I have been attending CTUO for a little over a year where I have been enrolled in a Bachelor of Science program, with a concentration in Finance. Does the school have faults or deficiencies? Of course it does. I don't believe that every school will be a good-fit for everyone.
My initial exposure, with CTUO, was with my assigned student adviser. He was very good at answering my questions and soliciting responses to what I wanted to achieve in order to marry up my desires with what the school offered. I have to admit that it was part and partial due to the rapport that he established with me that led me to register. I also appreciated his periodic calls and email messages where he inquired to how I was doing and offering further assistance.
**Likes: I like that the school offers 5-week long courses, making it feasible to achieve a degree program in an accelerated fashion. That can mean a lot of work in a short span of time. Some friends and coworkers state that they need to be in a classroom environment or they might be easily distracted by family, friends, television or other activities. To them, I would not recommend CTU Online or any online college, for that matter. Online education requires a student to have a lot of discipline and self-motivation in order to complete the courses. The important key, however, is a desire to learn. If an individual has little to no desire to learn, then he/she will gain little, no matter what the environment.
**Don't Like: One aspect of which I am not fond is the feedback assignments required of each student to provide to his classmates. We submit our assignments, read those of our classmates and respond to two of them, weekly. The logic behind this requirement is that we do not have the face-to-face interaction with our classmates by virtue of the technology. As such, this is one way to have the students interact with one another. Personally, even when I attend brick-n-mortar schools, I do not necessarily interact with my classmates. Not because I am antisocial (though there may be truth in that) but because my viewpoint is that I attend these classes to learn and garner an education, not to make additional friends.
Another aspect I do not like is that, no matter how many courses one takes each quarter, the assignments are due on the same day. This means that if you take two classes per quarter, you'll have two assignments due, at the same time (usually on Sunday, Monday and Wednesday) and part of which includes responding to two classmates per class.
In a brick-n-mortar environment, classes may be scheduled on differing days allowing for assignments to be staggered rather than simultaneously due.
**Instructors: As in any school, some instructors are better than others. I found most instructors to be knowledgeable and enthused about their field of study. However, some were not very good at conveying the information (you'll find this in any school). In these cases, it was up to me to learn on my own. A nice feature offered by CTUO are the resources made available to assist. You have access to online research libraries, tutorial services and a Learning Center where you might find similar chats covering the desired topic. Using such venues may allow you to find another source or individual from whom you can better understand the subject matter.
**Books and Material: I do not like having to access my books electronically. Call me old-fashioned but I prefer to have an actual book in my hands when reading or referencing material. CTUO seems to have gone to a standard where the books are published by "Works of Wonder" meaning that you cannot readily find other resources for the material such as on eBay, Amazon, etc. I would rather pay a few bucks to have the hard copy version of the text but discovered it is not always feasible with CTUO. Like many things in life, I don't like it but I can adjust.
**Information Technology: I found IT support to be very helpful, at least with the minor issues I encountered. It was great that the school provided MS Office 2010, at no additional cost to the student, as well as MS Project (for my Project Management class), and a pc video cam (for use with my Career Planning and Mgt class). I was also provided with actual books and a DVD for use with my Literature class.
**Transfer from CTUO: The caveat, with attending this school, is that the credits may not be fully transferable to a school that does not offer Quarter Semester Hours. Transferring to a local 4-yr state college, many of my credits have been accepted (not much of a need for Accounting or Financial Statement Analysis if going into Psychology).
However, I was not granted full credit. For instance, although my Literature course was accepted, I was only credited with 2.67 Semester Hours instead of the 4.00 identified by CTU. Nevertheless, my credits were accepted confirming, in my mind, that the school is accredited. Otherwise, I would assume none would be accepted.
**Costs: As a military member, I pay $210 per credit hour as compared to $250 per credit hour at my local college. A main difference, between the two, is that while a member of my state militia, I can attend a local school for very little to no money, out-of-pocket. Again, my reasoning for having attended CTU Online was due to the accelerated courses and my circumstances that dictated I obtain my degree as quickly as possible; circumstance that have since changed.
**Job Placement: I cannot speak to anything with respect to this as I have not yet been in need of these services.
**OVERALL: This is only my opinion based on my personal experience, with this institution, but I have very much enjoyed my experiences at CTU. My reason for leaving is that I am changing my major, from Finance to clinical Psychology, which is not offered there. If not for this, I probably would stay as it offers the benefits, services, and features that I desire from a school.