Ashworth College Reviews
Student & Graduate Reviews (215)
I searched high and low for a Medical Coding program that met these criteria: -Completely virtual, self-paced (no instructor-led) course -Flexible payment options available without having to finance -Would allow me to sit for the CPC exam -Included Medical Terminology and Anatomy in course What I found was that to start with a program that meets all of those qualifications, I would either have to pay a lofty down payment of $600 and then make $300 payments for a span of 2-3 months to cover the almost $2000 cost of the certification course. I would be, in most cases, afforded an AAPC membership and exam voucher with at least 1 retake. But it was unlikely that I would be able to sacrifice that much money so quickly. I found Ashworth and was a bit hesitant but as with any online certification program there are the obvious risks: 1. Once you pay, you have a set time limits (here it's 5 days) during which you can cancel and receive a full refund, given you haven't completed more than 5% of the coursework. 2. You do not have the engaged, concerned support of a professor or educational staff so any questions or concerns you have, you will be forced to be resourceful and find clarification in the resources given you. 3. It's a business at the end of the day so they provide you a service, for a fee, and you should not expect a really involved college experience, it's not made for that. However, despite the negative reviews, I chose to get my certification through Ashworth, even though it will not prepare to sit for the AAPC's CPC exam (you'll sit for the CBCS through the NHA) because it fit my budget and having those letters behind my name, since they are from an accredited and recognized organization, albeit not the AAPC or AHIMA, is better than not having it at all. When it comes to the coursework: You will find the material is presented in bulk. Lesson 1, not the intro but the lesson, is impossible to get through in a week if you've never taken anatomy or medical terminology. They presented too much material at one time, which is an issue throughout the course. In order for you to truly grasp the lessons, you should dedicate two hours at least a day to spend one hour reading 1/2 of the lesson and the other hour studying that half. If you can dedicate a whole day, even better! I work full time, workout, and take care of my two children so this was hard to do and by the end of the day I was drained before I could read much. There are no practice quizzes or assessments except for these pointless, shallow Check Your Learning quizzes throughout the learning guides. These checkpoints do not test your comprehension or ensure that you grasp the materials in any way. This is a negative given how much information they are presenting butttttt the world of medicine and the entire healthcare industry is so transparent and is growing so exponentially that if you wanted (and you NEED to in order to fully grasp this material), you could find a quiz online for EVERYTHING related to the coursework and do that during that second hour to help you retain the material. They give you four months to get this done and that's possible! Take one week to read the material, dedicating 2 hours a day on workdays and MAXING OUT on off days, and by the end of the week, after having done online quizzes and games, you will pass your exam. Just don't expect the course itself to prepare for it. Now, as far as the depth of the material, it's presented with copious bullet points. There is no in-depth explanations of the information given, everything is presented in a way as to allow the maximum amount of info to be given in the least amount of time. THIS IS THE TREND WITH ONLINE SELF-PACED CERTIFICATION COURSES. If you do not feel comfortable with the WHATs alone without HOWS and WHYS, a traditional classroom setting over the course of a semester would be better for you. The College Itself: The representatives of the college are ill-informed salesmen with no consideration for your situation so do not expect them to woo you or even give a crap. They have no professionalism. When I paid for the course, I was unable to access it for two days because the site was down. Which worried me because we only have the first 5 days in which to cancel it without penalty and I wanted to verify that this would work out for me. Overall: If you are already in the healthcare industry and are only looking for the certification as a way to get into the billing or coding department, this is a good start. If you can't afford to pay for the AAPC courses, this is a good start. But know, this is NOT a course that will prepare you to begin professionally coding. They market it as such but you spend so much time on billing and you don't even touch CPT codes really, that you are not prepared to start, Physician's Office, Inpatient, OutPatient, or Hospital coding. If you are on the payer side, like me, this course really does prepare you for a move into a claims adjudication position because you will have a better understanding of billing and medical necessity in that regard. For all of you considering this course, it's a good starting point to get you prepared for the serious work of obtaining a CPC certification with an AAPC-affiliated Coding program. I say this because, for just $40 a month for about 12-months (which isn't even 500 bucks) you will become familiar with the information needed in order to DO EXTREMELY WELL in the more serious, more complex and in-depth CPC courses offered through the AAPC or AHIMA. I believe that was the right choice for me. Instead of paying $2000 for a difficult more strenuous course that would prepare me to sit for the CPC, which is difficult, and run the risk of struggling insufferably in the course and failing the CPC exam and ultimately wasting my $2000. I am paying $500 for an intensive program that will give me the info necessary so that when I do go through the process of the CPC certification, the material is not completely foreign or complex anymore and I will be better prepared to sit for the exam that truly matters! It also doesn't hurt to have those letters behind your name. If you are looking for a serious course that will enable you to get a more recognized certification through AHIMA or AAPC this is not it and you should know that this course does not allow you to sit for those exams and your certification may not be accepted where you intend to present it, that's why I classify this certification course as an SAT Prep Class, you are not taking the SAT yet because you're not ready to take it and you don't want to waste all the money when you know you're ready, so you pay a small fee for a prep class so that you are more prepared and confident when you do choose to go for it!
Ashworth's online flexibility allowed me to study, write papers, and take exams during all hours of the day. I really enjoyed English Composition II, Principles of Marketing, Professional Selling, and the Consumer Buying Behavior classes. Only once did I have a delay with receiving a text book shipment, which was quickly resolved by contacting Ashworth to ship the next book and unlock/open the next class. 21 of my previous engineering and IT credits from PSU and PCT transferred into the Marketing program of study. I was able to earn the remaining 39 credits necessary to earn an Associate Degree in Marketing through Ashworth in roughly 18 months.
I was HIGHLY skeptical of online learning. I was wrong! Ashworth was amazing!!! They were not only right there to help at every stage of the process but they hid nothing! Anyone who says otherwise didn't read enrollment agreement or couldn't handle the work! It is hard. You have to hold yourself accountable the entire time and no it's not easy. Going to class is so much easier. You have to self discipline. Ashworth advisors were AMAZING!! There was never a time I needed help and couldn't find someone to assist. They want you to succeed. They care. I could not say enough great things about my experience and would HIGHLY recommend anyone that wants to go back to school to call Ashworth. Happy Graduate!!
I'm loving it so far. So flexible and the student portal/sakai (the online course software) is so smooth and easy to navigate. Please don't change it - at least not for a long while, Ashworth! I am very happy with the quality of education, as well as the support. The flexibility is obviously the greatest perk of the school. The fact that you go at your own pace is incredible. And I don't mean at your own pace with a deadline -- I mean REALLY at your own pace. You have up to a YEAR to finish one semester. Granted I don't need that long, but I'm sure some do with very busy lives. I work full-time but was able to finish my first semester in about 2 and a half months. Just about the time of a traditional semester, but you have NO deadlines. Take your time and learn at your own speed. I'm excited to continue!
I currently graduated from the HVAC program. My company encouraged me to do this, but that's a separate issue. As far as I'm concerned the school doesn't get any stars. A trade occupation cannot be taught online, that needs hands on training. The last 3 weeks of my program getting down to my deadline, I finally got a pop up icon "do you need help". REALLY.... If you need help good luck. The downfalls.... Have no idea who the professor is or even if I had questions, no way of communicating. If you do happen to get ahold of the school it's always a representative. Funny thing is I completed all the assignments, but I was only 93% completed. Couldn't figure out why ?? Come to find out I had a project to do. No emails to alert me. If I hadn't contacted a representative at the school....probably would've failed ?? The final exam, what a way to make a fool out of a person. After a year and a half of this course, trying to figure out this occupation on my own & other technicians coming in to assist & trying to learn from them....I'm to the point I don't even want to go to my job anymore due to poor education. Sure....my administrators & bosses are proud of my accomplishments & the 3.75 GPA. The tests are all open book and get 3 chances to take each test to get a higher score. There's no sense of accomplishment there....that's just lazy on the other end. My opinion to others looking into this school....save yourself the trouble & find a hands on technical school or just jump off a cliff.
Just graduated with my A.S degree! I'm enlisting in the Marine Corps, and my degree is already giving me an extra rank when I start boot camp! If the military accepts Ashworth as a legit institution, I'll definitely be coming back here for my Bachelors!
I am currently in a Master's program with Ashworth and am totally aggravated by the lack of access to faculty. I am tired of receiving graded assignment that say "poor grammar" or other such comments with nothing marked on the assignments, so that I can see what went wrong. I graduated from an Ivy League school and have never received papers back that say "poor grammar," which leads me to believe that the professors may have a poor grammar base which with they are grading. Also, instructions for assignments are convoluted and contradictory. I know that no matter what I submit it will be unsatisfactory. Students need to go through "advisors" to get information back about assignments for progress. I do not understand why, unless it is to save money by not paying for extra faculty time. Good luck to people in these programs. I wish was learning more and could understand why I am getting the grades that I do. Ashworth is quick enough to take money though....
I work full time, 50-60 hours a week. Needless to say, with my schedule it would have been difficult for me to attend a traditional college. I love the fact that Ashworth College allows me to work at my own pace and on my time and not to a predetermined schedule. This is really the only way possible that I could attend college. This is the Only college I found that was this flexible and I researched a Lot before deciding on Ashworth. The courses are challenging, the study material is spot on, and I am actually learning and retaining what I have learned. I would recommend Ashworth to Anyone, especially those who work a lot of hours and don't have a predetermined work schedule. I am very pleased with Ashworth.
Ashworth has the best value for your dollar given the current market of nationally accredited schools. You must agree to the fact that this school is not regionally accredited, their credits do not usually transfer to your state school or other regionally accredited schools. The accreditation is the same as U of Phoenix, Kaplan, Ashford, etc. The customer service was horrible and over the years has greatly improved, you can tell that it has been a concerted effort among the administration to tackle this complaint. Textbooks are from the major publishers like Pearson and McGraw-Hill and if you look up the exact edition you will find them on Amazon for $150-$200. Any online course IMHO is much harder than a classroom setting, you have to do every chapter and the instructor does not decide to skip sections because you are behind. However, you can study any time and you can complete the course at your own pace. This degree will not provide the same caché as NYU or USC, Boston University,etc. it doesn't have the same name recognition as your state school either so don't consider any online nationally accredited school if this is what you want. I do not believe Ashworth is the best school but neither is the state school my son attended. If you have the time and budget I recommend going to a regionally accredited school, preferably the best school you can afford. However, if that is not in your budget or you are an adult learner with experience then consider Ashworth if you wish to get a degree. Certificates are a different beast, those can be hit and miss not just due to what you learn but what the employers are looking in an employee. A Harvard Certificate does look better than an Ashworth certificate, however, is it worth the extra $8k-$15k? In my case this degree works but does put me in a disadvantage to an applicant that has a more prestigious school on their resume, however, I'm never going to attend the prestigious school due to $ and time so I accept that. I would recommend this school as a first option to anyone on a budget looking for an accredited school recognized by the Department of Education. Best of luck.
This is school is very misleading about self pace and the 4th semester is not free. They drag the program out to be as long as they want it to be. They are not prompted at all. Teachers is not helpful, you can't communicate with them in no ways. You are on your own with this school. You have to write papers with each classes. This is a challenging school. Cheap tuition but a lot of tests and papers to do. Now of stuff line up ! I graduated by the grace of God !!!!