Capella University Reviews - Doctorate in Human Services
I have Masters degree from Capella and had a great experience. That's why I decided to stay with them for my PhD. I completed all the coursework, the comps, and was done writing chapter 4 of my dissertation when my mentor told me I could not use aggregate data for my study. Keep in mind that I had IRB approval, passed comps, and had approval for chapters 1-3 already. I was told I would need to back up to Milestone 3 to rework my study and would need to get IRB approval again. The problem is, there is little chance of me getting through all of the milestones again before I "time out" of the program in October 2018. I'm in hock with student loans up to my eyeballs and I'm ABD. Basically, I have a MS and completed all of my doctoral coursework. I'm joining the class action suit. Maybe I can at least recoup some of my money.
After I read the catalog and not being sure of whether or not Capella needed the GRE for acceptance; I ended up calling them. After that one phone call, I was ready to start my first class within a couple of weeks. Capella's customer service is excellent. Call them! But be ready, because they will answer your questions very thoroughly and you won't have any more excuses to not attend Capella University for whichever of their wonderful career paths has captured your interest.
The doctoral program at Capella was excellent. I worked harder at Capella than I did at Columbia University where I received my MSW. The professors were from great schools all over the world and they expected nothing less than doctoral work. I was challenged daily.
I was very pleased with my experience at Capella. Having completed my bachelor's and two master's at respected brick-and-mortar schools, I knew the difference between a rigorous program and a sub-par program. Capella's was high-quality. I will say, however, that students must be self-disciplined and able to motivate themselves to learn well. Capella professors do not spoon feed students. As well, they expect you know how to write at the doctoral level when you start the program. They do not tutor you in writing skills. This is as it should be. Since graduating, I have compared my program to others' who have or are completing their doctorate degrees at traditional schools, and I am often surprised to realize that my program was superior to theirs in many ways. My advisor and dissertation chair were great, and I moved through the dissertation process in a timely manner. The only complaint I had about Capella's PhD program is that there was no opportunity to participate in research with faculty or teach as an assistant to faculty, like there would be in a traditional, residential program.
Go somewhere else. You will not get anything more from Capella than you will get anywhere else, but you will get it 100 times cheaper. Capella is no different than other schools anymore in that they set their tuition based on knowing what the government will give you in loans. There was a time when I was younger tuition was reasonable and the loans helped you live while you studied hard. Now, schools pay their teachers crap, but their administrator executives million dollar salaries with golden umbrella retirement packages (work 5 years get full retirement) so they make sure they max out tuition to the very limit so they get the most money. Anyway, teachers are okay, some bad, some too political (like every college that hires liberals). Here is the worst - when your money is coming in they are the worlds best friend, when it isn't or you're having trouble and once they can't pressure you, they drop you like a sack of potatoes. Just go somewhere else.
I earned a Ph.D in Human Services in 2010. Did I know that studying at a for profit institution would be a gamble? Yes, I did. Still, as a professor at a community college already working on a tenure track back in 2003, I can assure you that I weighed the pros and cons of enrolling very carefully. Ultimately, Capella is/was fully accredited and it allowed me the flexibility to work full-time, raise a family, and reach my highest educational goal. As a professor myself, at no time did I ever feel as though my program's curriculum was second rate. All of my professors, courses, mentors, and residential requirements were challenging. I learned a lot and have drawn upon my years at Capella to earn tenure and contribute to my discipline. All that said, my credentials have been "put down" by some of my less than enlightened colleagues at my institution and elsewhere. All I can do is my best as an alum. To be very candid, it is my assertion that the differences between a non-profit and a for-profit University are actually few and far between. For example: non-profit administrators are eager to see a "surplus" of funds in any given year... surplus is another name for "profit." In closing, I value my earned Ph.D from Capella University and recommend the institution for adult, non-traditional learners.
I am a satisfied Capella University alumnus after obtaining a Masters in 2011 and a PhD in 2014. As with any school there are positives and negatives with Capella (in my opinion the positives far outweigh any negatives). Depending on the region of the country you live in, Capella “may” be more expensive; however, it is not true everywhere. I live in the Northeast where the cost of attending local colleges was about the same (if not more) than what Capella charges. This is particularly true for graduate schools, as the overwhelming majority of Capella students are pursuing masters and doctorate degrees. I have attended both traditional brick and mortar schools as well as online. I obtained an Associates, Bachelors, and my 1st Masters at brick and mortar schools. I found the quality of education and its relevance to my work to be superior at Capella than in every other school I attended. Capella is truly geared towards the independent learner, and this is where many students falter. Even when I attended brick and mortar schools, I worked independently. I would look at the syllabus, read the text book and I was good to go. I didn’t need the teacher’s lecture to help me understand what was being taught. This style of learning helped me be successful at Capella. Unfortunately not everyone is able to learn independently, which is why you see so many of the negative reviews here (almost every negative complaint I’ve ever heard about Capella is from a student who was not able to finish their program). Every degree level at Capella requires and increasing about independent learning skill. There is also a greater level of difficulty between the masters and doctorate program. There is even more difficulty between the coursework for the doctorate program and writing the actual dissertation. I believe Capella prepares students as well as they can with multiple research classes and colloquia which focuses exclusively on writing a dissertation. Yet not everyone is able to grasp what is needed to succeed. I and thousands of other alumni are proof that you can be successful at Capella. Many Capella alumni are also getting impressive positions. My advice to those thinking about attending Capella is not only to do your research, but do an honest assessment of how you best learn. If you need individual attention and lectures, Capella is probably not the place for you. If you are able to learn independently and have clear ideas about what you want to do in your career, Capella is worth a shot.