Ashworth College Reviews
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After falling into insurance on multiple occasions, it occurred to me that perhaps I should look for a career in the industry. I like the business working of insurance but I was more interested in the claims process. Having worked on the practitioner/provider relations side of many insurance companies made me curious about the process that led to us receiving, and ultimately rejecting, a claim. So, I happened upon medical billing and coding, which interested me a great deal as I was always curious about how the procedures were billed and bundled and interpreted. After studying ICD-9 and ICD-10 CM on my own for about two months and CPT codes for about three weeks, I decided I needed to finally get into a course. My criteria for the course were that it had to be completely online. I have a family and I work full-time, I was not going for the college experience, I did that already lol. It must also be affordable, with flexible monthly payment options. We're saving for a house so I cannot afford to pay those grandiose $2500 fees. It also needed to include medical terminology and anatomy, which are VITAL if you want to be a proficient biller or coder. Lastly, it must prepare me to sit for the CPC exam. Ashworth fit all of those but the last one. The certification you're testing for is the CBCS through the NHA. While it is recognized as a valid certification, many employers prefer those offered through AHIMA or AAPC, as they both are the regulators for the code books used in the industry. This meant that I would eventually, once I was financially prepared to do so, go back and take a course that would enable me to sit for the AAPC's CPC exam. On the review of the enrollment process: The key to any for-profit online school is knowing what you're getting into BEFORE you enroll. Do not trust what the representatives of the school tell you. Know that they will misconstrue the facts to get you to enroll, they need the profit. Read the fine print. It cost me $10 upfront to enroll and I pay just $50 a month. That's great but you are given only 5 days to cancel and receive a full refund after you enroll and that's only if you haven't completed ANY coursework, not even the Pre-Test. But if you read the agreements you're signing before you actually commit to this, you shouldn't have any issues with enrollment. Also know that you are not entitled to a refund just because you didn't like the program or never completed any work. You signed the agreement that practically waived your rights to any reimbursement and acknowledged that they will go to collections on you if you do not pay. Also, if you are ahead of schedule, you will have to pay those monthly fee or pay it off in order for the program to be considered complete. These are not issues or hurdles. If you do your homework and read the information in its entirety you'll have an overall pleasant enrollment experience. The Program Itself: They have given you PDF lessons that are mailed out to you and available online but for the majority of the lesson you are reading lists. It is overwhelming and impossible to digest 224 pages of lists. Lesson 1 was torture. It got better in the following lessons but the overall setup is not interactive or even remotely engaging. Most of what you get explains the WHAT, if you are like me and need the bigger picture including the HOW and WHY (which is important to a biller/coder), you'll have to look to other resources found on the web. There is no faculty, professor, or staff presence. If you have a question, you will not be referred to a Medical Coder/Biller or even a healthcare professional. This is scary for two reasons: 1. This is a field that is constantly changing and the material is often convoluted as a result. If you have any issue or need further explanation of a billing or coding scenario, there is no one available to help you understand. 2. This course will not prepare you to be a proficient biller/coder. It will give you the information needed to pass an exam. I was initially excited about starting this course but I have been a little disappointed. Let me put this course in context. If you were unprepared to take the SAT and wanted more practice before taking the SAT, you would take an SAT prep class. In this case, the AAPC sponsored certification courses are the SAT and the Medical Billing and Coding program offered here is the SAT Prep class. This program will not make you a coder and they are not explaining the info well enough for you to truly understand the material hence why they can only offer the NHA exam. So, take this course to get the certification behind your name and to prepare yourself by getting an overview of the medical billing and coding info you need in order to take a more intensive, beneficial, and recognized course offered through an AHIMA/AAPC sponsored class. I enrolled in the same program with Penn Foster the day after starting here and it was the best decision I ever made! I would recommend that one IN CONJUNCTION with this one if you want to truly be a competent coder/biller.
LOVE THE SCHOOL GRADUATED AND PLAN TO RE ENROLL FOR BA IN MEDICAL ADMINISTRATIONS. Would recommend this school to anyone. You learn at your own pace. I am not only went through Ashworth but also James Madison getting my high school. They are affordable and doesn't leave you in debt as a regular college could.
Ashworth's online flexibility allowed me to study, write papers, and take exams during all hours of the day. I really enjoyed English Composition II, Principles of Marketing, Professional Selling, and the Consumer Buying Behavior classes. Only once did I have a delay with receiving a text book shipment, which was quickly resolved by contacting Ashworth to ship the next book and unlock/open the next class. 21 of my previous engineering and IT credits from PSU and PCT transferred into the Marketing program of study. I was able to earn the remaining 39 credits necessary to earn an Associate Degree in Marketing through Ashworth in roughly 18 months.
I was HIGHLY skeptical of online learning. I was wrong! Ashworth was amazing!!! They were not only right there to help at every stage of the process but they hid nothing! Anyone who says otherwise didn't read enrollment agreement or couldn't handle the work! It is hard. You have to hold yourself accountable the entire time and no it's not easy. Going to class is so much easier. You have to self discipline. Ashworth advisors were AMAZING!! There was never a time I needed help and couldn't find someone to assist. They want you to succeed. They care. I could not say enough great things about my experience and would HIGHLY recommend anyone that wants to go back to school to call Ashworth. Happy Graduate!!
I'm loving it so far. So flexible and the student portal/sakai (the online course software) is so smooth and easy to navigate. Please don't change it - at least not for a long while, Ashworth! I am very happy with the quality of education, as well as the support. The flexibility is obviously the greatest perk of the school. The fact that you go at your own pace is incredible. And I don't mean at your own pace with a deadline -- I mean REALLY at your own pace. You have up to a YEAR to finish one semester. Granted I don't need that long, but I'm sure some do with very busy lives. I work full-time but was able to finish my first semester in about 2 and a half months. Just about the time of a traditional semester, but you have NO deadlines. Take your time and learn at your own speed. I'm excited to continue!
I currently graduated from the HVAC program. My company encouraged me to do this, but that's a separate issue. As far as I'm concerned the school doesn't get any stars. A trade occupation cannot be taught online, that needs hands on training. The last 3 weeks of my program getting down to my deadline, I finally got a pop up icon "do you need help". REALLY.... If you need help good luck. The downfalls.... Have no idea who the professor is or even if I had questions, no way of communicating. If you do happen to get ahold of the school it's always a representative. Funny thing is I completed all the assignments, but I was only 93% completed. Couldn't figure out why ?? Come to find out I had a project to do. No emails to alert me. If I hadn't contacted a representative at the school....probably would've failed ?? The final exam, what a way to make a fool out of a person. After a year and a half of this course, trying to figure out this occupation on my own & other technicians coming in to assist & trying to learn from them....I'm to the point I don't even want to go to my job anymore due to poor education. Sure....my administrators & bosses are proud of my accomplishments & the 3.75 GPA. The tests are all open book and get 3 chances to take each test to get a higher score. There's no sense of accomplishment there....that's just lazy on the other end. My opinion to others looking into this school....save yourself the trouble & find a hands on technical school or just jump off a cliff.
Just graduated with my A.S degree! I'm enlisting in the Marine Corps, and my degree is already giving me an extra rank when I start boot camp! If the military accepts Ashworth as a legit institution, I'll definitely be coming back here for my Bachelors!
I am currently in a Master's program with Ashworth and am totally aggravated by the lack of access to faculty. I am tired of receiving graded assignment that say "poor grammar" or other such comments with nothing marked on the assignments, so that I can see what went wrong. I graduated from an Ivy League school and have never received papers back that say "poor grammar," which leads me to believe that the professors may have a poor grammar base which with they are grading. Also, instructions for assignments are convoluted and contradictory. I know that no matter what I submit it will be unsatisfactory. Students need to go through "advisors" to get information back about assignments for progress. I do not understand why, unless it is to save money by not paying for extra faculty time. Good luck to people in these programs. I wish was learning more and could understand why I am getting the grades that I do. Ashworth is quick enough to take money though....
I work full time, 50-60 hours a week. Needless to say, with my schedule it would have been difficult for me to attend a traditional college. I love the fact that Ashworth College allows me to work at my own pace and on my time and not to a predetermined schedule. This is really the only way possible that I could attend college. This is the Only college I found that was this flexible and I researched a Lot before deciding on Ashworth. The courses are challenging, the study material is spot on, and I am actually learning and retaining what I have learned. I would recommend Ashworth to Anyone, especially those who work a lot of hours and don't have a predetermined work schedule. I am very pleased with Ashworth.
Ashworth has the best value for your dollar given the current market of nationally accredited schools. You must agree to the fact that this school is not regionally accredited, their credits do not usually transfer to your state school or other regionally accredited schools. The accreditation is the same as U of Phoenix, Kaplan, Ashford, etc. The customer service was horrible and over the years has greatly improved, you can tell that it has been a concerted effort among the administration to tackle this complaint. Textbooks are from the major publishers like Pearson and McGraw-Hill and if you look up the exact edition you will find them on Amazon for $150-$200. Any online course IMHO is much harder than a classroom setting, you have to do every chapter and the instructor does not decide to skip sections because you are behind. However, you can study any time and you can complete the course at your own pace. This degree will not provide the same caché as NYU or USC, Boston University,etc. it doesn't have the same name recognition as your state school either so don't consider any online nationally accredited school if this is what you want. I do not believe Ashworth is the best school but neither is the state school my son attended. If you have the time and budget I recommend going to a regionally accredited school, preferably the best school you can afford. However, if that is not in your budget or you are an adult learner with experience then consider Ashworth if you wish to get a degree. Certificates are a different beast, those can be hit and miss not just due to what you learn but what the employers are looking in an employee. A Harvard Certificate does look better than an Ashworth certificate, however, is it worth the extra $8k-$15k? In my case this degree works but does put me in a disadvantage to an applicant that has a more prestigious school on their resume, however, I'm never going to attend the prestigious school due to $ and time so I accept that. I would recommend this school as a first option to anyone on a budget looking for an accredited school recognized by the Department of Education. Best of luck.