Grand Canyon University Reviews - Doctoral in Organizational Leadership

3.45 out of 5 stars
(16 Reviews)
62% of 16 students said this degree improved their career prospects
63% of 16 students said they would recommend this program to others
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Student & Graduate Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
DeterminationIsRequired - 10/18/2020
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2020
"Reading the numerous reviews for Grand Canyon University requires some self-reflection on my part. There are many positive and constructive responses that are valid. There are also responses that require self-reflection on the part of the individual who submitted the original post. I began my doctoral journey in August 2015 with the expectation of going through GCU's doctoral program with great ease, being that I started my courses online in the comfort of my home. I quickly realized that I needed to have face-to-face interactions in order to be successful. I spoke with my SA and she quickly revised my schedule to have me take my remaining courses on campus. Making the change to an on-campus cohort was the best decision I made. Having the opportunity to speak with my instructors face-to-face was extremely beneficial to my progress in the program. If I felt the need to challenge an instructor, I could do it in person rather than email. Believe me, I did not always agree with my instructors and made sure to advocate for myself when I needed to. When entering the program, I was told that the entire doctoral program generally takes 3.5 years to complete, start to finish. This was not the case for me. The first portion of the program (coursework) went along as planned. It was not until the dissertation writing process that I experienced delays in progress. There were a number of times in which I was required to rewrite a portion of a chapter to insure that my document was aligned. There was an instance in which I paid a large amount of money for an editor, only to be told that the editor did not do a great job! I was encouraged to located another editor. I did not find another editor, I simply edited the document with the help of my wife and Grammarly. I also paid for a statistician to assist me with my chapter 4. I was told by my chair that everything looked great once chapter 4 was complete, but my AQR reviewer presented many changes that needed to be made before moving forward. I must say that although I was frustrated with the need to make changes or the disagreements between some of my committee members at times; I can honestly say that they all worked for me, not against me. I would be remiss if I did not say that the requests for me to rewrite and my frustration in such request play a major role in the extension of time in my program. I have no bitter feelings about the time extension because, I was able to produce a quality dissertation that has been signed my the dean and published. I have earned my degree and have accomplished something that has never been accomplished my family. I could not be more pleased with myself. Perseverance is the main ingredient in the doctoral process. It is required from day one of the program. You have to be willing to think outside of the box. You have to be willing to research rigorously. You have to understand that the master's degree program and the doctoral program are not similar. You must also understand that you are the captain of the ship when it comes to your journey and your committee. You have to taste the doctoral degree in order to achieve it. I experienced many obstacles during my journey (required travel for work, job loss, raising a family, loss of family, etc.), but I pushed myself to obtain the goal that was predestined for me to achieve. Making the decision to enter a doctoral program is the easy part of the process. Making the decision to give it your all is a decision that will require you to make some hard decision and will require you to make some personal sacrifices. You must be comfortable in making such decisions/compromises. If you are not willing to do so, I would say the doctoral program will cause a great deal of frustration for you. So, one thing to take away from this post is that the doctoral journey is an individual journey that must be embraced full-heartedly."
1.1 out of 5 stars
Michael Schmidt - 3/18/2020
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2021
"I am a doctoral student at GCU in the dissertation writing stage. GCU does not provide proper support for doctoral students in the dissertation stage. We are required to take worthless continuation courses that are shell classes. These are not real classes, but we still are required to pay for them. GCU's technology department kept me from being able to access my student portal the week before my second residency RES-880: Formalizing the Research Prospectus. Dr. Wayne Schmidt told me in person that since I had access to my class seven out of the eight weeks before my second residency that he could not help me because "I should have finished my class preparation before my last week before my class". This jerk who claims to be helping me actually said this. Dr. Wayne Schmidt also told me "I will support Dr. Pam Epler-Brooks no matter what she does". Dr. Wayne Schmidt at GCU actually said this to me. Dr. Epler and Dr. Wayne Schmidt refused to help me even though it was GCU's fault that I was not prepared for my second residency RES-880: Formalizing the Research Prospectus. I asked GCU to refund all of my money inc. my hotel expenses, and to allow me to retake my second residency because it was GCU's fault and GCU refused. Dr. Pam - Epler - Brooks was extremely difficult to work with. Dr. Pam- Epler-Brooks gave me a grade of an F that I worked ten hours on, and she gave me the absolutely lowest passing grade of a C+. I already hold two earned doctorates. I have never been given a C in any of my doctoral work (At GCU, Liberty University or Gwinnett-Hall Baptist College). I won the award in academic excellence at Liberty University, but Dr. Pam - Epler-Brooks at Grand Canyon University gave me an F for my final presentation. I prepared a very nice Power Point presentation for that presentation I am an excellent public speaker. I even bought a beautiful brand new suit for my final presentation. Dr. Pam Epler- Brooks mocked me for dressing up in that nice brand new suit in front of other GCU students. I heard her do this with my own ears. It was GCU's fault that I was not properly prepared for this class. I wasted $4,000.00 on my GCU RES-880: Formalizing the Research Prospectus on campus class. To make matters worse Grand Canyon University disciminates against disabled students. I was retaliated and disciminated against by Dr. Pam Epler Brooks and Grand Canyon University in my RES-880: Formalizing the Research Prospectus class. Grand Canyon University refused to give me the disability accommodations that I asked for while I was taking RES-880: Formalizing the Research Prospectus. I was refused extraq time to take a test. I was refused a private room to take my test in. I wad also discriminated in many other ways during RES-880: Formalizing the Research Prospectus. Grand Canyon University ha continued to dicriminate against me since my second residency. The GCU Disability department is NOT helpful. I have musculaqr dystrophy, chronic pain, and many other health issues. GCU refuses to follow my medical doctor Dr. Christopher Crooker's medical disability advice. Dr. Crooker MD told GCU that I need more than two extra weeks to complete each class due to my disability. GCU refuses to follow Dr. Crooker's written medical advice, causing me to not do well in several dissertation writing classes. I was in a horrible car accident on 1/17/2020. I sent GCU a lot of medical info about how I was injured. GCU would not let me drop that class. GCU would not let me take an incomplete. I was too injured to do my work so because I was injured I made a B not ban A bin that class. GU did nothing to help me, they just took my money."
2.0 out of 5 stars
Iwasledon - 5/9/2019
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2019
"If you are reading this before applying to the GCU doctoral college, stop and choose a different University a doctorate! You will bleed time and money and question the selling of a "Private Christian University" The classes were not easy, as expected, it is a doctoral program. Residencies are required and the student is told "The work done at residency streamlines things once you start the dissertation courses." What a lie! You can attend both week-long residencies, at over $1000 each, and still be told in your 1st dissertation class, "Start over!". Once in the dissertation phase, you will get lots of subjective feedback from your "committee" and reminded that "Committee gets 10 business days to respond to communication." Waiting 2 weeks to get feedback on changes made to a handful of sentences in a 200 page document, all while paying for this time, will leave you feeling like a sucker even if you graduate. I even watch people who worked for the University quit the program midway!"
1.2 out of 5 stars
MsDuped - 2/25/2019
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2022
"Stay away from GCU - at least the doctoral programs. I received very little support in my Year 1 courses, and I even feel duped for taking these courses. They do not care about the students - they care about money. They are secretive about your financial aid - when and how much they will give you. They should be more straightforward about financial aid. You do not even speak to a financial aid officer - just your advisor. My advisor was very unsupportive and uncaring. I think she just was doing as little as possible at her job. Some of the professors were uncaring and just wanted to drop some students from the program. All in all, I feel duped that I wasted time, money and energy in this program. Unfortunately, GCU doesn't care about my success or situation. Study in a program where the advisor actually cares about your success and the university wants you to be successful. GCU could improve their financial aid services in that they need to be more straight forward about financial aid awards or what you will not receive, improve in student services (i.e. advisors), improve in their quality of professors, improve in their quality of doctoral curriculum within courses, improve with their ability to work with students that may have a life situation that influences their studies temporarily."
2.7 out of 5 stars
CH30 - 2/28/2018
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2018
"Grand Canyon University is a Christian university and has a solid base in terms of the level of education/learning you will experience. The quality and content of the education you will receive here is of a high caliber. However, GCU leaves much to be desired in terms of their program roll out. This school was formerly a not for profit college, and I feel that when they switched over to the for-profit sector, they replaced God at the top of their organization with money. The doctoral program advertises completion for students in 3.5 years. I have found this to be the exception, not the rule. Prepare yourself for an average of 5 years (without time taken off). They have "streamlined" the process multiple times in the 5 years I worked on my doctorate. Those of us who had reached certain milestones were supposed to be grandfathered in to the previous version, however we were "encouraged" to switch over to new versions with new expectations. In an attempt to increase the academic rigor and academic quality of the program, there are 7 layers of review to get through, each with a new perspective that will cause major rewrites on your committee approved work (so your committee is not trusted to uphold a high caliber or work from their learners). I understand this is necessary when you have more than 2,000 students accepted into your doctoral program; the school does not want to look like a degree mill. Also, each chair (mentor, etc) has a case load of approximately 15 learners, and your methodologist has approximately 40, in addition to the expectation that they also teach courses. This is not in the best interest of either the learner or the committee members. So if you want to go for your doctoral degree, I would recommend a school with a much more rigorous acceptance policy so that you will receive the level of education and support that you deserve and are paying for."
2.3 out of 5 stars
Tarstappedout - 2/27/2018
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2019
"Anyone seeking a doctorate from GCU should be warned, especially if you need to use financial aid. Once you enter the dissertation phase, exceed the continuing research course, and move to the extension of the extension courses, your aid will expire. Once your aid runs out, you are obligated to pay out of pocket for additional extension courses. The kicker is, whether you are progressing in your dissertation or not, they will still want payment to keep the "classroom open", even though you are not earning credit. Not to mention, getting past your AQR can be a nightmare! Some of the staff who are associated with the program are difficult just because they can. When your committee can attest to the difficulty of their peers, you know it is bad. I have hired a private editing service to help with my dissertation. With the phenomenal work that has been done, I still have not progressed because of GCU faculty. What their deal is in making the dissertation so adversarial, beats me. The point of higher education is to ensure that students are learning and preparing to give back to the educational community. If one cannot get through the dissertation, they may be stuck in All But Dissertation (ABD) status regardless of efforts to supply the faculty with the criteria they are asking for. It really seems as if GCU is in the business for money along. I cannot say that they genuinely care about their students on all fronts. On a positive note, the core classes were great. I have learned a lot."
4.1 out of 5 stars
Anonymous - 1/19/2018
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2020
"Instructors are helpful and supportive. Content is practical and relevant to the field. Excellent program setup for working professionals with integrated plan for dissertation development throughout coursework. Christian focus is optional throughout."
5.0 out of 5 stars
Mike - 10/19/2017
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2020
"For a online program I actually feel that I am in the classroom. There is always positive response from the professors and the material is easy to grasp. I am looking towards the following classes and the dissertation process. There is a standard of intergrity that is uphold at this university."
5.0 out of 5 stars
Rico Kaboom - 4/13/2017
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2020
"This university had the best and smoothest admissions process I have ever seen. One minute I was simply gathering information, and the next thing I knew, I was accepted and then enrolled. They wanted me there, and not just to get my money, but they believed in me. I still get calls and emails monthly from advisors just to check on my progress, and not because they have to. They are always caring and professional. The instructors have been great. They actually teach you what you need to know, instead of expecting you to already know it all. Even the professors want every student to succeed, and it is contagious to the point where even the students cheer each other on. I am learning so much and am so encouraged here."
4.9 out of 5 stars
PK - 3/9/2016
Degree: Organizational Leadership
Graduation Year: 2013
"I completed two graduate degrees at GCU, a Masters in Education and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership. Not only were the professors knowledgeable, but they were also caring. All questions were answered and there were supports throughout the process. Anytime an issue occurred, GCU stepped in and made things right. It does take a great deal of discipline to complete a degree online, and many people seem to expect to put in very little effort, yet expect excellent results. University policies are clearly outlined and as long as you follow them, the school is fair and helpful."
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