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Grand Canyon University

  • Grand Canyon University Reviews

    Ranking: #70
    For-Profit: Yes
    Country: USA
    Website
    Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA-HLC), The Higher Learning Commission.

2.9
273 Reviews
5 68 
4 55 
3 25 
2 48 
1 77 
0 0 

Grand Canyon University Reviews:

Hit or Miss

M.S. in Professional Counseling - December 3, 2018
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I just started my pre-practicum for the Master of Science in Professional counseling. I will say that GCU as a whole has room for improvement. With technology there are bound to be technical difficulties. With that being said, I'd expect the professors to have the same level of empathy; however, some of the professors use English as a second language and have poor grammar when typing. Some of the curriculum contains typos along with unclear instructions to assignments. Some professors were extremely helpful. On the other hand, there were a handful of professors that were passive aggressive and defensive in the forums to myself and other students. At times I felt that the online instructors were not educated enough to be providing feedback, let alone use a basic online dashboard to interact with students. As a whole I would rate GCU at a 7 on a scale of 1-10. My field experience counselor has been more knowledgable than my actual advisor. My advisor is difficult to get a hold of and doesn't always respond in a timely manner. I found issues in my undergraduate degree at Eastern Washington University and that program was not online. All in all, I think we are bound to run into issues. I will say that the online program has been just as much of a commitment as an on campus program. Reviews are going to be based on personal experiences and interpretation. Not a horrible school though! It just needs some work.

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GCU experience

M.S. in Professional Counseling - September 17, 2018
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Overall I enjoyed being a student at GCU. I was a student from 2011-2016, completing my MS in Professional Counseling, which is a program that has been discontinued and replaced with another program to meet the state deadlines. I completed 62 credits, however have to complete an additional 2 credits due to the fact that I did not complete the needed 700 total hours. I have to re-enroll in the program and take a course which is offered rarely in order to receive my degree and have my transcripts state degree conferred on it. Make sure you keep track of your hours so that at the end of the day you do not have to experience what I did. Now they also have a system so that the hours are electronic and won't have to be faxed or e-mailed in weekly which is a bonus. I would say overall I have made an effort to be a great student and I have put in work and time and dedication. The only thing that took me so long to graduate was the practicum. Finding a site proved to be difficult, so you have to make sure you start the process sooner. GCU does not assist with that at all. As a student it is your responsibility. It is difficult when you have the responsibility of working a full time job and have to take care of yourself, but you have find a site that is suitable for meeting your needs. Overall the employees of GCU do appear to care and the professors are accessible online or over the phone. I love my student advisor and love that I am able to speak to an actual person over the phone. She has been very helpful, though I have had several student advisors over the course of being in the program. All have been very helpful and knowledgeable. I would say apply and go for the program. The program does not appear to be very difficult, but you have to make sure assignments are completed on time and you can really flourish if you apply yourself! I would recommend the program overall and believe that it is worth the time, dedication and committment. I enjoyed the flexibility of this program and never had any issues. I found it very convenient.

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful

Graduated in 2011; Not a great program

M.S. in Professional Counseling - August 20, 2018
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I graduated from GCU with my M.S. in Professional Counseling. The only reason I chose this program was because, at the time, it was the only online program that would lead to counseling licensure in my state. I had to continue to work full-time during my master's, and since my work schedule rotated, a brick-and-mortar school was not a possibility. I recall being shocked that most of my GCU cohort had graduated from high school, let alone college. Many students did not possess the most basic writing skills. Engaging in discussions online is difficult when half the class cannot communicate effectively in writing. And I am not talking about typos and some issues with grammar. I truly cannot believe these students passed a single college class, ever. Further, when it comes time to locate an internship, you are completely on your own, with no support from GCU. I almost thought I was going to have to leave the program, deeply in debt with no degree, because I had such a difficult time locating an internship, and I worked very hard trying to find one, contacting over seventy-five organizations. GCU does not mention this when they are taking your money. The program was so-so. I had some excellent instructors, but I did not feel prepared by the time I started my internship. Almost everything I learned was from my internship supervisor and colleges at the clinic where I (finally) ended up working. I realize there are many of you who have no choice but to continue working full-time while finishing your degree, like I did, so I know you will have to complete an online program, but please consider other options besides GCU first. If I were to re-do by master's, I would have gone elsewhere.

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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful

Level of students is VERY low

M.S. in Professional Counseling - December 21, 2016
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I had to take 3 courses in GCU to obtain my permanent license to practice since I wasn't trained in the US. I don't like online classes because I don't get half as much as I would attending an actual class. But I didn't have the time to go to a campus and this was more practical. The level of expectations from the teachers was very low - I could read the crap, non-sense, stupidity that most students would write and they would still get full points. No argument, proper reasoning and everyone sharing their own personal struggles to use as examples - who cares, this is not your personal therapy or space to vent! Not only that, a lot of times some students who were commenting just to get points and had no real clue about what they were writing, would basically repeat what I was saying in their comment - copy my ideas - and get full points. I don't know what kind of professionals these people will be but the intelligence/academic level of the students is VERY low and they still get the grades to pass. SO many times have I wanted to correct them or tell them off for copying my ideas, but I just had to bite my tongue. They are just dumb and some of their comments were just plain BS bla bla with no real content, bad writing skills (bad English as well), and no logic, and beneath any university-standard I have ever seen. Teachers in the 3 courses have been very nice, accessible and knowledgeable and admin in the university as well, very helpful and quick to reply each time. The actual content of the course is pretty complete and interesting. It's the type of students that bring the quality down. But if you make an effort and focus on yourself then it should be ok. The other day I met someone who was also enrolled in GCU with a different program who told me she felt the exact same way. I'm sorry to sound harsh but I wanted to be helpful to others by writing this review.

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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful

Find another school

M.S. in Professional Counseling - May 29, 2016
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Grand Canyon University does not require any sort of testing before being accepted into the M.S. in Professional Counseling program, and unfortunately, this shows in the quality of the many of my classmates. Some classmates are not able to form coherent sentences. Most are barely able to write at a high school level. The quality of the instruction is lacking in most cases as well. There have been times when I, and other students, have asked for feedback and the instructor is unwilling (or perhaps unable) to provide any insight into the topic. Other instructors have been so awful, I've lost my interest in learning in those classes. I've felt like I was alone. I am basically teaching myself and learning from textbooks. I listen to my coworkers talk about their counseling program classes, and I am envious. They're actually learning how to do counseling. I feel like I'm learning how to fake my way through it. If I were an employer, I would require some serious intelligence testing before I hire anyone with a GCU degree, simply because the program does not actually teach, but still passes out counseling degrees. It is not surprising then that GCU is not CACREP accredited.

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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful

Poor Quality of Masters Students

M.S. in Professional Counseling - February 18, 2016
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Let me start by saying this is part review and part frustrated vent. But please think twice before starting a Master's program here. My experience so far has been fine as far as the teachers, staff and curriculum. I have many years in the behavioral health field but need the Masters to get to the next level. I'm truly enjoying what I'm learning and have good experiences with my profs and their teaching. What is really starting to leave me utterly disappointed is the quality of students in my online classes. The majority of the discussion posts are written by students who cannot write complete sentences or critically think. Almost weekly 90% of my class doesn't read the instructions on what the discussion posts are about. Assignments are turned in that completely leave out the answer to the very specific question by the professor. They either don't answer the question at all, they don't cite their work, they call five sentences a solid post or they tell each other,"GREAT POST!" when the work is clearly below high school level. I just find it incredible that this is a Master's level class with the academic work being produced from students that are in these classes. They don't know how to comprehend the work or write at the graduate level. And like another reviewer wrote...it's the same people in every class! It's sad really, I'm paying a lot of money and spending all my time on these classes...which I should...only to feel like there's not a University level quality among the students. I'm getting A's so I know I'm doing something right, but my patience is wearing thin for what should be an vigorous academic environment and just isn't coming close to what I thought a Master's Degree would be like. If you're looking for an on-line masters program consider yourself warned.

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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful

Derek Harada and Sheia Dwyer are wonderful

M.S. in Professional Counseling - November 18, 2015
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I am an online student at Grand Canyon University. Advisor Derek Harada is wonderful. Professor Sheia Dwyer is wonderful. Love Grand Canyon U. I am an online student in the Master of Science in Professional Counseling program at Grand Canyon University. My enrollment advisor, Derek Harada, is a wonderful enrollment advisor who gives me a phone call every week to see how I am doing in my online class. My professor, Sheia Dwyer, gave me a phone call because she was concerned that I wouldn't successfully pass the online class. Professor Sheia Dwyer is very responsive and asks thought-provoking questions during the class. This is the final week of my online class, and I am sad that the class is coming to an end. My experience as an online student at Grand Canyon University has been very positive and wonderful. I highly recommend Grand Canyon University.

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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful

1,495 dollars to drop a class within the first week

M.S. in Professional Counseling - November 6, 2015
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During the first full week of online classes, I tried to drop my online class and withdraw from Grand Canyon University. I was told that if I dropped my class, that I would have to pay off a 1,495 dollar balance within 3 months. Most real colleges/universities allow you to drop a class within the first 2 weeks without penalty.... Now, I am stuck and have to take this online class, even though I have significant health problems....The Grand Canyon University Policy Handbook states that students are entitled to a 75% tuition refund during Week 1. However, Grand Canyon University is threatening me, telling me that if I don't pay my balance of 1,495 dollars within 3 months, my case will go to collections

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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful

Master's in counseling

M.S. in Professional Counseling - October 13, 2015
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Gaining internship is very difficult to impossible. There are too many counseling students per internships. I live out of state and the places I have tried to acquire an internship told me the school needs to first inquire for their students. The schools in this state set up the chance for the students. Now I have completed all my bookwork and received a 3.1 GPA and cannot find a place to work towards an internship. University doesn't seem to care and if they care too much they no longer work for the university. I owe all this money for schooling and do not a place to complete an internship. Be careful when you go to this school if you are looking for a counselor's.

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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful

Questionable Ethics and Employment Practices

M.S. in Professional Counseling - May 10, 2013
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I'm also a behind-the-scenes contributor, a current online doctoral instructor in Counseling. Turnover is apparently high among online GCU instructors, most of whom are only part-time and are not treated well by the university. This department says it wants to uphold academic standards but teachers who do so are harassed and threatened, even removed from classes for the slightest complaint by a student being held accountable to minimal standards. In the short term, that may sound appealing to less capable learners(of which there are many, because GCU has no admission requirements such as the GRE or even a basic writing exam) but it ruins the reputation of a Counseling degree from this school. As long as a student pays tuition, she or he will likely get the degree regardless of whether they meet minimal academic and integrity standards or not. That makes GCU little better than a diploma mill. Good luck with this degree competing against recipients of APA-approved or ACA-approved doctorates from more reputable universities that actually uphold standards and therefore actually produce quality graduates.

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22 of 30 people found the following review helpful

I know what goes on behind those closed doors

M.S. in Professional Counseling - February 6, 2013
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I was an employee of GCU for almost 7 years and watched it go from a small Christian faith based school into a University of Phoenix clone almost overnight. The emphasis since becoming publically traded has shifted from student service to making money and simply getting students enrolled and posting their first day of class no matter what - WARNING- if you post that first day you are stuck with the entire cost of the class. The entire online division is numbers driven where counselors will do anything to get students enrolled for fear of loosing their own jobs. The university engages in constant cover up in regards to Federal Compliance regulations, hiring practices, and sexual discrimination. A pretty female will always get the promotion over the more qualified candidates. Pretty females finishing a grad program at teh school will always be hired over more qualified outside candidates. University staff ( who's salary is funded by publically traded investors money) regularly engage in such practices as internet surfing of inappropriate sites, online gambling, sneaking away while on the clock to gamble at the local casinos. Staff sit in meetings and laugh and poke fun of their online students and regularly leave their computers unlocked on on with student information upon the screen. Had your ID stolen? It probably happened because GCU was careless with your info. Staff regularly encourage students to borrow heavily with student loans to fund school and at one point it was actually a written corporate policy to not disclose to students what the consequences of borrowing are. Staff reguarly tell ONLINE students that they can use federal money to pay for computers, cars, housing, and even for vacations ( to ease the stress of school).

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31 of 42 people found the following review helpful

Fees Increase

M.S. in Professional Counseling - May 9, 2012
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In the middle of the program they increase the fees which is not at all justifiable. We are getting less pay in every job, this is ridiculous at a time when every business are paying less and offering discount to their clients. hospitals are struggling to make payments, cutting OT and other benefits. How can you justify increasing the fees at such a time of recession?

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18 of 39 people found the following review helpful

Great Quality Online Counseling Program

M.S. in Professional Counseling - March 12, 2012
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I would highly recommend GCU. I am just completing my first year and I have found it to be very valuable thus far. I am involved with the online program. I won't lie it is not just easy busy work. To the contrary. I feel I am receiving a quality education. As for my support team, my academic team is great!! Everyone that I have come in contact with that works at GCU have been very supportive and caring. They really want you to succeed.

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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful

Not happy with program..

M.S. in Professional Counseling - October 6, 2010
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I wish I had more than 3,000 characters. In short, I am not happy with my experience at GCU. I completed my undergraduate degree online, so I am very familiar with how online universities and classes work. I have finished 36 credits toward my M.S. in professional counseling. Quite frankly, the experience becomes worse with each passing module (classes are run in eight-week modules). I understand no education is problem-free, but the problems I have run into at GCU have been unacceptable. They decided to arbitrarily change our internship requirements with NO communication to the students. The handbook CLEARLY states we may start out internship after completing 24 credits. I started the application process, went on interviews, etc. At the 11th hour, I’m told a “change” was made, and we have to finish ALL of our class requirements before we can start our internship. Here I am, weeks away from starting at my internship site, and I am supposed to tell them I can not start for another YEAR? Sorry, I don’t think so. I asked a GCU academic advisor where and when this change in policy had been communicated, and they said they were “working” on updating the manual. Needless to say, I complained vigorously, and an “exception” was made…to a rule that does not exist in any manual or communication. In the end, I would not recommend GCU. I chose the school because I work full-time and this was the only affordable online master’s in counseling program that leads to licensure in my state. I wish I could have gone to a brick-and-mortar school, but I could not do that with my work schedule. If you have other options, I would suggest choosing a different university besides GCU. Good luck!

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12 of 25 people found the following review helpful

Addiction counseling review

M.S. in Professional Counseling - August 3, 2010
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I am in my next to last class before starting my internship. Overall the program wasn't bad and it fell short on the state guidelines where I live (Ohio) but mostly because of the lack of experience you need not the program. My only complaint is the financial aid department. I had to take the class that I am enrolled in now without a book because I still have not received my financial aid. I am wondering if I am getting the full benefit of my class, but GCU doesn't seem to care about that. Yes I am bitter because I have my last class starting in two weeks and there are three books to purchase for that one. I am still waiting on my funds. This school is for self motivators and self starters. If you do not fall into that category then I would not suggest you attend. You write papers and have groups projects in every class. Each week a paper is due sometimes big and some small. Using the online library is a pain at times and the tech support is sometimes not good about responding. Your academic advisor will change several times throughout the life of your program. I am on my third I think. Not bad otherwise.

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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful


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