Capella University Reviews
Student & Graduate Reviews (285)
I just graduated from Capella with my PhD in general psychology. I believe there are an equal amount of pros and cons to Capella. My overall experience was positive, however, like any degree program I would suggest doing a lot of research. In particular, when reading reviews ensure that you also consider the context, e.g., some negative reviews are from people who were upset that their program wasn't easy and weren't prepared to take on doctorate studies regardless of where they pursued their degree. Please note, this is only my opinion, based on my experience. Overall: I began my doctorate studies Fall 2011, and it took me from Oct. 2011 to Feb. 2015 to essentially finish (I defended my dissertation Feb. 2015). I was able to pursue my degree more or less full-time. I was only working part-time, so I was able to devote myself to full-time study. I also opted to make monthly payments so that I could pay out of pocket rather than take out loans. I realize that I was incredibly lucky to have my spouse's support, which helped. In turn, I worked incredibly hard, and I sacrificed a lot in terms of not spending as much time with family and friends. I pretty much lived and breathed my courses, then my research, and finally my dissertation. I believe that overall, the program provided academic rigor, particularly with the required original research, and subsequent dissertation process. I am basing my opinion from my previous academic experiences. I have a BS, MS, & MSc from brick & mortar universities, and I began my doctoral studies at a brick & mortar (I didn't finish due to an international move for my spouse's work & I wasn't far enough along in the program to solely work on my dissertation, I.e., finish from a distance). Bottom line: I still had to come up with a research study that was feasible and met the criteria for original research, online courses meant I had to be self-motivated and show up since twice-weekly postings were required in order to pass (in addition to other required assignments), and I still had to design, conduct, analyze and write a dissertation based on my research, on my own. I found the process exhausting, difficult and at times emotionally draining, however, the process shouldn't be easy, because this is after all, the process of earning a doctorate. I love my field of research, and I hope to continue with research in some capacity in my chosen field. However, this brings me to the cons (and pros) of earning a doctorate at Capella. I do think some negative reviews for Capella are from people who expected it to be easy, because it was online, but in reality this isn't the case. Also, a reviewer mentioned being required to pay $4,000 while deciding if he/she should continue with a dissertation. Once I was in the dissertation process, my tuition was $1,700. Cons & Pros: *There are 3 required residencies, which is actually a pro in the sense that Capella isn't 100% online. These are 4-day intensive *classroom* sessions. I found these to be expensive (travel expenses plus the cost of the residency itself) and even though I gained a lot from the first and third, I found the second to be useless, for me. *At brick and mortars, the research opportunities are greater. You're also a part of a research group, and you participate in weekly journal club presentations/meetings, have opportunities for collaboration, etc. *Comunicatng online can be difficult. At times, I wish I could've walked into my professor or mentor's office and speak with them in-person. This is also a prim though, because it forced me to problem-solve on my own, and to think independently, so that I was more prepared to have discussions with my mentor during the dissertation process. *Having to post two discussion posts per week, in addition to being required to respond to others' posts in addition to coursework was a pain, and required more work than I was used to putting in for a course. However, this is also a pro, because it wasn't easy-I couldn't skate by- so that indicated, to me, that the school valued academic rigor. I didn't find my courses to be anymore cookie cutter than a brick and mortar that has to follow a set curriculum.blike any institution, I had some great courses, teachers and classmates, but I also had a few terrible experiences. *My PhD studies did help me become a better scholar, writer, communicator, researcher, and the online portion aided me in keeping up with computer technology in real-time, in my opinion. However, the most profound con for me, and I think the one that people should be aware of, is that for-profit schools don't have the best reputation. Capella has the same accreditation as a brick and mortar, online courses/distance education is offered by a plethora of brick and mortars and Capella isn't 100% online so Capella and brick and mortars have that in common, and my dissertation had to go through the same approvals process for publication with UMI as a dissertation from a brick and mortar. Those three things are important similarities that are shared amongst academic institutions regardless of type, and therefore pros of attending Capella in my opinion. Yet, Capella is still discriminated against. Therefore, my eligibility for certain jobs is hampered. My PhD does not hold the same weight as if I'd earned it at a brick and mortar. Even though the accreditations are the same, the dissertation approval process and publication review are the same, and in many cases the course format is the same between Capella & brick and mortars, my PhD will likely be viewed as inferior to a PhD earned at a brick and mortar. Unfortunately, people judge and are biased, and often do not give you the chance to show that your accomplishments have equal merit (in my opinion). That is the biggest con people should consider, in my opinion. I don't think it would matter if I were already employed and using my PhD for resume enhancement or for a promotion in the job that I already had with a company that was familiar with my work, etc. finally, do your research, ask questions and then ask some more. Push back if you feel like you're being pressured or taken advantage of. By the same token, be realistic and don't expect the academic process to be easy, but this is just my opinion, and I do hope that this review helps others. My next steps: since I was not in a position whereby I was using this degree for resume enhancement or promotion in my company, I must consider alternatives. I want my degree to be taken seriously. I know how hard I worked. However, I fear I must consider alternatives. So for me at age 45, I will most likely pursue a psyd at an APA-accredited institution. Then, hopefully my PhD will also be taken seriously because I was able to pursue a doctorate from an APA institution. Looking back, I probably should've gone that route in the first place. Even still, I got a lot out of Capella, and my experience was, overall, positive. I hope this review helps!
I am a satisfied Capella University alumnus after obtaining a Masters in 2011 and a PhD in 2014. As with any school there are positives and negatives with Capella (in my opinion the positives far outweigh any negatives). Depending on the region of the country you live in, Capella “may” be more expensive; however, it is not true everywhere. I live in the Northeast where the cost of attending local colleges was about the same (if not more) than what Capella charges. This is particularly true for graduate schools, as the overwhelming majority of Capella students are pursuing masters and doctorate degrees. I have attended both traditional brick and mortar schools as well as online. I obtained an Associates, Bachelors, and my 1st Masters at brick and mortar schools. I found the quality of education and its relevance to my work to be superior at Capella than in every other school I attended. Capella is truly geared towards the independent learner, and this is where many students falter. Even when I attended brick and mortar schools, I worked independently. I would look at the syllabus, read the text book and I was good to go. I didn’t need the teacher’s lecture to help me understand what was being taught. This style of learning helped me be successful at Capella. Unfortunately not everyone is able to learn independently, which is why you see so many of the negative reviews here (almost every negative complaint I’ve ever heard about Capella is from a student who was not able to finish their program). Every degree level at Capella requires and increasing about independent learning skill. There is also a greater level of difficulty between the masters and doctorate program. There is even more difficulty between the coursework for the doctorate program and writing the actual dissertation. I believe Capella prepares students as well as they can with multiple research classes and colloquia which focuses exclusively on writing a dissertation. Yet not everyone is able to grasp what is needed to succeed. I and thousands of other alumni are proof that you can be successful at Capella. Many Capella alumni are also getting impressive positions. My advice to those thinking about attending Capella is not only to do your research, but do an honest assessment of how you best learn. If you need individual attention and lectures, Capella is probably not the place for you. If you are able to learn independently and have clear ideas about what you want to do in your career, Capella is worth a shot.
I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed my instructions/ class with Capella University. I ws involved in many aspects of managment I never thought were to be considered, risks managment to regulatory law. Could I have received a better education from a different college, no. The work load was huge but you learnt something, it was not all over your head or uncomprehensible. They made you think about the issues, help decipher the outcomes, and be able to present the information in a well organized manner. My question at this point is should I go for a PhD with Capella. I would not want to get that degree from any other college. It is just a question of am I ready for all that, at age 52. YES!
Please stay away from this school. All of the instructors are complete fools. NONE of them have a clue about being a proper mentor. You will waste countless dollars and time dealing with these people. State school are far better than the trash at this "university". STAY AWAY.
I waited 7 years to pursue my Doctorate. From the beginning, it seemed school was more interested in the money they could obtain from me than my academic pursuit. After passing my Comprehensive Exam, I was paired with a Mentor outside my field who was unresponsive. Upon expressing my concerns to the school, I was left with the impression that my money has been received which was the top priority. When offering the comparison of a brick-and-mortar program with Capella, I was told I could go ahead and transfer if that is what I felt I needed to do. My experience has started to feel more for-profit and less educational.
Run Fast. Run hard. Run as far as you can away from this scam. Capella is seen as a joke in the world of work, and it is. Save your money. I have had some of the most disorganized, unhelpful, and lousy experiences at Capella. Stay AWAY! The material is all cut and paste from other sources. It's wiki level. The professors are silent and invisible most of the time. The feedback is all canned and impersonal. What a disappointing disaster.
I graduated with my Ph.D. in Information Technology Management in 2011. My experience in the courserooms was uneven. About 1/3 of the courses were graded pretty easily and about 2/3 were appropriately rigorous. The problem with Capella faculty is there are very few full-time faculty. Most are part-time adjuncts so they probably correlate going easy on the students with higher reviews and chances of being renewed. The course content is fine and you can learn a lot if you take them seriously and understand how they build towards your dissertation. The dissertation process is very rigorous and quite bureaucratic which can cause frustrations and delays but they really are trying to ensure their student's dissertations are of sufficient quality. The ease of navigating the dissertation process depends on how well the mentor (committee) and the student work together. That's hard enough if you can meet face to face and even harder online. Despite the fact I had no issues with the courses or the dissertation process, there is a significant amount of bias against online only schools like Capella. That simple fact means you won't compete well with others who have brick and mortar degrees if you want to teach at post-secondary schools. If you are like I was and already had a job and are using it for resume/career enhancement where you are, then Capella works out quite well. I would not go to Capella and go $100K in debt if you think you're going to score a teaching/research position at a university. It's probably not going to happen. Weigh your options carefully before starting your doctorate at Capella. The degree itself is fine but be realistic about what you think you can do with it.
I really don;t know where to begin. I completed my Masters from Capella and had a really positive experience. I enrolled in the DHA program after being told the entire program take four to four in a half years to complete. Initially the program had over thirty students. When it came time to complete the dissertation there was seven of us left. During the meeting to discuss our dissertation and have questions answered, we were told it was going to be anywhere from an additional two years to four years to complete the dissertation. That is on top of the past three in a half years of course work. After talking with financial aid and my academic counselor, I learned that Capella goal is to max out student loans and many students quit or kicked out with no explanation with over $100,000 in student loan debt and nothing to show for it. My academic adviser said to me, "Many students don't want to do the work or put in effort. I recommend you stay in dissertation for a couple of semesters to meet with your mentor and lay the ground work, then consider leaving if you want". I am sorry at $4,000 a class. I don't have time or many to waste $8,000 to sit around and talk with my mentor. My mentor was changed four times before entering the dissertation course room. I completed the first dissertation course and my assigned mentor never got back with me. I ended up taking the next semester off so I could transfer schools. I am now finishing my Doctorate with ASU, which has appropriate accreditation and will take an appropriate amount of time and money to complete. I encourage anyone that is using student loans to be mindful and do your research before attending Capella. I have heard horror stories about the school deliberately maxing out student loans and students have nothing to show for it. I have over $120,000 in student loan debt and $100,000 is from Capella. Also good to note that I declined all extra loan money and paid for bare minimum. I am in my final track of my dissertation with ASU and will spend three years less in school and only had to spend another $11,000 to finish my Doctorate, where Capella said it will be another $33,000, on top of the $55,000 already spent. I can not stress the importance of doing your homework on this school.
Capella has had some fantastic behavior analysts teaching the specialty courses. I was in a psychology program in undergrad, and the psychology courses are similar (not bad at all, just not geared towards behavior analysts). However, the professors chosen for the behavior analysis program have been absolutely amazing and helpful.
I began the program in the Spring of 2005. I completed my coursework in less than two years. Overall my experience was positive, however I had issues with members of my dissertation committee which in my opinion were due to a lack of leadership from them.