Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Pappas, Oct 26, 2019.
You are doing a very good imitation of someone who is trying to defend/represent this program.
I've heard about MAUP, Stanislav. Some dishonest Polish politicians received degrees from them. The school also tried to establish a partnership with an unauthorized study center here in Poland, but the Polish graduates were not able to receive degree equivalence due to the way in which they obtained the degree. The Ukrainian graduates were allowed to get degree equivalence though. Yeah, the school is quite controversial.
I like to play the devil's advocate. ;-)
It can be a fun game.
MAUP? Is that an affiliate campus of MAUPA (Ukr. - Monkey) University?
LOL. I never made a connection before.
MAUP is a private school in Kyiv that has a bunch of satellite campuses in other cities; they have a prolific operation with their own journal, feeder two-year school, and division of postgraduate studies. They seem to be doing quite well, even though there were some setbacks and some branches closed. Locally, they have a reputation of a night school with low standards: a place to go if you need an accredited diploma with minimal effort. That's how Groysman got their degree: was already on Vinnytsya city council or a mayor, needed a diploma. So they are a lot like local "University of Phoenix", sort of a shortcut for "crappy for-profit". Outside of the country, they are mostly known for antisemitism; David Duke is a star "graduate". Not sure how active they are on this now, they weren't in the news lately. Needless to say that while accredited, I wouldn't recommend MAUP's programs, especially not for foreign students.
Notable here is while MAUP is also in "unrecognized doctorate" game, their offerings are not quite as blatantly substandard than what WMU calls "Doctor of Business Administration".
This is an unfortunate and inaccurate characterization of the University of Phoenix. I have to assume you have no real experience with the university. Well, I do.
All criticisms about for-profit schools' operations apply. They're known for high-pressure sales tactics, as well as an open admissions policy. Fine. But what no one ever seems to do is actually criticize the educative processes, nor the outcomes. There's a reason for that: there's no reason for that.
I taught at UoP for three years, first as a campus chair--directing a particular program at a particular campus, then two more years as an adjunct. Here are my observations.
Anyone with the correct qualifications can get in, but only deserving students graduate. The programs are rigorous and demanding. Andragogy-based, they rely upon a mix of instructor-led classes and student-led collaborative projects. These team projects can be extremely difficult to manage and produce--excellent for what "real world" managers face.
The academic programs are centrally-developed and updated continuously. Local (or online) faculty can modify the courses, but the learning objectives must still be met.
The university relies heavily on adjuncts, all of whom must have both relevant experience and education qualifications you'd expect anywhere else. But there are also full-time faculty at each campus and online to provide continuity, manage faculty, deal with students' complaints, etc. This reliance on adjuncts is bolstered by the centrally developed curricula--quality is better maintained than other schools that just toss the textbook at the instructor and tell them to create the syllabus and course materials themselves.
Faculty are considered facilitators, not instructors. Adults own their learning, faculty help them achieve it and measure the results. Sure, some teaching occurs, too, but it's much more about the learning process, not the teaching process.
If you earn a bachelor's or master's at UoP, you've earned a degree comparable to any other school no one's heard of. It's easy to start, but it's really hard to graduate. (I can't opine regarding the doctoral programs; I haven't seen enough dissertations to form an opinion.)
I have the same concerns regarding the for-profit model as others, but I also know that UoP takes the brunt of these criticisms because they're the best-known in the bunch--just like we saw in the quote above. But those criticisms are almost always about recruiting, finances, etc. Seldom are they substantive complaints about the academics, which was implied in the post.
Like most topics on this board, it's not all-or-nothing. There are reasons to criticize UoP and reasons to be impressed by them. But most things are in-between. I just object to sloppy, off-hand comments that indicate a lack of actual insight into the issue. But perhaps I am mistaken.
On the point! That's the beauty of degreeinfo
I've seen the University of Phoenix being characterized as a "diploma mill". But the arguments for this conclusion sound extremely odd to me, although I am generally open to persuasion on this front. Take the snippet from this guy's interview; he talks about how the university isn't truly innovative and points to the low graduation rates. Based on such considerations (although I truly hope that he expanded on these "arguments" in his larger book, which I haven't had a chance to read), he refers to this regionally-accredited university as a for-profit diploma mill. I guess that you might as well add Shaquille's O'Neal's graduation as another strong argument in favor of this conclusion.
The forum will only be useful, if the quality of the advice can be maintained. I am seeing the signs of deterioration in that department. I've been a follower of this forum without being a participant for some time. People are expressing their aesthetic judgments and passing them off as "the truth about the quality of an institution." They don't like how a website is formatted, or magically infer the quality of a course from a brief description. They proudly showcase their ignorance of international qualifications. For example, I don't claim to know whether Collegium Humanum is a good school. I have not enrolled in their programs. It may be a terrible college, or a small (though clearly non-elite based on the rankings that I've seen) gem in the realm of vocational colleges. And I live in this country and follow the trends in higher education. Other people seem to know a whole lot about how these schools function without setting foot in the institution. Take Ukraine. I don't know much about how their colleges and universities function. I've heard some things from Ukrainian students who visit Poland in large numbers, but it may just be anecdotal. I am not going to assess their quality. I'll leave that task to to the people who assess their quality in Ukraine. But sometimes, you get the feeling that the people here are really unsatisfied with the decisions of the national quality assessors. They want to take the matter into their own hands. Sure, provide the advice to students. But it would be kind of nice if the advice was based on something more than "I don't like the sound of this...", or "every other country does it this way..."
Why is that?
I was saying that some people would be wiling to go so far as to say that the mere fact that he graduated (based on some personal stereotypes that they hold of him and NBA players) shows that U of Phoenix is a diploma mill. I found the arguments utilized in the interview equally "persuasive". How does a lack of being at the forefront of innovation, or having a small set of student graduations demonstrate the "mill-ish" character of an institution? In the past, the small number of graduations may have indicated that the institution had high standards. The guy turned this on its head, while the interviewer (if I recall correctly) suggested that the lack of graduations is way to save on paper. If the U of Pheonix approaches a mill, I would not be persuaded based on such badly constructed arguments. Plus, I find U.S. regional accreditation (and national for that matter) a sufficient safeguard. As pointed out earlier, I generally respect the decisions of government accrediting and assessment agencies unless there is some specific evidence to believe otherwise, as in the case of Kosovo (their assessments have recently been questioned on an international forum), etc.
You're wrong, that never happens here.
Hah! It ALWAYS happens. There is NO middle ground on that!
Yeah, why? O'Neal is a graduate of LSU. He went on to complete a doctorate at Barry University. I don't see why his graduation from UoP would have any bearing on the institutional quality (or lack thereof) of that school. It's an odd anecdote to cite.
Low graduation rates are exactly the opposite of what makes a diploma mill a diploma mill.
It's also exactly what I would expect to see from a school with open admissions.
The two main reasons why I'd never recommend them to anybody are its poor reputation (deserved or otherwise) and its extremely high price compared to comparable offerings elsewhere.
If they hadn't become such a punchline early on in their history, they might be well regarded today. Having dozens of satellite campuses across several states in the USA on top of offering a wide variety of distance courses make them a rarity in the DL world.
They shot themselves in the foot in the marketing department, but somehow, they don't seem to be hurting financially.
A few years ago, I've met a fellow who specifically told me that the University of Phoenix "hands out degrees", and that "they even gave one to Shaquille O'Neal", which I also found rather bizarre. I was quite sure that (whatever one may think of it) it is not engaged in any such activity. Maybe the one-sided media coverage of for-profits had something to do with the spread of such bizarre claims among the population.
The price would indeed be too high, especially in a conversion from zlotys to dollars!
Well, your assumption is wrong, and partly based on my ambiguous wording. When comparing UoP and MAUP, I referred to their reputations only. Both are widely known in their respective countries, and widely disparaged. As for quality, it is harder to compare; I'd give UoP an edge here. However, observe how even though MAUP is deeply flawed, it, too, is an accredited school, and most programs follow prescribed curricula deemed adequate by reviewers.
In fact, I did work briefly for Apollo schools; my view on them is more nuanced but, generally, not that different from yours. To wit:
On doctoral level, relevant comparison would be between Phoenix and WMU's prospective DBA programs. UoP wins, hands down: it's ACBSP-accredited DBA is a doctoral degree program, while WMU's is deceptively named executive training certificate. Again, not based solely on legal status of the diploma. As a credential, it'll win against MAUP's degrees as well; I'd rather be a Phoenix graduate than have David Duke as my fellow alumnus.
Yeah, that's an offensive and ignorant argument. Shaq doesn't strike me as much of a scholar, but I have no doubt he's capable of following a standard MBA program. Also, it's not like this degree adds much prestige to the NBA, FIBA World, and Olympic champion with more MVP awards than one could fit on a bookshelf. He finished it for kicks, but also to learn something.
In fact, his Barry EdD given for a research project in form of a "video" raises more questions - and Barry is no mill. Neither is UoP.
Stanislav, you said:
On doctoral level, relevant comparison would be between Phoenix and WMU's prospective DBA programs. UoP wins, hands down: it's ACBSP-accredited DBA is a doctoral degree program, while WMU's is deceptively named executive training certificate.
Here's a potentially (have not checked myself) more rigorous Polish program. 90 ECTS points, 1,5-2 years in duration instead of a single year. It is run by the Polish Academy of Sciences. But it still ends with a certificate of completion of postgraduate studies (Studia podyplomowe). This still isn’t a degree…yet you would clearly not be engaging in any sort of deception by putting this professional "EDBA" title behind your name. You would only do that, if you placed Dr. BEFORE your name and acted as if you are a Dr. That's how it works in Poland. I just don't get the whole “deception” thing. You're using very strong language to describe a perfectly legitimate pathway in my country. You might have an argument, if you said that the WMU's program was not rigorous enough (although you would need to prove that instead of reading it off the school’s website, as some of the people are in the habit of doing here). However, that's a different argument from the one that you're currently making about the deception in the qualification's name itself. All Polish students have heard about studia podyplomowe, so your previous comment about the potential for deceiving Polish students is absurd on it's face. If a person graduated from “studia podyplomowe” and then went around calling himself a Dr., he might be taken for an insane person here. The only possibility of deception would actually occur with international graduates of this program. Will they call themselves doctors, or just place DBA behind their names (the latter would be fully justified based on these accredited and prized qualifications)?
There’s another reason why I would strongly disagree with you. Some of the studia podyplomowe are held in partnership with accredited American or European MBA/DBA degree-granting schools. In that case, the student might receive the Polish certificate and the American or European MBA degree. But this goes to show that it is not a “mere training certificate", so I can fully understand why schools like WMU don’t want to present them as such. This certificate gives you a genuine title!
It's not about studia podyplomowe. INE PAN program has research project in it's study plan. WMU doesn't. Therefore, in addition to not being a degree, WMU's program is not even a DBA at all. Google any discussion of doctorates without dissertations on this board.
As for Polish students: are they as familiar with Doctorates in Business Administration as with Studia podyplomowe form of training? If they can accept a 2-semester lecture-style program as a DBA, I'd confidently argue they are not. Here lies the deception.
Did I say all Polish business schools are bullshit? No, I specifically talked about WMU. Again, it's not about the type of credential.
PS: as to types of credentials: cross-accreditation with Apsley and Apostille business are recognizably millish practices. If you followed this board for a few years you'd know that. They try to make their diplomas seem more credible than they are, preying on misinformed students. This is when bullshit becomes sinister. Search this board for "Apostille". Dr. John Bear once issued himself a document making him Pope of Rome and got it Apostilled; this is a classic deception technique.
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