Is the University of Phoenix Legit or a Scam?         

I admit my interest in the University of Phoenix increased when Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals and the University of Pittsburgh became a spokesman for UoP (University of Phoenix). (Pittsburgh is my home town “area”) I followed Fitzgerald’s career and now his graduation (finally) – from the University of Phoenix.  So, what is this Online University so prominently advertised everywhere?

Before we begin. I have included googled information below.  The costs, the complaints, the history of the school can be found using that information at the bottom.


I have now spent some time researching the University of Phoenix.  It may be one of the most recognized and advertised University’s in this country.  Huge amounts of their budget are spent on TV advertising as well as the internet.  It is a huge, publicly traded, “for profit” Corporation. Apollo Education Group is that publicly traded company.  It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Apollo Group Inc.

The reviews are both good and bad. 

The complaints and lawsuits are numerous. The legal issues appear to always be resolved in some way.  The student complaints appear to be the normal complaints of dissatisfied students.  They involve the classes, withdrawal issues, past due bills and their disputes, an unpopular professor, etc.

There are, of course, the past due bills that a University always attempts to collect to the displeasure of the students owing them.  That then flows over to the student not being able to get transcripts while the bill is “supposedly” owed.  “Supposedly” is the students term.

There are the universal complaints of trying to transfer your credits to another school.  What is transferrable for credit and what is not?  I have never heard of smooth transfer of credits of your courses from one University to another.  So, I am sure it is not limited to U. of Phoenix.

In full truth of my bias and past college experience – I spent over 3 ½ years at Miami University (of Ohio).   I started there in 1971 in Architectural Design – a 5-year program at the beginning.  Before I was there 10 weeks the program changed to a 6-year program.  I eventually became disillusioned with the program and withdrew.  I later went to a community college for Drafting and Calculus with the intention of going back to Miami someday.  I also later began a correspondence course (pre-internet) for business management, but time restraints with family and job interrupted completing that.  (That school wanted payment in full for the entire education vs courses taken – so be careful that you can pay per credit hour vs the entire amount.)

Miami, at that time, was over $13k per year for someone out of state.  That was years and years ago.  So UoP does not look so expensive to me now.  But it is still daunting amounts to anyone who has to pay it.


So here is my “researched” opinion. 

What you get out of any college is what you put into it!  Any college is expensive.  UoP may be less expensive than spending your time on campus.  It still costs a lot of money and time to complete.

A percentage don’t graduate.  That percentage is higher than you would expect unless you know those figures.

If you take advantage of the education? – if you have researched and know the income potential and job availability? – if that income satisfies your goals? – this Online Opportunity for a Degree may be what will work for you. Be sure what you intend with your degree turns into a career that pays.  Make sure there are jobs readily available using your degree.  Don’t pick something that is not job friendly.  Do the research – know your potential using that degree!

And – make sure any Online Degree is accredited and accepted as Legit in the business world. Where you get that degree, that you work so hard to get, is paramount– it must open doors not close them.  UoP is accredited – but research it for yourself.

In order to take full advantage of the education experience, have a clear goal of what your degree will accomplish.  Where will you use it?  What job opportunity will it provide?  What income can you expect using the degree?  Is your opportunity to earn equal to the cost of the degree and your time invested?  Can you make what you expect using that Degree Certificate? Do the research before deciding on any college!

Let me further define what I mean.  There are thousands of college grads waiting tables and living in their parent’s basement. (you see the jokes all the time.)  Most of these graduates went and lived on a college campus.  They took courses and got a degree in areas that are not readily needed or job friendly.  Their degree cannot be turned into good profitable careers and effective salaries.  Make sure yours will provide for you and your family!

As a side note:  I have two nephews who considered the same career path. 

One is a doctor with years and years of education expenses.  He is now in his 40s – has practiced for years.  But – he still has thousands of dollars in school loans and is still paying.

His younger brother graduated with very good grades also.  However, he did not get accepted into medical school.  He ran a medical research study for a medical group of doctors.  Later, he went to work for a medical/surgical equipment company.  He is making more money than his Doctor brother now.  He no longer has college loans to pay.  He even teaches the doctors in their operating rooms how to use the equipment.

So, choose your path carefully, then choose the college or university…not the other way around.


Is the University of Phoenix a good school choice for you?     


Below are excerpts from various sources acquired from Googling the University of Phoenix.   And, at the very bottom of this article are 3 links to research information and statistics for you.   

You must take the time to research first.

Don’t get sold a college – research and choose a degree/career path first – then pick the best college circumstance for you.

Understand the dropout and failure rate is relatively high – but – the courses are there – the program is designed and works – it’s up to you to do the work (like most of life).  If you are not ready and committed – don’t do it.

In conclusion, I cannot tell you if this UoP is a good choice for you.  I can say it has worked for many thousands.  I can also tell you there are complaints.  There was a government investigation into the heavy marketing efforts to veterans.  The sales team and marketing encouraged the (ex)military to use their government benefits to pay for the schooling.

But – my opinion is – if you have a clear reason for the degree – If you monetize into a good career choice for you – if you want to make your own class schedule – if Online is best for you –  This can work and benefit you – IF YOU DO THE WORK!

But – If you have no clear vision to your goal – if you are not disciplined enough to do the work.- if you do not have a plan to pay for it –  this is not for you.  Only you can decide that.


Some information found from a simple Google search – rate phoenix university

According to Department of Education data, the University of Phoenix online campus has a graduation rate of 7.3 percent and a loan default rate of 19 percent5 percent higher than the national average.Jul 31, 2015

One result: Just 5 percent of community college students graduate with two-year degrees in two years and about 36 percent of four-year private and flagship public university and college students with bachelor's degrees in four. At non-flagship four-year public universities, the on-time graduation rate is 19 percent.Feb 17, 2016

In this group, 39 percent got their four-year degree within four years; 59 percent graduated within six years. Johnson said that on average, college students “are taking six years to get a four-year degree.”

Is the University of Phoenix an accredited school?

Accreditation. The University of Phoenix has been regionally accredited since 1978 by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) as a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA).


How much does it cost to go to University of Phoenix?     

Undergraduate Student Fees.
Tuition for University of Phoenix Online Campus is $9,467 for the 2015/2016 academic year. This is 38% cheaper than the national average private for-profit four year college tuition of $15,199. The cost is 35% cheaper than the average Arizona tuition of $14,666 for 4 year colleges.


How much does it cost to get a degree online?

Online Versus On-Campus at-a-Glance

Undergraduate On-CampusUndergraduate Online
Tuition and fees$28,588*Includes fees such as $52.62 per credit hour$16,580*Includes fees such as $52.62 per credit hour
Books and supplies$1,200$1,200


Here are links to additional sites to get more information and do more research on your own.



    By: David Kerchner  4.4.2017