Columbia Southern University Reviews

  • 186 Reviews
  • Orange Beach (AL)
  • Annual Tuition: $6,600
87% of 186 students said this degree improved their career prospects
78% of 186 students said they would recommend this school to others
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Student & Graduate Reviews

Steve Riggs
  • Reviewed: 7/12/2022
  • Degree: Information Technology
"The instruction at the school was less than adequate. I had to complete degree there because traditional schools wouldn’t take all transferred credits. Would prolong the education and go deeper in debt. Instructors just seemed to pass you on without really critiquing the homework to improve your skills. Once in the field you realize that your unprepared for most jobs you were hoping to get."
Tyler Hardy
  • Reviewed: 6/25/2022
  • Degree: Public Health
"Let me just start off by saying that I could have received the same education by going to one of those online services that basically prints off a fake diploma and fake transcript. I have two academic integrity violations. One was because I missed a citation and the other was because a pop up blocker popped up during my exam which was from the proctor company and the SUC looked at my review and denied my appeal. And get ready to write, and write, and write, and write and write. You will write a 2-3 page paper every week sometimes more it is the least effective program ever. Then I went to try and get hired in public health and they said I would need a real degree in public health. This program does not meet the accreditation requirements for the Council on Public Health Educations and as such will not be accepts in any of the 50 US states, any World Health Organization Region, the CDC or CSTE. In other words do not do it. Also by taking 3 courses per term will get you through the program in less than a year. No public health degree can be or should be taken that quickly. Point being steer clear or get robbed"
  • Reviewed: 5/12/2022
  • Degree: Occupational Safety
"First off, I'm not here to put down CSU. There were a lot of good things that came from my time here. For example, they allowed me to be the first in my family to get a degree higher then an A.S. They also gave me credits that I just by chance were able to transfer to a good grad school. However, there are too many negatives to count so I'll just hit a few of the biggest. First, they are a for-profit university and they are not regionally accredited. I'll put it this way, when an interviewer sees a school name on your resume, and ask if it's accredited, this isn't good (kind of makes you feel like Joe Pesci). Also, the whole learning experience is not great. I didn't realize this until I went to another school for my masters but there is almost no support, and you are extremely on your own. All in all, it did get me a pretty good raise at the time."
  • Reviewed: 4/29/2022
  • Degree: Business Administration
"I graduated from CSU with a BSBA in 2020. Many people are making comments about how the degrees "aren't worth the paper they're printed on" or how other schools will not accept their credits or recognize their degrees. I can speak from personal experience and say this is not true. After graduating from CSU, I pursued my master's degree at Indiana University (obviously not some hole in the wall school) and had no issue whatsoever with them recognizing my BSBA degree. CSU is a decent school for the working adult, especially with their LifePace Learning option. I'd recommend."
Mike Anderson
  • Reviewed: 2/9/2022
  • Degree: MBA
"I recently obtained my MBA at Columbia Southern. I was delighted with the life-paced learning. The course is structured with a 10-week completion deadline. You are provided all the material up-front and can work at your own pace. I have seen other online programs where the students are provided with busy work, complete peer reviews, etc. The courses require a lot of writing; however, the work is reasonable for a master's degree. Columbia structures the study, so you are challenged, however, not overburdened with busy work. An MBA education is a general education; it exposes you to concepts, theories, and tools that you can draw on in your career. The MBA will not "open doors" for you as some have stated it should. The program gives you a solid education that you can take to "open doors" for yourself with the confidence of good quality education. The instructors are fair to understand that most students are working professionals. I would highly recommend this school to anyone looking for a solid education using an online format. The instruction was focused on practical education while providing a challenge to the student. We need more educational institutions providing affordable options as government-backed student loans have allowed the cost of education to become hyper-inflated."
  • Reviewed: 1/10/2022
  • Degree: Occupational Safety
"This school will not support you or help you. They will hit you with rules and regs that benefit them only. Much better and cheaper schools out there. Look to a real school for an online program. My experience is from a working person who has life issues due to the pandemic. Absolutely no support from staff, but they all say they are there to help you, so far, everything goes through the board and people on the phone can do nothing for you but forward your call to VM."
  • Reviewed: 11/29/2021
  • Degree: Homeland Security
"It took me some time but I finally finished my B.S. Will be starting a Masters in Homeland Security. I found the instructors pleasant 90% of the time. I really only had issues with an Academic Advisor but overall great experience that I think will help me in the future. I don't think it matters if this school is nationally accredited because most government jobs don't care about nationally versus regionally accredited schools... if your GI bill will pay for it, it will not matter in the long run."
Changed My Life
  • Reviewed: 5/18/2021
  • Degree: Business
"I had an excellent experience with CSU. I was able to earn my bachelors degree at a scedule that worked for me. Upon graduation in 2002, I was hired at IBM. Because the degree is accredited, they had no issues with it. Later, I used this same CSU bachelors degree to get admitted to Benadictine University, where I earned my MBA. Contrary to what some are suggesting here, most RA schools WILL accept a nationally accredited degree. In fact most say it right on the admissions page. Please check and see for yourself. Here's why . .Almost all universities have online degrees now - it's no longer a novelty. There's too much competition now for them to turn away graduates from NA schools - which is why they dont. Anyway, after earning my MBA, I earned a Doctor of Information Technology at Middle Georgia University. Admissions was based on my bachelors and MBA. Today, I teach college courses in business and computer science at a RA community college part time. I'm also a data scientist at Lockheed Martin. So please, enough with the crap about how CSU isn't accepted. The jury has long since been in on this. Go to the alumni page on Linked In. Look at where graduates work. We're talking major corporations, government and education. Some are in high leadership positions. I'm proud I'm an alumni. The school offered me an opportunity to improve my standing in life and pull myself out of abstract poverty at a time when "online" was looked at skeptically."
  • Reviewed: 4/21/2021
  • Degree: MBA in Healthcare Management
"Yes CSU is nationally accredited, and yes not all schools will accept them. There are however many that will, including top ranked schools for master's degrees. Some of these include Liberty Univ, UMGC, Florida International Univ, Webster Univ, Colorado Christian Univ, and more. I don't think my bachelor's from CSU is worth much though, but no degree is without experience. That being said, it's no worse of a degree than from any other school save an Ivy league school. There are a lot of ridiculous comments on here about accreditation, all mostly from elitist folks that probably had mommy buy their way into college. Don't listen to them , they are naysayers, silver spooners, and know it alls. The bottom line is you get good grades, get experience in your field, you can get wherever you want eventually, even if you started at CSU. There is always a way, anyone who says anything else is merely trying to discourage you or sell you something you don't need."
Bruce W.
  • Reviewed: 1/18/2021
  • Degree: Occupational Safety
"I’ve completed both my associates and bachelor’s in Occupational Safety and Health with Columbia Southern University (CSU). CSU’s Occupational Safety and Health program is recognized by both the Board of Certified Safety Professionals (BCSP) and the Institute of Hazardous Materials Management (IHMM). Both of these agencies are the credentialing authorities for Safety Practitioners and CSU is the only nationally accredited institute recognized by BCSP for having a Qualified Academic Program (QAP). What this means is that the same rigor found in regionally accredited QAP’s are administered at CSU, essentially you are learning the same BCSP & IHMM approved course material as any other qualifying university. There seems to be a lot of conflicting “first hand” accounts regarding the accreditation value of this degree that I hope I’ve been able to clear up. Upon completion of a bachelor’s in Occupational Safety and Health, you can apply for the Graduate Safety Practitioner (GSP) designation through BCSP. This designation can be applied toward the eligibility to sit for testing of the Certified Safety Professional (CSP) without having to attain the Associate Safety Professional credential. Additionally, you can apply for the Associate Safety and Health Manager (ASHM) credential through the IHMM once you are completed with your bachelor’s. Lastly, at the writing of this review, the IHMM has begun a pilot program with CSU that allows students to apply for the Student Hazardous Materials Management (ST-CHMM) credential. The value of education you receive at CSU for completing the bachelor’s in Occupational Safety and Health is recognized by all major credentialing authorities and the U.S. Department of Education. If you want a solid education in Occupational Safety and Health administered by leading industry professionals, this is a great place to start that journey. -AM1, USN, Ret."
  • Reviewed: 1/13/2021
  • Degree: Public Health
"Sucked they moved my credits from 42 to 54. If you never want top graduate this is the school. They did a poor job explaining if you dont continuously go to school you will have to take additional classes. Hard to graduate in your Active Military...."
Lamont R
  • Reviewed: 1/2/2021
  • Degree: Business Administration
"Columbia Southern University is a nationally accredited university. As such, regionally accredited colleges (most) will not accept the credits earned at this institution. All its faculty as I understand must possess degrees from regionally accredited schools. I have many degrees – ALL from regionally accredited colleges. I chose CSU’s MBA in Project Management because I am a seasoned professional and I already have a viable career. What CSU offers me is a low stress course of study where I can earn the ‘sheep skin’ and check the block should I want to move within my organization. I would not recommend this school for a student coming out of high school looking to make their mark on the world. However, for adult learners who are already experienced – this school great! How much you learn is totally up to you. I know that to pass the PMP exam, I better study and take all my assignments seriously. At CSU (as with any school) how much you learn is largely up to you. I don’t agree that it’s a diploma mill as you must complete your work. The courses are NOT as challenging as DePaul University – and thank God for that! This degree is recognized and accepted by all government agencies and most large corporations that I am aware of that offer their employee’s tuition assistance will pay for your degree at CSU. That itself is a strong indication that it’s NOT a diploma mill. Let’s put it in its proper perspective: DePaul MBA vs CSU’s MBA, DePaul wins hands down in every respect! DePaul’s MBA may cost you over $100K, CSU will cost you much less than $10K. I already have a job and some of the positions at my organization will require an MBA – they did not say from WHERE the MBA must be earned! The only requirement is that the degree must be accredited, and national accreditation is good enough! For all of you complainers out there, I suggest that you get yourself back to the program. If some of your instructors are extra soft, then oh well – get the sheep’s skin!"
  • Reviewed: 10/4/2020
  • Degree: MBA in Healthcare Management
"I completed an MBA program that had a concentration in healthcare administration within the past year with CSU. I thought that after completing this degree it would be beneficial to my career, but at this point it has not really landed me any new interviews nor any promotions. I already had a bachelor’s degree from Rutgers in Public Health and I thought this additional degree would get me thru the door with various companies for a better position, but at this point, it has not. Landing a higher job in many cases is more so who you know and the connections you have, rather then your education or even your skill level. There are many cases that I have seen with people in higher positions who do not have a master’s, but only a bachelor’s degree and they make it higher up in an organization because of who they know or even their skin color rather then their skill level or contribution to a company. Before going to this school be cautious and do your research thoroughly."
  • Reviewed: 7/14/2020
  • Degree: Occupational Safety
"I started to pursue a Master's of Occupational Safety and Health at this school, but realized after my first class that my degree would not be worth the paper it was printed on. For a master's level course, very little effort was required to get an "A" in the class. Honestly, I just started to completely bluff my papers and assignments without even reading the required materials once I realized no matter what I submitted, I would get a high B or A."
  • Reviewed: 1/14/2020
  • Degree: Management
"After enrolling, I learned Columbia Southern University is considered a diploma mill. Credits at Columbia Southern University will not transfer to traditional universities. I transferred to accredited school and had to retake courses completed at Columbia Southern University. There was no comparison. The courses at Columbia Southern lacked detail and did not extensively cover the material. It was a waste of money."
  • Reviewed: 12/15/2019
"I had a great experience here at CSU. Most of my instructors were willing to go above and beyond when required. I required very little assistance from the school itself but whwn requested they were quick to respond and resolve all matters in a tinely manner. I was able to land a good paying job the same day I graduated i would reccomend this course to anyone looking to get ahead with their education."
James Sims
  • Reviewed: 11/25/2019
  • Degree: Business
"A for-profit, family-owned school. The diploma you get here isn't worth the paper they print it on. You should look for a REGIONALLY ACCREDITED school. There's a reason CSI can't earn a regional accredation. Don't waste you money and time here. They focus on recruiting students, not educating them."
Lamont R.
  • Reviewed: 11/9/2019
  • Degree: Project Management
"CSU is a nationally accredited school. I have earned two master's degrees from regionally accredited college, and I consider myself a 'life-learner.' I honestly don't foresee a time when I will stop attending school. I can tell you that the opportunity to learn and apply yourself is as available here at CSU as any other regionally accredited school. With that said, students coming right out of high school are better off in a RA school and have that campus experience and interaction. For established professionals, however, this program is GREAT! You can work and perform in your courses as your busy schedule permits. You can learn as much as you desire at CSU as they are very-well resourced. I like my program a lot, and I have found that the instructors at CSU are more attentive than what I had experienced at other schools that were regionally accredited. The cost of the program is very 'pocket-friendly' and is an over great value and an excellent investment in your career!"
Chelsea Jordan
  • Reviewed: 9/28/2019
  • Degree: Organizational Leadership
"Both Bachelor's programs I participated in were high class. Even though I decided to complete school solely with online courses, I felt very much attended to by all staff members and professors. For the most part, professors had grades returned within two business days and provided insightful feedback. Only downside is some of the classes are starting to not use physical books, which for me I have found to be challenging."
Terrance Mayes
  • Reviewed: 9/13/2019
  • Degree: Business Administration
"I had the honor of attending the online university, Columbia Southern University on and off from 2009 - 2015. I earned my Associate of Arts in 2010 in General Studies; and my Bachelor of Science in 2015 in Business of Science. The Pros: The university served to be very flexible for me. Flexibility was important because during those years I serve in Navy active duty in country (Norfolk, Virginia - at times in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean). And overseas/out of country (Setting in the middle of Baghdad, Iraq in a hut). There was no limit to the support I received from counselors and professors. The classes were web-based. The interaction with fellow classmates was very great/solid. The school is very military friendly. Military friend school are familiar with educational rights and benefits for Veterans. The Post 9/11 Government Issued (GI) Bill. For those that aren't familiar. The Post-9/11 GI Bill can pay for veterans full tuition and fees at school, provide for veterans with a monthly housing allowance while veterans are going to school. And generally veterans get up to $1000 a year to use for books and supplies. The Cons:. At the time of my last few classes I notice the class per unit were more expensive then others. Online Experience: The online experience was great for me but if you're someone who needs to be "pushed" or have no self-motivation, you will fail. Accredited status: the university is NA (Nationally Accredited) and not recognize as RA (Regionally Accredited). So the prestige isn't there like a University of Memphis, University of North Carolina, Duke, The Ohio State University."