A listing on reed.co.uk, for an Online Criminal Forensic Psychology Course provided by LSE Study, seen on 4 February 2018, stated “Study method Online, self paced…Duration Part-time/Full-time…Qualification Level 2 Diploma in Criminal Forensic Psychology”.
The complainant, who understood that the qualification received would be a certificate of completion and not a Level 2 Diploma, challenged whether the ad was misleading.
Person(s) unknown t/a LSE Study did not respond to the ASA’s enquiries.
The ASA noted that the advertiser's website was registered to a postal address which we contacted. However, we did not receive a response. The ASA was concerned by LSE Study’s lack of response and apparent disregard for the Code, which was a breach of CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 1.7 1.7 Any unreasonable delay in responding to the ASA's enquiries will normally be considered a breach of the Code. (Unreasonable delay). We reminded them of their responsibility to provide a response to our enquiries and told them to do so in future.
We considered that consumers would understand from the ad that the qualification offered was a Level 2 Diploma in Criminal Forensic Psychology. We understood that the complainant was informed by the advertiser that they only issued a certificate of completion of the course. Because LSE Study had not provided any evidence to demonstrate the ad related to a Level 2 Diploma, we concluded that the ad was misleading.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 3.1 3.1 Marketing communications must not materially mislead or be likely to do so. (Misleading advertising).
The ad must not appear in its current form. We told Person(s) unknown t/a LSE Study not to state that they offered specific qualifications, such as a Level 2 Diploma in Criminal Forensic Psychology, if that was not the case. We passed the matter to CAP’s Compliance team.