Aspen University... me experience as a doctoral candidate.

Discussion in 'Education, Teaching and related degrees' started by lordchalvey, Jul 7, 2015.

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  1. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    My name is C. Johnson. On June 30, 2015, I began my first class at Aspen University. Why am I telling you? Because I investigated many schools before I made the choice to attend Aspen U, and I found virtually NO information of worth. What WAS out there was outdated and somewhat "biased", as they were the comments of kids who feel they got ripped off. So, I will post facts and experiences to help others. It is my hope that other future students researching Aspen University will consider my comments as part of their discernment.:smile:

    I will be totally honest. Also, I am not employed by, or related to anyone who works for, Aspen University. In the interest of full disclosure, I do own stock in Apsen U, but not enough to really make me rich! I earned my undergraduate degrees at University of Arkansas at Monticello, and then earned a master's degree online at Liberty University. Afterward, I earned a master of arts in teaching from UAM, also completely online. So, I am no stranger to online schools. In fact, I "earned" my first "degree" in 1994, after reading Jon Bear's "College Degrees by Mail" and shelling out $20 to the Universal Life Church. I was a doctor at 19 years of age, so you should believe everything I say :)omfg:). Though my $20 education was misguided, I learned a tremendous amount from that book, and others. I even met Dr. Bear once. Do I consider myself an expert on distant education? No. I do, however, consider myself an authority.

    About four months before I graduated with my MAT from UA-Monticello, I began to research doctoral programs in education. But, as I already possess other graduate degrees, I also possess the debt that goes along with them. Thus, I needed something inexpensive and accredited (for teaching). I initially considered Liberty U for a Specialist degree, but they could not get the paperwork completed in time for the summer session, and I really did not want to waste my summer sitting on the couch when I could be studying. So, Liberty was out. Also, it must be stated that as a veteran, the rates at Liberty and Aspen were the cheapest around.

    I learned of Aspen University through the discussion boards. I was somewhat surprised since I have never heard of them, and I have heard of pretty much every online school in America (and some overseas). I did, however, remember an "Aspen University" from about 1995, as they were selling a PhD in the back of magazines for $15 (anyone else remember that?). My first impression of Apsen University was disappointing. Now, let me switch my verb tense.

    Aspen University's website is unimpressive. The site lacks depth and clarity. There is a very brief mention of administration and faculty, but the overall gist is pretty much a sales pitch. This, in addition to its obscurity, made me very suspicious. Nonetheless, it NATIONAL accreditation checked out and will work for me, as my degree program does include a state-required internship. No worries there. At almost the same cost as Liberty U, I sought more information. As I said, there's not much online. I applied for admission and was accepted. Everything has gone very, very smoothly. So far, everyone has been receptive to my requests, and I even have a "raving fan" story:

    A few weeks before classes began, I received an e-mail from the enrollment specialist asking if everything was okay? Did I have any concerns? I immediately told her that I was concerned about the website's vagueness and the obscurity of the school. I also told her that I was put off by the negative comments by others. Also, I think I even mentioned that there is no "spirit" store, or a place where you can buy shirts and stickers and the stuff college students like. A few hours later, I received a PHONE CALL from the school's director of marketing. He explained that he wanted to help and tried to assuage my concerns. He did an excellent job, as I formally enrolled a few hours later.

    Overall, my experience has been positive. As I said before, I am in my first doctoral class, though it IS puzzling because even though it is a doctoral research and writing course, it is geared toward the computer science folks. Odd, as I am in education. Also, I am the only person in my class. This is great because I get excellent one-on-one with the professor. I had an issue with my textbook being delivered late, but that is not Aspen's fault. The professor gave me an extension on my first deadline.

    Now... the big question! Is it rigorous? To me? Yes. I am actually surprised at the amount of work. Is it easy? Not sure yet. I think many authors on these boards state that their classes were very hard in order to make their degree more "official", even though they were easy pickings. I'm not sure, yet. But, I am impressed so far. As we go along, I will keep updating my post. I hope it helps. Until then, does anyone know where I can get an Aspen University shirt, pen, pencil, decal... or anything with which I may "represent"?:eek:mfg:
     
  2. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

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    Thanks for sharing your experience there. There's something to be said for having access to personalized attention!
     
  3. me again

    me again Active Member

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  4. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Thanks! Sorry, but I meant to say "MY experience...", not "ME experience". Just graduated pirate sailing school, too. Arghhhh!
     
  5. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    Holy Cow! Seventeen cents plus! The stock is (almost) back up on its knees again! :smile:

    J
     
  6. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Yep... hoping that Aspen hits it big... like University of Phoenix. But, without all the federal investigations and such.
     
  7. me again

    me again Active Member

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    A share is only 17 cents. Buying two shares at 17 cents per share only comes out to 36 cents. However, there is a $7.00 transaction fee to buy the two 17 cent shares. Mmmmmmm...
     
  8. Abner

    Abner Active Member

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    Aspen U decal

    I had a Aspen U decal made at my local mall for a few bucks. It looks awesome. There is a picture I posted of it in here somewhere. I put it on the back of my car rear window. Also, I agree that there should be a "spirit" store. I mentioned this to them as well.

    I received my MBA from Aspen, and my experiences were nothing short of excellent. The teachers responded quickly and efficiently, as the classes are not to large.

    That's all for now. Good luck

    Abner :smile:
     
  9. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Thanks, Abner. There are a lot of places online that will make whatever I want, but I do worry about copyright infringement. Don't want to step on toes.
     
  10. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Update

    So, I am about 1.5 weeks into this course and I AM having some minor troubles. I think perhaps the school placed me in the wrong course for doctoral research and writing. Here is the discussion board question for the week:

    What are the current definitions of “computer science” and “software engineering” posted by the ACM and the IEEE? Since far more people enter the programming profession each year without the benefit of an ABET accredited education than do, some assert software development, as most perform it, is actually a form of professional writing. Attack or defend the notion that given the outcomes from most schools and the way most “professional” developers produce software, these two terms are actually statements of aspiration and intent as there is very little science or engineering present in the software business today.

    This is nice and all, but I am in the EdD program. I mean, I do know how to turn on a computer, and all, but my concern is made worse by the fact that the school does not have an internal e-mail for students, so my emails must be sent from my Yahoo! account, and the professor is not getting them due to filters, or something (firewalls?) the school claimed. No problems, really though. There is always a little break-in period when starting a new school (I know because I am a teacher!). So far, everyone has been pretty responsive and helpful. I just worry about my grade.
     
  11. novadar

    novadar New Member

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    I suspect Aspen has many, many more students in the Doctor of Science in Computer Science program and for the sake of "simplicity" enrolled you in the same research class for those students. I would run this up the chain further until you get an appropriate response.
     
  12. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

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    One of my research methods electives at Cumberlands was coded for Criminal Justice. The instructor said that I should just choose topics relevant to me and his feedback would be specifically on the research methods themselves. It worked out fine.
     
  13. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Thanks, guys. I have not yet received a reply from my advisor or instructor, but it appears that a new instructor has been assigned to the course... only a few hours ago. Interesting.
     
  14. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Here is the response I got:

    Because we are working on doctoral writing, any question can be researched. The idea is to help you gather data and write with synthesis :) As an educator, you could research any topic such as NCLB, standards, pedagogy, and so forth. We will use the posted questions and respond with citations :)

    Uhhmmm... okay.
     
  15. Sacricolist

    Sacricolist New Member

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    Have you considered the EdD program at the American College of Education ? Online Masters of Education Degrees | American College of Education. The tuition is cheaper than Aspen, at $304.75/semester hour. They are regionally accredited, and have a lot of concentrations available within the EdD program.
     
  16. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

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    I looked at them. They seem fine, although their non-participation in federal financial aid may be a deal breaker for a lot of people.
     
  17. novadar

    novadar New Member

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    It appears your situation is like Steve's: write about whatever you want and it will all be fine at the end of the day. Good luck!
     
  18. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

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    Totally -- you're learning about research methods, not computer science. You'll be fine!
     
  19. Farmay

    Farmay New Member

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    Yeah you are right that is purely interesting. Thanks for sharing.
     
  20. lordchalvey

    lordchalvey New Member

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    Yep... I actually inquired with ACE, but the inability to use fed money scratched them off the list quickly.
     

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