Full Sail University Reviews
Student & Graduate Reviews (47)
I received both my Bachelors and Masters from Full Sail. I was absolutely thrilled with my time spent doing both degrees. My best advice for any student considering attending Full Sail is to understand it is a dedicated multi-media college. This is for students who really want to get into the entertainment, internet, film, music or creative arts field. It is focused and prepares you for being part of this work force. I honestly can say from my experience and that I am a non-traditional student in the work force -- that Full Sail is right on. You will be prepared to work when you finish your degree and you will be an asset to an organization. My instructors were brilliant, I learned so much from all of them -- their bios were awe-inspiring. These men and women were and are advanced in their fields and passionate about education. Of course you relate to some more than others but that is life. I never had any delays in getting questions answered and they were always caring and helped you succeed. All in all - every penny I spent and will continue to pay in student loans is worth the knowledge I received. One of the top two best decisions I have ever made in my life.
I went through the online program hoping to learn a great deal about computer animation. First few months went great and first modeling classes were challenging. There are a couple instructors that are very good. However a lot of the times you researching things on your own and can't solve your issue. You go to the instructor only to be told to research it on youtube. My final portfolio classes the instructors expected you to know things you were never taught. Critiques in those classes hardly ever happened due to on campus issues. Speaking of, in one class, I was on iChat for a live critique of one of my projects. It must have been a student assistant or something. Just after starting my critique his cell phone rings. He answers it and is talking to a client for freelancing. I'm hoping that doesn't still go on or happen to others. I can not attest how the campus experience is, but I would not recommend doing the computer animation online. You'll meet some cool students who work harder than you, and will have the same complaints of having no help. If you speak up about the issues, you will be immediately put in your place. I've heard bad experiences with auditing the classes after graduation. Those I know who have report an even worse experience. I even read comments from pro-full sail people that Full Sail is a great stepping stone to other higher education. For that amount of money, it shouldn't be a "stepping stone". Pay for digital tutors if you want a stepping stone. Then save your money and go to Gnomon or other professional learning institution. If I had the opportunity I would hand back my diploma without hesitation, if it meant having my over priced student loan debt cleared.
I originally went to Full Sail expecting to graduate then slowly go become a rock star. Went to school first for Recording Arts, but halfway through my degree I switched to the associates track and went into Digital Arts to be able to do more professional work (originally aimed for something in advertising, with a goal of doing music for film.) I LOVED my years here. It was an extensive education, hard earned but well worth it. That said, this is not a school for everyone. The classes are hard. There is an assumption of knowledge (at least in Digital Arts) which meant, don't get me wrong, skipping to the advanced stuff (especially later on) was great, but if you'd missed a concept you could find yourself scrambling to keep up. If you tell people you graduated from Full Sail in the industry, you get one of two reactions. One - "what the heck is that?" Or two - "holy crap, you actually graduated?" It's known for being a bit of a trial by fire, and it certainly earned that definition in my eyes. But it set me up to be able to do a lot of different things. I've worked for Bose as a technologist, done messaging work for the ACLU and Planned Parenthood, and done contract work with HBO, Food Network, SAP and Africa Home TV. I've worked on apps and video games, I've built websites and high end presentations, and all of that wouldn't have been possible without the education I got here. Know what you're getting into before you start, but it's worth it.
Waste of money. The head of the Program is a joke and is not respected at all in the industry. Why would anyone even both going to film school in Orlando when you need to be in Atlanta or Hollywood. Don't fall for the sales tactics like I did. They will promise you anything to enroll, but most of the instructors are awful and even recent grads. Just ask them or ask to see the credits. If you want a Masters in Film DO NOT GO HERE, go to a real school like UCLA, USC or even NYU.
This school is a waste of time, 1. Basically the issue comes into play when students want to transfer colleges or continue their education with a master’s degree program at another school. While the credits can transfer between national and regional accreditation, it is more difficult and often times schools simply won’t recognize the credits at all. This means your options for transferring schools are very limited and you may have to retake the classes at another school. 2. The Instructors are the worst, they don't get back to you and if they do it is with a question to a question, thus running down your communication time, before a project is due, 3. Basically, you're spending 50K+ to be taught by LYNDA.com videos. 4. As an online student your only recourse if any is your advisor which it seems like the minute you build up a rapor they switch and then you're back to square one. 5. The classes move at such a rapid pace, that instead of retaining you are basically, scurrying to find quick answers. there are no tutors for classes that are more difficult and once again, the instructors are a joke. I will say this though the back-end help, advisors, financial aid, etc. are thumbs up better than the instructors they have. The excuse is the instructors handle campus and online, maybe they should have dedicated online instructors because it is quite obvious they are unable to handle both tasks at the same time.... IMHO this school is not only a waste of time, but money!
So Full Sail is very poor at communicating and even worse at helping online students. I started knowing I would need to apply for financial aid, which I've done before and have never had any problems. I have gone to school for two other degrees and have been perfectly fine. However, the financial aid department at Full Sail seems to be stretched too far. They have their financial aid team working with both on-campus and online students simultaneously. This leaves the online students such as myself feeling like an afterthought. Four months into the program and I still have documents to complete. I am now past the point of withdrawing classes without owing money and have been sent emails stating that I will be withdrawn from school if I don't pay up. The financial aid department will wait weeks before replying to any of my emails and are never there when I call. (Too busy with campus students.) This doesn't even get into the actual classes. My first class was amazing. Creative Presentation. I had a blast with this class and my instructor was very good at communicating and providing excellent feedback. After that, it all went downhill. My Psychology of play class was literally four weeks of creating a schedule for yourself to help you with time management. This fine but my instructor rarely communicated at all even when grading assignments. I had to constantly ask why I got the grade that I did so I could improve. I thought maybe this was just a not so great class so I pushed through it. I started my Technology in the Entertainment and Media Industry class. Surprise, it was another four weeks of creating a schedule for time management. This to me had nothing to do with the class subject. Again I also had an instructor who rarely spoke to anyone mostly because he was running this online class while simultaneously running a class on campus. All in all, it seems that at least from my experience Full Sail cares very little for their online students. At least not enough to have an instructor and Financial Aid team just for them.
I have been attending Full Sail online for Web Development and Design. I will first say that I am not being bitter, my grades at the moment are very exceptional, as well as my attendance. What I am doing is addressing some things I have experienced so far. With that being said, my online experience with Full Sail has been below average. Communication with the instructors has been a little difficult. It seems like they are very quick to push you off to a web link or YouTube video instead of answering any questions or concerns. For example: Admittedly, I have had issues with APA style citation in a couple classes. I accepted the grade the for the papers but I would ask the instructor for additional help so that I may avoid the issue in the future. On ALL occasions, the instructor very quickly gave me a web address (not associated with Full Sail) containing additional information, or referred me to a YouTube link. The point is that I am not paying these websites nor YouTube for my education, I am paying FULL SAIL UNIVERSITY. I kind of feel like my queries are being pawned off onto a third party instead of getting help from the people that I am paying. There was even one instance where I called an instructor out after she attempted to call me a plagiarist. I had written a rough draft for a final project and points had been deducted for improper citation of sources, which is understandable. I asked the instructor for assistance to insure that my final draft was cited properly. I did not ask once, but a total of three times. All three of my requests went unanswered and when my final draft was submitted, the instructor immediately accused me of plagiarism and threatened me with expulsion. This is when I had called her out by mentioning that I had already contacted her three times regarding that very same issue. When I did, she claimed that she had answered all my questions in a timely manner. Luckily for me, I had saved the entire conversation and emailed it to the instructor asking her to show me where her response was located. The instructor still did not respond to my request but ultimately, my paper was mysteriously given a passing grade. I am currently still attending and making great grades. I am however dealing with similar issues in my present classes. Basically, the student to teacher outreach system is extremely poor. Lastly, I will mention that each online student gets a student liaison who calls you at the end of each month to evaluate your progress and to make sure everything is going well. My liaison has not called me since the plagiarism incident, it has been about six months in total.
Full sail is a for profit school, you don't need any prier education just as long as you can pay them. I can't speak for every degree program in the school but mine, the computer animation program. If you pull out a loan the average pay in your carrier wont be enough to cover the monthly payments of your loans. They wanted me to use Wells Fargo after they were no longer working with discover half way through my year. For some reason the School had the authority to tell Wells Fargo to split up my loans into separate loans without my permission and they wont combined them unless I cosign for another loan witch combines them...? To put it simply the School has a special tie with Wells Fargo. I was singed up in there hybrid classes. Online I experience a lack of help and feed back on my projects. When I was on campus It was the the same since most of the teachers were not industry professionals, Most of them are graduates. They are over worked and not pays well. I remember when the carrier development attended our finals classes and said that they will find us a job. I knew they wouldn't get me a job because I lessened to the graduates warnings about how carrier development won't help you. So I switched my carrier to be a freelance comic artist in the final months. Over the years I have saved up all the job leads I gotten from them and all the bad advice. They sent me leads on the sam day as the deadline supposition. Or a picking pull poll email for everyone to fight over in there job listings for free labor. For some reason you had to go through them to send them your resume but you can just google the job listing and just submit the resume on the internet. But they were all bad jobs. The best one was the free labor with the possibly of hire. I think they set up this system back when they had people in the industry but now its just a mess. The school and the staff breads the mindset of work hard, do whatever it takes to be the vary best and if you don't make it is your fault. Sounds good in the moment but in practice it is cancerous not only to the students but to the industry itself. When they encourage work for free they set the mindset of people and companies to think its ok for free labor. I know many graduates that have been burn by this. Many have not found a job in there felid, mostly because the combines don't count the full Sail degree as 4 years of experience in the industry. Even if you get into a big company you have to constantly fight for your job because someone can easily replace you. If you are amazing for years they will reword you by firing you and hiring students that will work for less pay. its a vicious cycle. I have been in the industry for 2 years as a freelance comic arts. I never needed the degree for my job. My advice to you is that you don't need to got to school to do what you love. everything I do now was not taught by Full Sail. If anything it was my photo shop know how and aftereffects that got me thorough the classes. Which they don't teach by the way. You have a powerful tool the internet to find what you need to know. If there is a will there is a way, you don't have to go to school or in debt to get there. The industry is not like a school, thank god.
The programs are at a pace that will cause burn out rather quickly in the field that you chose to study. After you earn your degree you will have a less than 50/50 chance of finding work in your field. Here is the real kicker. Once you get your degree it is not worth that paper that it is printed on. YOUR CREDITS WILL NOT TRANSFER TO ANOTHER INSTITUTION. I am moving on and going for another degree at a state local college, I checked several including USF and NONE of my credits will transfer, I have to start all over again after spending over $100,000 to get a degree from Full Sail.
Q: Is Full Sail a scam? A: No. Like all schools, some students make wise choices and excel, some don't and want to deflect blame when they struggle afterwards. Q: Why are there people who say they can't get jobs with their worthless Full Sail degree? A: More than likely they didn't earn the degree. When you fail classes so many times that you can't graduate on time, Full Sail doesn't give you a degree. They give you a certificate of completion. These people probably just don't want to admit this. Q: Is Full Sail accredited? A: Yes, by the ACCSC. Q: Can you transfer credits from Full Sail? A: Some. Full Sail is nationally accredited. Most universities are regionally accredited. Some of your Full Sail coursework will transfer easily, some will have to be evaluated for credit, and some won't transfer at all. Q: Are the programs any good? A: All of them seem to do a wonderful job at teaching students what they promise to teach them. However, a lot of students want to be taught things that aren't particularly useful. Therefore, some of the jobs Full Sail degrees train you for can be hard to get or don't require any formal education, so it doesn't make sense to pursue a degree for it. Other degree programs train you for much more realistic careers. Choose wisely. Q: Which degrees are worth it? A: Any of the STEM degrees. Q: Do employers take Full Sail grads seriously? A: Yes. 100% of the job listings I've applied to since my graduation responded with interviews followed by job offers. I've never been rejected for a job I interviewed for. Q: Is Full Sail harder or easier than other schools? A: Compared to the other universities I've attended, Full Sail was harder. Q: Is it possible to work while going to Full Sail? A: Yes. Full Sail by default offers their degrees at an accelerated pace (about 2 years for a bachelor's). They also offer them at an extended pace (about 3 years). Working while attending at either pace is possible if you're mature enough to hold yourself accountable and you don't have children to get in the way. If you have children or aren't mature, I'd suggest going with the extended pace or just not working while in school. Q: What other costs are associated with attending Full Sail? A: Tuition is usually around $80,000 for a bachelor's. You pay an application fee and reservation fee (negligible), and if you don't already own an approved device, you also pay an equipment fee (usually a bit over $3,000). That's it. Books and materials are free. Tutors are free. Retaking classes is free. Parking is free. There are no dorms, so you pay for your own housing. Q: Can you get financial aid for Full Sail? A: Yes. Q: Can you use VA benefits at Full Sail? A: Yes. If you're eliglble for the Post-9/11 GI Bill at the 100% rate, and you combine it with the Yellow Ribbon program, Full Sail is completely free. Q: Will they refund your money if you quit? A: They will refund the tuition for any future terms that have not yet started. Like most universities, you don't get refunds for terms that are well in progress. Q: What makes Full Sail better than a typical school? A: They automatically register you for all your classes and give you the books and materials for them. You never have to figure out or schedule anything yourself. Q: What makes Full Sail worse? A: Lots of fedora-wearing kids there waltz around thinking they're going to be famous producers. Q: Why are there so many negative rumors about Full Sail? A: For the same reason there are negative rumors about anything - people who fail want someone to blame other than themselves, so they write nasty things on the internet.