University of Maryland University College Reviews
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I cannot stress to you how important it is that you do not attend this college. They give you an online book and a summary of what is in it. Rarely do you see an instructional video. Students spend 99% of their time googling our youtubing in order to try to understand anything. I went to college so that I would not have to learn that way. Most of the computer course instructors have English as a second language. It is difficult for them to communicate to students what they require. By the way, tutoring is no longer available for computer course online. This school says it is friendly to working adults but that cannot be further from the truth. The workload is intense.
I have been studying in UMUC for 3 years now. this is my last semester because im graduating in spring 2017. so far my experience with UMUC is great. I enjoyed my experience with UMUC and had taken online college classes at other universities but really appreciated the clear and concise format of the UMUC online courses. All assignments and syllabus are loaded the weekend before class for the entire 8 week term for undergrad. They are broken up by weeks, usually you will have a weekly discussion and response post to make, you don't have to purchase books in most cases as you are expected to read and review the documentation for your class from the online access. For difficult classes like Computer Science or Economics, there aren't online tutors available. Most test are given through an online web-based exam portal. Projects and papers are also given for grades. Group projects for some classes are the same for most. There is NO LIVE INSTRUCTION or even video for many classes. You have to read a lot. Since the classes are 8 weeks long, expect to read anywhere between 50 to 100 pages a week of material to learn the topics expected. Taking a full course load of more than 2 classes every 8 weeks will be a killer on time. I have done 3 classes every 8 weeks and it is a lot of work. For the online free tutoring offered you get 2 sessions of 30 min each time. My tutors for Computer Science and Math were okay, I had to seek other tutors or really be verbal with the professor when I needed help. Most cases they helped.
Most of the students were lazy. I spent a lot of time in class answering most of the questions myself. Also, a lot of the teachers were jealous/rude. I dealt with multiple class cancelations, and just a lot of outlandish behavior. And, a lot of people were older and bitter in the classroom. It made for an uncomfortable experience.
I guess experiences may vary, but mine has been awesome here. I'm an Army Vet starting my last semester in January, and I would recommend UMUC to anyone to be honest. I am about to finish my bachelors in Software Development and Security with a minor in Digital Media and Web Technologies. If you put the work into it you will do well especially in the programming classes. I'm not going to lie at first I had Computer Science as my minor and I would have stuck with that had I not had to go overseas and gotten so busy. Beware though some of the IT/Comp Sci classes are no freaking joke. Most you can make it through them and do really well by putting a moderate amount of effort into them, but there are a handful especially in the Comp Sci arena that will eat your lunch. In particular the Data Structures and Analysis class. That one is super tough. I made it two weeks then found out I was about to need to go overseas for work so I dropped it and then decided to change my minor for a number of reasons, but that class was one of them. The professors are really helpful too, and this isn't some For-Profit garbage school like University of Phoenix. UMUC is actually part of the University of Maryland School system. There are 11 schools within that system total and UMUC is essentially the one that specializes in distance learning. There was one person that mentioned LEO being bad, and while I don't think it was as bad as they said it wasn't the best. I never had any issue with the advisers here. They always told me what I needed to know and gave me any information I asked for. Never had a problem with the financial aid department either. They have since made a lot of improvements and I don't think it's even called LEO anymore it's something entirely different. I had a great experience here. I recommend it to anyone Vet or otherwise especially if you are a working person with a significant other, children, etc.
Honestly, the best decision I have ever made, I graduated with my Master's in May and I don't see how it's any different than a traditional program (which I attended for my Bachelor's.) They have many services and tools to help you find work during and after school, I have not had a single issue with the administration/financial aid (they probably have improved from the many complaints). Some of the classes were easier then others, and some professors more agreeable then others. If you want to learn and do well, it rests with you. If you want to bs your way through- its also up to you. However I can say when I was attending a traditional program, it was the same exact principle. I know more than two professionals who attended UMUC for an MBA and hold VP positions. Ofcourse people say its not the best school but like a previous poster, I am proud to have it on my Linkedin account. It honestly opened doors for me.
This is a good program. I learned data mining and predictive analytics, and we worked with r (language), SAS Enterprise Miner, Hadoop, Python, MySQL, Tableau, and others. These are the top-of-the-line and current industry products. The financial aid office was very helpful at the beginning, and a standard government loan covered my costs (and I didn't use all that was available.) I got a job in the field during my last course, and I found the position through UMUC's Career Connection.
UMUC is a wonderful school, and the top for Cyber Security. Yet, since 2016 the cyber security program has a new program called labsim by testout.com where you have to purchase the program for the class and do all the labs, and quizzes for the chapters on it. It is kind of like an online textbook. Yet the site has many glitches, and doesn't work with all web browsers. For example, a lab would tell you everything is correct in the results summary, then when you go back on and double check in a few minutes, or the next day it will give you a wrong result. Also, the final exam of the classes that use testout.com are timed. That is fine, yet the amount of time is a bit short. Hopefully they would extend it up to two hours.
Student teacher interaction was a big advantage. Instructors are always available for students 24/7. All books and software technology are online and are free. You know what is expected of you and the instructor before class starts. You have access to your classes before semester begins. Syllabus outlines the guidelines and how to be successful in the class your taking.
UMUC was an excellent experience. I transferred there from a brick and mortar school and was initially worried. However, I found that I was more challenged and became a great deal more competent in what I was learning. The instructors are all experts in the field and their knowledge and facilitation was invaluable. The online platform encourages intellectual discourse and helps to practice developing insight into your area of interest. Online schooling requires more self-determination and self-motivation which is great for developing well rounded character and professionals.
I have 2 degrees here. The finance one was mostly a joke as far as receiving in the market skills. I went here because I was in the military, and it was the best available college for somebody who could not get college support. Their is a low graduation rate here 6% from what I understand, and the school seems to focus and put more resources into the intro classes. You will find the later classes, likely because there is less volume, are scarce, and you will get the feeling that your more and more on the outskirts as you move along. The school obviously does not understand that it is, in the end, represented by those who graduate, and those generally are just idiots who want to flaunt paper. You will have to schedule classes accordingly or have gaps in your education. Also if you are recently getting out of the military you will find that this is less vet friendly then advertised, and if you are not to far along, and have the time I would probably try a different institution, or put in the effort to find your own education while you go here, which you will be doing anyway, so as always it is what you put in. The low volume upper levels will cut into your GI bill as you will have gaps. They transitioned to 8 week classes some time ago, likely to get more volume and cheapen the standards for money. I have been going here for about 8 years because I've been busy with work ect. and now join the 6%, the odds are stacked against you. You will do more work then a normal brick and mortar school, because their are less and less face to face classes, and you will have to document all work done as opposed to a classroom and labs which often have a 'put in the time' grade. Also you will often have group projects and you are dealing with people who are in with no requirements. While I think requirements SATs ect. are over rated they do show that somebody can put in the effort. So, if you are here to get something beside a paper, you will find your peers are of low quality, and you will be carrying the weight and they will have little interest in improving themselves. Also the attitude of your peers will be similar to highschool where they are just putting in the time to get paper or because their parents are making them, and have no further interest of bettering themselves or working on a team. The pay for students that graduate here is generally higher then other colleges because most are already working in cush government jobs, and just need paper for promotion or whatever. Their is little support or teaching provided by the school, and often you are just given an assignment with no further assistance or tutoring help. There is some tutoring line you can schedule for 1 hour of assistance, but their is little in the way of tutoring labs or cohesive school type structure. While I graduated with 2 degrees and learned a lot sadly I cannot attribute it to anybody at the school, because they had a work for me attitude, not a I work for the student progression attitude, and what I learned was it is up to me to figure out what is marketable, and how to make money, and what the job market wants, which in the end is probably a good lesson, but when you pay money to an institution you expect them to provide the tools to succeed in some field, and this school sadly does not.