NorthCentral University

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by irwin, Feb 7, 2001.

  1. irwin

    irwin New Member

    NCU's ( website list the following notice as to their current accreditation status. I quess I am still not ready to enroll in the Ph.D. program untill they are fully accredited. Does anyone have experience as to how long it will take for full accreditation? Should I wait and see or start a program now and hope they will be accredited by the time I complete a program of study?



  2. Tom Head

    Tom Head New Member

    Personally, I'd wait until they're actually accredited -- though given that the NCA site team has apparently actually recommended NCU for candidacy, my opinion of NCU is much higher than it was a month ago. The recommendation is no guarantee that NCU won't fall through during the accreditation process (nor will the actual advancement to candidacy be any such guarantee), but it's promising news and suggests to me that, in five years, NCU could end up a viable accredited option.

    For now, it's a gamble; I can't say it will be accredited until it's actually accredited, and I can't say it won't be accredited unless something very odd happens that would jeopardize its future chances. Right now I would rate it as a risky investment.


  3. Sam

    Sam New Member

    Tom, I appreciate your information regarding NCU but would also appreciate if you could provide more specific rationales that result in your concluding that it is a risky investment. Thanks.
  4. Tom Head

    Tom Head New Member

    Well, it's a simple cost-benefit analysis:

    COST: Tuition in the low five digits, and at least two years of my time.

    BENEFIT: If it becomes accredited, a Ph.D. I can use; if it remains unaccredited, a Ph.D. I would have to put in a file drawer.

    That's why I think it's a risky investment; I wouldn't call it a bad investment (because it *could* become accredited), but I'd call it a risky one (because so far there's no guarantee that it will).

    I view NCU as being a little different from U.S. Open University and Western Governor's University because it doesn't have the kind of support that those two candidate institutions have. Folks have also said that there may be more than a small connection to the Southern California University of Professional Studies, a legitimate but unaccredited California-approved school with an interesting marketing history.

    So, basically, I think there's a very strong chance that NCU could turn out to be a good investment (if it gains regional accreditation) and a very strong chance that NCU could turn out to be a bad investment (if it doesn't). Because I'm just not sure how successful its efforts will eventually turn out to be with the NCA,
    I'd rate it as risky right now.


  5. John Bear

    John Bear Senior Member

    Irwin asked, Does anyone have experience as to how long it will take for full accreditation? Should I wait and see or start a program now and hope they will be accredited by the time I complete a program of study?

    If Northcentral gets candidacy in June (which is by no means a sure thing), they would typically be looking at 3 or 4 years of candidacy. The range can be two to nine, based on North Central Association's prior behaviors -- and, of course, not every candidate gets full accreditation, although most do.

    So the odds are that people starting the Ph.D. now would finish before accreditation, in which case they theoretically could ask to have the awarding of the degree delayed, or have what would technically be an unaccredited degree from an accredited school (but in practice, that it is distinction rarely made; the people who earned a Union degree the week before accreditation are as likely as those who earned it a week later to make good use of the degree). Union, incidentally, was a candidate for nine years.

    John Bear
  6. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    There are a variety of viewpoints on this issue, all presenting terrific information. My two cents: I've been cautioning about jumping up and down too soon regarding NCU's site visit, despite the very positive comments by the visiting team. A lot can happen between the visit and the vote for candidacy.

    That said, I believe the odds go way up after candidacy. As John said, most--but not all-candidates go on to accreditation. Some, like Capella, Walden, and Jones International, rather quickly. Union took forever, but that was driven by financial difficulties. All were eventually accredited by NCA. International Graduate School (located in St. Louis), however, didn't make it past candidacy.

    NCU has said they will raise tuition after candidacy is granted. Fine. The rates are pretty low right now; even a 30-40% raise would keep them pretty low. I'd wait the few months it's going to take to hear about the final vote for candidacy.

    Rich Douglas

  7. Erma

    Erma New Member

    I found this forum by checking out Dr. Steve Levicoft's Website.
    I hope Dr. Levicoft wins the case otherwise there will be more of non-accredited college and university will pop up everywhere.
    I strongly believe that non-accredited school can only allow to operate with a limit of time. If they don't seek accreditation, we can list or call them "degree mill."

    I have a comment about NCU. I don't know if waiting for NCU to be accredited before apply is a good idea.
    1) Tuition will be as much as any regionally accredited college and university. (compensate for accreditation fee and cost, etc...)
    2) The admission requirement will be totally different. For example, one can apply for a Ph.D program if he/she obtained a bachelor degree from any accredited college and university. (note: in addition, there is no minimum GPA requirement at this time).
    3) Even if it takes 9 years to be fully accredited, one can still feel proud to be graduated from NCA regardless when (given that it is guarantee to be accredited).

    What I am trying to say is that it is an investment like buying stock. Any investment comes with some kind of risks.

    Erma Ash
  8. Sam

    Sam New Member

    Do you feel from what you know of SCUPS if
    NCU's relationship with that school will have either a negative or positive impact on their obtaining regional accreditation?
  9. Erma

    Erma New Member

    Anyone help?
    What is the different between this North Central University?

    A friend of mine asked me if two universities have a same name.

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