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Penn Foster College Reviews

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Penn Foster College
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158 Reviews
60%
Recommend This School
57%
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Degree: Law Enforcement
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One gets the impression Penn Foster hires part-time, work-from-home individuals who would rather be doing anything other than grading assignments. Perhaps grading for Penn Foster is their second job, maybe they are retired teachers needing to supplement their income or possibly students who themselves were harshly graded. One thing is for sure; the impression you get from the responses of most of these “graders” (I hesitate to insult the educational community by calling them “Teachers”) is someone sitting at a computer, angry that while the rest of the world enjoys dinner, their favorite TV show or a good night’s sleep they must sit and grade papers from students they consider well beneath their egotistic standard. The frustration and bitterness they seem to have at being forced into such a menial job is transferred to the student by way of their harsh and cruel words. This scenario may not be correct at all, but again, it is certainly the impression one gets from the process. I have taken many of these graded assignments to local colleges to have them reviewed, thinking perhaps it was just my lack of comprehension. Repeatedly I have been told the comments made by these representatives of Penn Foster “do not represent sound teaching principles”, nor are they “clear and precise in their direction or instruction” and in fact; most have referred to them as “unintelligible” – “difficult to understand the correction (?) being offered.” In each instance, it should be noted, the paper(s) also received a far higher grade than that being given by Penn Foster. In one particular case, work was returned ungraded with only what can be described as note written in an angry rant and designed to attack the student's intelligence. The Instructor’s use of the increased size of the font, the color selection (red), the bold-faced type, and the underlining, as well as the use of all capital letters is considered to be offensive by most reputable websites that invite comments from its readers. It is considered yelling, a form of bullying. In fact; on many of the sites I attempted to post the reviewer’s comments (exactly as they appeared), I was not allowed to do so because of his/her aggressive use of these options. He did not go through the paper highlighting errors, making comments or suggestions; he did not even attach the paper to his arrogant and sarcastic note, he just proceeded to rewrite the instructions given in the study guide, adding and changing them as he went on his tirade. The point of this attack seemed to be that the student should copy two different articles – which the student did. That the student should cite the sources - which the student did. That these articles should be summarized – they were. And then an analysis of the article written – which it was. The only comments that remotely applied were that the summary and analysis should be separate – which the study guide did not specify. Other websites that forbid such usage categorize such conduct as “Demeaning, demoralizing, and disgraceful”. “Not at all encouraging and quite distasteful,” are words another popular site uses to describe such nonsense in declaring such “aggressive tactics” as misconduct that will not be tolerated. Any student who makes an honest, decent attempt at completing an assignment does not deserve to be treated in such a disrespectful manner! To do so not only shows poor judgment but, extremely bad character! While the entire Nation has come to recognize and deal with the negative aspects of bullying, Penn Foster apparently feels such disgusting behavior is a viable teaching tool. This individual should be named, forced to apologize to the student and then be terminated from his/her position. Most legitimate companies would do far more than that to mend the wounds and heal the offended in an attempt to distance themselves from such appalling conduct. A good rule of thumb to follow when selecting a college is can they accept Pell Grants. If, as in Penn Foster’s case, they can not – there is probably a good reason why and you will most likely discover the degree earned there is not as accepted as you had hoped.

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Degree: Management
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I have had nothing but great experiences with Penn Foster, both the Career School and the College. They are very flexible. When I call about anything I get a response quickly. I would recommend this education to anyone who is on a budget, but still wants to get ahead and educate themselves.

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I enrolled in pennfoster because it was supposed to be a do it at your own pace school. I enrolled when my son was 8 months old because i thought that i could do it a my own pace. My son is now 2 and they have kicked me out twice because i am studying to slow.

When i have tried to contact them about the situation they have never responded. They say that I owe them payments, when i paid them. The courses were okay. When i had questions about assignments the instructors were not there to help me.

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Degree: Early Childhood Education
Graduation Year: 2012
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Loved everything about this school! Great staff, affordable tuition, no waiting, prompt shipments-would recommend it to anyone!

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I saw the bad reviews... but I thought my experience would somehow be different. I thought these were just flukes and people didn't take the time to write about it if they were having a good experience. But nope, it really is as bad as they say! I'm doing the Vet Tech program. I'm in my 1st semester and there are already a ton of problems.

For instance, they don't have record of me attending the webinars, then when I ask what I need to do to fix that they send me to another, and then another, and then another person, none of which can actually give me an answer on what to do. Finally someone told me to call the webinar company, which I did, and they said they arent allowed to give that information out due to confidentiality. So now I can't move on in my studies until I RETAKE the webinars.. and I guess this time just *hope* they will register.. what a joke.

Not to mention each and every person I talked to was super rude and short.. and led me to yet another dead end. The only people who work there that are nice are the people who get you signed up. Then get ready for logistical details that will have your 2 year grad goal end up being more like 4... Run for the hills!

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Degree: Accounting
Graduation Year: 2012
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I live an hour from the closest college and I already commute to work. With having a 9 year old and working this was the best program I could find. It has helped my career a lot and my employer even reimbursed some of the cost.

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Graduation Year: 2012
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Emails to student services were not helpful and missed the point.

Webinar 2 hrs. of back strain, so...why don't you cover a serious volume of material. I have a forum and an audience forced here so; BLAH...BLAH...BLAH, could make more constructive use of class time.

2 weeks late to a class discussion board due to a shipment date, not aware for another week, problems posting, problems with student services not understanding what difficulty in posting means. BOOO! Hire a third grader, a little more computer savvay. Most likely, would understand what having a problem posting would mean. It is a tech. issue.

Never met my peers, it is a computer based independent study course. Do use a discussion board. Most of the feedback is, "I agree with you." Run-on sentences, typos, bad grammer, poor punctuation, and so on. Also, not following the directions. No real pleasent knowing this is generation next. Why are people still rubber stamp, next through the education system. Functionally illiterate and passing. Go elsewhere for your educational needs, if you don't have any standards go to PF. Graduate with honors. You deserve it for dealing with all the hoops you had to jump through prior to graduation.

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I started the medical assistant program at Penn Foster. When I got to my second semester, there were courses that required webinars, some that were in 2 parts. For one of the courses, I did part 1, and kept waiting for a part 2 so I could move on with the course. They kept scheduling times that were inconvienient for me.

I emailed the instructor quite a few times before receiving an answer. She said that they scheduled the webinars around a majority of their student's schedules. Well, I am sure I was not the only one who needed an evening webinar because of my work schedule! When I withdrew, she tried to be all nice and want to know when a convient time for me was. A little to late for that!

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I think it's funny to read the reviews of some of these people. Some of them don't even talk like they made it past the third grade. I've noticed most of the negative reviews on here were for people that enrolled and then decided to drop out. You sound really ignorant when you are talking bad about the school and the problems you had trying to drop out. HAHA.

Anyways, I am about to finish up my first semester at PF. I'm taking the BS Business Management. Everything has been going really well; I can't complain. I would highly recommend this school.

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Nicole Pittman - 2 months ago

I am considering taking the BS Business Management Degree Course and wold like to know what your intake of the course and school was, I read all the good and negative comments on the school and I agree with you. If your are not serious about the online school dont blame the school for your mishaps. You what you put into it. Have you heard of any success stories from people who have graduated PF with the BS Business Degree and what made you decide on this course. I would appreiate any and all help you can provide me in making my decision to enroll at Penn Foster. Thank you, and have a wonderful day.

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Degree: Gunsmithing
Graduation Year: 2012
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I'm a middle age, college educated, professional software engineer considering a change of career. I decided to take the Gunsmith career course from Penn Foster to see if that is the direction I want to go. The cost is low - $655.00 if paid in full at enrollment. Apparently, Penn Foster is not used to this type of student.

This is not a difficult course, especially for someone who has a technical background and is already familiar with the subject. I planned to knock out the entire course over 7 to 10 days.

I paid my tuition over the phone, received my Student ID and asked for all my program materials to be shipped immediately. The usual course of action is to complete a section of study and then the school ships another section's materials. I had to sign a "waiver" in order to get this arrangement, which I did. In any event, there was the usual paperwork (student contract, "waiver", criminal background check, etc.) which must be completed, signed and faxed back. Again, I did this the same day I paid my tuition.

There are only 19 lessons in the course spread over 6 sections. The first day I completed the first section (2 exams). The second day the second section (4 exams). I skipped a day and was prepared to spend a day on the third section (4 exams). Upon logging in, I noticed my account had been suspended. I called student services and was told that my application had not been processed. They had my application, but had not processed it yet. I expressed my displeasure and reiterated the fact that I had already paid for the course, they had my money and I had already sent in all the required paperwork. The representative(s) confirmed that they had the paperwork, it had simply not been processed. In addition, they could not tell me when it would be processed, since that was in "another department". At this point I was not happy. As of now, I am not able to continue. I do expect this to be cleared up, but the question is when.

In addition, some of the course materials are backordered! Not for one of the later sections of the course, but for the second section! I was told it would be 3-4 weeks before I would receive the material. How, can this be backordered? If I were at a traditional school campus, this would not happen. How can they possible expect people to wait for materials for a course? Especially when its already been paid for! If there was a legitimate reason for the backorder, you would expect them to expedite the shipping. The materials which are backordered I can actually order myself from other vendors and have them in 2-3 days. So why will it take 3-4 weeks?

Before you fork over your money to Penn Foster, get a guarantee in writing that they will process your paperwork within 24 hours of receiving it and that they have all course materials in stock. Otherwise, you'll may be waiting on them to catch up to you before you can finish your course of study. Overall, this is unacceptable and shows poor management of their back office.

So far I am pleased with the instruction (although the videos are not very professionally done) and the material is a bit "light", it is meeting my expectations. I did not expect a $655.00 course to be completely comprehensive in the area of Gunsmithing. However, for my purpose, to explore another career possibility, it is adequate.

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