University of Maryland University College Reviews
Student & Graduate Reviews (130)
I am a non-traditional student as I am a Dual enrolled High School/College student. I enjoyed my experience with UMUC and had taken online college classes at other universities but really appreciated the clear and concise format of the UMUC online courses. All assignments and syllabus are loaded the weekend before class for the entire 8 week term for undergrad. They are broken up by weeks, usually you will have a weekly discussion and response post to make, you don't have to purchase books in most cases as you are expected to read and review the documenation for your class from the online access. For difficult classes like Computer Science or Economics, there aren't online tutors available. Most test are given through an online web-based exam portal. Projects and papers are also given for grades. Group projects for some classes are the same for most. There is NO LIVE INSTRUCTION or even video for many classes. You have to read a lot. Since the classes are 8 weeks long, expect to read anywhere between 50 to 100 pages a week of material to learn the topics expected. Taking a full course load of more than 2 classes every 8 weeks will be a killer on time. I have done 3 classes every 8 weeks and it is a lot of work. For the online free tutoring offered you get 2 sessions of 30 min each time. My tutors for Computer Science and Math were okay, I had to seek other tutors or really be verbal with the professor when I needed help. Most cases they helped. If you want to verify a teacher will be decent you should go to RateMyProfessor before signing up for a class. Overall, I like UMUC and if you are a self-starter student, that is already comfortable with the subjects you are studying you should do well. If not, get a tutor for the topic before you start class. As for billing and financial aide, they seem to have a computer system that calculates everything in an overlapping way. I only had problems when we applied for financial aid and I changed my courses during the pre-registration time.
This school wasn't created for online students and regular adult student. It's a challenge and up to hill school for the regular adult tha my has a family and work to do. As a full time worker and part time student, no matter what how much time I dedicate I never get an A grade...
I chose UMUC to pursue a bachelor's degree online. I've had online courses before, and I understood that the workload is often more for out of classroom learning. If you are looking for someone to hold your hand while you learn, I don't recommend taking an online course. The only reason to take an online course is for the flexibility. As for UMUC's flexibility, it was largely dependent on the teacher. Each class requires weekly discussions as part of a participation grade, but some assign group discussions that greatly limit the flexibility of taking a course. If your group decides to discuss/post on a certain day, and you have to work, good luck keeping your grade up. It defeats the whole point of taking an online course. As for my biggest complaint, UMUC seems to mess up my billing every semester. I have a completion scholarship, which was awarded to me for having graduated from an associates program from a MD school. The scholarship boasts roughly a 50% cut in tuition, and although it isn't paid upfront, it (in theory) greatly reduced the costs to attend this school. The truth as it turns out is that the automated billing system they use can and will miscalculate your scholarship. In my case, I would pay in full, and get reimbursed, only to be issued an additional bill before the end of the semester. The worst part is that when I would call and question where this charge was coming from, nobody seemed to have any idea why this was happening. They would simply say my scholarship was being adjusted (even though I was meeting GPA and minimum credit hour requirements). Adding up the totals on my own, it became clear that the scholarship I was awarded was no where near the amount promised, and to this day, nobody can explain why. I learned to not count on any of the financial aid awards, and budget an extra $600 into what I already paid for my additional mid semester bills. I guess you could say the most valuable lesson the school has taught me is how to budget for the unexpected costs life will throw at you.
Great school. Do not believe the bad reviews. This school caters to the non-traditional student. The courses are taught that way intentionally. Throughout the week, you are basically on your own to read the assigned material. IF YOU CAN'T MANAGE YOUR TIME OR YOU NEED AN INSTRUCTOR TO HOLD YOUR HAND, DO NOT APPLY. This school isn't for you. It's not the school's fault that you cannot be an adult like the expect you to be. The instructors (many hold doctorate degrees) are not lenient. It's no different from a brick and mortar school (which I attended for almost two years). Just because it is online, doesn't mean it is easy. Sorry to burst you bubble. Back to the review. I have spent the last 2.5 years taking full semesters (4 classes in the fall, 4 in the spring, 2 in the summer). I took 7 CLEP/DSST tests (needed upper level credit). All this while stationed in overseas. I've been on mission to Ukraine, Republic of Georgia, Africa, Poland, Belgium, Italy, etc. I have been on TDY a total of 1 year out of my 3 years in overseas. It is not difficult to coordinate with the instructor about scheduling difficulties if you do it in a timely manner. My GPA is 3.9. Do not think you can't do it. But do remember, this is an institution of higher learning. You are an adult. Act like one and do your work. Or drop out, like the rest of the weak minded. Your choice.
I am active duty Army and had about 60 credits from other schools when I started with UMUC. I was deployed to Iraq when I took my first class and had no issues with access to the course, instructors, or help desk. Some classes were more challenging than others, but overall I liked the school. I had no issues with financial aid or with any portion of the school for that matter. I will say that they changed their online format for my last two classes which I didn't like. Would definitely take Master level classes from here.
I'm about 20 credits away from my Bachelor's degree and have had no issues with taking classes online here. The user interface is not hard to navigate with minimal practice. The instructors can be a little hands off in most cases, which is a positive for me. If you can be self-driven and self-disciplined, this is a great school to pursue your degree.
The graduate school does not assign advisors, so you may find it difficult to ask questions and properly plan your course of action. This school will make it extremely difficult to succeed. I've always been a great student and an independent learner - thank goodness - all of the courses are essentially self-taught. If you miss a deadline, no one cares - you may have to re-take a course or push a course to the next semester. Very few graduate courses are offered during summer/winter, making it extremely challenging to move through the program quickly. To UMUC, you're a number, not a human being. Just keep that in mind when choosing a college. I would have graduated a year ago if it wasn't for the million hoops I've jumped through.
University of Maryland University College or UMUC is known for treating its students badly. Do not believe their advertisements. They are a for-profit school who take advantage of military students and veterans. They have the monopoly on military bases. They do not try to treat their students fairly. Their undergraduate Dean is the same person as their Provost and relies too heavily on his staff. UMUC's Dean just signs off on whatever his staff says and his only aim to protect them, which presents a conflict of interest when it comes to the rights of UMUC students. UMUC does this to lower overhead costs even though they make a ridiculous amount of money off the soldiers and vets. They only combined the position of Dean and Provost just so 1 person can justify getting paid more than he should even though he does a poor job. So if you ever have a disagreement with UMUC or are accused of cheating / have an issue with an instructor, UMUC will be against you first and foremost. They will not be fair and impartial.
This was a difficult and expensive experience when it came to my math and computer science courses. Basically, you are given assignments of quiz, test, projects with barely any direction or teaching for 8 weeks. You are completely self taught. I had to hire tutors to help me in some cases. For my other classes some were better, but you are basically doing it on your own and Math, Science and Computer classes are the worst to do self taught. I suggest take those classes somewhere else and transfer them in. The financial aid and Bursar's departments aren't very good at keeping track of your records and billing accurately. Benefits is, you basically know what you have to do for each 8 wk or 4 wk session, they accept CLEP, DSST and Transfer credits, and its conveniently online or in person.
For the most part all of my teachers were pretty decent. Lots of independent learning, using simulated training programs, and reading. Most classes required writing papers, interaction in online discussion but no live lectures. Take your time and research professors using Rate Your Professor, because if you get a bad one, it will cost you money and your grade. For Math and Computer Science Courses - you better be comfortable with math and programming because the teachers in these subject areas aren't good at all. They don't actually 'teach' or even direct you to the right information. They grudgingly give help and the online tutor service is hit or miss. Overall, if you are a motivated student, don't mind 'self-teaching' and want quick 8 week semesters that you can get up to 18 credits a semester finished by taking 3 classes the 1st half and 3 the second, then this is a great school with 24/7 tech support and no frills administration.