Oxford Graduate School

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by boydston, Aug 24, 2004.

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  1. boydston

    boydston New Member

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    Please, I would appreciate your assesment of the strengths and weaknesses of Oxford Graduate School in Crystal Springs (Dayton), Tennessee. Thanks!
     
  2. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Glenn Wagner, senior pastor of Calvary Church in Charlotte, NC, earned his Ph.D. at OGS.
     
  3. mrw142

    mrw142 New Member

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    Strength: great name

    Weakness: it's not THE Oxford
     
  4. boydston

    boydston New Member

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    Since there isn't a major rush with information I think I will interject my thoughts to see if I can draw anyone out (I would like to hear some other perspectives on this).

    I like OGS because:
    1. It is designed for accessibility.
    2. The costs are reasonable.
    3. They have been around for awhile -- nearly 25 years.
    4. They are attempting to fill a niche which involves the integration of Christian theology with social application.
    5. They don't offer 45 different degrees but are focused on two.
    6. I know a few of their graduates and they are quality people.
    7. They are at least pursuing some kind of accreditation.
    8. I think that people are actually getting an education through their programs. This isn't a degree mill or a second rate correspondence school.
    9. They have a campus -- which suggests stability.
    10. The faculty looks diverse and qualified to teach in their areas.

    There are a few things about OGS that bother me:
    1. The name. It's too confusing. As mentioned by someone else, you would always be saying, "No, not that one."
    2. It's too much of an attempt to clone the English Oxford -- culturally -- and institutionally with a structure that mimics the English version. You can admire the English Oxford and borrow liberally from the culture without looking like a bad copy.
    3. Where are the graduates? Do a websearch on the school and you'll find that only a few grads are in academics. And it's not clear in most cases that their OGS education contributed to their positions.
    4. What's with the DPhil nomenclature? Too much like that other Oxford.
    5. I sense that the school doesn't have a strong institutional focus. The website is a lot better than before but still a bit flimsy. A few years ago I received information from them that was low quality photocopying. All of the institutional presentations are off a bit for a school that is developing scholars to address the issues of the culture.
    6. Why has accreditation been such a hard thing for them? It has taken them 25 years to advance to candidacy -- with TRACS! I suspect that the issue is more than just the fact that they are based on the "Critical Path Method" rather than the "American Performance Evaluation Review Technique". It has to do with the schools inability to interface with the accrediting agencies. Why is that?

    In spite of the fact that there is room for significant improvement, I like the school. They are genuine educators -- although they march to the beat of their own drummer. For someone who isn't worried about getting a doctorate to land a teaching job at an RA or ATS accredited school -- for someone interested in research for the sake of making a contribution -- OGS could be a good choice.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 25, 2004
  5. mrw142

    mrw142 New Member

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    I apologize for my flip answer, I understand you're trying to get honest information--and yet, you seemed to take it quite well.

    However, it seems as if in answering with a gut reaction and a stab at humor, I veered into the primary objection to such institutions--the use of deception. Any time I see a lesser-known school with a name strikingly similar to a world-reknowned university, my antenna prick up and I wonder who they're trying to fool. Columbia, Madison, Cambridge--and of course, Oxford--are all names of non-traditional institutions that seem named with the intent of subtle--not so subtle?--deception. That alone is a knock-out in my estimation.
     
  6. boydston

    boydston New Member

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    No need to apologize. I just figured it was the kind of thing a U of A grad might say (*grin* -- Go Sun Devils!). And your assesment is right on the money!

    That was my initial reaction, too. Who are these guys trying to fool? The more I've looked at them, though, the more I'm convinced that in this case it has nothing to do with fooling anyone -- it is more of a misguided attempt to clone the English approach of Oxford. However, I suspect that many people (most?) will read the situation as you did. If they are smart they will change the name of the school. Perhaps someone from there might even be reading this not-so-subtle-hint.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 25, 2004
  7. mrw142

    mrw142 New Member

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    The more I've looked at them, though, the more I'm convinced that in this case it has nothing to do with fooling anyone -- it is more of a misguided attempt to clone the English approach of Oxford.
    _____________________________________________


    I suppose if you're going to imitate anybody, it might as well be the best.

    A Sun Devil, eh? Well, I'll give you this much: you've got a better football team than the U of A and a better MBA program; the Carey school's on the way up, I considered them for an online MBA, they're ranked a few notches above UMass, but in the end, I just couldn't bring myself to do it--my blood bleeds red and blue, it just doesn't mix well with that Maroon and gold!

    Best to you!
     
  8. uncle janko

    uncle janko member

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    What next? Stellenbosch-on-the-Suwanee?
     
  9. Guest

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    I agree.....I do not think there is any attempt to fool anyone. It is more like a group of anglophiles.

    A quick scan of their programs make them appear substantial. They are not inexpensive and they have a residency.

    A surface look would indicate that someone going there would probably get a susbantial academic workout.

    I agree with what has been said about the name. I don't want to go through life saying "Oxford" and when the eyes get wide saying "no not that one...the one in Tennessee".

    North
     
  10. uncle janko

    uncle janko member

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    Better to go through life saying, "No, not Trinity in Deerfield...the one in Indiana that used to be in Toledo."
     
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Actually, one way or the other there are too many Trinity's. When I first moved to the states I told a clergyman that I was intending to go to Trinity. He asked which one and I was honestly astounded. I meant *THE* Trinity in Toronto Ontario (High Church Anglican Seminary that would have friendly fights with the evaneglical Anglican Wycliife (??). Never occurred to me that there was another one.

    North
     
  12. uncle janko

    uncle janko member

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    Fairweather Blues

    Sure, but nobody who's familiar with TC Toronto will have heard of Newburgh, and vice versa.

    Hey hey ho ho Spikes along the O-hi-o?

    Naah.

    Rorate caeli desuper, et Newburgh pluat justum?

    Nope.

    "...with the cross of Jesus, down behind the door."*

    There ya go.



    *About all I recall of one of my old hymn parodies, "Onward Low Church Soldiers". Look; you had your misspent youth, and I had mine. Lucky you.

    Janko the Hymnographer
     
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    One former Trinity (High Church) student (Ontario) told me that students from Wycliffe (Low church) walked up the street to Trinity one day and stole the censure. Ahh those wild and crazy seminarians.

    North
     
  14. uncle janko

    uncle janko member

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    Censer. Nobody censures anything in Anglicanism anymore.
     
  15. Guest

    Guest Guest

    True :D

    North
     
  16. rodgerbailey

    rodgerbailey New Member

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    Update:

    I am now attending Oxford Graduate School. I thought I would add some updates to this thread.

    It seems that the school was named after the educational model the school was founded on. For that reason the DPhil was chosen as the degree. They are considering a student option of DPhil or PhD (I personally prefer the correction of the school location to a question about a degree somehow based on "Dr. Phil").

    When the school was founded, their "market" was the preparation of missionaries and accreditation was not a priority for them. Now they are fully accredited by TRACS.

    Someone mentioned an "academic workout" and I can agree to that at OGS. The curriculum for the school is intensely focused on research in the social sciences and applying Christian values to social issues. The current motto is, "I am a world changer." In the last couple of months, they have produced a promo video which emphasizes that motto.
     
  17. historyprof2010

    historyprof2010 New Member

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    Oxford Graduate School has an outstanding program that is expanding rapidly. As a professor in a WASC accredited institution in California, I've had an opportunity to compare my doctoral work with colleagues. All have agreed that the OGS program was equal to or exceeded the academic rigor of the institutions they attended. Discussions about dissertations were interesting, as most told me they had problems with their advisers and committees telling them what to research; however, OGS was highly supportive of independent research.

    Kellogg College, Oxford University, hosts OGS while one studies there. We were welcomed as fellow scholars and had full research access to the Bodleian Library. Lectures were provided by OGS professors and Oxford University professors equally.

    It is interesting to note that some OGS graduates pursue a second doctorate with ease. A friend of mine form OGS just received his second Ph.D. from the University of the Western Cape, South Africa. I will be going for my second doctorate as well. OGS provides that kind of education: it pushes one to move forward academically. It is expected that an OGS graduate will continue to do research. The school has a Society of Scholars for that purpose. In addition, the The Journal for the Sociological Integration of Religion and Society is an academic online journal related to the school.
     
  18. wildgoose

    wildgoose New Member

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    I've got an Oxford shirt. I'm just too fat to wear it without popping buttons.
     
  19. NMTTD

    NMTTD New Member

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    Actually, U of A is University of Arizona. Wilbur and Wilma are the mascots of the University of Arizona. They are, of course, Wildcats, as are all U of A students. ASU is Arizona State University, which has Sparky the Sun Devil as its mascot. Just wanted to clear that up. ;)
     
  20. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member

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    Very interesting. I was not even a member yet when this thread was opened.
     

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