's.” recognizes that advanced education available in India is overlooked in the US.

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In Secret Daughter, author Shilpi Somaya Gowda brings to light the wealthy educated side of India as well as the slums. However, according to Sheila Danzig of, in the US the rigorous education is often not regarded as highly as it should be.

The best selling novel, Secret Daughter, is the story of an Indian girl given up for adoption who grows up in the US and returns to India exposed the two India's – one rich and highly educated and one destitute. In the US many education experts including Sheila Danzig and Professor John Kersey believe that the Indian education system is often under-rated, perhaps in part because of the large portion of the country that lives a 3rd world existence.

According to Danzig, who heads a foreign credential evaluation agency, Career Consulting International (, India should be better recognized for its excellent system of education, not its slums. “In the book Gowda shows that intelligent minds are widespread in India yet many graduates of India’s rigorous educational system are having trouble getting their degrees recognized in the United States,” Danzig says. I am repeatedly seeing universities and government agencies who simply refuse to understand that the Indian 3 year bachelor degree is at least as rigorous and consists of as many contact hours as the US bachelor degree."

According to Danzig, who evaluates non-US degrees in terms of US education, a graduate from the U.K. with a three-year bachelor’s degree has little trouble having it accepted in the U.S. as equivalent to an American bachelor’s degree, someone with a three-year bachelor’s degree from India faces an uphill battle getting American graduate schools to accept his degree as equivalent to an American bachelor’s degree – even though the Indian educational system is closely modeled on that of the U.K.

Indeed, a 2005 and a 2010 study by Sheila Danzig and John Kersey, President of Marquess Educational Consultants Limited, concluded that the Indian and British educational systems are materially equivalent. Their conclusion: “If the value of your degree is not to depend on the color of your skin, the Indian three-year bachelor’s degree must be accorded its proper value as an international credential.”

“When we started including this study with our evaluations as well as expanding the evaluation itself to make the matter very clear, the rate of acceptance of Indian three-year degrees increased dramatically,” says Danzig, whose company evaluates international educational credentials. “When the arguments are laid out objectively, people understand the inequity and are open to a proper equivalency. But prejudices continue to pose a challenge for many Indian graduates.”

“This has a serious impact on people’s ability to immigrate, get higher education and obtain employment,” adds Kersey, who is president of a British educational consultancy firm with particular interests in international credential evaluation. “We are very proud of what we are doing to right this wrong.”

The study, “Does the Value of Your Degree Depend on the Color of Your Skin?,” appears at

For information on evaluations of educational credentials from around the world for U.S. immigration purposes, university admissions or employment, visit .


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