University of Maryland University College Reviews
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What you've probably researched and read online is accurate from my point of view as an UMUC MBA graduate. This isn't Stanford Business School, Harvard, or the Wharton School of Business. It won't magically open doors to $250k a year jobs. It will fill the graduate school gap in your resume, fulfill federal government requirements for advanced education, and is respected because it is the University of Maryland. I have NOT had a negative experience or comments from employers when they see University of Maryland UC MBA, they just see it as an MBA from a respected state school, versus the for profit colleges and universities. I proudly list my education as UMUC and not just University of Maryland. The Maryland Smith School of Business is a much better and higher quality program. That being said, I don't mind listing UMUC, as it was a lot of work to get my MBA. Granted, if you just want the degree and want to 'skate' through the program, you can do that, too. I wanted to do well and graduated with a 4.0. That is hard work, but also some luck depending on the professors. Some are easy graders, others almost impossible to get an A. My current position as a VP in a small association in Washington, DC was partly predicated on my having an MBA. The CEO noted that seeing "MBA" was important in addition to my other skills. Thus, I will say it helped me directly get a better low six figure job. If you already have that kind of salary, it won't boost it IMHO. You would be doing it for the love of education and have an MBA - which is nice to say. It has come up several times already in my work. Hope that was helpful.
I started with UMUC while I was on active duty, separated and had to take off from college, it was an easy transition back. They're new online platform is amazing once you get use to it will be the standard in what you expect from an online classroom. The eight week classes were perfect for my schedule allowing me to complete 30 credits a year. The Military and Veterans Advising were also very helpful in answering questions and directing me to the right place to get the answers I needed. As I had unexpected medical issues come up the professors were very receptive to my situation. Additionally, the Office of Accessibility Services helped out a lot with providing the advice that I needed to get the right wording so the school and professors could accommodate me with my medical situation. The online access can be done anywhere, through the use of laptops, desktops, tablets, and smartphones. The school has moved to using more online materials requiring less hard copies of books when they are able to. I would recommend this UMUC to anyone who can't attend a traditional college/university for whatever reason.
As a graduate student, UMD's main appeal is the excellence of its academics. There is definitely a great college atmosphere and plenty of opportunities for entertainment and fun on campus, but the excellent research and professors at UMD make it an excellent school to obtain a graduate degree.
Great university. Professors are knowledgeable and very helpful. The cohorts are great to help you get through the program and establish lasting professional relationships! The Dean is engaged and very personable! The residency requirement is well defined and a good resource to build a relationship with the faculty, staff, and the university as a whole!
I can say UMUC Graduate program I successfully completed was challenging and very demanding. Be prepared to write and use your critical thinking skills. The key is to log on every evening including weekends to stand above your peers. Take no more than 2 classes at a time. The professors are tough and demanding. On the other hand, the effort you put into the program will pay off. Stay focused and participate beyond the minimum during collaboration time with your colleagues. Like any graduate program, it requires discipline, lots of research, and above average writing skills.
In reading many of these reviews it appears that the positives are spot on and the negatives seem like sour grapes, to me anyway. I have nothing but praise for this school. I took both on-line and in-person classes and they were pretty fair and consistent. The support answer all questions in a timely manner and I never had any real delay with them getting back to me. The professors like any other school can be hit or miss but, all were professional. I actually enjoyed many of them as they appeared very personable and easy to contact. As for the work, I do believe that they have a pretty balanced curriculum. Some classes were tough while others were a breeze. I believe that school is what YOU make it ad if you are constantly displeased and this gives you an attitude towards the school, you're only going to make matters worse. I could deduce from most of the one star reviews that while the school may have had issues, the students probably made the resolution of those issues much more difficult. I really like UMUC and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for an advanced education.
Overall, I will have to say that my experience at UMUC has been great. There have been a couple of snags with the financial aid offices, but any problems have been laid out and resolved very quickly. When it comes to financial aid, always be sure that you keep track of it, if anything changes with your GPA or status it can change drastically. The most impressive part of my experience thus far has been the quality of material and instruction. The courses are very interactive and require a lot of your time, YOU WILL HAVE TO EARN THIS DEGREE. Many students come into an online program expecting to breeze through the program, this will not be that case. Many professors are adjunct with other schools and their teaching styles prove it, many coming from UMD or Penn State. If you are willing to learn and work, you will gain a great degree, with a great deal of knowledge.
The admissions, administration, financial aid, and disability departments are terrible. They make no accommodations for disabled people at all. The staff is ignorant of the law. (-Asked for medical records which is illegal.) Both Webtycho and LEO are awful. I have had teachers who cannot even use the system. I have also had great professors. I am not sure the professors are enough to endure the rest.
The Information Systems Management program at UM is very good, it provides a very thorough look at the mid to high level picture of IT. One weak spot is that it doesn't provide much knowledge for the lower level IT functions. Since most new to the workforce employee will be starting out in help desk, this is a potential weakness in the program, but overall it was a great program and was well work the money and effort.
The negative reviews posted seem to be heavily weighted towards the financial aid and customer service aspects of UMUC. While I have never had an issue with the staff's professionalism or helpfulness, if the customer service at UMUC is an issue, it's probably unfair to drag the reputation of the entire university through the mud to vent your frustration with the administration office's personnel and your financial aid issues. Over the last seven years that I have been (slowly) working towards my degree, I have found that 90% of my professors were quality educators that are very dedicated to teaching. Some of them have been downright outstanding and carry some big time credentials in their field. In my experience, you better come prepared to learn and contribute to the classes. Yes, you have to contribute in the discussion forums. Getting As and Bs shouldn't be enough to pass, as learning in an online environment is very different than a traditional setting. Discussion forums are an important element to online learning. Some may not like this fact, but you know what you are getting into when you choose an online program and I personally feel good knowing that an academic standard is being upheld. The reviewers that commented on how they are in the military and now owe the school money; that is their fault. This means that they signed up for classes through the university instead of their respective service's education portal. That is the only way that the university would come after you directly for payment if you are in the military. And you are specifically told not to sign up for classes this way by both UMUC and your service's education advisors. Follow directions next time.