The University of Phoenix, the largest private university in North America, offers the best of both worlds, with a network of nationwide campuses as well as an extensive online education program for higher learning.
In addition to online degrees, it provides 112 brick-and-mortar campuses and learning centers for students who want a more traditional learning experience than that online courses alone offer. Phoenix focuses on the working adult student, but it has a diverse student population.
The university is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association. The school was placed on notice by the commission in June 2013, which is a sanction that shows an institution could possibly be out of compliance. A major issue involved is an application to amend a trust involving the school's primary stockholder in its parent company, Apollo Group Inc. However, this online school and its campuses remain fully accredited, with both online degrees and campus-based degrees carrying the same value as before.
This online university offers 126 degree programs, including bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in several fields. You also can choose from its 26 two-year associate degree programs.
Tuition varies by program. Typically, the cost for an online undergraduate degree is about $10,000 per academic year, and this includes the cost of textbooks, but not an additional fee that comes to approximately $700. A master's degree generally costs close to $17,000 per academic year, plus a fee of about $900, but again, this includes the price of textbooks. The university offers a number of financial aid packages, including scholarships, grants and discounts for members of the military and veterans.
You can expect substantial flexibility in scheduling for your online courses. The University of Phoenix provides personal attention from instructors, but you also work collaboratively with other students as part of a learning team with each class you take. The school emphasizes that teamwork provides the opportunity for students to interact with each other, exchange ideas and become better equipped for the workplace.
Class sizes are small in this online college, typically with 15 or fewer students per class. The University of Phoenix has more than 800,000 graduates, approximately 300,000 current students and about 32,000 faculty and staff members, which combine to make an extensive network of potential contacts. The classes offer an online community for students who never set foot on a campus. There are chat rooms, online communities through various social websites, and team assignments within the classroom.