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#1
Old 01-06-2014, 01:46 AM
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University of Phoenix - legitimate degree or joke?

I confess to being skeptical of on-line (or mostly on-line) degrees. If you are trying to get promoted within a company you are currently working for, and the position requires a degree, I can see looking at one of these options like the Univ. Of Phoenix to get the piece of paper.

But U of Phoenix has been around for quite a while now. So, has it become an accepted "school" to have a degree from when you go out into the job market?

Does anyone here have a U. Of Phoenix (or other similar) degree, and can you share your experiences with it when job hunting? And if you have a degree from there, what was your opinion of the quality of the education received? Is that opinion shared by others you've dealt with, or has your experience been that people don't view them as "real" degrees?

Thanks
#2
Old 01-06-2014, 01:57 AM
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They are currently accredited, but "on notice." I haven't met anyone who has a great deal of respect for University of Phoenix degrees.

There are online programs run by more reputable institutions, in any case. Western Governors University has a good reputation.
#3
Old 01-06-2014, 10:07 AM
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First, some background thoughts:

1. If the company is so rules-driven that they don't want to promote someone merely because they didn't get a college degree umpteen years ago, I'm not sure I'd want to work at that company.

2. If the company is so institutionally loony that they don't care where the degree is from or what it's in, just that you have one, I'm not sure I'd want to work at that company.

That being said, I recognize that not everyone can just change jobs on a whim, so assuming you're stuck there...

1. I don't think UoP has that great a reputation, and there have been rants from professors that quit because they were tired of how bad the education they were required to provide was.

2. Many online colleges, and UoP included, have a reputation of stringing someone along to suck more money out of them. If you're smart about it, you can probably avoid this, but it's a trap they don't seem to mind others falling into.

3. Credits probably won't transfer if you decide to get a degree from a more respected institution.

4. My guess is you can find something cheaper that works with your schedule if you look into your local community colleges.

5. Don't expect the education you get at UoP to be worth much if anything.

Last edited by yellowjacketcoder; 01-06-2014 at 10:07 AM.
#4
Old 01-06-2014, 10:15 AM
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Phoenix, as mentioned, is accredited. Their strongpoint is in allowing people to complete degrees while working. A lot of the driving force behind their expansion (and that of similar institutions) was how employers started making specific levels of degree a requirement for promotion/retention, so obtaining degrees becomes a checkmarking exercise. So it's "accepted" in the sense that it ticks off that box in the HR form but if someone shows up with a Masters from Phoenix and some other person shows up with one from State U., I know which one tilts the balance all-else-being-equal. Then again you could say that about many other institutional comparisons.

They catch a lot of flak for being established for-profit, which raises eyebrows, fairly or not, about matters of rigor.

Like it has been already stated, there are other accredited online institutions and credit-transfer/credit-for-work programs, as well as ever more online programs being offered by more established institutions, and programs for accommodating the working student among both public and private institutions (not just CCs).
#5
Old 01-06-2014, 10:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowjacketcoder View Post


1. I don't think UoP has that great a reputation, and there have been rants from professors that quit because they were tired of how bad the education they were required to provide was.

2. Many online colleges, and UoP included, have a reputation of stringing someone along to suck more money out of them. If you're smart about it, you can probably avoid this, but it's a trap they don't seem to mind others falling into.

3. Credits probably won't transfer if you decide to get a degree from a more respected institution.
I'm going to focus on these three points, because I think they are worth noting. The idea that the credits won't transfer is important, especially if one has the idea of ising the degree to move forward with their education, and/or decides to go to a brick and mortar type school.

I did not realize credits from an "accredited" university could be kept from transferring, but I confess to knowing little about how a school gets accredited in the first place, and what that actually means. I always thought that being accredited meant that the degree and credits WERE recognized, because the school had jumped through the necessary hoops to prove to whoever that the education was on par with a similar program at a typical higher education institution (let's call it State University).

On-line colleges are not the only schools that have the reputation of stringing students along for money. I went to grad school and saw how things worked. If you wanted an "A" you had to earn it. And you had to work for it. There were no gimmee "A"s. However, passing the class was somewhat different. If you put in some effort and seemed to have a general grasp of the subject matter, you got a "B", and if you showed up and put ypur time in, ypu almost always got a "C". A "C" is looked at as failing at many schools, because some schools require you to carry a GPA above 2.5 to continue. Now, we all know that those types of things are flexible, and if a company is paying for one's education, then the school is more likely to be forgiving. However, most companies will not re-emburse a student for a "C" grade (IME, anyway), so if you want that degree and can't pay for it, you will work to get at least a "B".

My graduate education was IMO excellent, but I had to put the time in. And teachers made you work for the "A".


Quote:
Originally Posted by JRDelirious View Post
Phoenix, as mentioned, is accredited. Their strongpoint is in allowing people to complete degrees while working. A lot of the driving force behind their expansion (and that of similar institutions) was how employers started making specific levels of degree a requirement for promotion/retention, so obtaining degrees becomes a checkmarking exercise. So it's "accepted" in the sense that it ticks off that box in the HR form but if someone shows up with a Masters from Phoenix and some other person shows up with one from State U., I know which one tilts the balance all-else-being-equal. Then again you could say that about many other institutional comparisons.

They catch a lot of flak for being established for-profit, which raises eyebrows, fairly or not, about matters of rigor.

Like it has been already stated, there are other accredited online institutions and credit-transfer/credit-for-work programs, as well as ever more online programs being offered by more established institutions, and programs for accommodating the working student among both public and private institutions (not just CCs).
The idea of people being offended that U of P is for-profit makes me laugh. ALL schools are for profit, U of P is just honest about it. They don't surround the piece of paper with football teams and sprawling campuses. So, if the education is good, I'd be ok with it. But I have also heard that the degree is little more than time + money, and that's not a good reputation. Especially if graduates don't seem to have much in the way of knowledge after getting that degree.

As for other schools, i know nothing about the quality of their on-line programs, other than what I've read. I think what troubles me is that schools see the demand for on-line programs only growing, and want to cash in on that market. That cheapens the degree and the institution, IMO, but that's just me. I DO know that some schools have waived the requirement for GMAT scores to enter their on-line MBA program, and that isn't a good trend. I don't think the test is a perfect predictor of who can and cannot succeed at the graduate level, but it does show aptitude. And without requiring an entrance exam makes it look even more like money is all that the schools are after. Which is probably true.



Does anyone know of a school that has PhD. Programs that are on-line? And how are they regarded?

Last edited by crypto; 01-06-2014 at 10:51 AM.
#6
Old 01-06-2014, 10:52 AM
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I also suggest taking a look at WGU. It's not Harvard, but better than Phoenix and is non profit and accredited. They don't have PhD programs, but there are some master programs. It's very, very affordable too.
#7
Old 01-06-2014, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowjacketcoder View Post
That being said, I recognize that not everyone can just change jobs on a whim, so assuming you're stuck there...

1. I don't think UoP has that great a reputation, and there have been rants from professors that quit because they were tired of how bad the education they were required to provide was.

2. Many online colleges, and UoP included, have a reputation of stringing someone along to suck more money out of them. If you're smart about it, you can probably avoid this, but it's a trap they don't seem to mind others falling into.

3. Credits probably won't transfer if you decide to get a degree from a more respected institution.
Credits do transfer as long as the new facility deems the class to be an equivalent class in the curriculum. That is the advantage of accreditation through one of the Regional Associations of Colleges and Schools. For example, if I go to UoP online and take courses in Business, then switch to, let's say, the University of Houston, then U of H will probably accept most of the classes I took: Accounting, Economics, etc. And if I'm working toward a concentration, such as MIS, then most of those courses will transfer as well.

The issue is that the new university will probably cap the number of transfer credits accepted, no matter what the source. For example, when I registered (way back when) with SWTSU (now TSU San Marcos), I transferred about 80 some-odd hours from UT Austin and ACC. SWTSU would only allow 66 hours, so I wound up graduating with extra hours on my transcript.

Quote:
4. My guess is you can find something cheaper that works with your schedule if you look into your local community colleges.
Agreed. Community colleges are a good way to get credits cheaply.

Quote:
5. Don't expect the education you get at UoP to be worth much if anything.
Disagreed. I've worked with people who have degrees from UoP and they were quite knowledgeable in their fields.
#8
Old 01-06-2014, 11:19 AM
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People are using the term "accredited" but it hasn't been defined.

There are different levels of accreditation. The one that matters is the AACSB. The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is a 687 school group that has all the serious players as members.

On this list you'll find Harvard, Dartmouth, Yale, and the rest of the Top Tier schools.

You'll also find the good state schools with MBA programs such as UNH and UMASS.

You won't find Phoenix or other schools such as SNHU.

Note that this has nothing to do with online vs offline. You can go to a good school and get an MBA that is entirely online. Or you can go to a diploma mill that has a physical campus.
#9
Old 01-06-2014, 11:24 AM
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Western Governors University isn't on the list of Accredited Schools and I've never heard of it.

I'd stay away.
#10
Old 01-06-2014, 11:46 AM
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Let me explain further what I mean by transfer credits may not transfer.

For example, I went to Georgia Tech, so I looked up their transfer rules here: https://oscar.gatech.edu/pls/bprod/w..._find_location

Long and short of it, while you can transfer credits, not always, even from one state research institute to another. For example, the first half dozen or so math courses from Georgia Southern don't transfer to GT (mainly they are college algebra and pre-calc courses). Calculus does transfer, but if you thought "hey, I need 12 math credits to graduate" you might be surprised to find 9 of them don't make the cut.

Similarly, if you went to Toccoa College (which I pick because I had a friend go there), the only things that would transfer are 2 English courses and calc I, so you're looking at most of your credits going nowhere.

Herzing, which is a local for profit I see advertised on MARTA, doesn't even get that far - 1 course of english and one that is a 'departmental evaluation'.

Assuming UoP is the "Univ Phoenix" from Arizona in the list, it's slim pickings afaict.

Now, I will freely admit that GT may not be the best example for transfer credit, and I have known people that played the "transfer game" - transfer from sketchy U to community college and then from community college to state U, which got the credits transferred, but would not have worked going from sketchy U to State U. But I think expecting all or most of your credits from UoP to transfer is naive.
#11
Old 01-06-2014, 11:53 AM
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WGU offers quite a different type of education than is offered by most online schools - it is a *nonprofit* program that you complete at your own pace. It is well-respected and accredited, but is decidedly NOT a good fit for all students. A friend of mine wrapped up an MBA in record time, but she applied herself to her classes. The non-self-motivated will not do well.
http://washingtonmonthly.com/mag...ould031640.php
http://therepublic.com/view/stor...ine-University

Last edited by Snowcarpet; 01-06-2014 at 11:55 AM. Reason: added links
#12
Old 01-06-2014, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Stink Fish Pot View Post

On-line colleges are not the only schools that have the reputation of stringing students along for money. I went to grad school and saw how things worked. If you wanted an "A" you had to earn it. And you had to work for it. There were no gimmee "A"s. However, passing the class was somewhat different. If you put in some effort and seemed to have a general grasp of the subject matter, you got a "B", and if you showed up and put ypur time in, ypu almost always got a "C". A "C" is looked at as failing at many schools, because some schools require you to carry a GPA above 2.5 to continue. Now, we all know that those types of things are flexible, and if a company is paying for one's education, then the school is more likely to be forgiving. However, most companies will not re-emburse a student for a "C" grade (IME, anyway), so if you want that degree and can't pay for it, you will work to get at least a "B".
In the school I taught in for many years, C in a graduate course was a failure and you were formally expelled. You could petition for readmission and it was automatic. But get a second C and you were toast. That said, getting a B- didn't take a lot of work. But we certainly weren't "stringing students on". We were supporting one way or another (research grants, TAships mostly) almost every graduate student and certainly didn't need non-performers. I think the situation is similar, at least in math and science departments in all reputable universities.
#13
Old 01-06-2014, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Debaser View Post
There are different levels of accreditation. The one that matters is the AACSB. The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is a 687 school group that has all the serious players as members.[...].
IF you are speaking of specifically MBA programs. Not if you are taking a MA in school administration or a BA in IT.

Phoenix and WGU, for instance, have the regular Regional Accreditation mentioned in Clothahump's post above, which is the standard for arts & sciences institutions in general.

One item that does make people go about a place like Phoenix is if the proliferation of "satellite centers" across different states under the aegis of the "home" school's accreditation can ensure that the standards compliance that earned that home institution its accreditation are properly met and overseen all over.

Last edited by JRDelirious; 01-06-2014 at 12:16 PM.
#14
Old 01-06-2014, 12:57 PM
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Joke is too harsh, but it is basically a worthless degree. And overpriced as well.

I wouldn't spend a minute looking over a candidates resume if has a UoPhoenix degree listed.

For-profit does make a difference. The techniques used in recruiting people are quite questionable. Their main strategy is to accept anyone and everyone, help them get student loans, take their tuition money, and that's it. They make a lot of promises about degrees and jobs, but the really don't care about that. It's all about the $.

The "recruiters" for such schools are just sales reps. They have a quota. If they don't meet their quota, they are out of a job. This makes their recruiting tactics quite sleazy at times.

The most important thing to keep in mind: You can get a real, respectable, degree from a local state school for a lot less money. Why would anyone get sucked into a for-profit place is beyond me.
#15
Old 01-06-2014, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by yellowjacketcoder View Post
First, some background thoughts:

1. If the company is so rules-driven that they don't want to promote someone merely because they didn't get a college degree umpteen years ago, I'm not sure I'd want to work at that company.

2. If the company is so institutionally loony that they don't care where the degree is from or what it's in, just that you have one, I'm not sure I'd want to work at that company.
For what it's worth, some of the government contracts my company bids on require us to show that we have a manpower pool that meets certain criteria -- bachelor degrees, masters degrees, x years of experience in the relative field, professional certifications, etc. Our professional biographies are often included in proposals. So it's possible to have an institution that wants degrees without caring where they're from without being loony.
#16
Old 01-06-2014, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Stink Fish Pot View Post
The idea of people being offended that U of P is for-profit makes me laugh. ALL schools are for profit, U of P is just honest about it. They don't surround the piece of paper with football teams and sprawling campuses. So, if the education is good, I'd be ok with it. But I have also heard that the degree is little more than time + money, and that's not a good reputation. Especially if graduates don't seem to have much in the way of knowledge after getting that degree.
U of Ps bad reputation is not only because it is for profit, but because its business model seems to be extracting as much student loan money as possible from students and the government and then letting students twist slowly in the wind. From
here.
Quote:
USA Today has listed University of Phoenix as a "red flag" institution for posting a default rate (26%) that surpassed its graduation rate (17%).[3] A 2010 report found that the University of Phoenix's online graduation rate was only 5 percent.[4] According to collegecalc.org, tuition costs are typically 300% to 500% more expensive than community colleges[5]

According to USA Today, the University of Phoenix's Detroit campus has a graduation rate of only 10%, but a student loan default rate of 26.4%.[6] The university has 112 campuses worldwide and confers degrees in over 100 degree programs at the associate, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree levels.[7] The University of Phoenix closed 115 of its campuses in 2013, previously having over 200.[2]

University of Phoenix attained a peak enrollment of almost 600,000 students in 2010, but its numbers have declined almost 60 percent since 2010. The enrollment drop has been attributed to operational changes amid criticism of high debt loads and low job prospects for university students.[8] These changes included allowing students to try classes before officially enrolling and recruiter training programs that are designed to improve student retention and completion rates.[9] In October 2013, Apollo Group reported University of Phoenix's degreed total enrollment 269,000, an 18% decline from 2012. New degreed enrollment fell 22% to 41,000.[10]
I suppose a really self-motivated hard working student could get through - but this student could make it in better places also. My son-in-law's sister "went" to U of P for a who;e - spent a lot of money and got nowhere. She is neither hard working or motivated - just what they are looking for.

I believe that new rules are going to prevent schools with inadequate completion rates from getting federal student loan money, so perhaps the days of these places are numbered.
#17
Old 01-06-2014, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by JRDelirious View Post
IF you are speaking of specifically MBA programs. Not if you are taking a MA in school administration or a BA in IT.

Phoenix and WGU, for instance, have the regular Regional Accreditation mentioned in Clothahump's post above, which is the standard for arts & sciences institutions in general.
True, I was talking about MBA programs. Science programs are different.

Finding a high quality liberal arts program is sort of an oxymoron, though, isn't it?
#18
Old 01-06-2014, 01:29 PM
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Western Governors University isn't on the list of Accredited Schools and I've never heard of it.

I'd stay away.
It's not AACSB accredited by it is regionally accredited. It's not a bad school at all and very affordable.
#19
Old 01-06-2014, 02:38 PM
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True, I was talking about MBA programs. Science programs are different.

Finding a high quality liberal arts program is sort of an oxymoron, though, isn't it?
Aren't all the Ivy League schools liberal arts programs? You don't think THEY are high quality?

Unless this is just a dig at liberal arts programs in general, which I find crass.
#20
Old 01-06-2014, 03:28 PM
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Yeah, let's try and not go there, it's not the topic...

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Originally Posted by steronz View Post
For what it's worth, some of the government contracts my company bids on require us to show that we have a manpower pool that meets certain criteria -- bachelor degrees, masters degrees, x years of experience in the relative field, professional certifications, etc. Our professional biographies are often included in proposals. So it's possible to have an institution that wants degrees without caring where they're from without being loony.
Exactly, this is what I meant by the "checkmarking" and ticket-punching, that led to the expansion of UPhoenix and the like. And it's not that much different from how some HR or departments will have programs that read submitted resumés looking for keywords/key phrases and just disregarding anything that does not contain them.

(I have in earlier threads mentioned that when police departments started requiring specific academic levels for promotions, that created a proliferation of "Criminal Justice" programs at various local colleges, mostly composed of night/Saturday classes.)
#21
Old 01-06-2014, 04:06 PM
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They don't surround the piece of paper with football teams and sprawling campuses.
Whaddya mean? They've got this great stadium in Phoenix!
#22
Old 01-06-2014, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
U of Ps bad reputation is not only because it is for profit, but because its business model seems to be extracting as much student loan money as possible from students and the government and then letting students twist slowly in the wind.

I suppose a really self-motivated hard working student could get through - but this student could make it in better places also. My son-in-law's sister "went" to U of P for a who;e - spent a lot of money and got nowhere. She is neither hard working or motivated - just what they are looking for.

I believe that new rules are going to prevent schools with inadequate completion rates from getting federal student loan money, so perhaps the days of these places are numbered.
(Link to Wiki article removed.)

I work in the well-respected field of student loan debt collection. A good number of the people I talk to on a daily basis are in real trouble because they went to some for-profit school that sold them a worthless degree, and a good number of these people went to University of Phoenix. UoP appeals to people who wouldn't make it in a more traditional higher education setting because they only require two classes every eight weeks, as opposed to four or five (or more) every 15 or 16; it's far easier to manage two classes than it is to manage four. This structure also ensures that all students are eligible for federal student loans because the gubmint will only approve loans for students attending at least half time, and if two classes are full-time, one is half-time, so lo and behold! all students can get loans to pay for school. Suffice it to say, I have a lot of problems with for-profit schools and would love to see them go away.

For what it's worth, the Department of Education, which manages the Federal Student Aid program, is cracking down on schools with high rates of delinquency. I don't know if schools will lose all eligibility for federal financial aid, but there will be some consequence.
#23
Old 01-06-2014, 11:39 PM
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The University of Phoenix is under sanction by the Higher Learning Commission. If they don't change their ways, they will lose accreditation.
#24
Old 01-07-2014, 09:35 AM
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You're better off going to Empire State College, which is accredited and part of the State University of New York.
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#25
Old 01-07-2014, 11:15 AM
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In addition to Western Governors University and Empire State College in New York, there's also Thomas Edison State College in New Jersey and Charter Oak State College in Connecticut. All are legitimate online schools.
#26
Old 01-07-2014, 01:22 PM
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...UoP appeals to people who wouldn't make it in a more traditional higher education setting because they only require two classes every eight weeks, as opposed to four or five (or more) every 15 or 16; it's far easier to manage two classes than it is to manage four....
I have a problem with this idea. Why is scheduling so important? Isn't the point of school to learn the material and achieve research goals, not prove that you have uber-multitasking capabilities and have no life outside of school?
#27
Old 01-07-2014, 02:00 PM
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I have a problem with this idea. Why is scheduling so important? Isn't the point of school to learn the material and achieve research goals, not prove that you have uber-multitasking capabilities and have no life outside of school?
Google "non-cognitive abilities." The idea behind this is that successfully making it through the rigors of "schooling" is just as important as the "book learning". This may explain why HS drop-outs with GEDs tend not to be as successful as HS graduates. A high diploma indicates someone has some level of commitment and tenacity. These are skills you need in the workplace.

It seems to me that someone who is willing to juggle classes and full-time work and family is an attractive candidate. But in terms of "Is this employee likely to flake out?", a diploma from a traditional school, acquired over 4 to 5 years, is probably a better indicator. That's why UofP and the like will never be viewed with much respect, rightly or wrongly.
#28
Old 01-07-2014, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Dewey Finn View Post
In addition to Western Governors University and Empire State College in New York, there's also Thomas Edison State College in New Jersey and Charter Oak State College in Connecticut. All are legitimate online schools.
And Excelsior College, also in NY, that built itself up serving people like military members who'd accumulate a bunch of credits at different institutions as they moved around in their work but would risk "losing" a lot of them in the transfer process to a "final degree" institution (that situation seems to have improved since).

Last edited by JRDelirious; 01-07-2014 at 03:06 PM.
#29
Old 01-07-2014, 10:31 PM
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I have a problem with this idea. Why is scheduling so important? Isn't the point of school to learn the material and achieve research goals, not prove that you have uber-multitasking capabilities and have no life outside of school?
Well, sure, but at the UoP, you're probably not going to learn the material and you're not going to achieve research goals. Eight weeks is not nearly enough time to learn the material in any real depth, even if you're only taking two classes. And UoP isn't a research school, so you're not going to get a lot of experience doing that. Basically, at the undergraduate level, UoP is about cramming as much information as possible into as short a period as possible, and that's a lousy way to learn.

And to add on to what monstro said, a lot of formal education has to do with the so-called "hidden curriculum". How are you at managing multiple tasks and deadlines? Can you show up to class on time? What about group work -- can you learn to work with people who are different from you to achieve a common goal? How do you work with superiors (e.g. faculty)? And most important to employers, can you fit into a new culture and adopt its values and norms as your own? These are things that are taught in a traditional college setting, but that are harder to get in a setting like the UoP.
#30
Old 01-07-2014, 11:11 PM
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The University of Phoenix is under sanction by the Higher Learning Commission. If they don't change their ways, they will lose accreditation.
It's not a matter of changing their ways. Their parent organization has applied for a restructuring and they are on notice that certain paperwork has to be file by certain deadlines. There are no sanctions being imposed upon them.
#31
Old 01-08-2014, 02:52 AM
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A few more idiot employers requiring (another) degree from every employee with a desk, and we'll be back in 1969 with the draft-dodging schools. Let's hear it for Parson's!
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:45 PM
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I just got off the telephone with the admissions office at the University of Southern California (USC, Trojans) a well respected university and asked them if they would accept a B.S. in Human Services from the University of Phoenix so I can continue my education in their Master's program in Human Services. Guess what guys. unfortunately, they did NOT tell me NO!!! They said they would accept the degree to further my education. So who ever is making rumors that Univ. of Phoenix Degrees don't transfer, is probably someone who couldn't hack the curriculum U of P offers. P.S. this is not a paper I am writing, so don't be quick to judge and say that I don't know how to write.
#33
Old 03-31-2015, 12:19 AM
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U of P has a pretty kick ass stadium in Glendale, AZ.
#34
Old 03-31-2015, 06:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayrocks View Post
I just got off the telephone with the admissions office at the University of Southern California (USC, Trojans) a well respected university and asked them if they would accept a B.S. in Human Services from the University of Phoenix so I can continue my education in their Master's program in Human Services. Guess what guys. unfortunately, they did NOT tell me NO!!! They said they would accept the degree to further my education. So who ever is making rumors that Univ. of Phoenix Degrees don't transfer, is probably someone who couldn't hack the curriculum U of P offers. P.S. this is not a paper I am writing, so don't be quick to judge and say that I don't know how to write.
I think what some are saying is that the classes themselves do not transfer, not the final degree. I taught at a for-profit institute for a while. They decided to shut down my department. The students were given a choice to transfer to another school within the institute, stay at our location and receive a non-acredited (in our field) degree, or go to a university. The few that went the university route discovered that 95% of the classes taken at the institute were not transferable. The university felt they were not equivalent. When I transferred from one state to college to another, a lot of classes were not transferred, but not to this extent.

My experience with for-profit schools is that they are preditory. Our main students were ex-military with a GI Bill (who often discovered that their allotment was not sufficient to finish the degree), and students that could not possibly get into a traditional university (The vast majority of my students struggled with remedial math, for example).

This said, the knowledge they recieved was very good (if they went to class). My colleagues genuinely were great teachers. It wasn't the education that was a problematic here, it was the recruitment department. They would accept pretty much anyone with a pulse that has access to money.
#35
Old 03-31-2015, 07:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayrocks View Post
I just got off the telephone with the admissions office at the University of Southern California (USC, Trojans) a well respected university and asked them if they would accept a B.S. in Human Services from the University of Phoenix so I can continue my education in their Master's program in Human Services. Guess what guys. unfortunately, they did NOT tell me NO!!! They said they would accept the degree to further my education. So who ever is making rumors that Univ. of Phoenix Degrees don't transfer, is probably someone who couldn't hack the curriculum U of P offers. P.S. this is not a paper I am writing, so don't be quick to judge and say that I don't know how to write.
Do you actually have an acceptance letter from USC, or were you just not able to get an admissions officer to say that they would definitively not accept your UoP degree?
#36
Old 03-31-2015, 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by steronz View Post
For what it's worth, some of the government contracts my company bids on require us to show that we have a manpower pool that meets certain criteria -- bachelor degrees, masters degrees, x years of experience in the relative field, professional certifications, etc. Our professional biographies are often included in proposals. So it's possible to have an institution that wants degrees without caring where they're from without being loony.
This is true. My brother has a master's degree in music (from a venerable institution), but is a (mostly) self-taught IT expert. When he worked as a contractor, his company was allowed to bill the government at basically the same rate as someone with a master's in IT. He had numerous IT certifications though, and had worked in IT during his military career. More recently, he moved to the civil service, and the government again recognized his master's degree in the grade they offered him.
#37
Old 03-31-2015, 09:03 AM
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Just a few points:
  • University of Phoenix is one of the schools with in-person classes on the US military bases overseas. They cannot do that without accreditation.
  • It doesn't matter if people you've met "don't have a lot of respect for the degree" or not; what matters is that it is accredited.
  • Regarding credits in transfer, a number of schools have a limit on how many credits one can transfer from another institution. That's one of the reasons for the military's "Contract for Degree" program with participating universities.

It seems to me that those decrying UofP's degree are stuck in the past. The educational landscape has changed a lot in even just the past few years.
#38
Old 03-31-2015, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Monty View Post
[*]It doesn't matter if people you've met "don't have a lot of respect for the degree" or not; what matters is that it is accredited.
No, not really. If an overwhelming number of recruiters and employers do not respect the degree from UoP and as a result UoP grads have difficult getting employment as compared to graduates of other schools, then it really does matter.
#39
Old 03-31-2015, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Omar Little View Post
No, not really. If an overwhelming number of recruiters and employers do not respect the degree from UoP and as a result UoP grads have difficult getting employment as compared to graduates of other schools, then it really does matter.
Yes. I am unlikely to hire you. If you already work for me, it is unlikely to help you get promoted.
#40
Old 03-31-2015, 10:42 AM
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As a public librarian I would appreciate it if every 2 Click U would catch fire and burn to the ground. They take advantage of people's hopes and desperation, "accept" students who have no business being out of middle school and have no hope of doing college work or who, alternately, could be getting a real education for less money at a community college or state university, and take not just their money but our money. And leave them with the public library as their only resource.

No. Don't. Very Bad.

And no, I would not look twice at a resume with any of those places on it. University of Phoenix is not the worst of them, but it's definitely among them.
#41
Old 03-31-2015, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monty View Post
Just a few points:[list][*]University of Phoenix is one of the schools with in-person classes on the US military bases overseas. They cannot do that without accreditation.[*]It doesn't matter if people you've met "don't have a lot of respect for the degree" or not; what matters is that it is accredited.
But they're not accredited at the level that matters.

As I pointed out upthread in this zombie, you can't just lump everything into two categories of "Accredited" and "Not Accredited".

There are regional accreditations. There are ones such as "Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)" that basically mean that yes, it's a real school, but it's not a good school.

The good schools have AACSB accreditation and you won't ever find Phoenix on that list. If you're getting an MBA you can pick from plenty of high end schools like Harvard and plenty of cheaper state schools like UMass that are on that list. Picking Phoenix is a bad choice.
#42
Old 03-31-2015, 12:19 PM
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I am in Human Resources and one of the tasks I perform for my company is oversight of the educational reimbursement program. For several reasons, we have removed U of P from the list of institutions for which we will reimburse tuition and books costs.

1 - There is a wide degree of dissimilarity in what is taught under the name of a specific course. What I mean by that is if you take Engl Comp I at one Phoenix location, it may differ significantly from that same course taken at another location or online. In some cases, you may get a really comprehensive course. In others, it's a sign-your-name-get-an-A arrangement.

2 - They offer too many credits for life experience. We had a secretary who was offered 12 hours of business management credit for achievements she'd supposedly earned in her job. She's an excellent employee and very bright, but she is not doing any management tasks whatsoever. We found that, and other similar instances, to be suspect. Other students were offered public speaking course credit because they occasionally spoke (not presented, just spoke) at meetings.

3 - U of P is quite expensive. Students were averaging $1,500 and up in tuition costs alone. Books added another several hundred dollars in many cases.

We have partnered with several universities that offer online programs with a much greater degree of rigor, more consistency in coursework and who have per credit hour costs around $200-$250 per credit hour. In the example of the public speaking course above, we now have students who are required to give actual speeches in front of at least five of our staff members, which are videotaped and sent to the instructor to grade. The audience is also vetted prior to serving as the official audience and is asked to complete an evaluation of the speech.

As you can see, all the difference in the world.

But as others have said, that's if you want your people to have an actual education. If you want them to just get a diploma, U of P is fine.

We've been very happy with the results. Our student-employees are working harder and getting a better quality of education.
#43
Old 03-31-2015, 12:27 PM
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This whole discussion reminds me of how misguided the whole idea of "You get a degree to get a job" is. With a few exceptions such as engineers, nurses, lawyers and teachers where the accreditation is a requirement for the job a lot of people who have obtained post secondary education don't work in that field. Cite.
What a post secondary education should do is give you the critical thinking skills and organizational skillsets to do ANY job with a modicum of success.

I have a B.Sc. General that I obtained primarily by Distance Ed because I was in the military and raising my family no where near a major University not because it was relevant to my job but because I wanted to learn about geology and physics, my primary focus. The downside was I couldn't get a Geology or Physics Major due to the structure of some of the courses in the curriculum; no labs, no major. If a proper curriculum was built on the premise of doing your own experiments, you'd have a better education.

As to a liberal arts degree, you might sneer at it but you may want to read this first.

Last edited by swampspruce; 03-31-2015 at 12:29 PM. Reason: too many commas.
#44
Old 03-31-2015, 12:28 PM
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I thought that I would point out that UoP made the news recently because they had half the number of students enrolled as they did in 2010.

I can't make a judgment if that is good or bad (maybe quality over quantity?)
#45
Old 03-31-2015, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Hermitian View Post
I thought that I would point out that UoP made the news recently because they had half the number of students enrolled as they did in 2010.

I can't make a judgment if that is good or bad (maybe quality over quantity?)
I believe that's largely due to reforms in the federal student loan program.
#46
Old 03-31-2015, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by stillownedbysetters View Post
I am in Human Resources and one of the tasks I perform for my company is oversight of the educational reimbursement program. For several reasons, we have removed U of P from the list of institutions for which we will reimburse tuition and books costs.
Do you accept WGU? Why or why not?
#47
Old 03-31-2015, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Living Well Is Best Revenge View Post
Do you accept WGU? Why or why not?
We haven't had a student come to us with a request for reimbursement with WGU, so although I've heard of it, I haven't researched it.

If I can find anything pertinent that might help with assessing this institution, I'll let you all know.
#48
Old 03-31-2015, 02:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monty View Post
Just a few points:
  • University of Phoenix is one of the schools with in-person classes on the US military bases overseas. They cannot do that without accreditation.
  • It doesn't matter if people you've met "don't have a lot of respect for the degree" or not; what matters is that it is accredited.
  • Regarding credits in transfer, a number of schools have a limit on how many credits one can transfer from another institution. That's one of the reasons for the military's "Contract for Degree" program with participating universities.

It seems to me that those decrying UofP's degree are stuck in the past. The educational landscape has changed a lot in even just the past few years.
Someone with a U of P degree would not make it through our doors for an interview. If someone snuck them in and tried to make an offer, it wouldn't go through. And the person making it would bet a nasty email from HR.
#49
Old 03-31-2015, 03:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayrocks View Post
I just got off the telephone with the admissions office at the University of Southern California (USC, Trojans) a well respected university and asked them if they would accept a B.S. in Human Services from the University of Phoenix so I can continue my education in their Master's program in Human Services. Guess what guys. unfortunately, they did NOT tell me NO!!! They said they would accept the degree to further my education. So who ever is making rumors that Univ. of Phoenix Degrees don't transfer, is probably someone who couldn't hack the curriculum U of P offers. P.S. this is not a paper I am writing, so don't be quick to judge and say that I don't know how to write.
There's a lot of space between "not an automatic disqualification," and "appropriate qualification for further study." "They did NOT tell me NO!!!!" is an (overly excited) restatement of the first, but let's take a closer look at the program that you're ostensibly qualified for. From the program FAQ here:
Quote:
The USC School of Social Work has a very competitive admissions selection process. The school is top-ranked by U.S. News and World Report among all accredited social work graduate schools. Our high standards ensure that admitted students are able to handle the graduate level of study, as well as create an environment where students are studying with peers of equally high-caliber and who exhibit the same enthusiasm for learning and a drive to succeed.
Does a U of P degree show that a student is equipped to handle the graduate level of study? Does it indicate that the student is at an equally high caliber to his/her peers who will be admitted to USC's program? Does it exhibit an enthusiasm for learning and a drive to succeed?

I don't know anything about the social sciences, nor do I know the answers to those questions (even if I have my suspicions). I am, though, a university faculty member in the physical sciences, and I would not accept a graduate student with a University of Phoenix degree. So far as I know, none of my colleagues would either. The student's application would be clearly missing letters of recommendation from researchers - not just professors who've had this student in a class, but people who can assess the student's potential as a future researcher. I don't know any active researchers in my field who teach at U of P, and without that aspect to it, it's not an environment that prepares somebody for graduate study.

Last edited by Enginerd; 03-31-2015 at 03:11 PM. Reason: superfluous carriage returns
#50
Old 03-31-2015, 06:38 PM
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Just wait till our buddy finds out what it costs to go to USC. It's stupefying!
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