Western Governors University Reviews - Bachelor's in EducationSee reviews of all programs at Western Governors University
With WGU, plan on being a number or a dollar sign, not a person. The classes require you to teach yourself. Everything is impersonal and automated. Grading is unclear, and the mentors and "support" staff are not helpful at all. At times, they are so critical that it seems they have a power issue. I have never felt so personally attacked over simple matters. I would never treat a student the way they have treated me. Do yourself favor and attend a college where they look you in the eye and treat you like a human being, with mutual respect and dignity. You won't find that at WGU.
This school is AWESOME!!!! For those, like myself, who have been in and out of school but were unable to successfully commit to being a full-time student due to life's obligations then this is the university for you! If you possess decent understanding and are willing to be responsible for yourself, then you will succeed. At WGU, YOU are responsible for YOURSELF & YOUR SUCCESS. You are ON YOUR OWN TIME! You can do SO MUCH within the six month term. Your pathways to passing courses are many. There are many resources available to aid you in gaining comprehension and there are many aids to assist with practical assignments as well. You are advised on the 'best' way to approach to a course, but if you are like me, then the general 'best' does not work for you, so you can do your own thing-which is whatever floats your boat :) I am in love with WGU and plan on starting a Master's degree program after obtaining my Bachelor's next month. I will say, this school is a blessing. Life can throw you many curveballs, and not everyone is blessed with a strong support system. For those individuals who are solo and maintaining the fort single-handledly, then this school is DEFINITELY for you. Being responsible for so much leaves you with a lot of surprises, especially when parenting is involved. WGU allows you to focus on the other things when it's time to do so, while your classes wait patiently waiting for your return. If you can dedicate 2-4 hours a day to school work, then you can definitely expedite your degree plan. I will be completing a four year degree in a year and a half, and that's only because I had MANY distractions and upheavals to deal with. All in all, if the traditional route isn't an option, if finances are a priority, if your time is of the essence, if you're mature and willing, give WGU a chance to bestow you with a new outlook on life. As the saying goes-'degrees are major keys', so let WGU give you one (or a few lol) so you can pursue the many things that life has to offer. I can't wait to see what's behind the doors that will soon be open for this new college grad ;) P.S. My only complaint was/is the mentorship requirement. You have to speak with your mentor every week and then every two weeks once you've passed a few courses. I felt like it was a handholding requirement, and quite unnecessary. I did have to switch mentors initially due to my personal preference and a notable personality difference, but I have come to accept the VERY short check-ins as a minor stipulation and I do like my mentor, so it's okay.
It took me 5 years including student teaching, to receive my degree and get licensed. I worked full time while doing this. I received a great education and had a wonderful experience. I had help and encouragement through out the whole process. Also, the cost was a fraction of what I would have paid at a live campus.
What you should expect from WGU's education model is nothing more than what you put into it. This program is not for a person that wants to be spoon fed information to regurgitated for a test at some point. With WGU you have to be able to prove competency, this is done with detailed papers and passing professional tests (such as teacher licensing). As a teacher now of a year, WGU over-prepares you for the education world, I had more in depth pedagogy knowledge and knowledge about academic laws than the students that came from the local traditional 4 year institutions and even more than some of the 3-4 year seasoned teachers. Mentors help guide you to find information for yourself, they do not show you on a chalkboard. This is a self-guided learning process, that gives you time (6 months) to prove you can master the class. If you do not have the ability to think for yourself, discipline your own learning, can take criticism and make corrections, you might consider a more expensive route.
I need to start off by saying that I did not end up graduating from WGU. I decided to return to a local university and graduated in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Education. I thought I would give a review of my WGU based on my experience. When I decided to get a teaching degree, I needed something to allow me to continue working (substitute teacher). I have small children and a busy lifestyle. I earned my Associate's Degree through a local community college and it was mainly online with a couple of classes on campus. It was hard to finish up a day of subbing and rush (30 minutes) to campus for classes until late in the evening. When I saw WGU, I was interested in the convenience. Here is my personal experience: WGU is set up on 6 month terms. Basically, however many classes you can finish in that time frame is up to you. You pay the same whether you complete 1 class or 30 classes. I loved this idea because I am very responsible, self-motivated, and a hard worker. I submitted my transcripts, filled out all of the required paperwork, and was given my degree plan for Interdisciplinary Studies (Elementary Education). The local university had me graduating in May of 2014 where WGU had my estimated graduating date of May 2015. I didn't like the extra time, but thought I would be able to able to work hard and finish sooner. I had 16 classes needed at my local university and 24 through WGU. I went ahead and signed up with WGU. My mentor was to call at 6 AM, which was not good for me, but I made it work. I did not get much out of our conversations. If I had a question, she would tell me someone else to call. It felt like a waste of time. The course mentors seemed to know their stuff and they would offer webinars and recordings that felt like a class, but more times than not, these were scheduled at difficult times for me. The instructors gave written and verbal information. There was a lot of technical difficulty making it hard to call in to the webinars or listen/talk over the computer. Many times we had to type out our conversation, which isn't a problem for me since I'm a good typist, but this is something that many struggled with and ended up not participating much. There are two different types of classes. Some classes require that you study the information using the webinars, online text and other resources, and then take a multiple choice test at the end. You do have the opportunity to take a practice test to see if you are ready, but I never found these practice tests to be very helfpul as the material did not seem to be consistent. I did feel like the practice tests were harder, including more specific details. The ending test seemed more generalized and easier. You will need a WGU webcam and sign into a location that will monitor you while you take this test. You will be required to show them the room you are in, your computer, all around your desk area, etc. The other type of class requires a written research paper. This is turned in and evaluated by separate instructors who you have not been involved with while taking the class. If there is a problem, they will send it back for you to correct. I only had one sent back and it was pretty vague as to what needed attention. I was told the person who evaluates your paper can be different and is totally random. You may get someone who isn't picky about certain aspects, but the next time they might be. Not consistent grading. I think I went through the first couple of classes in less than a week, so I was moving quickly. A couple of months into my first term, my degree plan changed. I just logged in one day to see it. I immediately called and was told that they put me into the Special Education degree program as it was just a couple more classes and would make for better opportunities for me when I graduated. This was not discussed with me at all. The "couple more classes" ended up being 9 more, making a list of 33 classes and pushing my estimated graduation date back until May of 2017. The classes were lined up in such a way that the new ones were toward the top of the list of classes I needed to take next. I could not get any answers on this and it became very frustrating. I was locked out of the courses I wanted to take and could only move forward with the top few that were posted for that term. These were classes that were added for the "Special Education" plan. Over a week went by with no answer and I finally just picked a class that I felt would contain the best information for me. A couple of days after starting the class, I got a return call from someone at WGU who was trying to help me get it figured out. But they were still checking into it. I was so frustrated. I kept calling and it took a month to get that straightened out. Once they did though, my old degree plan list of classes was locked. It took them several more days to get me back on track and working on my classes. The pass/fail grade concerned me from the beginning, but I was assured that school districts were on board with the idea and that WGU offered a clear explanation that seemed as though passed classes were more than above average work. Be careful with this as I was finding out school districts may not like this. Many applications specifically ask for GPAs. There are a couple of required tests that each state requires their teachers to pass in order to obtain certification. WGU is based out of Utah, but I do not live in Utah. There was a lot of conflicting information regarding which test/s I needed to take. I was told that I needed to take all tests required for the state of Utah and then transfer to my state. I was then told I needed to take the tests required in my state. I was also told I needed to take past tests, even if not required by my state. I was told I needed to take both Utah and my state tests. It was very confusing. I called the department of education and confirmed what I needed, but WGU said they were not correct. Ended up I only needed to take 2 tests... one during/before I entered into the teaching program, and the major content exam for my state. WGU was wrong and misleading over this. Had I listened to them, I would have taken and spent money on tests I didn't need. I think WGU has a great concept, but has a lot of things to work out before I feel it is a good option for those seeking a teaching degree. Working online through all of the classes is convenient, but even with my experience in the classroom, I don't see how anyone could get the same knowledge from an online course as they could from a physical classroom environment. After my first term with WGU I realized this and went back to the university. This wasn't the only reason I made this decision, but it was just another factor for me. Although I am self-motivated, I felt all alone. I guess for some that is ok, but I enjoy the interaction with others... that is why I want to be a teacher! I enjoy the hands-on learning. I enjoy the experiences that being in a class of other students offers. All of that is just not possible with an online class. I was getting the facts/information, but there is SOOO much more to be a good teacher than that. WGU might be well suited for those going into other areas, but I feel for education majors, it doesn't offer what the student needs to be the best teacher they can be. I was also disappointed that most of the classes I took at WGU did not transfer. I left WGU and went back to the university. I graduated with my BSEd and have a job lined up. I am confident that my experiences at the university gave me far more of what I needed to be successful. The reasons I liked WGU: * Convenient * Can work at my own pace * Easy * Price seemed lower/comparable What I did not like about WGU: * Inconvenient weekly phone call each week * Lack of effective communication * Course work did not seem challenging * Missing out on physical classroom experiences for my degree - did not feel it was preparing me to be a teacher in a classroom * Felt they delayed my work on purpose to slow me down * Added/changed my schedule without discussing it with me * Ultimately was going to end up costing more in the long run * Did not offer GPA * Lack of knowledge over correct certification requirements/tests * Repetitive classes * Many classes did not transfer * Began to doubt WGU and did not have confidence in my direction with them This is just my personal experience. A lot of factors could be different with others changing their experience. I think it matters which program you are seeking, the mentor/s you get, and the speed at which you complete the courses. I hope this review helps.
Western Governors University is the best online college for creating an excellent foundation of how to learn online, maximizing the amount of tuition to competencies learned, applying theory to practice by learning in the field hands on, and providing efficient use of time management by being able to learn in the evenings, on weekends, and still be able to work, parent, or have the flexibility to do other activities while earning a degree. The quality of education is at the highest because of the structure of learning. In order to earn competency credits, you must master every competency unit in order to move forward, every discussion, paper, and proctored exam must be at a level of a "B" or better in order to pass the competency units. The mentors at the university are more than academic counselors, they are there to assist you, your education, your career, and life goals. I feel that Western Governors University is the best undergraduate school I could have attended while working full time and raising my son. I am successful today because of the opportunities and quality of education that Western Governors University provides.
This school seemed okay at first, but after getting into some of the classes and talking with my mentor, I realized this school was not for me. The CDs they sent for my class and the videos they had online to help with classroom management and teaching strategies looked like they were from the early to mid-90s. Schools and students have changed a lot since that time so much of the information was unreliable. Secondly, I happened to get a temporary teaching job while attending this school. I could have stayed at that school since I was technically enrolled to get my license through WGU, but WGU would not let me stay at the school where I was being payed. They said I would have to leave that teaching job and be assigned to a school of their choosing and work for free. Of course I wasn't going to leave a paid job to go to a non-paid job. So I left this school and went to a cheaper and quicker state alternative teaching licensure program.
This is tough coursework but that is to be expected. It has been a perfect option for me. I am 3 credits from achieving my bachelors degree and it cost me only $6,400. I recommend the school to everyone that I know!
I already have a BA and an Master's Degree ~ I enrolled in WGU to pursue a Post-Bacc Teacher Certification. However, given my experience with WGU, I would strongly warn against enrolling here for any degree or program. There is no genuine educational value in the 'tasks' that are required of students; just a series of 'hoops' to jump through, with a rubber-stamped 'passed' once you've completed them. The mentor program is really ridiculous; you are forced to converse with a mentor on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, but they offer no tangible advice or help. I think their existence just fills some accreditation requirement for WGU. Seriously, if you want to work in Education, you owe it to the students you will be teaching to get your degree from a school that will actually provide you with useful classes ~ this is NOT Western Governors University. Stay away!
I am in my third and final term for my BA degree in education. I explored the various "communities" and the Facebook page for WGU and refuse to be part of either of those. I am a 46 year old professional who has nothing but excellent things to say about the program. It is hard. You must work on requirements without your mom telling you what you need to do next. You must take responsibility for blowing off the needed work.
WGU is not a degree factory and you must actually work towards the degree. I see many of the people posting here and in the areas I discussed previously blasting WGU who can barely spell and/or complete a sentence. Instead of taking the time to whine about how pathetic you are as a student and blaming the school, take some time and get some remedial spelling training and learn how to write a paragraph. If this seems harsh well, I have one thing to say..... WAAAAAAAA!!
In case you care, I will be starting my master's immediately after I graduate.