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Anonymous (Graduate) on July 15, 2014

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NCU doesn't teach and postpones you as long as possible NCU is about charging their students monthly for as long as possible. Enrolled in a PhD program (after completing 2 masters) with a 4.0 GPA and they strung me along for as long as they possible could. Instructors know little about the courses they are teaching and the administration is high and mighty not willing to speak to you if you request. If there was a class action against this school I would be all over it.

Anonymous (In Progress) on March 14, 2014

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OK Until You Reach Dissertation Stage or Have a Problem This school is fine if you ca teach yourself. Everything is writing,writing, writing. Little real human contact. Mentors are paper corrector and advisors are mail carriers. You breeze through coursework and then all heck breaks when you get the dissertation stage because you are really not prepared. The school claims flexibility but the real flex is when you decide to complet your assignments. If you can stomach the school's constant changes, increases in tuition then get the degree...it is accredited. Don't expect much from the administration or anyone on the inside. Don't worry you will never really get a chance to know them anyway. When you have problem they treat you worse than elementary school children and many of the students in the doctoral program are afraid to say anything for fear of repercusions. It is so sad. Everything is done by writing which means things take a lot longer than it should. In the dissertation stage, they can keep your papers as long as three weeks. It used to be two. I would never recommend this school to my enemy, let alone a friend.

Ncuemployees (In Progress) on June 26, 2013 (email verified)

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Current Employees' Perspective As a purely online university, NCU is not the worst in private education. That said, their main objective is to drive up enrollment, revenues, and profits to elevate valuation the company in order to sell to the highest bidder within the next 2 to 3 years. The university is owned by a couple of private equity firms (Rockbridge and Falcon) wanting to cash in on their rapid growth over the past 4 years. Several of the executives have equity positions which will reward them accordingly. These execs come from institutions such as Education Management Corporation and Quicken Loans. This profit centric model does not necessarily cause poor academic quality. Remember, persistence equals longer cash flow per customer and a higher student population, very important financial metrics for investors. However, the senior leadership lacks the appropriate focus on academic quality and is far more focused on spending more and more money on acquiring leads to contact and convert to new students while increasing their profit margins through higher tuition to ultimately increase the university's valuation for sale. Accreditation is critical as it gives a sense of validation of academic quality. As front line employees, many of us are frustrated with the rhetoric at NCU highlighting academic quality when we know they will let in doctoral level students from countries like Vietnam at very low English proficiency levels and then fail them after collecting some revenue.

Anonymous (In Progress) on April 29, 2013

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HLC Probation The HLC placed NCU on probation early in 2013 and the senior management is attempting to hide it from students, employees, and the general public. These folks are slimy at best.

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 20, 2012 (email verified)

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Waste of Time and Money This University is a waste of time and money. They moved me around to so many instructors, once three times in a course. I finally dropped out.

Anonymous (Graduate) on December 19, 2012 (email verified)

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No Issues with NCU Program I've just successfully finished 6 years working on my Ph.D. at NCU. I'm a professional already working in the field and just needed the letters after my name. The PROS: no residency (perfect for a full time career & family), locked-in tuition rates, flexible teachers, set expectations in course requirements. If you can synthesize materials and write well, you'll do fine. My mentor was great, my teachers were responsive and thoughtful. I never had an issue tailoring assignments to my specific research or job-related interests. I had no issues with changing program requirements, management, or tuition and fees. I just kept on working and the changes really were transparent. Costs were on par with other universities - I paid for the convenience of online in a field I wanted and I'm okay with that. The CONS: courses are what you think of from a traditional mail-in distance ed. course back in the 1920s - send in an pre-determined assignment and get feedback, the only difference is that it's online. There's talk of changing this. I hope they do because there is so much out there for online ed now. Minimal teacher/student and student/student interaction. You have to make the effort to seek out those interactions. Don't be fooled by not needing a GRE to get admitted, this is not a program to figure out that your writing and critical thinking skills aren't up to the graduate level. It will be a painful and expensive experience for you and you probably won't find this out until you get to the dissertation (see other comments on this board). That being said, I've spoken with many many colleagues and they have all said the same thing of their traditional graduate school experiences: It's not the coursework that weeds people out, it's the dissertation (from Harvard to NCU - same/same). Basically, the expectation is that you'll bring the skills needed to the program, the program will not give you the skills needed, just the information. I planned on 5 years, it took me 6.5 years - 9 months of that was data collection for my dissertation and not NCU's fault. If you don't mind working alone, are highly driven and organized, and are fine with reading and writing a lot - you'll do well in the program. Good luck!

Michaeldweyer (In Progress) on November 2, 2012 (email verified)

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Lucky I Withdrew in My Last PhD Course I am lucky I withdrew from NCU when I was in My last course...I wasted my money and I had no option apart from running away. The University reviews were horrible...contradictions all over.The chairperson of the university review lied and went contrary to literature...though I appealed and she resigned immediately afterward, the Dean was not kind out of the shame i had brought to one of his faculty member....I dropped immediately after I won my appeals and luckily, I was accepted in European University and completed by studies there in addition to being offered a double doctorates. Dont even go near NCU!!!

Anonymous (Graduate) on September 17, 2012 (email verified)

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Not sure anymore, but management does have a very large egos Something is wrong with NCU, their class ivory tower they seem to believe they have does not fit the model of an online adult education. For one, they really look down on faculty who have DBA's or other types of doctorate - you have to have a PhD, if you read their emails and faculty announcements, they really believe only PhD's have the higher ground - bizarre from an online university. Second, this ego has transitioned to mentoring learners - it’s almost impossible to get a PhD there, you have to fight and struggle so hard, and you are constantly corrected on your submissions - many times they repeat the same things – one mentor will say something, only to have the school review board say something else, and after you correct that, the school review board again will say something new. I've seen and talked to learners who have cried because of this, and there really is no help. In my years there, I know of six people who have completed their degrees. The leadership there has forgotten that a PhD only shows you now know how to do basic research. A new PhD grad is not a researcher with years of service or many published articles, but somehow they think they should be. From observations, they want to be an online Harvard or Stanford, it is not a business model that can sustain – and its interesting reading the academic leadership – the cross of experiences would tell them they are following a faulty business model. Finally, they are instituting some kind of faculty cleansing – many good and caring faculty are being let go, the mentor I had for the last two years is being let go, and he is a much published academic with a number of successful dissertations under his belt. NCUs reasons are constantly changing as to why this is happening, seems to be hush hush… I don’t want to say anymore as I am finishing up, but if I had to do this again – I would really take to heart the many reviews written so far.

Rico572 (In Progress) on September 5, 2012 (email verified)

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"Mentors" that don't Mentor I am a huge fan of education and of all the online programs I took, the University of Cincinnati's Criminal Justice (graduate) program was THE BEST!!! I'm usually deployed, so I've basically forced to take my degree programs online. I understand that there is a huge market for online degree now and I assure you these online-only schools are taking full advantage. I was elated when I found that NCU had no residency requirement and had a Criminal Justice program. But wait, NCU is a BUSINESS SCHOOL, so how can they offer Criminal Justice, right? Oh well, I figured it marketable for me to have a Business PhD that I can market as a Criminal Justice PhD as well. Win-win... I hope. We'll see. One chancellor understand my reason to earn a PhD online, but shuns online-only doctorate programs. Hey, he is a chancellor of a big name university in Indiana and since I was interviewing to teach there, it pays for me to take note of this. Unfortunately, the school (and many others) don't offer doctoral programs in Criminal Justice :( Oh and at the time, NCU was reasonably inexpensive at around $1700-$1800 per course. Better than Capella's $4500 per quarter whether you take one or up to three courses (who does that anyway... three online doctoral courses per quarter is suicide, but I'm sure some are strong enough to do it... I'm not. However, NCU has raised the tuition rate THREE TIMES since I've been a student here! Really, three times and Now I'm paying damn near $2400 per course! Now, I expect phD programs to cost more. I expect online programs to cost more. However, TEACH ME SOMETHING!!! The mentors at NCU do not mentor at all. I even had one that told me that my reference page wasn't on its own page. He refused to accept that he moved the text down when he input his comments in my paper (not mentoring on business or anything mind you, but APA-related comments). It moved the text down as if you were inserting lines or paragraphs. Yet, he would not even go back to look at the original submissions that clearly showed the references page was separate from the text (as was the cover page, title page, and even the table of contents. I escaped that course with a B (oh, and only 3-4 points from an A, but the points he deducted from the reference page issue could have put me at a low A, but an A nonetheless. I'm still wondering why I had to take that course (SKS7000) because it didn't seem to have ANYTHING to do with my status as a doctoral learner nor my degree specialization. Other than no instructor assistance and the one [bad] instructor, my main issue is that the instructors don't teach anything... literally. I'm not exaggerating here. I mean, no lecture notes, no mentor input, nothing except almost worthless comments AFTER you've written the paper. WTF does my $2400 pay for here??? I can't transfer to Walden or Capella because they have residency requirements that I can't meet because I'm overseas a lot and I need the PhD so i can be eligible to teach at most universities, which is my goal (conduct research and teach). Always do your due diligence with online schools and read the comments that students post. By the way, I'm not whining because I received poor grades, I've a 3.7 GPA and I'm fine with that. However, I want to actually LEARN something if I'm going to spend $2400 per course and write papers every week! I'm desperately seeking another school and trying to be careful about taking more classes, because ultimately, I'll reach a point where they all won't transfer to the new program, but I can't waste time getting this degree, which I'm just not very proud that I'm earning because I'm getting my knowledge from the textbook and scholarly research that I (not the mentor) found for myself. Granted, as a doctoral student, I'm supposed to learn how to conduct my own research and all, but shouldn't the mentor (that's what NCU calls them, instead of instructors or professors) teach me some of what he or she knows? If they can't or won't, then why not just accept my $50,000, I'll write the dissertation, and accept my diploma. NCU is worse than a diploma mill. I'm beyond frustrated. Demand much more from your school; after all, you ARE the paying customer!

Anonymous (In Progress) on May 22, 2012 (email verified)

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Enrolled in the "e" learning doctoral program I am a professional already teaching in the online environment, chose this school as it was relatively inexpensive, first of all the fact that they are calling my area "e-learning" made me nervous since that term is very outdated. Just now taking a course on "e-learning" where they are using books from 2001! If you are in this field, or even if you are not, you might see that this looks like a red flag issue, using such old books for a cutting edge technologically based field. Also their LMS is extremely creaky and antiquated. Oh, and they excert the UTMOST control over students, recently there was an online "town hall" where no one was allowed to ask questions, no question of participants being allowed to chat with each other or have any sort of interaction.

Anonymous (In Progress) on April 26, 2012

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Love it I am a current student and I was intimidated at first regarding the whole idea of an online program. It took a few weeks for me to catch on to this type of learning platform. Once I adjusted I really came to enjoy it. It is up to me to complete my coursework. I feel more accomplished when I turn a paper in and recieve an A. Everytime I have asked for help I have had a quick response. I have had one issue with a professor and my academic advisor handled it swiftly. If you are the type of learner that needs someone to "hold your hand" through coursework, online education is probably not for you. Not that that is a bad thing. Everyone learns differently. For me, I am able to maintain a fulltime job and other life duties while attending Northcentral. I would reccomend this school to anyone.

Anonymous (In Progress) on March 25, 2012 (email verified)

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Program Questionable business PhD program at best. No face to face time required. Very easy entrance requirements could make this school a haven for those that hire someone else to write their dissertations. Not AACSB accredited and seriously doubt they ever will be. Do yourself a favor. Talk to people at your local state school. Search for jobs requiring a PhD at the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Anonymous (In Progress) on February 27, 2012 (email verified)

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Ambibalent I attended NCU in previous years for a few classes then re-enrolled a couple years ago. It is a good place to get the paper you want, but you will teach yourselves. My biggest issue is how they make consistent changes during the same school year...(programs, financial increase, mentors...instructors) and pretend it is all for the benefit of students. This I do not believe. Frankly I believe those in charge only care about the money. The mentors basically correct your papers and do the best they can, but it appears that they pretty much come and go also because of dissatisfaction. Tuition went from about $1300 to over $2300 in a few years,(doctorate) claiming that all costs are now inclusive. (Joke). In the end, you still have to pay a graduation fee. Some students who came in in prior years, due to administrative changes could not finish on time, and were NOT grandfathered in under the old rules. Well, the school made plenty of money from them and the student had no final degree. The staff at NCU will back up anything or any choices that are made. They must to keep their jobs. I DO NOT THINK it is a good school, ethically or otherwise.Once you get into it, it is too costly to transfer elsewhere.

Anonymous (In Progress) on February 26, 2012 (email verified)

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Caveat Emptor "Caveat Emptor!" This is a private, for-profit, school owned by the Rockbridge Growth Equity, LLC and Falcon Investments, LLC. Any wonder then that, among incessant rise of fees and tuition, the US Department of Education in 2011 ascertained that this school failed its 2009-2010 financial responsibility criteria thus requiring it to post a letter of credit so that students could continue receiving federal financial aid at this institution (reference: http://chronicle.com/article/Interactive-Chart-/129353/). Bottom Line: Prospective Doctoral students, think twice about enrolling.

Cw5eric (Graduate) on December 24, 2011 (email verified)

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Brick and Mortar school vs on-line Northcentral University I completed an MBA with NCU. I discovered the lack of live interaction between students with students; and students with mentors rewarded me with a weak degree. The knowledge I should have with an MBA is lacking when compared to a brick and mortar school. You will actually learn more from the book "MBA for Dummies". Even though I finished with a 4.0 average, my knowledge of Lean Six Sigma just wasn't enough to compete with my peers, until I got additional education from another source. Some mentors are very good. However, half the mentors I dealt with simply collected a paycheck (my tuition) and left me to learn on my own. Syllabi are haphazardly written. The Dean refused to talk with me about a mentor's poor performance or my displeasure with other aspects of the school. Steer clear of NCU and any other for profit online education.

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 23, 2011

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Am pleased for the most part...but... I am a BAPSY student at NCU and am finishing my second class. I received an A- in my first class but am struggling in my second with a 66% which at NCU is an F. I am frustrated as they are both research based classes and are very similar. So how can I get such a wonderful grade in 1 class and not so much in the other?? The mentor!! My first mentor was helpful and encouraging while the second is not at all. I can't seem to do any right in his eyes which is frustrating as I am a good student overall. Word to the wise be careful who your professors are and plan accordingly. Also if you have financial aid and are entitled to a refund STAY ON TOP OF IT or you wont see it for months. The other staff are actually very accessible and friendly. I would recommend this University to friends if you are good at online coursework and can take ups and downs in grades. Im going to stick it out and see how the rest of my classes go. Will report back in March after classes 3 and 4. Wish me luck!

Anonymous (In Progress) on October 4, 2011

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Disappointed School is okay if you want a degree, flexibility and independence. Frankly I don't like the school. They constantly have mentor attrition. Don't think board members are concerned with anything but to make money. They say they are a research institution but they are NOT INTERESTED IN RESEARCH. I know this for a fact. I would not recommend the school to anyone unless they want a piece of paper.

Anonymous (In Progress) on September 21, 2011 (email verified)

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Does not follow best practices in online education Every course syllabus in my graduation program is the same. It's obvious that the courses were developed by someone outside of the major and not the instructor/mentor. Very little response or support from online faculty. The administration does not support learner/student complaints; even from professionals in higher education. Discussion boards do not follow best practices, i.e. there is no discussion between anyone. I have been the only student taking a course in all six of my courses so far. Some mentors are extrememly rigid and do not want to be challenged. Avoid Northcentral and other for-profit institutions.

Anonymous (In Progress) on August 30, 2011

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For-Profit is NOT student friendly Folks, This is a for-profit university. The economic incentives grossly retard HOW the education is pushed to you, the low, sub-par quality of student-peers and professors, and any agreement you make will be stacked against you. Sure, you may get through a for-profit program with little fuss, but if you find yourself unhappy, you WILL BE stuck. So after high pressure sales tactics, I finally get my "Enrollment Agreement" that they really, really wanted me to electonrically sign, BUT they tried to get me to give them an open-ended e-signature that will give them open-ended consent on all furture agreements, changes, etc., unless you are seriouly paying attention. I call to complain, and stated my opinion as such. Here's my e-mailed response to thier proposed Enrollment Agreement: "You know you're in trouble when over a quarter of an "Enrollment Agreement" details arbitration. This is a sizable red flag. So let me get this straight, I agree to allow this University to charge any and all fees throughout the duration of a 5-7 year program, all off which are subject to change; you want me to forgo my rights to sue this for-profit program in court in the event I am wronged; and, my favorite part, you get to change any term or condition at anytime you want? Yeah right. I am quite amazed that people actually enter into such a decidedly one-sided agreement that utterly protects this University and affords no protections whatsoever for the student. None! What a waste of time. It violates every precept of contract law, fairness, and consideration. I'll be sure to articulate my observations on the social media / blog boards. Please withdrawal my application from Northcentral University. I have exhaustively researched the for-profit model as well as this University, and I find them both to be comical at best, devastating to higher education at worst. Respectfully, Eric" Take the time to read. Your not engaging a student-friendly education institution. You are entering in an agreement that was written for shareholders and the protection of the bottomline.

Anonymous (Graduate) on June 30, 2011

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Disappointed in all the chaos Chaos. There have been 3 provosts (a senior leader) during my 4 years. They target military/government students due to their high tuition entitlements. Of their top 6 "leaders" (Pres, PRovost, deans, academic officer), 50% are their own graduates which I think might even be an accreditation violation. They change policies as often as one might change underware. There is simply no one in charge. They hired individuals to approve concept papers, then say no they are not approved. This results in more money to the student. They have high employee turnover (3 deans in 4 years). Run

Anonymous (In Progress) on June 10, 2011

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DO NOT TRUST NCU I hope this message is received by possible applicants of NCU. DO NOT DO IT. It isn't worth it. I am finishing my Doctoral degree and have attended a half a dozen universities. I have never run into the unscrupulous actions this school has been delving out to me. Not to name names, but the people that are supposed to be in place to ensure student's needs and rights are defended, are failing to respond or put corrective action into place. Please don't make the same mistake I made, steer clear of this University!!

Anonymous (In Progress) on February 3, 2011 (email verified)

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Federal Aid Recipients Beware! If you use financial aid with this university BEWARE! They use funds like their own personal checkbook. They will withhold funding, manipulate your disbursements and stipends to meet their needs, not the students/learner. I too am a former employee as well and unfortunately the culture is nothing new or different then any other for-profit education company. If you use Financial Aid I would recommend revoking authorization for them to manage your funding, this is my best advice as a seasoned financial aid auditor.

Anonymous (Graduate) on January 24, 2011

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The worst university that I have had I used to work for NCU and took classes from NCU. It is a place for you to pay an obnoxious amount money for tuition and fees, do 99% of the work and fight to get your degree. Support from mentors was nearly zero. Sometimes I made errors in my assignments and still received an A with a short comment from mentors "Good job!" That's how much time they will spend on often a side job, teaching on line as adjuncts! Some of them are not qualified to teach and chose to ignore my questions for over a month and I finally had to request to switch to a different mentor. I finally withdrew from the university because I could no longer waste my time. Many times, I found syllabi were written poorly with many spelling errors, or incomplete sentences. Once time, NCU did not update the syllabus in the system so I bought a textbook that was too old based on the new syllabus. NCU is also a horrible place to work for. You’re not gona believe how incompetent some managers are. But they got paid very well for doing nothing but creating troubles for other employees who actually did the work every day. HR is not a place for you to go to get help if your manager treated you unfairly. You have no one to share and just have to shallow it all. HR director often avoided dealing with staff. She avoided eye contact or saying hello to you if she could. However, she fired employees very easily based on other employees' false accusation or make-up stories. It was quite depressing working there since you had no one that you could trust to share any feelings/thought about management. Top management/president of the university is a scammer! Before NCU was visited by the Department of Education in 2007, he had meetings with staff to prepare them for not reporting issues/problems directly to DOE audit team. He said everyone could just tell him problems. But if you did, you received no answer from him. All the feel-good-photos, mission statements, direction panels on the interior walls of the building of NCU were just put up within the week before the visit of DOE. It was really fake! Once NCU received the accreditation for 3 years, management treated employees like trash. Pretty much every week, someone or a group of 3-5 employees will be fired with no good cause. Quicken was one of Wallstreet companies bought NCU in late 2008 bought its own people in and thus some good long time employees had to go! Management often makes up rules as it goes to keep you confused and frustrated. Yes, tuition hike is an obvious trend with this university. New owners are from WallStreet! They are extremely greedy! They're not gona thing about you or anyone out there but themselves. But from now and then, they will pay to have someone to write a good write up either through a local newspaper or a military magazine, or even through their own website. They pick and choose some learners who had good experience with the university to be the ambassadors to "vouch" for them. Of course, you had bad experience; you would never be chosen to write a review. All the reviews that you complete at the end of each class from NCU were never read by anyone there. It was just a making-you-feel-good feature. One last thing, the CFO and controller, payroll administrator, and accounting manager are the ones you certainly do not want to trust. They all suck up to each other and are willing to lie, make up stories when necessary to get rid of other employees that they foresee as a threat to their positions. NCU won't get nowhere if they continue the same direction with unethical management teams and HR. It's not a joke that NCU vouches for itself as the best place to work for. It can only fool people who have limited access to the internet and information. There have been and will be many of us willing to take time write factual reviews about NCU, an university that should have not received accreditation for DOE.

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 9, 2010 (email verified)

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School is Average If you can teach yourself, it is fine. The mentors are 90% great. The school sucks because they always change things mid-stream. They just changed where students had to start paying mandatory dissertation fees in beginning research courses. Then a few months later, beginning Jan 1, 2011, classes are offered at an all-inclusive tuition rate.I believe this was made to get more financial aid money from students, and what about those who have already paid part of their dissertation fees, even though it is 4-5 classes away. Many good instructors/ mentors have left. I understand it was about receiving no tenure. Regardless, it is about money to the board members and owners, not people receiving (teaching themselves) a good education. Many schools, online or resident, are the same even if it is a state school. I have found after taking classes at about 10 different schools over a 45 year period, Junior colleges are the best.

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 13, 2010 (email verified)

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Please Do Not Dare Please, I would like to suggest to someone contemplating to join NCU to think twice. Let it be the last option if you have no other choice. Coursework is easy but the dissertation phase is hell. Reviewers and dissertation committee members clash on every aspect...the students always goes round in a circle. I cannot recommend the school. After many faculty resignations and high doctoral drop rate, administration did change after November 8, 2010. Lets hope NCU will improve. Wishing you well as you make your informed choice

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 10, 2010 (email verified)

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Not worth the Money and btw fees don't seem to end I took an online class this summer to get ahead for what I am doing at a local university. It cost 3 times as much as the local school I attend, they discouraged me from trying to get financial aid, and the whole class was doing homework problems directly out of the book and emailing them in. There are no video lectures, no support from your teachers. To top it off they are still billing my credit card for fees when I paid in full at enrollment. They are now falsifying statements to make it look like I underpaid and owe more now. Get everything in writing before you enroll and don't pay with a credit card because they keep it on file and continue to charge you even after you're finished.

Joev (In Progress) on September 16, 2010

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Not worth the money or time ok, beware of writing skills. Different views on how mentors grade in terms of APA format especially in the research and dissertation phase.

Anonymous (Graduate) on May 8, 2010 (email verified)

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A solid education I am a proud graduate of NCU. The support I received from my mentors was by far much better than any other at public or private institutions alike. The dissertation process was difficult and trying but well worth it. The one on one support from mentors makes many brick and mortar institutions simply outdated in todays global tech environment.

Anonymous (Graduate) on July 6, 2009 (email verified)

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NCU: A fine university NCU is a fine university that has a strong academic focus. At the same time, I agree it is NOT for everybody. Students of distance learning programs ARE expected to be comfortable with a high degree of self-directed study. I did my Masters from a reputable and traditional B&M (via distance learning) so I can tell you that the NCU experience was even more challenging and worthy. I am proud of my time spent at NCU. In this post, I want to address some of the common concerns regarding NCU: they are mostly related to lack of hand-holding and the dissertation process. Concerning the lack of hand-holding, I am somewhat surprised that some post-graduate learners still require a significant amount of hand-holding. If this is the case, then you should examine whether academic post-graduate study is right for you as opposed to getting professional certification in your field. This is NOT meant as any disrespect to any individual - its just that some people like self-study and others thrive well in a regulated environment. Perhaps it is the failing of some under-graduate programs to inadequately prepare the expectation of some students for post-graduate study. Concerning the dissertation process - I have read, talked to, and shared the NCU experience with other doctoral learners. Those reading this may want to choose NOT to believe this, but IT IS GENERALLY THE SAME EVERYWHERE. Please do NOT expect a doctorate to be handed to you on a platter. YES, some professors are better, and some are not. Some school reviewers are tougher, and others are less stringent. Some professors are the greatest scholars but some of these left their teaching brains in the other jacket at home. Is NCU perfect? No. Can it improve? FOR SURE. The school should improve. The professors should improve. The administration should improve. And hey, I'm guessing, ... some of their students could improve themselves too. For the esteemed readers reading my post, let me pose two questions: (1) Why does one study for a PhD? (2) What is the purpose of a PhD program? If the ONLY answer you have was so that people can call you "Dr", then you still have a long way to go. To all the NCU / online-education bashers out there, please earn your doctorate from a RA-school, then come back and maybe some of us will take you a bit more seriously. Finally, to the rest of you pursuing your degree at NCU or other online schools, BE ENCOURAGED. Online learning requires a high degree of independence and self-study. You are all people of a certain quality but you must persevere and complete the program. Nothing that is of value is easy; and great success is only attained through much tears and toil. I wish you all the very best!

Anonymous (In Progress) on April 9, 2009 (email verified)

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NCU no more This school is a waste of your time and money. If you want to do Doctorate degree, seek for a well established state University not one with 100% online. What do you plan to do with your PhD or DBA after graduated? Teaching? too bad, NCU PhD graduate is not up to the standard to teach in other state universities. But you can try your luck with NCU. May be, to use that Online Phd degree to get an executive position? Unfortunately, most executive position do not require PhD degree. Even if a company is looking for a PhD candidate to fill a position, it wouldn't be NCU. From personal experience, the homework turnaround is more than 24 hours. Some courses simply lack of students where the lecture do not bother to do anything. I have been in a DBA course with only 3 students, 2 dropped and I was the only one left. Requesting more information on assignment will get response 2 days later and only couple days left to finish up a 20 pages paper with strict guidelines. This school has dropped the writting assistance in the middle of my program. I have to pay local writting professional for editing for couple of my courses. Those costs added up fast! Also, just wait till you want to get out of the school, you will be charged with all kind of fees. Withdrawing from NCU will be more expensive than registering. NCU has one advantage I must admit. They have very good online research library. But hey, you pay big money for it and expecting to solely use it for the rest of the program. Most professors have unknown degree to teach a class. English major is teaching OB???? I am expecting to learn real Organization Behavior from the professor not from textbook. I don't need to pay someone to tell me what to read. I am an executive and what I need is real world example. I have 0 discussion in my OB course. Just read the chapters and write papers every week to get through. Be real, NCU is not a university, it is a company there to make profit !

Chuck (In Progress) on January 27, 2009 (email verified)

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Dissertation process I see a few negative complaints regarding the dissertation process. I suggest you speak to those who got Ph.D.s at traditional state universities: they have the same complaints. A Ph.D. is SUPPOSED to be gruelling. The dissertation process is the heart of that. The classes are just prepping you for dissertation. And there are PLENTY of people leaving state universities as A.B.D. and never completing the dissertation. So what you describe at NCU is typical. Ph.D. dissertations are demanding, take time, sometimes one has to start over. I met a physics grad student at the University of Oklahoma who had been working on his dissertation for four years!!! So compare NCU to state universities...

Anonymous (In Progress) on January 23, 2009 (email verified)

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Air Force John Discusses NCU! For reasons unspoken here, I considered myself extremely experienced in researching the credentials of universities and taking note of superb, excellent customer service. Since I have dealt with NCU and enrolled into their Ph.D. Psychology program, I have to say that it has been the best experience to date! The staff are knowledgable and quick turn every question I have had about my degree plan. Trust me when I say that if you are looking for a solid university who is regionally accredited and cannot afford to attend time consuming residencies like so many other online institutions require, then NCU is the place for you! Take advantage of the great programs at NCU with their monthly start ups and outstanding staff, you will not regret it!

The_bryants (In Progress) on December 17, 2008 (email verified)

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NCU ED.D in Curriculum & Instruction I am in the dissertation process of my Ed.D at NCU. I am also a NBCT. Had I not gone through the writing process of National Boards, I would not have been able to handle the rigor of the program. So far, it has taken 3 years. I, too, do not understand the person who is critical of NCU. The format is rigorous, exciting & worthwhile. I recommend it to all but be prepared to work your tail off!!

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 6, 2008 (email verified)

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Confused I'm confused on some of the reviews. I just checked the Dissertation Center at NCU. Thirty-nine learners have graduated with doctorate degrees since June 2008. All had to complete a dissertation. I'm in the process of getting final approval on mine, and do agree it is a tough process, and looking back I'm not sure if I would do it again. Nonetheless, it is doable and there is no brick wall that I can see. I'll comment back in a few months to confirm, or verify previous writings on this discussion board.

Jerry.green (In Progress) on June 16, 2008 (email verified)

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NCU Rigor I graduated with a B.Sc. and M.A. from traditional B&M universities. I have found that the rigor required to succeed at NCU is at least as difficult if not more so. Recently, after four years of rigorous study, I’ve earned doctoral candidacy status at NCU, the ABD stage in my journey. My dissertation committee members all teach at very reputable universities across the country, in addition to teaching at NCU, and one is also a director with the APA. They require no less of me than one of their students completing a dissertation from their B&M school. Change seems more difficult for some people, nonetheless however, over-time, fewer and fewer people will leave their home to attend school. Regionally accredited universities, such as NCU, are at the forefront of this imminent change.

Langewasheb22 (Graduate) on February 28, 2008

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My experience at NCU I just finished my studies at NCU. I was in the doctoral program in education. I have to say that when I started with Dr. Hollywood, the experience was absolutely great. After three years, Dr. H. was gone. I spoke with her after her termination and she told me the new president told her the school was going in a different direction. Well, I am one to give everything a chance, but the new direction was one of chaos and lack of support. Thank god I was almost finished, because quite honestly if I was just starting, I would have gotten the heck out of there. I wouldn't recommend the university to anyone, and I had recommended it to no less than 5 friends. Now I heard that they only got 3 years of reaffirmation, which I understand in the world of accreditation is not good. Of course, it is better than probation, but not a sign of confidence. Luckily I am out with an accreditated degree. The place it is now isn't the place it was, and that is a shame. We had a honor society in the school, which I understand there is no support for any longer. The new provost has completely turned the place upside down. I am an Ed.D. and he has been quoted as saying that Ed.D. are inferior to Ph.D's. Inferior? No just different in focus. There are no faculty left. Now they use all adjuncts. The service with the dissertation has become a nightmare. My friends who are in dissertation are now waiting weeks and weeks for feedback and no one seems to know who is on first or second base. I would not recommend NCU, and I hate saying that given I am now an alum.

Anonymous (In Progress) on February 24, 2008 (email verified)

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NCU and the future of online degrees I've read a lot of these reviews about NCU. Many are true and many are false, but perception is reality in the eyes of the beholder. Basically, NCU is an online correspondence school: - NCU gives the student the assignment - the student does it - the student turns it in for grading - at the end, a grade is given - and, hopefully, a degree is obtained. There are no lectures (like at a Brick & Morter University) and there is no student interaction. The only interaction I got from mentors was after I completed an assignment -- then the mentor would provide constructive criticism, along with a grade. If I needed help, then I found answers on my own i.e. there is no one to babysit you or to hold your hand. Once I got to the dissertation phase, then I talked to the mentor via telephone to get a basic idea of what his expectations were. I have a MA from a traditional Brick & Morter school, so I have a basis of comparison from which to compare NCU. I learned more knowledge at NCU, but I made more "community connections" at my Brick & Morter school. Which is more advantageous? I'm not sure, but either way: both schools will provide a regionally accredited degree. Many NCU students seem to be complaining that NCU is nothing more than a correspondence school because NCU simply provides the assignments and the student completes them with little to no supervision. The only way around this dilemma is to enroll in a traditional Brick and Morter university where there is plenty of instructor-student interaction, as well as student-student interaction. Some people need this kind of interaction, while others don't need it at all to obtain a degree. I also took a class at the University of Phoenix online and, frankly, I didn't get anything out of the "group projects;" nor did I get anything out of the "group postings" where we had to make a "quality post" for others to read. It was silly. NCU bypasses that and allows students to work on their own, which I prefer; but conversely, I really enjoyed the interaction that I got while obtaining a MA degree at a Brick & Morter school. The 21st Century is the "information age" and all of these online schools are unfolding before our very eyes. Is it the wave of the future? Time will tell. It's probably going to be contingent on: 1. the students' perceived value of the degrees 2. the community's perceived value of the degrees 3. the long-term sustained profitability of online institutions 4. the regional accreditors My .02

Cpe590s03 (In Progress) on February 22, 2008

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NCU Excellent school. I am currently enrolled in their Ph.D. program and am very happy with the school. Classes are not easy but the mentors are very helpful. Be prepared to work. If you need your hand held and you cannot figure things out on your own, then maybe NCU is not for you. Overall I am pleased.

Kierstin6 (In Progress) on February 10, 2008 (email verified)

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NCU- an honest review Northcentral university AACSB & regionally accredited. A quality education for people who are self starters! I'm a PhD student. The educational rigor received at NCU has expanded my knowledge more than ground education ever did. The reason for this is I make the schedule so I am "awake" and "focused". You must be self-directed and internally motivated to learn. Highly organized comes to mind too. You have to be willing to pick up the phone and call your mentors and facilitators when you need something. Most call back within 24-48 hours and I have taken 18 courses all with different facilitators. But, with anything there are better facilitators than others-JUST LIKE IN TRADITIONAL SCHOOL! BOTTOM LINE: The school is great & they have some of the best facilitators and mentors. In all things, we all relate differently to people. Sometimes we don't relate to how someone explains something to us at all. So, you must take the initiative and find someone who can explain it to you! I went to University of Phoenix for my MBA and did not enjoy the experience. I learned a lot but, the school was too structured. Lots of busy work. Maybe that is better for some people. Many can attest that there is nothing worse than waking up for an 8am class at a traditional school after working until 4am because it's the only time the school offers it that semester! Half asleep makes your grade suffer but you do it because if you don't you will be in school on a 6 year or 7 year plan. Some bloggers on this site have blown my mind! Why are you stating that purposeful over inflation of their school ratings because they question the "worth." Online education continues to grow because professionals cannot go back to the "struggling student status" and need the education for promotion and wage increase. Anyone who "questions the education worth" should really go to brick and mortar schools. Why waste your time and money for convenience and the ability to keep your job instead of becoming a poor student again? Better yet, why over inflate? Just be honest, why aide hurting others if you believe your education was not good enough? People blow my mind. It is no wonder we have so many problems in this country! If you have interest on how you can find other legit online schools check out www.myspace.com/kierstin6

Tfelke (In Progress) on February 2, 2008 (email verified)

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Great for Self-Directed Learners! I'm a doctoral student at Northcentral University and the online learning mentoring approach has worked well for me. Most of the mentors I've worked with have responded within a day to my questions and assignments. Their feedback was helpful and encouraging. The course work and assignments push you to develop and use higher order thinking skills. I've been surprised at how much I've learned in the program. I recommend NCU to any student who is mature, self-directed, and motivated to earn a degree.

Anonymous (In Progress) on January 25, 2008 (email verified)

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Good experience I am in my 5th course through Northcentral University, Prescott AZ, in the PhD Psychology/Marriage and Family Therapy Concentration. I am very satisfied with this program, and have found that the books and research articles have been informative and provided useful information with my client population. Out of 5 instructors, I have had only one that I had significant difficulty reaching through email, three who were accessible and provided sound feedback regarding assignments, and one instructor who I consider one of the most engaged and motivating instructor I have ever had. This instructor's feedback on assignments has truly helped me be a more accomplished writer. My academic advisor promptly emailed me or called me, and I have had numerous phone calls with library staff to help walk me through a problem finding articles. While my undergraduate and graduate degrees were from B&M schools, most nobably Wake Forest University, I believe that I am the most important part of my education,and have found Northcentral willing to help me reach my academic goals. Northcentral U.'s regional accreditation is also a major reason I chose them. They are not AAMFT accredited, which is the accrediting body of my profession. If I were not already licensed in my field, this would have hindered me from attending, but being licensed, my degree will have merit because it is from a regionally accredited university. I recommend Northcentral without reservation.

Samcbrian (In Progress) on January 11, 2008

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What a program?? just started my program and i can't get hold of anyone(mentors) tuition rate is good but the support you get is zero. NCU administrators do something.

Anonymous (In Progress) on January 10, 2008

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Vested Interest I have just started my degree program - so I have little VESTED INTEREST in giving this university an inflated rating (In other words, I haven't gotten half way through my degreee program and have double posted high marks because I'm concerned what my degree will be worth 2 years from now). The good: it's cheap, easy to get in, never have to leave your house. The bad: you do all the work with little to no support, the academic advisors are nice until they get your tuition, and the "mentors" I have come in contact with treat you like an elementary school student. The argument that people who have trouble at NCU aren't cut out to be "self-directed learners" is interesting. If NCU interprets self-directed as "we don't have to give you any academic guidance" then they should delete the propaganda from their website which states otherwise and start calling the "mentors" "hired part time grade-givers." Furthermore, the version of self-directed they seem to be using is more similar to the "write a book report on..." assignments that we all did in third grade - and they require a lot of them! From my experience my guess is that the only reason they are still around is that no other institution has come along which offers the same variety of degree programs at such a low cost.

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 30, 2007 (email verified)

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Very Limited Info -- Not Recommended. I have taken a couple courses at NCU.edu (NorthCentral University, Arizona) From my experience, this is a quick review. There is very little to almost no interaction with the mentors (aka professors). They only like to communicate via email. You are almost never able to pick up a phone and call someone. This can be especially challenging if you are taking your 1st set of classes and have questions about the format etc. The advisors also only provide assistance over web content & always ask you to refer to online documentation. This can get very old very quickly, as my perception is people take online courses as they are limited with the time they have, and would like to get responses fairly quickly. NCU staff & administration constantly push for students (or learners) to use the NCU messaging system. This is very archaic system that only allows sending messages (messaging) between ncu personnel. Also this message system has no interaction to the outside world .. so if you are travelling & get a message from someone, then you cannot respond from any email client -- you have to log into the NCU webpage & respond. I am finding that NCU online is very much aloof in terms of assisting students with any program or helping them review materials. If you were able to pick up a text book, and write an exam, to get a grade, and eventually get a degree -- this is what you will experience at NCU. It will certainly benefit if NCU put's some effort into their learner's online interface. its a very rudimentary system, put together to get a few students. However, now that they have a lot of student's signing up, it would be good to have a lot of interactive tools. Hope this information helps. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions. Thanks,

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 18, 2007

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Excellence in Distance Learning You will be hard-pressed to find a credible university that you can earn a bachelors masters or doctorates at with this kind of quality. NCU allows its students to be anywhere in the world. I live overseas and have been continuing to earn my degree in business administration at NCU. I highly recommend this school as it is not only affordable, but actually creates an environment where you can learn. After attending Illinois State University, I actually like this university better. I am a terrible test taker and my grades would suffer over confusing multiple choice exams at Illinois State. At NCU, my exams are in the form of research papers, allowing me to explain myself. My GPA has gone up considerably and I already have employers lined up for when I graduate this summer. I love this university.

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 13, 2007 (email verified)

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Watch out So called Mentor did absolutely nothing to "facilitate" my learning. Got a generic "welcome aboard" message at the beginning of class along with a list of papers that I had to write. Zero interaction (other than, here's your grade). You are at the mercy of your mentor, who by the way you don't get to choose. Also, check out the incestuous faculty credentials. My mentor’s replies to my emails (which didn’t answer my questions) included spelling errors and misuse of “big words” – but what do I know, maybe the pace in which assignments are submitted is an “interglacial” part of the learning process. I will have to say that this instructor was "new" but her incompetence didn't save me from having to fork over the tuition money. At $850 plus books, it was a costly "learning experience"! You are required to use a special email system for all correspondence, which makes me thankful for Outlook. The learner portion of the website isn't very intuitive. Eventually I found a site map, which wasn't linked. . . One of the least expensive degree programs I found. Interlibrary loan staff person responded quickly to requests.

Propdrvn (In Progress) on December 12, 2007 (email verified)

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Preceding Questions I am a student nearing the end of my MBA program, and I have been satisfied the whole way. I have three other degrees from bricks and mortars universities (Purdue University and Embry-Riddle) and the rigors of NCU academics are on par. Just like anything new, there will be plenty of people who don't want to change and/or feel threatened. Remember the old adage "if men were meant to fly, God would have given us wings"? It has been a century now, and I doubt there are many naysayers about that laughable and newfangled idea of flying. Online learning, just like flying, is a new medium for its purpose, and it is just taking off. Some "universities" will do it wrong (which is evidence for the naysayers), but many will do it right. Has train travel gone away because of the airplane? Will bricks and mortars learning go away because of the rise of online learning. I for one, believe that for every "changeaphobe's" steadfast view, it never turns out like they feared. Okay, onto the questions about accreditation and the apparent past bankruptcy of the owner. The accreditation issue is not much of an issue at all. Regionally, NCU is accredited in the same organization as Arizona State, University of Arizona, and my alma maters Purdue University and Embry-Riddle. Additionally, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation recognizes NCU -- (http://www.chea.org/search/actionInst.asp?CheaID=699) and (http://distancelearn.about.com/od/onlinecourses/a/MBAaccredit.htm) and (http://www.acbsp.org/index.php?module=sthtml&op=load&sid=s1_001). As for the owner's past bankruptcy, is not bankruptcy a common risk for entreprenuers? A bankruptcy does not a failure make. What I care about as a consumer -- not a student, a consumer -- is that the product I am buying is proven and accepted. The NCU product is exactly that, proven and accepted. To those people who have their finger on the NCU tuition trigger, put your worries aside. There will always be naysayers out there for any decision you make. Nevermind those armchair quarterbacks. If you've done the research, then YOU have more information than the quarterbacks could ever have, especially those who tried but failed and are disgruntled. Remember, this is a business decision for you. Don't treat it like you're in highschool trying to decide which university to go to. Treat it like an investment with a specific anticipated return, even if purely intrinsic (the joy of knowledge for example). In closing, just remember that the diploma mill threat is not indigenous to the online realm, it just seems like that because it is an easier market to enter than it was 10 years ago. Just go to the links I posted and that should be all the proof you need, for NCU or any other school you are investigating. Good luck! Jim

Richard (Graduate) on November 9, 2007 (email verified)

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Overall Very Good Institution I am in the process of finishing my eleventh and final master’s course at NCU. I can honestly say that it has been a rigorous process. JA, I am sorry to hear that you feel you have wasted your money on that course, but you may have had a bad professor or simply did not try hard enough in the course. It is very easy to skip much of the reading and slack off on your assignments. However, you will realize that you are not getting away with it once you have to assimilate the knowledge that you should have learned into coherent research papers. This is the reason that some individuals are simply not meant to take online courses; you have to have self-motivation since you do not have a professor force-feeding you material for two hours each day. I can honestly say that I am learning more now that I do my own research on my own time than back when I was attending different brick-and-mortar institutes and zoning out in class. As far as what you said about the academic advisors not returning emails fast enough; I sent an email to my academic advisor (Susan Lohn) at 1532 yesterday and I was reading her reply at 1541. I sent my next reply at 1543 and she replied at 1645. I pretty much always get a reply within an hour or two of sending a question. Unless you expect an instant response, I consider that to be pretty quick. To each their own, and I cannot understand what your exact experience has been. However, mine has been a great one, as has the majority of the learners I have heard from. V/R Richard

Propdrvn (In Progress) on October 29, 2007 (email verified)

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Negative reviews?? I am absolutely flabbergasted by the (very few) negative responses on this board. Only one actually gave ideas on how to improve, the others just ranted and raved like spoiled children who didn't get their way on this item or that item. NCU has been a blessing in my educational journey. I have a management Masters from another online school that is also a B&M school. That particular school (Embry-Riddle) has one of the top engineering programs in the nation and specifically partnered up with NCU to create a bridge program for doctoral learners and the creation of other Masters programs. I highly doubt a regionally accredited and well respected school such as Embry-Riddle would pick NCU if it did not have the utmost of respect for NCU's programs and efficiencies. And by the way, for the individual who referred to the "regional accreditation" of NCU, your sarcasm is completely misplaced and unwarranted. NCU has the exact same accreditation of Arizona's state school system, Embry-Riddle, my undergrad alma mater (Purdue University), and many many others. NCU is about working professionals trying to improve their careers and/or gain knowledge for more insight into their own profession. There is no hand holding. This is the real world kiddies, and just like the real world, you are assigned the work and told when to have it done. You can always ask for advice from those who know more (NCU mentors), but the direction you take to achieve the goal is yours and yours alone. If you can't take the idea of setting your own direction, then you really have no business being at NCU or any advanced university program for that matter. Jim

Kbutler777 (In Progress) on October 16, 2007 (email verified)

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Happy student I have attended North Central University (NCU) since Jan 2005 and have found that the staff and mentors are there to support the students. I was nervous at first about online education, but have been very happy with my experience so far at NCU. I have developed better time management skills and feel that I more self reliant. I would recommend NCU to anyone that works full time and wishes to continue their education. It is not an easy path, but very worth while.

Anonymous (In Progress) on October 15, 2007 (email verified)

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Great school - Great Education I have completed 3 degrees from B&M schools, including an MBA. NCU's curriculum is indeed rigorous and appropriate. In my experience at NCU, nothing less than scholarly writing is acceptable. Reading, researching, reflecting, writing, and discussing (asynchronously) keep me very busy for each course. I have been in the PhD Education program since January 2007 and am learning a great deal. My mentors have been timely and thorough in their responses. My advisor has been very helpful in a situation where I had a difficult mentor (every school has some difficult faculty). Overall, I know I am getting a quality education! I strongly encourage anyone seeking an accredited college education to consider NCU.

Anonymous (In Progress) on September 15, 2007 (email verified)

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Dissertation support services in School of busines I just found this blog and wanted to offer some personal insight from personal experience. I am working on my Business PHD at Northcentral. I have a co worker working on her PHD at a well known California state university. We are both in the proposal writing stage. We exchange ideas/swap scare stories as all doctoral students do. I submitted my initial proposal and got recommendations back from my Mentor. My coworker wanted to see areas that I needed to hone prior to resubmitting for the next review. She took the feedback that I had gotten and reviewed her own materials. she has been trying to get an appointment with her 'assigned' Chair for 2 months. She proudly shared that if she gets through her own doctoral program it will be because of what I have taught her from my NCU learnings/feedback. Is my proposal good yet? No. Does that please me? No. I'm exhausted but I know when I finish, I'll have a product that I will be proud and will publish well. As I see typos/methodology flaws in studies from other schools, I just smile knowing the officials at BTM will not let this happen to me. The doc program at Northcentral is hard but I suspect it is easier than many other schools because of the support systems they provide. While my coworker has waited 2 months to get feedback from her Chair, I got feedback within 2 days (they have to do it in 14 days tho). The School of Business also offers 'chat with the reviewer' teleconferences each month that I (and now my coworker) participate. NCU is all about student support, it hard but they make themselves available.

Bkemery (In Progress) on August 30, 2007 (email verified)

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PhD Program-Psychology I am currently attending NCU in the PhD program-psychology and I must admit it has been a wonderful experience--I am really enjoying the distance learning expereince with NCU. The courses are difficult, however, you do learn and the mentors are great!

Cuvamp (In Progress) on August 19, 2007 (email verified)

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MBA Public Administration I am currently enrolled in my fourth class at NCU and will start my fifth course in September. I am pursuing a MBA degree with a concentration on Public Administration. I have been totally satisfied with my studies. The course are a bit arduous at times and can require a lot of research and writing, but this challenge you to form an opinion and establish an ideology, which results in learning! My only problem to date is a very small one; every time you complete a course you get a grade report. This grade report I guess helps students who need proof of studies to be reimbursed by their employee. I do not fall in that category, but my grade report has me affiliated with the US Navy. I am an ex-Navy guy, but have no affiliation and do not get any type of tuition assistance. I sent several e-mails to my advisor and the affiliation still has not been removed. It is not a big deal, but it should be a problem that is easily fixed. I would recommend NCU to anyone who is looking to advance themselves through gaining more knowledge. The workload is heavy at times and can take up a lot of your free time, however NCU‘s degree is worth it. I look forward to my future classes and hope to advance my educational goals even further! Ray Vampran

Anonymous (In Progress) on June 18, 2007 (email verified)

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Northcentral University Northcentral U. is one of the best univerities in the country. I have 4 degrees (including a Ph.D.) from 3 others famous universities in the US and I think Northcentral is equall (If not better) than most of them. The amount of work required by Northcentral for a Ph.D. degree is around 25% more than it's required by a traditional university. The mentors participate actively in onluine discussions and dissertation committee works pretty fast compared with traditional universities. I am very happy I decided to get the 2nd Ph.D. from this universtity.

Hans_hinding (In Progress) on June 5, 2007 (email verified)

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Rigor and Integrity I have attended several campus-based public colleges and universities in Canada and the United States throughout my career. I believe Northcentral University has established a respectable baseline for academic rigor and scholastic integrity as an emerging 21st century online school. I'm enrolled part-time in their Ph.D. in Business Administration (MIS specialization) program while employed as a Vice President of Information Technology at a regional financial institution. This year, the School of Business and Technology Management at Northcentral University achieved programmatic accreditation standing with the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (www.acbsp.org) in addition to its standing as a regionally accredited institution (www.chea.org). Regards, Hans J. Hinding, MBA, MBCS

Hamptonspress (In Progress) on May 2, 2007

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Dissertation I am concerned. I am in the middle of completing my specializations and hear that the dissertation process is very long and no one to speak to about it. I do correspond with many students that are in the process. They seem very, very disappointed. The University has a new president, a new Chair for the Bus. Dept. and I hear the mentors are new and usually are of no help. Maybe we should compile a list of students and go to the Northcentral accreditation region with our grief. Keep all your e-mail and attempted telephone contacts so if and when this happens we have a leg to stand on. I think it is lucridous that people write their mentors asking where they stand on their dissertation and they do not get an answer and when they do it is that the chair of the Dept. who does not respond or tel. calls or e-mail needs to approve it. Let's do something collectively. E-mail me with your concerns. I have a great deal of experience in the accreditation process and will comply a complaint to them that will get their attention.

Eekress (In Progress) on April 16, 2007

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Long, Self-Directed Road I have just completed my Ph.D. program (Psychology) at NCU. It took me nearly 4 full years. I entered the program with two MA's. I work full time and have two teens. I took one class at a time, taking nearly 1 full year for the dissertation process....data collection, statistical breakdown, writing of dissertation, completion of the oral defense. Whew!!! NCU worked for me, I could easily contact my Professors, and received quick turnaround on my written work. I only had one negative experience with a Professor, most were helpful, supportive, encouraging. The course work was rigorus. I learned a great deal, and feel my degree is well earned. The university is North Central Acredited, I would never have wasted my time if it did not carry this qualification. If you are looking to expand your education, and do not need the support of face-to-face direction, I would highly recommed this University.

Jsavard (In Progress) on April 5, 2007 (email verified)

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No Way I have an undergraduate degree in Engineering and two Masters degrees from name institutions. DO NOT attempt to insinuate that the education offered by Northcentral University is a joke ... the rigor of the curriculum is comprehensive and demanding. Jim Savard

Anonymous (In Progress) on March 28, 2007 (email verified)

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NCU is a value Certainly there are issues for Learners in the distance learning programs. The value of working when the Learners want means it may be harder to have contact with Mentors, but when one is at the doctoral level contact with Mentors should not be all that necessary until one is in the research/dissertation phase. Anytime I read someone asserting the rigor is not there I have to smile, as it is always on the doer, not the evaluator. If I choose to not apply much I should not expect much, but if I put some muscle into the job, perhaps I will discover the required rigor is greater. Often I figure the naysayers are folks that have difficulty "getting there." If you want to get that doctorate you have been dreaming about, and believe you have what it takes to measure up, give NCU a try. I have every belief you can succeed ... if you want to, and will take the personal steps to ensure it. As is sometimes said ... belly up to the bar.

Anonymous (Graduate) on February 26, 2007 (email verified)

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NCU is a Joke What a joke. NCU has no rigor. All of the "mentors" (not even called professors) are rarely available... not that you'd need them anyway. Every class is the same. Read the text and either answer the canned questions in each chapter or write a "paper" which is no more than a repeat of the questions - only rephrased. Financial collection problems are common. Academic "advisors" are no help in sorting out degree options. Tuition just took a HUGE hike along with "fees". The "department heads" are not available. I've called mine several times, left emails, left voicemails, and even sent registered letters to him about issues I have. To date... NO feedback. Avoid the place like the plague. No value.

Dalertodd (In Progress) on January 12, 2007 (email verified)

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Great School The school takes an active role in the student's welfare. I have yet to have one negative experince since enrolling December 2003. The school work is no 'give me" I assure you. After completing over 200 assignments I am now on to the dissertation series. There have been disgruntled students at times but they generally resolved their issues or look for blame other than themselves. Supportive, directing and informed instructors have been my experiences. I believe any student who applies themselves will find this school to offer approprite direction and a quality education.

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 29, 2006 (email verified)

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Great online program I have been working on my masters in Psychology at NCU for several years now. Most of the course work is quite challenging. Not writing tests means a more rigorous workload but better understanding and application of the material. You need to be organized and dedicated but it is worth it. To me this program has meant less travel, working my own hours, no long-winded (filler), often redundant lectures, and no pointless regurgitation of facts. It has also provided me with a student-first education that allows for a more thorough understanding of concepts. The mentors have been great and seem genuinely interested in the subject matter. As others have stated you get what you put into it.

Anonymous (In Progress) on December 13, 2006 (email verified)

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NCU is a remarkable school! I have been with NCU since May 2006 and I really enjoying my online experience. I am not new to online learning, having earned a Masters degree from Capella University as well as taking several courses at Walden University, and I can say that NCU meets or exceeds any arbitrary standard for high qualtiy education. My mentors have all been responsive and have provided great and timely feedback. I have learned more via online education than I ever did attending brick and mortar classes! It takes a great deal of self-motivation, self-discipline, and self-determination to excell in any online education program. The same is true for NCU. I read some of the more negative comments about NCU on this board. I strongly disagree with them all and tend to believe that they come from misinformed and misguided students had took some narrow, confined personal problem with NCU and unfairly generalized it to the entire institution. I urge prospective students to research NCU for yourself and not be tainted by these negative reviews of the school.

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 28, 2006 (email verified)

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far more rigorous than brick and mortar I am boggled by the negative reviews of NCU. I am in the dissertation process, and my external reviewer is shocked by how rigorous the dissertation process is; more importantly they can't believe the quality of the learner focused mentor instruction. There are still people that are so threatened by online learning and don't understand what it takes to complete an online degree (a great deal of self-initiation, independence, etc.) that they prefer to slam a legitimate, accredited program without experiencing it first hand.

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 19, 2006 (email verified)

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Motivation is the key to success This school does take a lot of motivation, but that is what distant learning is all about. On my first assignment I got a rude awaking with a "not so great" grade, but it was a blessing. After being mentored in the correct process, I was able to improve my grade. I would recommed this school but you have to follow thru and don't expect an easy grade.

Anonymous (In Progress) on November 7, 2006 (email verified)

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Most can do better Let me begin by writing that if one likes to read some chapters in a book, write a long paper summarizing them, and have basically no feedback from the "mentor", then this is the school. This may not be a terrible way to learn. In fact, many do learn a great deal from reading books and summarizing text. At Northcentral, one pays tuition and is assigned a mentor for each course. A mentor is a trusted guide. The school is wise to not use the term "instructor" or "professor". There is no instructing, professing, and little mentoring. I am not quite certain that the mentors even read the papers. The idea is wonderful. If the school guides the mentors to deliver meaningful feedback then the programs have a chance to be very good.

Anonymous (Graduate) on September 23, 2006 (email verified)

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It is all about you Like any program it is what you put into it. It is all about you. I finished a second Masters program in Psychology at NCU with the first Masters being in the traditional format (face-face). Let me say that I worked very hard and feel still today that since I was in charge of the learning process I learned more and can apply more from my education at NCU. With this degree I was hired as an instructor at a college. The program offers the flexibility to take any course at anytime. As far as support just wonderful- issues on a Saturday morning was resolved quickly. I learned so much I am starting my PhD program there in the next few months. The mentors for the most part were fabulous- some issues however were resolved after contacting the department chair. As far as the textbooks in the beginning were very expensive but within time learned to go to different websites to purchase books. If you do not want to be challenged on your competence and degree of independent, self-determination, and self -disciplined abilities than this is not the school for you. There is no “spoon feeding” here you have to work.

Anonymous (In Progress) on September 12, 2006 (email verified)

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You can do a lot better than this As a relatively new school NCU seems to be experiencing a lot of growing pains. This wouldn't be too much cause for concern if the effect was solely internal to the school, but they seem to be passing it on to the students. For example, initially I had difficulty with the person evaluating my previous work for transfer credit. It was apparent the individual hadn't even read the transcripts I submitted, and as a result I initially was being denied appropriate credits. I'm still not certain whether this was merely the result of that individual's abject incompetence or part of a plan to soak students for more tuition for unnecessary coursework. Once that was settled I started the program and did have a couple of wonderful professors. But I also had one professor who was not only incompetent but an unabashed liar as well. Again, the professor's conduct was so outrageous it raised the issue whether anyone could be that incompetent by accident, or whether there was some purpose or design to the conduct. (I've since learned NCU has a legacy of corruption, shady dealings, diploma milling and "overseas agents" involved in selling cut rate degrees for little or no work, as discussed in more detail here: http://www.armedforces.net/Groups/General_Military_C1/Military_Distance_Education_F4/First_Hechts_Balin_Scam,_Now_NCU/SCUPS_Scam_P276797 ) Eventually I got tired of dealing with their problems and left the program. I found another program at a different school with a much higher level of prestige in my field. I would not recommend NCU to anyone unless you couldn't possibly get admitted at a decent school. Even at its best NCU is bottom of the barrel. If you are willing to settle for that then this is for you, but if you aspire to anything above that look elsewhere.

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