Western Governors University Reviews of Master's in Nursing

  • 37 Reviews
  • Salt Lake City (UT)
  • Annual Tuition: $7,790
72% of 37 students said this degree improved their career prospects
62% of 37 students said they would recommend this program to others
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Reviews - Master's in Nursing

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Paul
  • Reviewed: 1/25/2021
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2020
"Honestly, I have many reasons that I would not recommend WGU to individuals seeking an advanced degree in nursing. First, the program claims to provide constructive credit for your work and prior education, but that is not true for nursing education. I was already working in nursing education and had completed the course work on my Doctorate of Education, and WGU did not provide me one hour of credit. The only credit I think is possible is maybe to an NP for the physical exam class. So, basically, be prepared to pay for the full program. If you are an independent learner, the mentor will ignore you and not provide you with the information you need, especially when it benefits the program. For example, I was not told that I needed to submit the final two classes several months before the term ended to ensure that all the corrections were completed in time. The term ended on October 31st, and I took a week of leave to complete the last two courses. After my submission, I was locked out of the submissions until I enrolled for another semester. I contacted the instructor, and she inquired why I did not file for an extension. When I told her that I was not aware that I needed to, I figured that my submission would be graded once I submitted the paper before the end of the term. I also reached out to my mentor and asked why she did not make me aware of the extension process and needed to turn it in early to ensure it was completely graded even though I had emailed her earlier in the month, letting her know that I was working on the final paper. She basically responded that since I had not communicated with her every week, she did not feel the need to inform me. Finally, I had to pay over 2,000 dollars to be part-time my final term to have the program grade my final submission. Then when I finally got my final grade on December 25th it took WGU almost another month to get my final transcript and diploma to me. I have much more to say about WGU but time and space do not permit. My suggestion is to find another online university that is more open to getting a degree. I know I wish I had."
Edumacated
  • Reviewed: 1/9/2021
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2021
"This school is a joke! WGU is for true online learners who want NO instruction, which can be great.... But the annoying part is they make it mandatory to speak with your course instructor (so they can justify paying them I guess). When you get on the phone with them, they sit there in silence and act like the call is a big bother to them until they finally say, "So, do you have any questions?" Why make the call mandatory if they have nothing to offer the student? Once in a while you will have a paper returned for revision, which you also need to reach out to your instructor before you can re-submit. Same story. You ask them to review the paper, they tell you it looks good, yet the paper still gets returned for another revision. The course instructors are useless. They should make the people who grade the papers be the instructors since apparently they know more than the so called instructors."
Carla
  • Reviewed: 5/3/2020
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2020
"I really enjoyed the BSN to MSN Nursing Leadership and Management program. There were alot of papers with weekly calls from my mentor. The fact that you can work at your own pace is a PLUS! Under 10,000 for my degree and possibly could have completed in one semester. The semesters are 6 months long. This program teaches you to not procrastinate. The heavy research of the papers prepared me alot! If I had to do it all over again WGU is at the top of the list! Cons competency based. So there is no letter grades. Pros there are alot of colleges that accepts WGU classes. I had no problem with my classes transferring. No regrets! Future AGPCNP"
Jessica
  • Reviewed: 2/28/2020
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2020
"WGU is a great school. The classes are online and organized well. The classes are rigorous and require a lot of work. The program is self-paced, so you are able to graduate sooner if you can finish the classes faster. The standard MSN program takes two years."
Disappointed in Idaho
  • Reviewed: 11/15/2019
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2020
"My daughter used WGU for a masters in business. She completed the course in six months and loved it. She persuaded me to finish my masters in nursing education. I have only a couple of classes left to complete and wonder what I am doing. None of the classes have provided me with the information on how to teach nursing students. I am given theory but no examples of practical application. I have written papers and more papers that have taken a great deal of time and effort. I have read every word of every chapter or article that has been assigned. I was committed to learning and this education. Now so close to the end I am considering dropping out. How can I teach when I have not been given the tools to do so. I feel like I have been given a huge heavy tool box but when I open it there is nothing inside. It is not because I have not chosen to learn. I spend around 35-40 hours a week studying, reading and writing. Still I don't feel I could teach nursing students. I don't mind the assessment process other than it is much too long. Three days for a working nurse is just too long. My mentor was great at the beginning but I have not talked to her but once in the last 8 weeks. When I would email a question I would get the standard response of I am out of the office your questions are important to me. I will get back with you. Then nothing or you get the standard call student services or the writing desk. No effort was taken to find out what the problem really was. To say the least I am disappointed and would not recommend this program."
Lora
  • Reviewed: 7/7/2019
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2020
"I have mixed feelings about WGU's program. I have attended other online education which require posting to boards, but this has a mentor call you and they want to contact you weekly. That has proven difficult with my current role. I am greatly disappointed with the curriculum however. This program provides education for advanced practice nursing more than leadership and management. My mentor tells me that more leadership comes in the final classes, but literally what I read, what the instructors say during cohorts is that this will help me as an advanced practice nurse. I already have worked as a nurse manager and director, so I know what education would be helpful. The APN information is not. Financial information would prove far more beneficial for me personally. Based on curriculum for people who want to be nurse leaders, I would not recommend this university."
Nurse Mngt
  • Reviewed: 4/16/2019
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2019
"I have attended traditional brick and mortar universities as well as taken online classes. I would never recommend anyone to WGU. The MSN program is based on mostly writing papers. The rubrics and evaluations are solely based on answering very specific questions. I have altered my writing style to make sure I answer only what is being asked so that the evaluators give credit for very section. Any creative processes you might have should be thrown out of the window. The coursework is repetative and they may require a paper and a video assessment discussing the paper's content. I can accept feedback so the task evaluations don't bother me but having to rephrase the same sentences to receive credit does. I never, not once, read any of their material or assignments. The program allows you to open a course and write the paper to receive credit. The Mentors are basically cheerleaders and if you require someone to motivate you and have scheduled phone meetings for a degree at this stage in your career that's sad. Talking to your Mentor is required and I spent 5 minutes biweekly saying "everything is good and no help is needed", seemed like a waste of resources and time. WGU is preferred if you just want the MSN after your name. Dont expect to learn any6and definately be prepped for frustration over coursework and redundancy. There is a Health Assessment course that refers to you as the APN for a patient. Not sure why I had to pretend to be an APN and do a head to toe. A pharmacology course that asks during a test questions specific to being an APN and writing orders. It felt like they pieced classes together to make up a MSN program."
LOVE it!
  • Reviewed: 3/19/2019
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"I absolutely love WGU! It's competency-based model is perfect for students who already have a foundation in the area of study. It cuts out all the unnecessary time spent studying something you're already competent in, plus it's super affordable! I completed my BSN in 2 terms (12 months) and then completed my MSN in 1 term (6 months)."
Nurse
  • Reviewed: 1/13/2019
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"I enrolled in the Master of Nursing Education based on the affordability and a few verbal recommendations from coworkers. I found the program to be very unorganized and did not find any of the promises of having so many resources available to me true at all. The grading of the papers was a complete joke. They must be written to answer the questions from the rubric in chronological order. There is no flow whatsoever. I found this style of writing extremely odd and unconventional. I withdrew from the program and did a lot more research finding another program which I currently am enrolled in and find much more organized. I found WGU to be very frustrating. My mentor did not know how to answer many of the questions I had and she had been mentoring for several years. If you want the degree without learning ways to become a great instructor, then this program is for you."
Jason Holland
  • Reviewed: 12/20/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"Outstanding program overall. There are issues with graders, who don't work for WGU, contradicting each other within the same paper and triggering a revision on APA rules that don't exist. But overall the content is well thought out and focused well for an MSN in Leadership and Management. I have a significant background in this area and felt the coursework tied in well to what I was doing at work at the time. The grading process can be frustrating which I think causes a lot of the negative reviews on this website. There is some redundancy within assignments which could be improved on. The web interface works well, as do the online books and their library. For the money, WGU can't be beat. I got far more out of it than what I paid."
Psych Nurse
  • Reviewed: 12/1/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"I am not new to online learning. I received my BSN online from a very reputable state medical college which prepared us to go into their MSN program. WGU has been a major headache from the very beginning. I am self pay so I was not held up starting due to financial aid. I was held up in the beginning due to incompetence of the enrollment counselor or having to do more than one person should be doing. The MSN program has been a joke. An instructor does not grade your work. An evaluator grades your work. If you do not say exactly what is on their sheet of paper to grade by, your paper will be returned for revision. Any papers you write would not be accepted anywhere else. If you do a PowerPoint, you still have to write an essay in the speaker notes. Speaker notes are for the speaker and is not supposed to be an essay. The redundancy in the projects is ridiculous. A paper will never flow correctly. Being required to turn in crappy work has been one of my biggest pet peeves. I learned WGU evaluators do not consider a doctor, nurse, or pharmacist to be human. I still have not figured that one out. One evaluator does not comprehend that mental illness is an illness and the lack of available beds is a community problem. When you get to the end of the program, there are no words for the frustration and stupid I have run into. Would I recommend WGU? NO I will be happy to be finished very soon. I will then be able to go back to writing correctly, doing a presentation correctly, and preparing business reports and proposals correctly. If my grammar is poor or there is redundancy please forgive me. I have written too many papers for WGU courses lately."
Kayla
  • Reviewed: 11/20/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"I did the Master's degree in Nursing Informatics in 6 months, spent about 6 hours a day doing it and 8 hours on the weekends. For me it worked well and I enjoyed the content. I felt it was very organized and I always had prompt reply with any issues or questions. I would recommend this school to everyone. With this degree I am now excepted into a DNP program. Thanks WGU!"
TxRN
  • Reviewed: 11/12/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2019
"I have been in the MSNed program for 7 months and so far I have been very pleased with the quality of the coursework and the resources provided. If you are new to online classes, you may consider taking an online class through your community college first to see if they are right for you. Keep in mind that WGU is competency based learning so even in comparison to other online course work, this is much more independent. You dont do a lot of discussion groups or assignments through out each class. You are basically reading the course material and then doing a paper, project, or sometimes a test. It is self paced so you have to be motivated and get things done. It is also great for people who have jobs and families and need to be able to work on school work around life. I always see nurses complaining that they dont learn anything when going back for a BSN or MSN. If you arent learning, it is your fault! You will get out of these assignments what you put into them. If you seek out new information you will learn!"
brittany
  • Reviewed: 4/23/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"I would not recommend WGU. This school sounds great at first based on price and time. That's what I thought at first however, no one told me how unorganized and how inappropriate the amount of work there is. First they begin you with a leadership communication class that everyone is mandated to take, it is a live cohort class that meets every week, twice a week for two hours and the only available times are based off the instructors schedule. This means it can vary from each week. It is not geared towards full time employees, they don't take in consideration of the time zone changes. this is just the very first class, might I add how they also claim to be designed for full working/ family men and women. This is untrue they are very strict and not flexible with hours. Most of the "credits" or CUs do not transfer to any other school which they claim they do. Also, once you get into the real courses the instructions are very unclear and most are hidden within the course that makes you find them. They aren't teaching you be better writers, they have your numerous papers sent to a third party to "unbiased" grade it. They literally have a rubric in front of them and they are skimming your paper to look for keywords. If those keywords are clearly stated (which they aren't in the task instructions) they will reject your paper. It's frustrating because you're not being graded on the content of your paper rather than the keywords. these aren't just 3-4 page papers either, these are 15 page research that require so much time and hard work and it doesn't matter. Plus I think the amount of these papers are disproportionate especially at the undergrad level."
Sarah
  • Reviewed: 4/6/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2020
"I'm only a third of the way through the program and the only reason I'm struggle through trying desperately to finish is that my hospital is picking up most of my tuition. This program is only for those who need the letters after your name, nothing else. You would think this program is still in development by the inconsistencies and general vagueness that all communications from the university and course documents are written in. The first course alone had 3 different instruction sets for the final paper, which really cannot be define as a paper but rather 4 writing assignment chopped together with an introduction and a conclusion, and then it had a totally different set of parameters being used to grade it on the grading rubric. Everything within the course of studies for the classes are hard to find and unorganized, and this is somebody whose taken online classes before for higher certifications. Other colleges may require more discussion boards and time consuming busy work, which WGU does not, but I would still say explore those other options."
Jane Abendschoen
  • Reviewed: 3/21/2018
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"I cannot award enough praise to WGU and the online program offered. It is defin the best bang for your buck and in addition you can go as slow or as fast of a pace as you wish/have time for! The Program Mentors can be described best as your coach or cheerleader throughout the program. You will get the sense that you are the most important student to them. The Class Instructor Mentors were wonderful, approachable, knowledgeable and very helpful in any situation. They offer Webinars that feel like you are in class when you actually are sitting home all cozy in your jammies! Oh yes, and the Webinars are optional. You can choose to watch recordings of them anytime at your leisure. I gave them 5 stars because they offered great payment plans. Again, financial department excellant, library excellant.....you get the idea. :-)"
Dennis Gerrits
  • Reviewed: 9/4/2017
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2018
"Don't believe the negative comments....it just amazes me how you can get someone totally disrespect a school and then go through it yourself and say...What is wrong with that person????? WGU is an awesome school and is tough but thorough and worth it!!!"
Tara
  • Reviewed: 3/25/2017
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2017
"After 20+ years as an RN and many years of internal debate, I finally decided to go back to school. I chose WGU because of the self-pace and very reasonable cost. I started and completed the entire Master's program in 18 weeks. (That's not a typo). I am very self-motivated and basically committed 6-7 days per week including evenings and most of the weekends in order to get it done so fast. It was not easy and I learned a great deal. However, much of my experience/employment was applicable and I was easily able to relate to the assignments. My Student Mentor, Clarissa, was awesome. The Course Mentors were helpful with anything I needed. The Cohort (live classes) were excellent and definitely offered clarity on where to study and focus and gave opportunity to ask questions. The program was very time consuming but heck, 18 weeks of pain, dedication, and tremendous focus and I'm DONE. I absolutely LOVED this program and highly recommend it. I also have 3 children, a hubby, and also had many personal project going on at the same time and still was able to complete the program that fast. Zero dollars out of pocket for me as my employer reimburses up to $5k per year to employees for furthering their education. Woo hoo!!!"
CJ-RN
  • Reviewed: 12/12/2016
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2015
"I'm reviewing the Masters in Nursing but I did also complete my BSN at Western Governors. (If I were reviewing the BSN program, I'd give 4 to 5 stars). I would recommend this school for your BSN. If you are considering your MSN, I would tell you to look elsewhere. I took a year to complete my Masters at WGU. Some of the courses were really difficult, others were extremely weak. My focus was Masters in Nursing Education but I do not feel at all prepared to call myself an educator after this program. Their Pathopharmacology course was a joke, and there was minimal work in the way of learning specifically about nursing education. I've seen reviews on the WGU Facebook page from nurses who are boasting that they finished in 3, or 6 months. There is no way that these people are truly getting a masters level education in this manner. If you want to just have MSN after your name, but don't care what else you do with your career, go here and save some $$. I would imagine (and hope) this school won't have it's accreditation forever at this rate. If you want to go on to a Post-Master NP program definitely don't go to WGU. Their PASS/FAIL way of grading is not well-received by any reputable programs. WGU advertises that a PASS is equal to a 3.0 GPA but when your transcripts are sent to another institution, that isn't made obvious to them and they will deny you. The same Pathopharm. course I mentioned earlier also will not be accepted (Thankfully, because it was terrible). I was accepted to one of the FNP programs that I applied to but I had to do a lot of leg work to make them understand WGU's grading system. Other school aren't even interested in hearing about it."
SSellars, RN
  • Reviewed: 10/23/2016
  • Degree: Nursing
  • Graduation Year: 2016
"WGU is a very good school. I can assure those reading that this is not a fake review, as someone accused of below. The course of study is rigorous and is HIGHLY dependent on self motivation. If you are able to set and honor your own goals, you will do well with WGU. If you require structure to help you achieve your goals then this school will be more difficult for you. One is not better than the other, simply different learning styles. That being said, I am more door #2 and I have managed to get my BSN and my MSN within three years through WGU. Initially I applied and was accepted to UTA for my RN to BSN. I found that program poorly run with poor student support. WGU tempted me by the affordable price. Tuition is a flat rate regardless of how many classes you take, allowing you to accelerate your program without additional cost to you. Online books are included in tuition, eliminating one of the more major expenses involved in seeking a college education. I was also drawn to the mentor program. Having someone to hold me loosely accountable and to discuss frustrations with was very good for me. The coursework is excellent. For the RN to BSN or RN to MSN programs, you must be working as a nurse to be accepted into the program. This is an important distinction. Critical thinking is absolutely required to be able to pass the exams. Independent study is a vital part of this program. Not all material on the exams are covered explicitly in the coursework; this is where working knowledge and critical thinking come into play. There is nothing on the exams that you should not be able to figure out as an RN working in acute care. However, that is also one of the downfalls of the program; it is very much geared toward those nurses who work in acute care. As we all know, not all nurses do. I personally found the exams to be very similar to NCLEX and, while rigorous, not out of the ordinary for our career field. I do have five years of recent acute care experience and I do feel it made a big difference in my ability to pass the exams. I liked that I could essentially "test out" of courses in which I had the knowledge to pass without wasting weeks of time studying redundant materials. As a student, you are assigned a personal "mentor", who is an MSN or higher level nurse. Every course also had two to three class mentors, who were also MSN or higher nurses. Graders are required as well to have advanced degrees. My personal mentor has seen me through the good, the bad and the occasional ugly meltdown. The course mentors were, without exception, simply amazing. Reaching out to them was intimidating to me the first time. I never hesitated again after that. They were accessible, approachable, kind, knowledgeable and willing to go the extra mile each and every time. WGU has an excellent digital library for students to access for research purposes and a writing center to help clean up those papers before submitting for grading. They take care to avoid those who would cheat by plagiarizing others by scanning all submitted papers into TurnItIn, a database of published and student works. Papers over 30% match do not pass muster. I never had one rank more than 11%. The average age of my graduating class was 40. There were a lot of us who are working parents. It was a diverse group of people at our graduation ceremony, which was super special and very well done. The competency based program is gathering steam and beginning to be offered by other institutions now. WGU is the first of its kind and it was, without a doubt, a way to make going back to school easier, more manageable and more affordable for those of us who did not do this early in life. Cons I encountered included the absolute need for self direction (which ultimately has helped me grow, but it did make things hard), shifting coursework changing up expectations from students from semester to semester and at one point being advised to skip doing a couple of classes I was enrolled in because they were changing. With those, I was told they would reflect as an "incomplete" on my transcript, thus not impacting my GPA. Unfortunately they did not honor my good faith following of those instructions and now sit on my transcript as "not passed", which equates to an F. That has me upset, as it may limit my ability to get in for NP school. My complaints regarding this have gotten lost in the bureaucracy without an advocate for getting it resolved and fixed. I have been told there are no "incomplete" grades or "withdrawn" grades on WGU transcripts, so be aware, you cannot quit in the middle and negate the impact of it. Once you are signed up, you are either going to pass or not. There does seem to be some disorganization as the school works out their rapid growth. In all, I think WGU is a good option for those who are able to follow the program, critically think and discipline themselves to do the work. The coursework is definitely in line with current evidence-based practice guidelines and is staffed by admirable nurses who have achieved already what we are studying to become. I am proud of my degrees from WGU. I am not proud, however, of my transcript given the two grade I did not earn nor deserve. I do recommend this program, but go into it with open eyes."