How good are University of Phoenix’s online degrees?

My experience differs from Ms. Anderson’s. Full disclosure, I hold 3 degrees from UoP, 2 of which were in the classroom, and my doctorate was online, completing it at the age of 59, 2 years ago.

I opted for UoP online because of my familiarity with the school in general, recommendations from peers that had taken online courses and personal familiarity with several online professors. I also opted for an online doctorate because it allowed me to sustain with a full work schedule.


Do they ‘push’ you to continue? Yes. It’s part of their continuing involvement in your experience with UoP and recognition that the vast majority of UoP students are also employed and sustaining school with work and with family. So – do they ‘push?’ I’d say they work to stay connected to you and help with motivation, clarity of goals, and a sympathetic ear. I actually appreciated my academic advisor’s monthly calls.

I found no requirement to work in the field of your study – although that IS a hard requirement of the professors. And there is a high volume of student-led debate and response. In that regard, I felt the online venue was superior to the classroom where ‘dialog’ is somewhat suppressed by time and extroverts. But the students are not left without professorial direction and structure. 

Was it hard? Yup. Some will tell you that UoP’s entry requirements are so low there is no value to going there. Big Ten and Ivy League schools are hard to get in, and you must be exceedingly well-qualified (sometimes both economically and scholastically) before you walk onto the campus. With such a tail-wind – you’d be a statistical outlier to fail. UoP will give anyone a shot, minimum academic history notwithstanding. But UoP is not easy to graduate as some would believe. Do the work and you will learn.

I work in a consulting capacity facing senior management and C-level leadership. As for employer perception of a UoP degree – I’ve had only one comment directly from one C-level engineering leader that he assumed UoP was a diploma mill with a ‘correspondence school’ reputation. So I took him to lunch and told him what I had to do to win my doctorate. That modified his opinion, although he wasn’t totally comfortable with the concept of ‘online’. A lot of people aren’t – especially graduates of traditional schools who lack a good point of reference. But UoP was one of the first to tackle online education at scale (I believe Jones International was the very first, opinions vary) and with first-hand familiarity – I think they do it well now, and they’re doing creative things to make it even better.

I urge you to look for my other posts on this matter (I don’t have very many posts in total) because additional info will be found there – then look for me on LinkedIn if you want to discuss further.

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