About Walden University
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I had attended Walden University and know first hand that a student needs to work hard to earn a degree from this university. It is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, one of six regional accrediting associations recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Many highly respected brick and mortar universities are also accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. I read some of the whining reviews from former students who complained about the university's quality, but I suspect these are the type of students who expected an easy degree but ended up not being able to keep up with the studies.
In fact, it is actually much harder to earn a degree from an online university instead of the traditional university because there will not be teachers to physically nag you to submit your assignments and study for examinations. You have to be very self-motivated to achieve success while studying at Walden University. My advice to those who think they can earn an easy degree from Walden is to stay away, because you will in fact need to work hard to earn a degree from Walden University. Also, a Walden degree is well respected by employers. I am earning a high six-figure salary today because of my Walden education.
I applied for the MSW program in November of 2021. My enrollment recruiter brought to my attention that there was a financial and academic hold on my account and I would need to talk to the financial enrichment team. Upon talking to them, it was brought to my attention that I had applied to Walden in 2007 which I cannot deny. In the spring on 2007 I had withdrawn from class. Somehow, I was placed in a class again in the Fall of 2007. I was unaware of this class, never received a bill or was contacted by Walden University. It has been brought to my attention that not only did I receive an F for this class that put me in poor academic, that I also owe them $2000.00. It has been 14 years. I do not know of a single college that would enroll a student in 2 semesters of classes without payment. I think when I withdrew they placed me into a fall class as this is a for profit school and the recruiters only get payment if the students are enrolled.
Because of this, I now have a 14 year old bill. The statute of limitations for a college bill is 6 years on average and the very fact that they NEVER sent this to collections, has me very concerned about the validity of this bill. I told them that I want to dispute this bill and they said that my application is proof enough. So, I cannot even dispute this within the university. I am now taking this outside the university. What is funny, is at the time, I had a trust fund that would have paid for this that my grandmother set up for me. So this is why I question the validity. If there was a bill, I would have simply submitted it to the bank for payment. It is now dissolved because there were only limited funds in there for college. They have yet, to show proof of my attendance, and I made it very clear, of the timeline and the reason for the inconsistency of their records.
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Where to even start with Walden, my mom says if you have nothing nice, say nothing at all. The only nice things I can say is that some of their faculty is kind and it’s convenient for working students who need a flexible set of courses to accommodate their work schedule. Aside from that from 2017 til this month, October 2021 I have been a student at Walden. I am going to point out each deceptive practice from my own personal experience.
1. Scholarships and discounts. I was told by the enrollment advisor that if I received a scholarship with Walden it would reduce the cost until I complete the program at Walden. This couldn’t be further from the truth. I had a scholarship with Walden as a social work student and I most definitely saw my scholarship go away and my school costs go up in the middle of my degree program (2019).
2. They say that the courses will strive towards social change and help you to grow as a student. It was very self paced, I mostly taught myself, and the teachers rarely provided feedback that helps students to strengthen their work or their writing.
3. Residencies are not only a joke but also a waste of money and time. Had I known I’d be spending for room and board, food, and traveling everywhere to pursue a degree while trying to accommodate my full time, very demanding schedule, I would’ve never attended Walden. I did what I had to do to move forward in my degree plan.
4. In dissertation pod I have had the worst experience ever. I’ve been in pod for at least 4 terms and got NO guidance on how to strengthen and improve my proposal and writing to move forward, first of all the first chair responds with, "Looks good," or if you text her she’s always traveling, when you manage to have a call with her, she has very little feedback to provide that helps you to move forward in a confident way as a doctoral student. The second committee member is completely non responsive, doesn’t attend meetings, when I look for her feedback on writing you get things like ‘looks good’.
The URR doesn’t follow the checklist, they pick and choose what to nitpick at. They send you to fix and make corrections, you follow their guidance completely and do exactly what they say, then resubmit it, only for them to send back a plethora more of mistakes that they never pointed out as an issue in the first place. Also to note you didn’t change anything about the paper that would misalign it, only corrected their critiques and sought feedback from first and second committee member for them to say ‘looks great or way better’ only for URR to continue to say it’s not right. At this point it’s a money pit and I feel I’m being sent through these hoops and circles for them to buckle and dime me. I understand the dissertation is rigorous and that there will be several edits but to not have guidance and be paying all this money is a HUGE issue.
5. I consulted with my advisor about changing from PhD program to DSW program and they showed me that I would only need to take three additional courses and do a capstone project if I went that route. When I decided this year to pursue this, I’m already at Walden and switched from the Clinical Social Work PhD program to the Clinical Social Work DSW program. I side by side compared the courses in the course catalog, the description of the aim of the course, and the course code numbers. I’ve already taken those courses and exceeded some of the courses that are required to be taken.
To expound in DSW you get to choose between quantitative, mixed, or qualitative reasoning research courses. In PhD program you had to do both, which I did. So how is it that the evaluator states that at the same school, with the same class codes, and the same requirements as before, I would not be able to just transfer over and complete the few courses initially projected in 2019 and the capstone project, but instead essentially start almost completely over. This is deceptive because in ANY college of university I have attended, they would allow you a change of major or degree plan. 4)3 courses that compared in the course catalog were allowed to transfer over. Another example of Walden deceiving students and trying to nickel and dime them.
6. When there is a dilemma with Walden there is little to no feedback, I’ve presented this issue to the enrollment counselor who’s supposed to help me transfer from PhD to DSW program, nothing from my academic advisor which might I add a huge red flag is going through four academic advisors in my time here, they leave like flies. I also reached out to the ombudsman and the next step is to figure out how to email the dean of the school of social work to get guidance because no one is responding to my very real and unreasonable question about a mere transfer process.
7. Walden is not honest and upfront about its prices, they project a way lower amount initially. Then you end up paying a whole lot more when you include residencies, materials for courses, the time wasted in dissertation pod with no guidance, etc. The financial aid team tells you mid semester when you ran out of funding for school, after you’ve already begun the term. When you ask them for resources and fiscal options they send you a link to fastweb which we know the link doesn’t work or had just another list of long scholarships for students that are first time 18+, not options for non traditional students. They also don’t work with you on a reasonable payment plan to pay for your school on your own.
8. Can never speak with anyone from your assigned school to discuss your concerns and get answers that makes sense.
I started Walden during the pandemic. They were the only program offering (at your own pace) Tempo Learning. After attending Western Governor I thought this would be comparable. However, it isn't. No guidance through classes, 3 days is the response time from the "teacher" subject matter experts, and then there was a ownership change. The ownership change made it impossible for them to receive government funding until the audit was done. Therefore, according to financial aid, all programs were sent an email requesting them not to remove students from their courses because they would eventually be able to access funds. Financial aid could see the funds, they just couldn't access them. My course mentor removed me from the program and refused me access until I paid the funds myself. Meanwhile, financial aid is dumbfounded as to why this is happening and continued telling me they should not be removing me from the program.
Jennifer, from the President's office was supposed to call me. When she called I was at work. I have called her back 3 times. Her voice-mail says she will return my call within 3 days. It's been more than a week since my last call. I will not be continuing with Walden. I do however hope someone whom is in charge of accreditation looks into them soon. This is not a school. The "leaning resources" are a joke and I don't know how anyone could take this seriously. I paid outside psychology professionals with their PhD. to tutor me. These professionals were at a loss and had to refund my money because they couldn't understand what was being asked on the assignment/s. Don't waste your time or money. I've wasted over a year.
My name is Rayla ** (formerly Rayla **) and I was a previous student in Walden University's Education Doctoral Program in March 2013. In 2013 I suffered a miscarriage and was unable to continue my classes. I received a bill in December 2013 for $2,934.23 due to me dropping classes at a certain point. I was unable to pay the debt, and filed a grievance providing documentation but was denied any leniency.
Fast forward to October 2020, and I am not attempting to purchase a house and there is a recent inquiry from Sunrise Credit Services on my Experian credit report. Unbeknownst to me I did not receive any letter or notification of this new debt that has a date of June 2019. Sunrise Credit Services Manager Angel **, claims that Walden refuses to negotiate this debt.
I spoke to Britney, Jean and Jackie in the Financial Center Department that stated the account was indeed sent to collections on July 31, 2014. According to Mr. **, Walden and Sunrise Credit Services did not become affiliated until 2016. I am very upset that this recent inquiry is jeopardizing my livelihood and attempted to ask for some resolve from Walden. Instead I am transferred to the most unprofessional representative who attempted to tell me I have called too many times and that some manager will call me back. After I told her that I wanted to be transferred to someone other than her, she laughed and said "Ok Girlfriend" and placed me on hold.
I chose Walden because it was online. However, I am in the middle of my masters and they are now sending me an invoice for 2,800 for EACH class. I called them and ask them why was this class 1,000 more expensive than the others. The lady said that Walden was giving me 1,000 dlls per class but that they had already done it three times and that they will no longer do it. That from now on my classes were almost 4,000 dlls each and that this time they had helped me with 800 dlls. So I had to pay 2, 800 per class (with subsidy).
I regret that I have already done half of my masters here. Arlington University charges 1,800 for 4 classes (a semester) and it is much better school. If I had known this before going into Walden I would have chosen Arlington. Now I am STUCK because I was about to start preceptorship. Walden is not worth the money. Go someplace else. TOO EXPENSIVE!!!! DO NOT TRUST THEM because they do not tell you that classes are going to skyrocket more than 30% meanwhile you are in the program.
I completed my Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership in 3 1/2 years. Some may say everything is great until you start the dissertation. Many have the impression this is when things go down-hill; however, you make the rules and decide how fast you want to finish and form the direction of your study. You are now the expert in your field, and you have the tools needed to complete your program. The ones who complain are the ones who are not serious!!! If you want to graduate, you have to make tough decisions and be determined!!! It is your destiny, and you are the one in charge.
I started researching my dissertation from the day I started my program. I centered every paper around this central topic. In doing so, I was able to write my prospectus is 2-Weeks, my proposal in Month 8, my URR approval and Defense in Month 8, IRB and Survey completed in Month 9, Data Analysis and Finished Chapter 5 in Month 11, URR approval and Final Defense in Month 12, and Finally Form and Style, followed by CAO Approval in Month 12!!! You have to be dedicated and motivated... I woke up at 4 AM every morning to read journal articles and write...
When I received feedback on my manuscript, I would have it back to my committee within 24-Hours... I called my chair in Ohio when I needed guidance on content, and I would call my Methodologist (2nd committee member) in Doha, Qatar, when I needed analytical advice... I completed my Quantitative Dissertation in Education in a SINGLE YEAR!!! It is possible, but you have to drive the car... My committee was excellent, and I forced them to follow my direction but worked under their experience and expertise. However, in the end, it is My Study! I'm Published! I am working on my first Academic Journal Article, employed in Higher Education, and I am proud of My achievement! Finally, I am Proud to have My Doctorate Degree framed and nicely hung on the wall in My office at My University, where I very proudly work! Thank you, Walden University, Class of 2020!
I wanted to make a review of Walden University based on my experiences with both my Masters and Doctorate degrees. The masters went without a hitch. I had some excellent instructors and completed it in a timely manner. My doctorate on the other hand seemed to be dragging out costing me time and money. This had nothing to do with Walden themselves but rather the instructor I had when going into my dissertation. She was in my opinion more worried about how long she could keep my status in the school rather than finishing the degree program. I actually then changed my chair to someone that was 100% for the students and finishing their degrees, and she helped me finally finish my PhD.
My opinion is this, you are going to find some instructors who are strictly in it for a paycheck, the longer you are made to stay in, the more they get paid. BUT then you will find those real professionals who are there to TEACH and help you attain your goals. I was very happy with my final chair for my dissertation completion. So, whatever school you think you want to attend, get some information from previous students who finished not just quit. I hope that this review will help inspire you to not look at just negative reviews but also the positive ones before making a sound decision on your education.
I truly had a positive experience at Walden. I graduated in 2015. Since then, I have found jobs at international schools in China and Uganda easily. I enjoyed my classes at Walden, and most of the times they were challenging. It is sad to read complaints about Walden. All went well for me. I can describe my Walden experience as a big contribution to my career.
Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program is well done. Fellow students are mostly engaging and high quality. Good instructors. The only reason I gave it 4 rather than 5 stars is the academic advising department needs improvement.
Walden University author review by ConsumerAffairs Research Team
Walden University was established more than 45 years ago. It is a regionally accredited school that focuses on educating adults.
Online programs: Walden's online programs are designed to fit the needs of busy adult learners by offering flexible start schedules.
Grants, scholarships and tuition savings: Walden offers a variety of ways for adult students to save money on tuition.
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