Capella University Reviews - Doctorate in Information Technology
Review of Information Technology Doctoral Degrees
I started a PhD at Capella because I wanted to expand my career as a software architect/development lead to include research roles in related IT areas. A crucial conversation with the School of Business & IT department chair strongly influenced my decision to pursue my PhD at Capella, rather than elsewhere. It took me almost seven years to finish while I worked full time. The process included two years of coursework, one year to settle on a research topical area, about a year to formalize propose research in the topical area, two years to conduct the research, one year to write the dissertation and defend the research, and then, finally, graduate. The process was a journey unlike any I had previously undertaking in my undergraduate or graduate program. You should want (expect) to expand your intellectual horizons, based on my experience. I would note that I was aged 55 when I graduated, having wanted to finish my PhD for over 20 years. I would say than many people could achieve a PhD, but they must be entirely self-motivated to do so. This was the single biggest success factor for me: I simply wanted to finish, no matter what. Therefore, my best advice is if you really like the research perspective (i.e., creating knowledge) and desire to conduct research professionally (publishing created knowledge), including working in academia in later life, then Capella is a excellent opportunity to make that happen. Some things that improved in career following (during) my PhD program include: better writing habits, including clearly addressing audiences; exposure in conferences/colloquia; opportunities to write in professional journals; developing contacts with other PhDs publishing in professional journals; and improved research efficiencies and information organization habits.
I started out with Capella University about three years ago. One major problem I faced are inconsistencies, lack of communication with instructors and advisors about their program. I completed the coursework required for the PhD IT program. You are also required to complete three tracks, track 1, 2 and 3. I completed track 1 and 2 and had my topic approval/Endorsement in track 2. But during my second attempt taking track 3 my instructor at that time rejected my topic. A topic that has been approved and endorsed in track 2 and has been recorded in school records to be used for my dissertation. The first instructor I went through when I took track 3 (Dissertation Research Seminar) the first time acknowledge the topic. I received a NS for my first attempt at track 3 because I had an emergency and couldn't attend the required residency involved. For some reasons the school made some changes and a different instructor became the head of the information and assurance department who reviews the DRP's. The instructor rejected my topic during my second attempt at track 3; telling me the topic is viable but I will have challenges down the road and was unwilling to assist me so I am better off changing the topic. I dropped the course (track 3) and later brought it to the school's attention about my situation. I informed staff members and advisors about my situation. I was told by an advising staff at the school that I have already had topic endorsement and approval in track 2 so I did not have to change my topic. I was informed that what the instructor needed to do was to help me with the challenges I am having in putting my DRP (Dissertation Research Plan) together but not to tell me to change a topic that have been approved and endorsed by the school. I was advised to go forward and register and take track 3 (Dissertation Research Seminar) again. I register for track 3 again and lo and behold I run into the same instructor again and he rejected my topic once again. I was back to square one. It seems to me there is no communication among the staff members, advisors and the instructors. I did complete an evaluation and made my experience, concerns and challenges known to the school and also voiced out my concerns on the phone several times to advisors but still no progress. I wanted to change the topic when it was rejected by the instructor during my second attempt with track 3 but I was specifically told not to worry about changing my topic because I have already had or received topic approval or endorsement by the school so I should go ahead and take track 3 (dissertation research seminar) again because the instructor is suppose to help me with my DRP not to tell me to change a topic that has been endorsed and approved for my program. I did went ahead with the recommendation that was given to me by the school and I met the same instructor again and he rejected my topic and I am back to square one. There are lots of inconsistencies, lack of communications, lack of support at the school. Is like the school is much more interested in money. The instructors heading with the programs do not communicate with each other, inconsistencies and lack of knowledge by advisors. The instructors, staff and advisors are not consistent at all. I am a veteran of the US military and I will not recommend my fellow veterans to enroll in this school. I have not hard a good experience at all.
I am a student that is due to start school and I have not graduated, I don't like the fast track orientation, don't like the unnecessary symposiums and I really don't like the main office and their personnel. I recommend that you watch your back at all times if you are to attend this organization.
Most all of the instructors were helpful, others were out of touch with the industry. In general I would say this was a beneficial program. I liked the opportunity to interact during the Colloquiums. They were some of the best learning opportunities. Advising team was amazing they were always helpful even though they didn't always give me the answer I was hoping for.
I work full time and I have a family with 3 children. My dream to pursue Ph.D is being realized through Capella university's unique teaching, and assessment methods. Let me summarize them in points. 1. Capella is fully accredited University by one of the six regional accrediting bodies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. So, it's degrees are valued and respected by the industry. I got recognition and promotion by just pursuing it. 2. Capella degrees requires hard work, commitment and determination 3. Capella give opportunities to every eligible (meets the degree prerequisites) candidates without requiring additional requirements like GRE, GMAT, or recommendations. 4. Capella puts the onus of commitment and determination on the students. So, if you see or hear students complaining or write bad/incorrect reviews, then look into the reasons and I think the problem is with their ability to remain motivated and committed. My experience is if one puts the required hard work and commitment, one should be able to get through the course work required to attempt the Comprehensive Exam. 5. Comprehensive exam is rigorous and world class assessment of your skills to pursue doctoral research work. Getting through the course work doesn't guarantee passing comprehensive exam. One should be able to critically analyze and answer the questions, apply research methodology, and cite latest research in your research topic area. I worked hard (120-150 hours in 4 weeks), read 100+ articles and wrote my answers, and I am glad, I passed. If one feels he/she is not prepared to attempt it, then there are various options such as taking writing course, etc and acquire the skills required. I am sure the advisors will gladly help you. One has to plan properly and be truthful to one's readiness. 7. Deciding research topic is a rigorous path, and the mentors, professors and residencies helped me in shaping my research topic and I am very grateful for it. I can't imagine what more can they do to better the experience. 8. I am currently in my dissertation phase, and I am happy with the milestones laid out and working towards them. I am excited to complete my dissertation and proudly list my PhD. I hope this helps you in reaching your dreams.
Some individuals have good thoughts about their Capella journey ;and others have shared not so good experiences. As for myself, I have no regrets. The institution was just what I expected in meeting, and in some cases, exceeding my expectations. I do believe, it is each student's responsibility to make sure he/she perform their "due diligence" particularly when it comes to a financial investment such as higher education. For those expressing both positive and negative reviews, I do understand because it is reviews and concerns such as yours that can potential result in the betterment of the institution. Best of luck in your pursuit of your educational goals; whether, you are attending Capella or some other university.
I graduated with my Ph.D. in Information Technology Management in 2011. My experience in the courserooms was uneven. About 1/3 of the courses were graded pretty easily and about 2/3 were appropriately rigorous. The problem with Capella faculty is there are very few full-time faculty. Most are part-time adjuncts so they probably correlate going easy on the students with higher reviews and chances of being renewed. The course content is fine and you can learn a lot if you take them seriously and understand how they build towards your dissertation. The dissertation process is very rigorous and quite bureaucratic which can cause frustrations and delays but they really are trying to ensure their student's dissertations are of sufficient quality. The ease of navigating the dissertation process depends on how well the mentor (committee) and the student work together. That's hard enough if you can meet face to face and even harder online. Despite the fact I had no issues with the courses or the dissertation process, there is a significant amount of bias against online only schools like Capella. That simple fact means you won't compete well with others who have brick and mortar degrees if you want to teach at post-secondary schools. If you are like I was and already had a job and are using it for resume/career enhancement where you are, then Capella works out quite well. I would not go to Capella and go $100K in debt if you think you're going to score a teaching/research position at a university. It's probably not going to happen. Weigh your options carefully before starting your doctorate at Capella. The degree itself is fine but be realistic about what you think you can do with it.