American Public University System Reviews
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I quite liked everything about this school, except their financial aid office. The teachers were incredible knowledgeable and helpful. I learned an awful lot. My only problem stemmed from how they handled my financial aid. During my fiscal years with them, which is the 8 month period you are taking classes with them, I had more problems than I didn't. I was on the phone with them so many times to figure out what was going wrong it was kinda ridiculous. Now my biggest problem was not that it was a repeating problem, it was a slew of all sorts of things. My biggest complaint in all this, was I would call and they would give me information that was wrong. Yes, Beth you will be able to enter your classes, the start date would role around and my class would still be locked. The number of problems they had with my account seemed to be endless. Here is a few examples: a new financial aid system was installed and I didn't click through it to show I had learned about it, but I was never informed to do this. My aid was cut drastically, they marked me down as part time instead of full, I use this money to pay my rent! I had class overlap between to fiscal years and they really could not figure out how to hand out the financial aid because of it. My favorite out of all of them was when they sent me an email and told me they had over appropriated funds to me on my student loans and that I now owed them $1755. How does that even happen? The honest truth behind the last one too was I called them to make sure I was suppose to be getting the extra money, it was more than I typically received. They assured me up and down that it was the correct amount. I could not finish my last two classes with them until I paid it back. I do not have a lot of money, I have two small kids, and the financial aid was my living money. I had to take out a payday loan to pay them off, so I could finish my degree. It really was not a pleasant time for me.
All I have to say is best online school I have been compare to CTC, SLCC, and Parker University. I got hired at the EPA under the Recent Graduate Program and I am currently a Scientist for the agency. I get a fatty check every month :) Mission Accomplished!
Absolutely stay away! After a rough year, unexpected major surgery and my grandmother's death, I had withdrawn from 2 courses and failed two others. I fell .2 GPA below what is required for fin aid. I created a SAP appeal sending in over 20 documents, death cert and doctors records. They denied my appeal for financial aid. I honestly have zero clue why. They said I can "pay out of pocket". No thanks, I'm withdrawing completely. The classroom set up is extremely basic, I don't actually believe you learn anything and their financial department is miss informed about how the process works. Find any other school because this one is a joke.
This school has been amazing, I honestly cannot find the words to describe the caring and considerate staff, and the timely service. I have never had a problem, technical or otherwise that was not addressed promptly. My professors were absolutely professional and considerate of the challanges that online education may present. I work a full time job and I have a busy home life; this school integrates easily with this life. The negative comments noted on this page is not an accurate representation of American Public University. I will urge readers to call the school and talk to a representative for youself. Please do not let these absurd and negative comments affect going back to school. I will continue to pursue my education with APU because of the cost, the service and their ability to meet the needs of the working individual. I believe that this program assisted in enhancing my career as a Project Manager.
Education is what you make of it, whether you're Abraham Lincoln reading second hand books and mastering the law or you're a rich child attending Harvard Law because your parents went. AMU/APUS is no different. There will always be some professors who are better than others, and there will be some classes with a heavier workload or a unique curriculum requiring extra discipline. Some courses I've taken, especially in my graduate studies, have been incredibly challenging and time consuming, with one class standing out in my mind requiring nearly 1,000 pages of reading per week in addition to written work. Your own initiative and discipline will win your success at this university, just like anywhere else in life. I have been a student at AMU/APUS since 2006. I finished my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and then started my Master of Arts in Ancient and Classical History. I've seen the criticism over the years of online study, especially earlier on in my decade of attendance here as the concept of distance learning threatens the profit margins of brick & mortar schools. This school has done nothing but improve my life. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to take courses online at AMU/APUS because I would not have been able to attend a brick & mortar university with all of my training and deployments keeping me out of a physical classroom. The advent of the online classroom, so well delivered by APUS, has literally opened a door for me where there previously was a wall.
Very user friendly for the online student. Easy access and very compatible with all windows operating systems. Instructors are quick to reply, however I would have liked grades to be posted quicker.
My program was online and it was a very enjoyable experience.
Future students need to know what awaits you with the faculty that will teach you. In the last couple of years there have been layoffs 'only' in the Academic area - the part of the school that is truly needed for students. The upper echelon has not suffered at all during any layoffs, drops in enrollment, and so forth. The upper echelon keeps increasing their fat salaries along with titles such as VP in front of their names to collect free stock. If their goals are met at the end of the year they also graciously give themselves bonuses. No one else receives these self appointed bonuses in the company. All this goes on at the cost of the backbone of the other employees. For example, faculty wages are 42% below the average payable wage. The average pay for a faculty member at the Instructor level is $38,524.00. Part time faculty have not been given an increase in pay since before 2005. Part time faculty are paid by the student with a payment of $120.00 per student. One student in an eight week course - yes you have just earned $120.00! This of course is before taxes. The new retention effort is targeted clearly at faculty. It is faculty's responsibility to 'keep' students. Faculty are constantly observed by a Program Director, Faculty Director, outside observer, or the Center for Teaching and Learning. Faculty are rated on three levels of engagement for participation and feedback on forums. Each faculty is targeted at least every other eight week start. There are monthly meetings to discuss why a teacher (even good teachers) have a high drop rate and should that teacher be removed from the course. If a teacher is removed from a course it is generally a high volume course and the teacher will loose his or her job because one cannot meet their teaching numbers. Teachers are required to meet their yearly work plan goal on the number of students taught each year, e.g., 500 (which is to be increased for 2016 by 10%). The university has concocted another creative way to layoff (fire) faculty now with what they believe is lack of performance on the retention initiative. Faculty are often told 'you do not want to be on the list.' Lately faculty have also been told (not in writing of course) that you do not want to submit students for plagiarism and students need to pass with at least a C in courses. The other new layoff (firing) tactic is to set up a one-on-one meeting with your departmental Dean. You think it is just a meeting. Alas, you are wrong. The faculty member is blind sided with Human Resources being on the phone. You are told you are not a good fit for the university based on your performance - period. No time to lawyer up. They send you a severance package within five minutes at the end of the phone call, which is generally for three months - clearly not enough time to support you or your family while trying to find new employment. The layoff meter at APUS has become very creative. Employees live in the fear factor of the dictatorship of APUS and not having a job. It is a constant threat held over your head. It is so bad they have started calling a new dean "the litter reign of terror" because no one wants to have contact with her out of fear of receiving a phone call meeting summons to be layedoff/fired. Sadly these are the layoff tactics of this university. Given time they will come up with more creative ways to terrorize its employees with fear and layoff tactics.
I received an MA in history and a Graduate Certificate from AMU. I have to admit, I was thoroughly impressed by the attention and quick responses from my professors. AMU actually requires its professors to be very active in their courses. The programs were thorough and well structured. The program director was extremely helpful, as were the live chat options and advisers. For the sake of not sounding like a drone post sent by the university, I would also like to admit that I was very weary of enrolling with APUS because it is strictly online. Even today, despite the fact that most universities have online programs, APUS is criticized. However, in my experience at OSU and other on site universities, APUS was far more hands on. Their workload was difficult and required discipline, which, to an honest student, means they will learn more and work harder. This is what you want from a university. Do not enroll in APUS if you are looking for a cushy diploma mill. APUS may be a for profit university, but I, personally, received a better education from AMU than I ever received as a speck in the crowd at OSU. It is unfortunately true that APUS still receives academic criticisms, but it cannot be justified. APUS is fully accredited. FULLY accredited. A degree from APUS is just as good as a degree from any major university, including OSU. People need to get over themelves and accept the direction that academics is taking. All aspects of APUS far exceeded my expecatations. It was the best decision of my life. Note, I am married, have two young boys, and worked full time while I got my degree. Quite making excuses for your own failures people.
Excellent and updated course materials. Although instructors have an important role in any study program, courses are so well conceived and organized that instructors become almost optional. The online platform is very user friendly and classes' organization fit every potential full-time worker (8-week or 16-week optional duration for any course).