Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Gurumurthy Kalyanaram – Reports on Expert Witness Testimony in a False Claims Act/ qui tam Lawsuit

Gurumurthy Kalyanaram - Former Dean and former NYIT and UT Dallas professor Gurumurthy Kalyanaram reports on his expert witness testimony in a False Claims Act/qui tam lawsuit based upon my expert witness testimony, the US government decided to intervene in a qui tam lawsuit against two private educational entities.

The background to the lawsuit is as follows. Two educational entities had collaborated and designed an on-line educational program. According to the complaint, the institutes were purportedly offering degrees without completion of the requisite requirements, employing unqualified faculty and using inadequate facilities. The on-line educational program was also purportedly engaged in commissions-based student recruitment process.

Since I have started new degree programs; directed, supervised and monitored programs; recruited faculty and students; designed and developed curricula; served as Dean for Programs and Dean for Research; and successfully led and completed the accreditation of many programs, I am considered an expert in college and university education.

As an expert, I was asked to assess if the on-line program met the overall professional and accreditation requirements. More specifically, I was asked to assess the following elements:

Did the on-line education degree programs satisfy the stipulated credit hours/courses requirements?

Were the qualifications of the faculty members adequate for the appropriate degree programs?

Did the facilities and resources in the program meet the requirements for productive learning?

In light of the fact that law forbids student recruitment based on commissions because that is likely to lead to low quality, what is the assessment of the admissions processes and outcomes?

I reviewed the records and data, and prepared a report. Further, I met with the U.S. government and provided my insights.

The qui tam lawsuit was found meritorious, the U.S. government decided to intervene, and the on-line program partners admitted to wrong doing and paid a penalty of over $4 million to the U.S. government. My expert witness testimony offered important insights in adjudicating the lawsuit.

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