Student & Graduate Reviews
David - 3/25/2015
Graduation Year: 2011
"I started Walden in the spring of 2008. I took my MS in Gen Psy in the spring of 2011. I finished my academic requirements for a PhD in Education Psy in March 2014. I also completed the academic requirements for a PhD in both counseling and clinical psychology. My observations: Some professors were what I refer to as absent professors. Class response, evaluation of weekly postings and assignments reflected inconsistent and, frankly, unconcerned attitudes. Several professors indicated that they taught as many as 5-7 other online classes, as well as perhaps 2-3 or more in-class teaching assignments. Clearly the school administration does not do a very good job of monitoring instructor teaching ability in these conditions. Instructors must be evaluated and audited on a regular basis to insure they have the ability to actually instruct their students and provide appropriate feed back etc. On the other hand some instructors clearly provided a superior teaching experience. In these cases weekly discussion postings received detailed evaluation, complete with pointed inquiry and encouragement. Weekly assignments - designed to help the student develop critical thinking skills - also provided these instructors an additional medium for teaching. Bottom line the student must study, must contribute, must take an active part in the learning process. Books are expensive, no doubt. I explored every avenue I could to help reduce this expense - used books, Amazon, etc. One positive note, in several classes we had no text requirements as all written material drew from journal articles, web published materials and the like. I am in the 5th quarter of my dissertation process. Do I feel I have learned anything? Yes. I have a 4.0 GPA with 190 hours of completed graduate school classes. Do I feel I have been abused, taken advantage of, or exploited? Sure, in many ways. Do I think the ENTIRE process has been of value and contributed to my enhanced knowledge of both psychology as well as the education process? Yes I do. Bottom line: Walden needs to change. However when compared to other on-line schools I personally feel they do a better job than many and a significantly better job than a few. Will I be employable when I finish? I have no idea. Thank you"
samanta Johnson - 3/21/2015
Graduation Year: 2016
"I thought FNP program suppose to give you knowledge and skills to treat patient as a health care provider. So far did not get any. Most of classes are bull, such as leadership, nursing research, role nurses as patients advocates over and over again. You write lengthly discussions, answers, papers. So far far after 1.5 year of studying I din not learn any medical knowledge. I guess it is accredited program and we will be able to find preceptors, which are not provided at all, graduate, pass FNP certification examination.But without any medical knowledge it will be very stressful and difficult to work.Hopefully you could learn and get skills at work , but for the fist couple of years it will be very difficult. The school basically teaches you to write essays in English, but nothing more. As a patient I would be very afraid to have fresh Walden graduate as my primary care provider. due to his or her incompetence and lack of medical skills. the whole education is absolutely useful and does not give you good medical knowledge base to practice medicine. The only reason why I am here is convenience of online classes and an opportunity to get FNP certification. Also it may be difficult to find a fist job."
Kristen - 3/14/2015
Degree: Criminal Justice
Graduation Year: 2015
"This is the most honest review you will receive. If you are not good at learning on your own, do not attend this school. The work is HARD in most classes (which should be expected). However, there is not enough interaction with professors. I had a professor turn me in for cheating because I took his tests too fast. Well I challenged him and the school. I won the challenge as I have a photographic memory and it serves me well. I also had the best professor I ever had in my life (twice). Classes are 6 or 11 weeks long, and it generally takes a few weeks to feel the flow from the professor. I am happy with my education. I am a 4.0 student, yet I worked my tail off for that grade. If you are a visual learner, or need the slightest guidance, I recommend you go to another school. I am a driven person therefor I push myself further than the assignments require. (I feel if I do not, I am only cheating my future). If you are a student that can work on your own and push yourself, then this is your school."
Challenge the Adult Learner - 3/13/2015
Graduation Year: 2015
"In the beginning, I thought that I was not being challenged enough and then half way through the program I realized I wasn't challenging myself. I am a great test taker and being online you can look answers up. I wasnt studying! I started taking practice board tests and did really poorly. I then got my act together.. I read and memorized like a normal student and my board review books and practice questions majorly improved. As an adult learner you have to take responsibility for your skill set.. Being an online student.. no one can tell you what your weaknesses are. The program uses books ONLY from the recommended reading lists for boards and gives you papers to question your train of thought on subjects. Other than that.. the tests are not challenging enough. You must be responsible for your own learning. I think you will find this true in all online programs. The program is expensive but you WILL get through it as long as you put in some effort. HOWEVER.. You will not pass boards if you do not challenge yourself. The support staff is helpful but it is a PAIN to get a clinical on your own. If you are not proactive you wont get the right clinical and will end up dropping out. Good luck!"
Kelly - 3/9/2015
Graduation Year: 2014
"What are the odds of getting the same rude instructor twice? It happened to me. How can someone expect you to do an assignment with no examples? On top of that the instructors take their sweet time to respond to you. How can you ask for something in a timely manner when you don't know the status. What I mean is how can you move on to week 3 without having a grade from week 1. First off your emails are not private. Anyone on the other end of the phone can just read all your business. None of the classes have prepared me for the real world. Very disappointed. Enrollment will say anything to get their bonus. Buyer beware. Fees are ridiculous."
H. M. Smith - 3/6/2015
Graduation Year: 2011
"One has to be self-motivated to complete an online degree. No excuses; one has to do the work and progress through the program as outlined. Is every faculty member perfect? No. However, having spent my entire career in higher education (30+ years), I can say that there are plenty of faculty members at excellent "bricks and mortar" institutions that are far from perfect, as well. The program at Walden worked well for me. I had only one suspect faculty member, but because the material in that course was mainly focused on current literature, the instructor had little bearing on the course itself. I also committed myself to the program. I put in 3-5 hours/day for at least 6 days per week. I learned a great deal and am appreciative of the opportunity to earn my doctorate and advance my career."
Prof (Dr.) Richard Zigler - 3/5/2015
Graduation Year: 1989
"The good old days when life was simple and the faculty and process was exceptional. I cannot review the current situation but can attest to the excellent service and dedication of both faculty and staff. The courses were rigorous, the feedback timely and the quality of summer institutes second to none. The cohort of the late 80's were practicing professionals who dedicated an inordinate amount of time in pursuit of their goals. I have a sense that the current students are not willing to dedicate the time and energy needed to complete their degrees with efficiency. Maybe the growth of the univ and staff have lessened the overall dedication of each to completion. Tis ashame."
ProGrad - 2/23/2015
Graduation Year: 2016
"This "school" is the poster child for a predatory, unethical online school. To begin with, the instructors will vary of course as is typical with any academic institution. Some are very engaged and proactive whereas with others, you are lucky if they post two or three times in the course over the entire term. Where this school truly fails is in reference to the dissertation "courses". As part of your dissertation if you are pursuing a doctoral degree, you will be placed in a series of never-ending dissertation "classes" in which you are required to work towards your dissertation. Note, these "classes" are supposed to be monitored by an instructor however this is not the case. They market the program in such a manner as to tell students that you will work productively with a dissertation committee in an expeditious fashion towards your research. I am currently in my tenth "class" with no end in sight. The instructor is simply non-existent. Students continually post in the questions for instructor forum and in the discussion forums to no avail. The class as a whole has repeatedly complained regarding the lack of any guidance whatsoever but without any resolution. Walden will also charge you $3,000.00 per each of these "classes". Because of the lack of available instructors to serve on dissertation committees, you are forced to work with whoever is left over. The lack of communication is absolutely appalling. I once waited 9 weeks...yes WEEKS for a reply to an email. Feedback of any kind on your dissertation drafts will take MONTHS thus the justification to keep you locked into these classes indefinitely. It is repulsive how this school can continue to get away with this completely unethical (and let's face it illegal) business practice. Once you are done with your required coursework and begin the dissertation process, you are essentially stuck. You can either withdraw with no degree to show plus a mountain of debt or continue to process with the false hope of one day finishing....plus an even bigger mountain of debt. Enrolling in this school was unquestionably, unequivocally, the worst decision that I ever made. This school absolutely needs to be investigated for false business practices."
Dan M - 2/23/2015
Degree: Higher Education
Graduation Year: 2016
"I am currently attending the MS in Higher Education program at Walden University. I am about a quarter of the way through the program and I have to say I am pleasantly surprised by the program to this point. I initially wasn't sure about the online learning environment, but have found it to be very easy to follow instructions and the material to be relevant to the themes of the courses. Every class has a major discussion requirement that connects you with your classmates, and makes the learning experience very interactive."
MSCMHC student - 2/19/2015
Graduation Year: 2016
"Do not enroll in Walden it's a scam. TIME TO DEGREE COMPLETION AND OVERALL POLICIES: I enrolled almost three years ago as it is one of a few CACREP accredited programs in counseling. I was told I would finish my degree in two years, three years ago. When and if you make it to complete your field experience beware. The email address listed in the field experience manual is incorrect and hasn't been for some time. I was forced to wait two terms because I sent in paperwork to said email address as instructed to do by academic advising and heard nothing. You will have to complete excessive amounts of documentation and the office of field experience will drag things out as much as humanly possible. Once you jump through all of these hoops they may or may not remember to register you for the course. As a student you are not allowed to add or drop any courses without speaking to academic advising. Oh, but wait it gets better, getting ahold of your every changing academic advisor is like trying to track down bigfoot. Even when you schedule appointments with them your assigned advisor is rarely the one who calls you back. I the three years I have been there I have spoken with a counseling program advisor twice. Most of the time you are sent to advisors for other programs who have no clue what your degree requirements are. Whatever you do please do not have any health related issues. I was placed on academic probation because I received C’s in two terms worth of classes causing my GPA to drop below the required 3.0. The reason you ask, I had cancer. Walden’s disability services did not consider cancer to be a short term disability and I was told that I would have to completely withdraw from the program which may or may not cause me to lose credits when I re-enrolled. So yes I was only able to get a “C” in the two terms I took during chemo and surgeries, because as I was told by financial aid and advising “you should have used your time away from work to focus more of your academics, it may have helped you get your mind off of your health problems”. FINANCIAL AID: First off their financial aid process is horrible. They do not notify you if there is any issues and let you find out when you get a bill. Every support staff I have ever spoken to or email has taken excessive amounts of time to respond. However, their "policy" is 1-2 business days. They use an outside vender to process refunds which is scary to me as far as security is concerned. FACULTY AND COURSES: The faculty teaching the courses are inconsistent with grading what may be an "A" paper for one will be a "D" for another. As far as the discussion boards are concerned which are required weekly, the instructor will give you the response requirements then count off if you do not exceed above the requirements. You are required to read 5 or more academic journal articles per week per class and find a way to cite them in your discussion, weekly assignment, and discussion response posts. Most of the counseling program text books are custom editions thus forcing students to order from Walden's bookstore and pay several hundred dollars per text book with a tiny $500 budget. There has not been one single term that I have not had to pay out of pocket for materials. You have to complete an online form that can take up to two weeks to be processed to get your book advance from financial aid, when there are only two weeks between terms. This forces students to pay for inflated expedited shipping costs so that they don't start classes without their materials."
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