Differences between Thomas Edison & Charter Oak

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by CollegeChick, Nov 2, 2016.

  1. CollegeChick

    CollegeChick New Member

    Hi all,

    What are the differences between Thomas Edison State University and Charter Oak? I read somewhere that TESU is cheaper and the most liberal for transfer credits.

    I have applied for admission and been accepted at TESU. Just waiting for all my transcripts to be reviewed. (Associates degree 64 credits, other cc 9 credits, Art Institute 15 credits.) I don't really like the name TESU, sounds like a diploma mill, but know it's not. Still unsure of what future employers will think. I'm just looking for the fastest/cheapest/easy/legit way to obtain a Bachelors. I've applied to their BA Communications program.

    Thanks for any thoughts and comments.
  2. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    Depends on how you intend to get the credits.

    Both schools are great if you want to test our via CLEP/DSST or bring in a bunch of credit obtained elsewhere. Both are pretty expensive choices if your plan is to take their in house courses. TESC requires a capstone while COSC requires a cornerstone and a capstone.

    COSC will take your FEMA, but rather or not that really matters is dependent on what degree your looking at.

    Knowing how many credits and what they are in would help us guide you. It just isn't as simple as "how are they different".
  3. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    Welll, it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything useful that actually has to do with higher education, but here goes . . .

    First rule to keep in mind is that when it comes to the “big three” (the third is Excelsior College in NY), people tend to favor the one from which they graduated. (Disclosure: I’m an Edison grad from back when they were TESC. And yes, I favor them over both COSC and Excelsior.)

    The main difference between COSC and TESU for your purpose is that TESU has a slew of actual majors. COSC has a few B.S. majors, but for the B.A., all they offer is a Bachelor of Arts in General Studies with a concentration. And communications is not one of them. For a summary of their undergrad degrees, see Bachelor's Degree Majors & Concentrations | Charter Oak State College. (Steve Foerster, an active member here, is a COSC grad and may be able to give you more complete feedback on this.)

    Having graduated from TESC with a B.A. in Humanities almost 30 years ago, they did not require a capstone back then. Instead, they required a “Pre-Graduation Conference,” which was essentially a final oral comp. For my B.A. in Humanities I split the credits between communications, music, and theology, but did my PGC in philosophy. Go figure…

    All of your credits can probably be applied to a B.A. at TESU. If not applicable to your major, they can be fit into the Free Electives area. (I did a bunch of credits in business, and popped all of them into Free Electives.) You can do your own initial transcript review by surfing to the specific subject requirements for your major to determine how many credits are required in each of the liberal arts areas, your major area, and which could go into the F.E. area to bump your total numbers.

    Something to consider: I chose Humanities because I didn’t want to do my entire major in any one area. By choosing a broad area liberal arts major, I was able to vary my credit selections with a lot more flexibility. Although most of my concentration was in communications, I was able to integrate the other three areas into the picture.

    As for the name, I wouldn’t worry about it. (Think of the poor Excelsior grads whose alma mater sounds like a packaging material.) There was, in Florida at one time, a degree mill called Thomas Edison University, but they shut down many years ago. I have the impression that it may be why TESU kept the word “State” in their name when they attained university status. I’ve always simply say that I graduated from “Edison.” The only time I was ever challenged on that was by someone on this forum, and I was able to reply that (at the time) the street signs leading to their campus in Trenton simply said “Edison State College.”

    As for how to complete your degree, do whatever works for you. I only carried in six whopping transfer credits, then did 98 credits by portfolio and 16 credits by testing out. And pulled the whole thing off in 1 yr. 10 mo. Get to know how to “work the system,” and at that point you can start thinking grad school.
  4. CollegeChick

    CollegeChick New Member

    Thank you for your comment. I was hoping to obtain credits via Saylor.org and PLA portfolios.

    FVT 150: Development of Film Expression - 3 credits
    FVT 160: Video Equipment & Tech - 3 credits
    FVT 254: Digital Editing - 3 credits
    GAT 120: Adobe Photoshop - 3 credits
    PSY 101: Gen Psychology - 3 credits
    PSY 102: Gen Psychology II - 3 credits
    SPE 115: Speech Comm - 3 credits
    SPE 125: Interpersonal Comm - 3 credits
    ENG 121: Eng Comp - 3 credits
    ENG 122: Eng Comp II - 3 credits
    HUM 122: Survey of Humanities II - 3 credits
    HUM 123: Survey of Humanities III - 3 credits
    ART 111: Art History - 3 credits
    GAT 106: Adobe Illustrator - 3 credits
    CIS 136: Power Point - 4 credits
    CIS 125: MS Word - 4 credits
    CIS 117: Web Page Essentials - 4 credits
    MAT 135: Intro to Statistics - 3 credits
    AST 102: Astronomy
    AST 103: Lab - 4 credits
    GEO 105: World Regional Geography - 3 credits
    THE 111: Acting I - 3 credits

    **If they accept Art Institute**
    MM1360: Inside Multimedia - 3 credits
    XD1301: Fund of Design - 3 credits
    XD1310: Fund of Drawing - 3 credits
    XD2302: Computer Paint - 3 credits
    XD3303: Fund of Business - 3 credits

    Total: 88 credits

    I also am trying to figure out if they'll accept my Allegra Nutrition certification from a regionally accredited nursing program out of CA. It's the same as their HEA 311 Nutrition class. One admission adviser told me no, but I want to challenge him. If TESU customer service is anything like calling Verizon customer service, I'll get a different answer everytime. Also have 6 FEMA certs, current CPR cert and over 15 years professional work history. Looking for the fastest way to get a legit degree. Doesn't even matter subject field as long as it's easy and doesn't require algebra. Which why I picked BA in Comm. Thanks for your help! :)
  5. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

  6. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  7. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    You do have most of the general eds for COSC done. At a glance I don't see American Government and Ethics. Might be a couple more. The rest might fit the lower level of a concentration or electives. You would still need 9 courses or 27 credits in a concentration (or concentrations) plus the capstone.
  8. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    What degree are you going for?
  9. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    I think I might be the guy who challenged you on the name; I remember being concerned that Edison the legit school might be confused with Edison ther degree mill. I was a newbie at the time.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2016
  10. CollegeChick

    CollegeChick New Member

    Thank you everyone who's responded. I'm going after a BA in Communications. I'm confused matching up my existing credits to TESU's website. For example, what does a credit in Civic Engagement mean? I wonder if I can PLA out of this due to my volunteer work?
  11. CollegeChick

    CollegeChick New Member

    Thank you for your responses. What is the "sister" forum? I thought this was general questions, so my apologies. So much info to take in. Thanks everyone!
  12. rebel100

    rebel100 New Member

    The link I gave you is for a different forum that specializes in undergrad use of the Big 3. You weren't wrong to post it here, but over there your specific question is about all we do while this forum is centered more around Master's level and above work, politics, and such. Many members are on both sites, they aren't related, but are often reffered to as "sister" or simply "the other" forum. Ask your question over there and at least a half dozen folks will chime in with relevant and recent info to help you make the decision.
  13. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Well, I don't know why grads from the other schools say it, but I went to Charter Oak because it's the best school for everyone. :wink:

    I agree. It sounds like she's really just interested in graduating as soon as possible, but if she's actually interested in Communications then Charter Oak is not the right choice.

    If she just wants to graduate quickly, however, then it makes sense to reach out to all three and see which one offers the "best deal" in terms of transfer credit. TESC still might win, though, if they're still sometimes taking community college credit as upper division.

    The "concentration vs. major" thing can be safely ignored, though. There is no meaningful difference between a thirty-six semester-hour concentration and a thirty-six semester-hour major. I think so because in the eleven years since I graduated, not once has it come up in grad school admissions or job interviews, or anywhere else other than on this forum.

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