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… is the mantra of many an academic scammer, as in the case of Ireland’s Fergus Heffernan, a floridly compulsive liar with a thriving business as a lecturer on mental health.

Like a lot of degree frauds, Fergus seems to have decided somewhere way back that having issued himself a PhD, he might as well manufacture an array of further achievements.

[H]is doctoral qualification in psychology is fake …

[An] investigation also revealed he had falsely claimed to be a visiting professor at a number of top international universities, and that his claim to have served with the Irish Defence Forces in Lebanon in 1976 was untrue — as there was no conflict in Lebanon until 1978.

In response to these discrepancies, he said he used the wrong terminology and that he was a “visiting lecturer”.

He also claimed that he was in fact in Lebanon in 1978.

… [He] claimed to be a visiting professor at Trinity College Dublin, Boston University, and Columbia University in New York.

All three institutions have ­confirmed they have no record of any employment or affiliation with Mr Heffernan.

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3 Responses to “Go Big or Go Home…”

  1. DRC Says:

    “But what about Fergus Heffernan the victim? I don’t suppose anyone will want to hear that.”

    Well, there’s one accurate psychological insight.

  2. Margaret Soltan Says:

    DRC: I’m so glad you quoted that. I loved that.

  3. dmf Says:


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