Western Governors University Reviews
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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!!!
WGU is a great school so long as you are a self-starter, motivated and can learn without an instructor spelling out every topic for you. You are required to have weekly meetings with a course mentor (academic advisor) but these normally take 10-20 minutes and are at the same set time every week. Each course you take has mentors that are specific to that course that will assist you if you need it. The school has countless webinars and cohorts to assist you through each course. Some of these are live with the ability to ask questions and some are recorded from previous live sessions. For each course you are given the course material for you to learn and when you finish you either take an exam or submit a written assessment. There are no other assignments, so your final assessment is what decides if you pass/fail. As with any school there are rules you have to abide by. Since this in online they are a bit different than most are accustomed to. You have to maintain 12 credit hours a semester (this is tough but I managed it with two jobs and a family), you have to keep in contact with your student mentor and you have a limited number of attempts on your course assessments. If you can follow pretty simple rules and not make excuses for failing to follow them the experience is pleasant. Overall if you can learn mostly on your own and can follow some simple rules then this school is awesome. The cost is reasonable and the education is good. Don't get swayed away by the negative reviews of disgruntled students.
Started the application process for a degree with this school. Nothing but ineptitude from all levels. The financial aid department has you fill out undergraduate paperwork for a graduate degree. The transcript review department states that they will take a maximum of 10 business days, taking over 14 business days instead. The academic advisers state that you need courses that don't exist, refuse to apologize for delays and simply state "this isn't my problem, go talk to someone else" and send you to voicemail. So glad I found out the atrocities of this school before giving them any money (application was free). This is a terrible school, a terrible program, and you should go literally anywhere else.
I attended WGU, a completely online program for my bachelor's degree. At first, I was a little uneasy about not having that face-to-face contact with instructors and peers, but how WGU lays out the program and the different ways to connect really impressed me. Each student gets their own mentor who calls weekly to check in and to make sure the student it staying on task. They are also the gatekeeper for any questions you may have about course work. This was great for me! Knowing I had someone calling me on a scheduled day and time really kept me working hard. WGU also has online community board where students working on the same class can go and post questions or just vent. I may have not taken the "traditional" way to obtain my BA but it was a great experience and was well worth it.
In many ways I love WGU. Despite a lot of upheaval in my life while I have been a WGU student, it has been flexible enough for me to be able to continue making progress. But I cannot at this time recommend it. It comes down to two basic problems I see in both my own experiences and those of friends and family (some of whom have graduated and some of whom dropped out.) First, the mentor connection is important. If you do not have a good match with your general mentor, it will be much harder to make progress. I was lucky with my first mentor, we meshed well. Not everyone has been this lucky, and I have heard horror stories about the difficulties of trading mentors if there was a problem. Which assumes that, as a new WGU student, you really can recognize that a mentor is a bad fit rather than the system being the problem. I lost this mentor with no warning and was reassigned to someone with whom I did not have such a good fit immediately. While it developed over time, it was much more disruptive than I felt it needed to be. Course Mentors are also important, although for a shorter time, and how well you click with them also may determine if you get the type of help you need to understand a course. There needs to be a better method for students and mentors to be paired than random assignment. Second, I cannot recommend the school while they are using Acrobatiq to teach courses. My impression is there is no quality control for the material used in the Acrobatiq courses. The quality of writing has varied greatly between classes which use it, with the worst examples being very, very bad. In all cases, however, the questions (the ones that make it interactive and thus supposedly a better teaching tool) are flawed more often that not. I have seen questions marked wrong for selecting the right answer as explained by the quiz itself in explaining what the correct answer is, and I have seen the reverse. I have frequently see it ask for one thing and then want something else entirely to be calculated. I have seen so many unclear and poorly written questions. I have seen questions about things that are not in the text and questions about things that will not be taught for several modules. I have seen questions where not enough information is provided and answers where incorrect information or information different than what was provided was used. It is not user friendly on tablets (I use an Android--and have always had the newest OS for it-- and classmates have vouched for similar problems with iPads.) It does weird things with the questions, and loads incredibly slowly. And just in general I have seen many examples of generic sloppiness. Like duplicated graphs meant to illustrate different things, or duplicated answers for very different questions, or (in the body of the text) places with instructions to "fill this field with body copy". These things shouldn't be in the final copy used with students. Many of them shouldn't be in anything past a first draft. It is demoralizing to work with this, and never know if you are learning things properly or not because you can't trust the feed back and it contradicts itself. As long as they are using Acrobatiq for some courses, I would recommend that you be really honest with yourself about if you can deal with this. This is a second degree, I have a lot of confidence in my abilities, and I was questioning my intelligence and skills during these courses.
The best bang for your buck in a teaching career. Easy to do when trying to hold down a job. This is the most affordable school or masters' degree in the United States of America. However, I would recommend choosing a degree in a high needs area, like special education, science or math.
I just completed the Bachelor program in Human Resources Management. I work full time and have a family. I had an Associates of Arts degree, WGU was able to apply the AA degree to fulfill the general requirements. I have several years human resources experience and found the courses to be challenging in general. The program took 4 terms with a 1 month term break between the 3rd and 4th term. 18 to 21 competencies per term were doable but probably the most I could do while not neglecting my other responsibilities. I was able to complete all courses during the scheduled term.
Outstanding University with great resources, responsive mentors and advisers. This University supports the learner and monitors progress to promote success. BE PREPARED to work hard, meet deadlines, and be self motivated or one can get off track and waste tuition. The high academic standards prepared me for my doctoral program as well with the high standards required. My experience was excellent and with my years of experience, I felt prepared for the leadership role that I took immediately upon graduation. I would have returned for my doctorate if they had the program it was such an excellent and supportive school.
As a professional, I was used to self-study to get individual certifications. The additional benefit to WGU is that most of my certifications that I needed for classes applied to my job. I could not say that for any other university that I had taken classes at over the past 20 years.
As a working professional, this course of study fit well into my work/life schedule. The course material is broad and, like anything, you will get out of it whatever you put into it. That being said, the courses are well structured and offer a good deal of insight into business. Though I had a wealth of business experience prior to participating in this degree program, this program offered knowledge beyond what I experienced as a working professional. I love this school and highly recommend the degree programs.