Have you ever had a bad experience with a private or online college?
Questionable recruitment tactics, lies about accreditation, poor instructors, etc. If so, please explain and offer the name of the school if you wish.
When I just started looking around for online schools I had no idea what it entailed. I knew nothing of diploma mills or unaccredited schools. I did not know that an unaccredited diploma could not get me into a regular school so I signed up with Breyer State University. Everything seemed normal. I did not yet pay any money so I decided to check around and see what other schools had to offer. I found Almeda university. Now this was too good to be true. They offered my degree without studying and only asked me to answer a few questions about my work experience. I mentioned this to my boss and he told me that no employer would employ me (if I used that diplomas to get another job). He explained to me that a life experience degree was not a real degree and employers were very strict about such things.
I didn't use them but I know others who have and have lost their job because if it.
I have compiled a list of such schools and have assisted friends and acquaintances with figuring out which schools to avoid and which schools are real. I wrote a hub about it too.
I have not, but be careful about choosing a reputable, accredited school. Do a lot of research first. If you have a potential employer in mind talk to them and see what they would accept or at least find out what is considered acceptable in that line of work. Cardisa's excellent answer gives a perfect example of what can happen if you aren't careful. There are many hubs, books, etc. that can help you sort through the different colleges. Good luck!
There are regular complaints about these kinds of issues from a number of the online, for-profit institutions on discussion boards and other areas where these topics are hotly debated.
My advice, rather than saying which I think are true/untrue or valid/invalid is that if you are having a discussion with a college admissions office, and it begins to feel like you are in a used car dealership being pressured to "buy now" or being taunted by statements like "I thought you wanted to be a good example for your kids",... then it's time to hang up the phone, and walk away from that institution, permanently. No college worth it's salt needs to pressure students to sign up. If you're being pressured, hounded by emails and calls and made to feel bad when you say things like "I'm not sure it's the right time for me," or "I'm not ready to spend the money right now" you're dealing with a diploma mill (and it may be an accredited diploma mill, but it's a diploma mill, all the same)
About accreditation: a COLLEGE may be accredited but if you are hoping to enter a profession that requires that you attend an accredited PROGRAM, this is a different issue.
Too often, students ask about accreditation and are assured that the school/college is accredited (which may be true) but if you want to be an X-ray tech, for example, and you attend an accredited college whose Rad Tech program is NOT accredited by JRCERT, you will not be able to sit for the credentialing exam after graduation and therefore you will NOT be able to work as an X-ray/Rad Tech (you will still have to pay back those student loans though...)
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