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Capella University Reviews
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I can’t say enough about the flex path. I 100% thought it was too good to be true but I started my BSN 3/6 and finished 5/19/23. I had a referral scholarship that got tuition down to a little under 2700 for the 12 week cycle and I straight up busted my behind to get every class done before they billed me again. I am recommending this program to everyone I know and I can’t believe this huge weight is lifted off my shoulders. Professors were great!! And the directions are clearly defined on each assignment, I believe there was a total of 31, including the capstone which was the most lengthy. I saved thousands and the self-teaching module actually helped me learn better than a traditional school.
I graduated with a PhD in education with an emphasis on literary theory. Please bear in mind I had done graduate work at top tier universities and wanted a PhD that catered to my specific research needs. I did all the work and tailored my research and dissertation to my research interests. It was not easy but I finished and my research was published in the well respected Oxford university bibliographic research online. Since then I have taught graduate and published widely in my chosen field of postcolonial literary studies.
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I was really skeptical about this whole "online bachelor's degree" thing at first. I even used this website (Consumer Affairs) to grill the admissions counselor at length about people's common complaints. Right off the bat, this admissions fella was attentive and personable. I think I sent him at least 10 emails with essays' worth of questions about Capella, about my responsibilities, about other people's complaints and if they're valid. Rather than shrugging me off, he gave me his full, patient time. Every time.
So I enrolled in the Flexpath program for my psychology degree. First off, this program is not your typical "attend zoom and take your test" sort of structure. This is an essay-driven structure that you take at your own pace. Each class often consists of four "Assessments," which are usually essays, sometimes worksheets or PowerPoint presentations, and you're given a host of reading assignments and activities to go with each assessment. The flexpath program is a *flat fee* every 3 months of $2,500 (at the time of this writing), and you can take as many classes as you can fit in there. After my financial aid (maximum award amount), I paid $1,000 every three months. When it was all said and done, I only paid $3,000 out of pocket for my degree because I finished in less than three semesters with a 3.9 GPA.
I know some people are looking at that and going "this can't be a legit degree," or "this sounds easy." This is NOT an easy program. I made this degree my full time job. Furthermore, you can download the VitalSource Bookshelf app, Capella's textbooks, and have the app read the material to you while you get things done around the house. Second, it's vital that you develop a good essay writing strategy for gathering your peer reviewed sources and structuring your papers according to the bullet-point requirements the instructors give you. This structuring will be the number one thing you use time and again. Work smarter, not harder. Bottom line: essays essays essays.
Are the instructors attentive? Yes and no. If I ever needed help with anything at all, they were quick to respond and help me. Are the profs conversational? Sometimes. I always submitted a lengthy "how are you" and talked a bit about the subject matter with my assessments. Some were happy to chat along in response, and some ignored my babbling completely. I didn't take it personally, they have a job to do. I have a job to do. All that really mattered was that I stayed professional and got the feedback on my work that I needed to either improve or move on to the next assignment. Now then. People's complaints on this site that I can provide answers to:
-Technical or financial errors with billing that results in people being passed around to too many clueless departments and then getting sent to collections.- Um, no? Like literally you just log into the website and there's your billing stuff right there. I got an email when my bill was due. I logged in and paid my bill. I don't know how people mess this up.
-Professors taking too long to grade course material, nullifying the "go at your own pace" appeal. - Again: Um, no? You can be enrolled in two classes at once. Even if by some weird chance a professor is taking longer than the allotted 48 hours to grade an assessment, you always have the next assessment to work on at your pace. Or the one after that. Or the next class. There is literally no reason to blame the professors for your pace.
-Too many people in the class.- I don't know why this is even a complaint, honestly. You never have to interact with these people. In all honesty, since I never even saw their names, I often felt like I was the only one in the class and that was awesome.
-Impossible to talk to a real person.- Really? You just follow the format. For my academic advisor, I scheduled an appointment and she called me at the right time and we always had a nice chat about my goals. Easy peasy. As I mentioned earlier, the admissions fellow was always attentive and responsive at any time. The professors were also quite responsive. Never had a problem.
Now then, let's get to things I feel I should mention to help out the next person.First of all, Capella uses Blackboard for their online format. Blackboard is clunky, not user friendly, and frankly, buggy. I did a few things to subvert this. I wrote down all the chapters I needed to read for each assessment so I didn't need to log into my classroom to do my reading (remember, our textbooks are in an app!). I also copy/pasted the assessment instructions into a word file and highlighted the important bits. That way, if Blackboard was ever being Blackboard, I could still function until it was up. In this same vein, Blackboard is coded first and foremost for Microsoft Edge. Begrudgingly, I ended up making Microsoft Edge my school browser. And here's a must: you need to set the browser to clear all cookies and caching every time you close it or your Blackboard simply won't work.
Second, Capella courses strongly recommend you use an online portfolio service through another company, paid for by them, to save all your work. Don't bother with that company's tech support if the website doesn't work for you either, they'll blow you off. Just save your work elsewhere, like a dropbox account, and don't mention the portfolio and you're fine.
And now the transcript. You need to know going into this that your transcript is a flexpath **pass/fail transcript**. Capella also has a "translated transcript" option for free, which isn't "official", but it translates your flexpath transcript into letter grades. It's recommended that you submit the translated one alongside the official one. I did that for my graduate program and it's fine.
For psychology grads: I thought Capella's accreditation was a green light for California, but my first class taught me it's not. Your state should have a board of psychology that outlines clearly what kind of accreditation your school needs in order for you to be licensed. Find out, then match that up with your school. I used Capella for a bachelor's and am now transferring to a different graduate program, but would have gladly stayed with Capella.
Things I really enjoyed: If, for whatever reason, I wanted a chance to do better at an assignment, we get 3 submission attempts. Three! I scoffed at this idea at first and thought I'd never use it. But in actuality, this was a great learning opportunity that allowed me to gain skills I used through the entire program. I also loved that I was able to take charge of my education and do it at my pace. This is college, no one is going to hold your hand. For people like me who manage our time really well and like to make sure we're satisfied with our understanding of the course material, this program is made for us.
Student programs and services are AWESOME. Through Capella we get free access to things like the entire Microsoft suite, Grammarly, or the incredible library. Your "school email" enables you to take advantage of so many things. Overall I totally recommend Capella to anyone seeking to further their education and embark on their career. Put in the work, communicate when possible, manage your time, and prosper, my friends. Cheers.
I was surprised to read so many negative reviews for Capella University as that has not been my experience at all. From the first day that I called them I have had an advisor hold my hand and be so supportive throughout the entire process. I choose the Flex Path option to earn my degree in General Psychology faster than the traditional route. This is a competency based program - which means you attend school alone, there is no cohort, and can complete courses as fast as you would like. Competency equates to writing extensive, comprehensive research papers and case studies. There is a grading rubric that is easy to follow in order to earn basic - distinguished. The papers show your professors that you have gained mastery of knowledge and write at a college level or higher in APA-7.
My phone calls have always been answered no matter the day or time and issues have always been resolved swiftly from financial aid questions to changing course selection or technical help. Even though Flex Path is competency based I have been able to form relationships with my professors. I do believe that you have to be incredibly self-motivated in order to reap the benefits of this program - it's really what you make of it. There is a lot of writing. I happen to love writing research papers and case studies but it is a lot of work.
I only have a few classes left so I've double downed because the end is in sight. It can be a little easy to burn out from all the paper writing but Capella is there to help mitigate that. Also, my papers are always graded in 48 hours or less. Capella is also constantly adding new classes and that can be both exciting and motivating. For example today I dropped Cyber Psychology and switched to Group Dynamics - which is a new class they just started offering. It is very easy to tailor the psychology classes to your interests. I found this program to be perfect for me. I have loved absolutely every moment of this journey and honestly have come through this a completely changed person. I highly recommend Capella as a working adult and parent. It's the best decision that I've ever made.
Attended the online “FlexPath” program for BSN. Was told that this program would take less than a year. First 3 classes were easy and straightforward and I was on schedule to finish within 8 months. Home and work life changed and the 4th class was ridiculously more challenging than the previous 3. Decided to drop before next full tuition was due, or so I thought. My “advisor“ didn’t offer advice or assistance, just checked his boxes and moved on. Received a bill for over 3k. Made numerous unanswered phone calls, emails and messages with both the “advisor“ and finance department. Offered many different stories and excuses. At one point, it looked like I met the criteria in which I would owe 25% of that tuition cost, roughly $750. I reluctantly offered to pay that, they refused. Sent to collections for money that Capella did not produce a product for. They are also holding my previous paid for grades hostage.
Very bad, don't go here, you will regret it. I attended, submitted one assignment, I had some issues with the content delivery (there was none). I told them that I wanted to withdraw, but was still charged appx $3000. It was an expensive experiment. If you value yourself or your learning, look for a better school. This one is awful. The people are unwilling to assist you and when you ask for help you will not receive it.
If I could give this school a -5/5 stars I would. The only good thing about this school is the flexibility of the flex path to be able to complete your classes when you can while also working a full time job. Aside from that, good luck getting ahold of a coach or a professor. The fact that this is an online school and not one person is available 24/7 is insane. Unless you get tuition assistance/financial aid or finish your degree in 3 months you'll be paying loads of money. 3,500 plus more fees here and there every 12 weeks. Oh and if you're still enrolled in a class into the next billing period you'll get charged 3,500 again.
Capella shorted me 6 weeks of financial aid for this academic year and I was on my capstone class but because I didn't finish it within the billing period timeframe I got charged 3,500 that I now have to pay out of pocket. The professors and coaches don't help you whatsoever, they basically just tell you you could do better and make you feel stupid. I got told if I didn't finish my class before the billing period ended I'm screwed and there's nothing they can do to help me. Steer clear of this university and save yourself some money.
The only thing Capella does consistently is bill. And frequently with errors, which take weeks and weeks to get fixed. I was done with them and withdrew in writing. They continued to take student loan money! Now I have to go after them through FAFSA and the US Dept. Of Education. Save your money and go somewhere else.
The financial aide department messed up my aid. As a result I was locked out of courses and got an F in one. They also took out of 50 grand in unauthorized aid on my behalf. Don’t do it!!!! They will not do it! I’m traumatized and wasted so much time and now I have to find an attorney to sue! Save yourself the hassle!
I have gone to 3 colleges prior to Capella University and never have I dealt with a financial aid department so incompetent. I took out the recommended borrowing amount to cover my schooling without taking anything additional out. I never changed credit load and somehow ended up with a bill over $2,000.00. I tried to resolve it in January 2022 and was told I would get a call back because they didn't understand why I had a bill either since I borrowed the correct amount. I never got a call back. I call multiple times over the course of the spring/summer and never got anyone to call me back after they said I needed to speak to a manager. The last phone call was placed at the end of August, and I was promised a call back from someone and no one ever called me back. I then just got collections notice for the amount I allegedly owed.
Save yourself a headache and go to a college that knows how to manage federal funds and not try to say you owe when you took out what they said you needed to take out to cover the entire cost. Nothing is special about the education either. Go to your local state school as you can get a better education with a more competent staff. Wish I would have read the reviews here before I transferred to Capella as I would have never done it.
Capella University author review by ConsumerAffairs Research Team
Capella University is a regionally accredited, for-profit university that specializes in online education.
Offers degrees and certificates: Capella offers bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees and certificates in criminal justice.
FlexPath programs: FlexPath is a unique program that is assessment based and allows students to complete as many courses as they are able to in a 12 week period for one rate.
Capella University Company Information
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- Capella University
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