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Old 08-07-2010, 07:10 AM
 
Location: McKeesport, PA
2,327 posts, read 6,513,798 times
Reputation: 1514

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Quote:
Originally Posted by IntheKnow11 View Post
There aren't ANY admissions requirements - any moron can sign up and write a check. Please keep in mind that traditional universities require students to pass admissions requirements:
undergrad: SAT, GPA, essay, and application
graduate: GRE, GPA, recommendations from professors they've worked with, 25 page writing sample
Students who do not fulfill these requirements ARE NOT qualified, nor have they proven eligibility for an advanced degree. The standards at AMU/APU are very low, and any diploma coming out of such a degree mill is just a piece of paper at a very high cost.
Hmmm. I work for a 'traditional' public state university. In fact, I happen to work in a graduate school department (in education) which has 2 online programs. What I can tell you is that the admissions requirements are the standard, 3.0 GPA, letters of recommendation, writing sample, etc.; however every term there are 'exception' to the rules. Low GPA? No problem, if the credits are old we don't count them and/or we'll look at your last 30 cr only. We get unsigned, generic letters of recommendations and two paragraph essays. Again...no problem.

I point this out because don't think for a minute that ANY college does not care about enrollment...for-profit or not. Our budget is determined by our enrollment numbers. With the extra fees from online students, these programs are some of the most profitable at the university. This commands more support from the university administration. So the bottom line is 'numbers are king'; if you catch my drift.

I know nothing about AMU (although I did go to their website...and felt a bit weirded out by the lack of curriculum and program course descriptions on the site); however we need to call it like it really is. Online degrees run the gamut from very good to very bad. And they can be housed at a 'very reputable traditional university' and still be bad. It is a shame that as a consumer, you have no real way to assess the quality of an online degree (although GetEducated.com is an invaluable site...the information is still way too general). I am currently in an online MBA program; and I work very hard....and perform more advanced projects and tackle tougher subject matter than some of my peers who go to on-campus MBA programs. And this is in the non-profit higher education arena. I have had some graduate assistants (who were graduate students at the public state university where I work) who were beyond clueless. By 'clueless' I mean that they don't know how to use MS Word or Excel beyond the basic level; or who cannot write or proofread to save their lives. For sure there are graduates from AMU or University of Phoenix who are more competent. I don't doubt that for a moment.

 
Old 08-07-2010, 11:47 AM
 
4 posts, read 33,965 times
Reputation: 17
True, but at least there are admission requirements. The majority of students in your program are qualified. Having NONE is a big problem, and at AMU, when a prof suggests bringing the program up to academic standards of a traditional university, or having students meet admission requirements to attend this school, these requests are ignored. We are told that the student is the customer, and that the higher ups would frown on any changes to the system. The principal aim is to make a profit, whereas a university with a good reputation strives to attract accomplished scholars in research and teaching, AND to create scholars and experts of the students in the field they choose and/or to provide the students with a superior, liberal arts education.

Lower-level colleges do make exceptions, but at least it is very rarely done among the better schools, and those students who don't earn their place there are weeded out quickly. At online colleges like AMU and Phoenix, they'll accept anyone with a pulse and their curriculum is a joke; these are big problems. However, if one is in the military or if one is seeking a specific vocational degree, i.e. a program of study essential to a military career or specific job (that recognizes this degree and will pay you for the effort), then it will work out just fine. And online colleges, since they do not have standards, support each other, since they are not accepted by the traditional universities - they do not have equivalent academic standards. A Ph.D., MA or BA from Capella or AMU is not the same as UC Berkeley, Dartmouth or Washingston State, for example. An online college degree is just a piece of paper, not an academic achievement of the same standard as a reputable traditional university. This is why traditional colleges of prestige have alumni associations through which former students like myself support the university, are proud to don the school insignia, and have no need to defend the education. This is unlike those who have online degrees and try so hard to prove that their degree is equal to the big schools and that their education is the same.

One cannot compare an online education to a four-year college that achieves high ratings among employers and a good reputation. The online degree is similar to schools like ITT Tech or DeVry, not a higher end institution. Sorry, the degrees earned there are no comparison to well-established state schools or research univerisities. These instutions do not try to "sell" themselves the way that online universities do. Legitimate schools have websites and send students admission packets, but there won't be a so-called "admissions counselor" calling the student to push him or her to enroll and using every marketing trick in the book to get the prospective student to sign up and write the check. The prospective student of a traditional university undergoes an admission process, and if accepted, receives an acceptance letter in the mail. The traditional university that has a good reputation has limited space, and does not accept everyone who applies. The education offered at these institutions is worth more, and pays off in the end. It does depend on what kind of job you want, how much effort you want to put into your education, and how much you want your degree to be worth in the end.
 
Old 08-07-2010, 03:33 PM
 
4 posts, read 33,965 times
Reputation: 17
I am sorry about the typos, everyone. An early morning, without coffee.

Seriously, I do hope that online schools begin revising their programs to offer non-traditional students the opportunity to receive an equal education, because they certainly merit the chance if they meet qualifications to do so. It is not possible that an online graduate degree would equal that of a traditional university, as graduate programs require students to collaborate on projects, attend 9 hours of class a week (and this does not include outside work on assignments or research!), and are urged to publish papers and attend conferences. A prof in the department serves as an advisor to grad students at the inception of their entry and , after the period of about a year and a half, they choose a prof who will advise them personally and direct the MA thesis. This type of quality mentorship is not provided online. I wish that online schools would emulate the traditional classroom structure by integrating technical programs that have virtual classrooms in which profs give lectures, students can see them and vice versa, and, spontaneously respond to generate a lively discussion, and not an asynchronous set of postings that resemble a chat room and not scholarly debate. And they should require (and most importantly, permit!) the profs to put more time and effort into creating a curriculum that is up to standard.

Schools like GWU, Penn State, The New School, and Virginia Tech offer online masters degrees and their programs work just fine with the online format.
 
Old 08-21-2010, 08:05 AM
 
4 posts, read 30,110 times
Reputation: 15
Default To WK91

Re: your #80:

I don't like to make waves or presume that my experience is indicative of the entire institution (that would be a hasty generalization). I did work with my superiors within AMU to try and improve quality. I tried to raise the standards in my little corner of the operation, but was met with resounding indifference. And, over time, I got the distinct impression that, the more I talked about wanting to make AMU the best it could be, the less they considered me a "good fit." The tacit message I received was, "Oh, that's nice, that you want to teach with integrity, but you can make a lot more money by just passing as many students as you are able. Do that, and we'll keep giving you classes to teach." (I got good student evals from about half of my students, by the way. So, some, like you, appreciate high standards and are willing to work for an "A.")

I don't think I was being too pushy, I was just being my normal conscientious self. But I couldn't get anyone's ear; some students became upset because my class was harder than other sections of the same class, I started to perceive that quality was generally low in the humanities, so I dissociated myself with the school. In the end, I don't think they appreciated my view of academia (a view, btw, based on work at 4 other public institutions and 1 private, both on the ground and over the internet, and, in each case, my enthusiasm for quality teaching was applauded and rewarded.)

So I walked away with this impression: AMU/APUS has a for-profit scheme that works by keeping standards really low, which keeps mediocre students coming back, along with their continuing education tuition dollars. The good service AMU offers, accommodating troops who are in theater notwithstanding, it strikes me as a sham. And I have been to Charles Town, WV and seen the massive building campaign they're on. Their formula works! They're obviously making tons of sweet moolah. So it's all good, right? Not really. I will never put my year working there on my resumť . . ..

As far as going to the authorities, I'm not interested in shutting them down or fighting some battle on a national scale. I'm too old for that, and, besides, I'm not given to tilting at windmills. I'm just going to continue working at my university, cultivating in my students human excellence, by the grace of God. And I'll post an opinion now and then, just to give pause to honest students like yourself!

AMU/APUS IS a good idea, I just suspect over time the profit motive won out over academic rigor. Then again, maybe there should be places in this world where a simple person can just earn a piece of paper, for promotion in rank or whatever, and not be too challenged in the process? I'm just not cut out for that sort of thing. That's why I don't teach at a tech school, but, hey, getting a technical career is one approach to success. But I guess we're right back to the basic question: Does the school provide the education it promises? If I am your mentor in vocal performance, and I give you all "A's" so you keep coming back for more instruction, but everyone that hears you sing realizes you are mediocre at best, I've done you a disservice, I've failed my mission, and I should be ashamed. But I've enriched myself . . . in the short run.

(Sorry so long. I tried, really hard, to not post again to this thread. But you "provoked me"! HA!) If I elaborate any more on this topic it will have to be over at WikiLeaks . . ..

Last edited by FormerProf; 08-21-2010 at 08:17 AM..
 
Old 08-21-2010, 02:25 PM
 
Location: McKeesport, PA
2,327 posts, read 6,513,798 times
Reputation: 1514
Quote:
Originally Posted by IntheKnow11 View Post

Seriously, I do hope that online schools begin revising their programs to offer non-traditional students the opportunity to receive an equal education, because they certainly merit the chance if they meet qualifications to do so. It is not possible that an online graduate degree would equal that of a traditional university, as graduate programs require students to collaborate on projects, attend 9 hours of class a week (and this does not include outside work on assignments or research!), and are urged to publish papers and attend conferences.
I am in an online graduate program; there is a LOT of group work. I am not sure why you think that people have to be physically next to one another in order to work collaboratively.

I actually utilized this in the working world. I worked for a title insurance company where a branch office was set up with just myself and an administrative assistant. This was in NJ. When I had to process a policy, everything was sent to the main office in Miami. When the clients wrote checks for me, I had a machine to make remote deposits into our account in FL. This is the year 2010 folks!

Quote:
A prof in the department serves as an advisor to grad students at the inception of their entry and , after the period of about a year and a half, they choose a prof who will advise them personally and direct the MA thesis. This type of quality mentorship is not provided online.
Many, many, MANY masters programs are (or have) non-thesis options.

Quote:
I wish that online schools would emulate the traditional classroom structure by integrating technical programs that have virtual classrooms in which profs give lectures, students can see them and vice versa, and, spontaneously respond to generate a lively discussion, and not an asynchronous set of postings that resemble a chat room and not scholarly debate. And they should require (and most importantly, permit!) the profs to put more time and effort into creating a curriculum that is up to standard.
This happens; not in every course...but it is also not needed in every course if the course is designed well enough to insure that the course objectives are met. I have had online course where the professor has filmed themselves. I have had other course where they have used Adobe Live chatrooms with no video...but with audio and along with your peers...it is pretty interactive. I find that discussion boards provide a great medium for debate in that you don't have that tendency (like you have in real classrooms) for a few people to 'dominate the floor' so to speak.

Quote:
Schools like GWU, Penn State, The New School, and Virginia Tech offer online masters degrees and their programs work just fine with the online format.
Many more schools can be added to this list as well; no need to be exclusionary.
 
Old 08-28-2010, 07:44 PM
 
1 posts, read 9,549 times
Reputation: 14
I am currently active duty Air Force. Prior to coming into the military I attended a tier 1 university, was unable to continue to pay for my education for reasons I wont bore you with, and decided to let the military finish paying for my education. What I didn't know was the nature of my job (aircraft maintenance, electro-environmental) would leave me with very little time to finish pursuing my B.S. Physics that I started at the University of Houston. I'm looking to get commissioned before my first enlistment ends which will be next July, I found AMU, it was regionally accredited and appeared to have a bachelors program specialized enough for me to have a good chance of ending up in the command I want to go to (Space Command). I went to my education center and asked them about applying for OTS with a degree from AMU. They didn't see a problem with it so I singed up for the Space Studies program, I should finish in February. At the University of Houston I was a student work study and worked in the admissions department, I did a lot of counseling and credit transfers so I know a lot about that. Coming from a physics program at a reputable university (3.8 GPA) I find some of the classes at AMU just as if not more difficult than the B&M university I came from, why? Because I have to actually read every page of the material to understand it. I don't have the luxury of just taking notes at lectures and going over what I know will be on the test vigorously like I used to. Perhaps I'm just making it more difficult on myself than other people do, but I've become accustomed to actually knowing the material my professor puts in front of me. I knew people at U o H that would employ methods of cheating or avoiding having to actually learn the material we were being taught, this would probably be the same anywhere. I donít see how that effects me I'm not that guy. Furthermore you cant expect to get a bachelors degree and be an expert in the field you're going into, regardless of the degree you have you still need experience to land a good job. That being said you are going to get a good amount of on the job training where ever you get a job. Since the credits from AMU that are applicable are transferable to just about any University (I checked up on this) I thought it logical to get a bachelors from Amu for commissioning purposes and use that bachelors to get into a distance learning program for a master's degree (probably Aeronautics and Astronautics or Electrical Engineering) from a reputable brick and mortar university like Stanford ( I actually called them recently and they told me to take the GRE and they would work with me), I have experience already, I carry out the functions of an Aerospace engineer daily, I just need a degree to get the rank so I can be more competitive in the outside world. Right now I would consider myself knowledgeable in the subjects I have been studying at both U of H and AMU equally. I donít know about civilians competing in the civilian sector but I'm pretty sure that AMU is a good choice for military looking to make rank and progress their careers. I asked my section chief about commissioning and Space Command, he didnít know, so he put me in contact with a CMsgt at Buckley AFB who basically told me he sees a lot of 2nd Lt's with degrees from AMU in the same field of study I'm going through now. For some of you the word of Chief might not mean a thing, but for an Airman thatís basically from the horses mouth.
 
Old 09-05-2010, 10:36 AM
 
1 posts, read 9,602 times
Reputation: 12
Id also like to testify to the fact that max0626 is 100% wrong in everything that he said.

Ive been to both B&M Univeristies and AMU. My education is far better at AMU. The hands on approach is uncomparable to that of sitting in a room with 500 other students. My professors at OSU never even knew my name. There ARE proctor exams, and even quizes and finals for many courses are TIMED. It should also be said that even if an exam is "open book", they are not word for word. The questions are designed to be "critical thinking" questions that test your conceptual understanding. Not even google can give the answer. Wiki? Please..its completely forbidden to the highest level by all branches of APUS. Plagarism is as well. The instructors DO respond both to email, and dioscussion board topics. I personally developed very positive relationships with several of them, who continue to answer questions even though they are no longer my instructor. Id also like to add that its not possible to copy and paste the same post or paper to the same class, especially if it is junk. Each course is a different subject and requires different styles, lengths, etc etc. Not to mention the plagarism factor, turnitin requirements, and rules against such a thing. That was just an ignorant thing to say.

All arguments ive seen against online degrees ingeneral are not only bias, but they are uneducated and angry. They probably didnt meet the GPA requirements for credit transfers into AMU are trying to take a stab back..oh yeah, did everyone leave that out too? Yep, GPA requirements.

Please listen, all prospective APUS students, do it. It is 100% legit, and anyone stating otherwise is themsevles bias..not the other way around. B&M universities argue against it because it takes away from their pocket, yet conform to APUS' methods more and more daily.

AMU is a great university, I dont know what I would do without it.
 
Old 09-15-2010, 01:22 AM
 
413 posts, read 965,057 times
Reputation: 125
There are far too many 1-2 post people commenting on AMU.
 
Old 10-08-2010, 09:53 PM
 
6 posts, read 49,024 times
Reputation: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by tyranator View Post
yes, but you also have to pay 750$ for a "intro to online college" course that does not even count for anything. just a rip off. no other college does this.
Let me be another to jump on this thread after just registering tonight. I have been to other colleges. Almost every college or university requires either a Freshman orientation course or a Transfer orientation course. This "Intro to Online Education" course takes the place of those. Why is AMU bad for requiring a course irrelevant to the actual degree when most other colleges, online and brick and mortar, do the same thing? Unless you know what you're talking about, please refrain from posting.

I'm finishing my degree from AMU this semester and have been approved for a entry into the US Army OCS upon graduation. Apparently AMU IS recognized and respected. I've been to four colleges since high school including AMU and so far, AMU has required the most writing of any of them. The professors have had high standards and the cost is unbeatable. There's finally no "in-state" and "out-of-state" tuition crap to deal with. There's one cost for all undergraduates and it includes the materials! At the other universities I would average about $500 each semester for books but at AMU I've paid $0 for books. That saves a ton of money on top of the low tuition expenses.

If you've never been to an online college or even done thorough research about them, you have no business posting on this thread as if you are an authority. I've been to big and small universities, community college and online college. I know what I'm talking about.
 
Old 10-08-2010, 09:56 PM
 
6 posts, read 49,024 times
Reputation: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by IntheKnow11 View Post
A prof in the department serves as an advisor to grad students at the inception of their entry and , after the period of about a year and a half, they choose a prof who will advise them personally and direct the MA thesis. This type of quality mentorship is not provided online.
Actually, that type of mentoring IS available online and at AMU if you choose a major that includes a thesis.
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