Does the University of Phoenix really require a statement of faith?

My blog entry University of Phoenix reinvents the week, again has over time become quite a magnet for discussion, pro and con, regarding the University of Phoenix. A few days ago, a comment was added that piqued my interest:
“The University of Phoenix (Phoenix, AZ) is also a stinker. Its business degrees are not accredited by AACSB, and the tuition is $1,764 for graduate courses. Additionally, this institution requires that instructors sign a “statement of faith” concerning their religious views.”
Hmmm…, I said, I know the latter certainly isn’t true since I’m an instructor and would never sign a statement of faith, even if it was a perfect match for my own faith, just on general principal. To dig further into this, I checked in with colleague Pete Wright, who works with the University of Phoenix, and here’s what he said…

“First, on the AACSB issue, no – we’re not accredited by them, but we are members of the organization. The accrediting standards are such that it would be impossible for us to qualify. They look for things like percentage of full-time faculty, physical library facilities, etc., that are clearly outside of our scope, given the sort of organization we’ve chosen to be. As members, we work closely with the organization on learning objectives for our graduate business programs, but accreditation isn’t something we’re going for any time soon. I’m not sure if this was one that you wanted a response on; the site has a standard statement on our accreditation, but that’s the word as I see it. 😉
“Now, on the statement of faith. This is one of those pesky rumors that tends to mutate a la telephone tag. Here’s the straight story.
“We provide some of the infrastructure for Orange Lutheran High School Online. They’re an independent institution, and we’re a business partner and white-label solution provider for their online operations. As such, we provide some faculty recruiting (though Orange has a vast network recruiting operation through the Lutheran Education System which mirrors their on-ground faculty recruiting initiatives). All potential faculty members are vetted through University of Phoenix faculty specialists, documentation collected, credentials verified; then candidates are forwarded to the director of the school. Because the curriculum is faith-based, and there’s a religious backbone in all courses, the administration of Orange requires all eligible candidates for faculty positions to sign this statement of faith.
“Once Orange selects appropriate faculty, they’re handed back to University of Phoenix faculty training to get training on the systems they’ll use in teaching at Orange. They’re teaching the Orange curriculum, in their system, using our engine.”
So there’s your answer. Seems reasonable to me, just as if I were to hire a group of bloggers for, say, a local religious institution, I might well have to convey their requirements for certain values or even, yes, a statement of faith.
Also, had the commentator done their homework, they would have learned that I have already written about this subject: University of Phoenix expands into religious teaching.

16 comments on “Does the University of Phoenix really require a statement of faith?

  1. Nadine, it is the regional accreditation that matters and UOP is regionally accredited. There is a difference between regional and professional accreditation. AACSB and the like are professional accreditation bodies. However, UOP is recognized by CHEA and the US Department of Education. Some people question the quality of a degree if it is not “professionally” accredited. However, it is the regional accreditation that matters the most. There are many factors that contribute to professional accreditation. Some of which UOP can not possibly fulfill due to the type of school that they have chosen to be. Nevertheless, this not directly relate to the quality of education. I have seen similar situations in traditional settings as I have in the online setting.

  2. As a former Academic Counselor of U of P, it absolutely amazes me that this school is Regionally Accredited. They must be paying of somebody to have all of their unethical business practices overlooked by this accrediting body. When it comes to academics, Regional Accreditation must allow for extremely low standards. U of P attracts and admits so many students who could never succeed at a traditional university.

  3. I am a student, and have had the pleasure of working with many very qualified adults at UoP that would do fine in any academic setting.
    You will get what you put into it.
    With two children, one on the way, and full time job, home to keep, I personally do not have the time to waste going to and from campus.
    Besides the last class I took at a brick and mortar was philosophy, 30 year old married, father, Vet, in a class of 18 year old, still living with mom and dad, no responsibilities whatsoever. It was humorous to say the least.

  4. I could not agree more with the academic advisor whose earlier blog stated that many students admitted would not make it in a traditional college. I am a current student at Phoenix with enough class under my belt to recognize that by making 40% of total grade from team exercises lets many students pass that should’nt.
    They create this process of creating a charter to give students a sense of some control over the relationship between our work and grades. In the charter process, other students taught me to ensure we included consequences for students that turned in poor work to include, because many times they were unable to understand or apply the learning, or would wait until the last 1/2 hour after someone had spent a whole pulling together a team assignment, to turn theirs in. I personally hate Mondays because with team assignments, it usually means an allnighter on Sunday or missed work time on Monday to fix others work — that is if you want an A.
    Well, if the Charter said those non performing member would not receive credit and names left off the assignment, I could live with that. But, time after time after time, the instructors say the charter has not bearing and they give these non performing students the A’s the rest of us earn for them. It is amazing how these students have emergencies every weekend or retreats or just disappear knowing that they don’t have to do any work because someone on the team wants an A.
    It is insulting, as an adult paying for a quality education, and is a huge disservice to our communities… giving degrees to students that sometimes cannot think through even basic applications of their learning.
    When I’ve tried to push back to the professor that if a student on my team doesn’t understand the learning they should help them, the party line is that it is the responsibility of the team to help that student out.
    The certainly should be not accredited.

  5. This degree is a joke. I have been tryiong to become a teacher for three years and nothing. I am substitute teaching and working at Walmart. Thanks UOP.

  6. I would like to address the previous post from the person who has been trying to become a teacher for three years but is working at Wal-Mart, perhaps you did not apply yourself and you are not a quality candidate. For example, you might want to use spell-check before you post in an open format. [tryiong]<<See above post.

  7. You do not know how hard I applied myself. I had a 4.0 grade point average. Just because I made a typo does not mean that I am not intelligent. There are no jobs.

  8. In addition, there are plenty of people in the same boat. The competition is so high for jobs around where I live. The rate of people applying for each job is 300:1. There are stories like this all over the country.

  9. As a former employee and a student of U of P, I have zero admiration for this farce of a business–and it is no more than a very profitable business. In fact it is little more than a cash cow for its stock holders and merely a crap shoot in terms of educational value. While I agree, to a degree, with one blogger’s comment, “You get out of it what you put into it…,” the main premise of being a successful graduate is simply showing up and paying the glutenous/excessive tuition. There are many fine and experienced teachers who offer great insight into various “degree” programs, but let no one be fooled, it is not about education. It is about enrollment at any cost–most notably sales tactics, pressure and deception at its worst. Where I worked, the Director of Admissions was no better or qualified than a low budget used car sales person. She openly and consistently lied and was a blatant sexual harasser. The company new of its untoward director and tactics and literally celebrated them. This company is sleazy. Anyone would do far better for themselves, financially and educationally, by attending a community college and then a state university. No sour grapes here, just seven years of teaching; three degrees (two of them far more meaningful than the other) and countless aspects of comparison.

  10. UoP is a farce. As a former student I can tell you that much of your grade is based on classroom “discussions.” These are forum posts wherein many students simply repeat–badly–what they think the text says every week. Trying to maintain a “discussion” or to have something pertinent to offer to people who plagiarize the text week in and week out, is more than a little challenging.
    Nor do instructors make any effort to curtail this behavior. So, discussions are a joke and not worth the effort, as nothing is learned the entire week.
    Assignments are simply a matter of reiterating what you have read. No imagination or real effort required. I would often paraphrase text as a test and then make up sources. I was rewarded with an A regardless.
    How this university remains in business, and how any prospective employer would take them seriously or consider someone with a degree from UoP, I cannot understand. I highly recommend looking elsewhere for a quality education.

  11. I also feel obliged to add this tidbit: The communication you will receive from UoP-from Counselors and enrollment “specialists” or even from financial aid counselors-is simply a joke. Weeks will go by during which time you will hear nothing, or perhaps receive a notice that “everything is fine, and your next classes are all set.”
    Then, a scant few days before your next classes roll round, Financial Aid will postpone them because of something they failed to tell you about. This is a common practice and since they never return phone calls it is very difficult to rectify these matters.
    Please, stay away.

  12. I have attended UOP Online for the past three years and find it very challenging. Having to write 2000 words essays every other week is no joke. I attended National University some years ago in a traditional setting and have to say I learned nothing. The professors were awful. I attended the USC in a traditional setting, although some of the professors were great, attending class in evening for three hours was very difficult, especially after a long day at work. I love online. At UOP, I have been put on academic probation when I allow my GPA to drop below what is required. I have been dinged for not quoting properly and had to go before an academic board. I believe all educational setting have its pros and cons. UOP is by no means a “pay for degree” program. Try taking an online advance quantitative statistics test within three hours. UOP is just like traditional schools, some instructors are great and some are awful. What you get out of it is what you put into it. Since getting a BA Degree at UOP my salary has increased by at $10,000. This is over the past 2 years. I have two class left on a master’s program and I intend to double $10,000 over the next year. One can go to any school and obtain a degree. It is what you learn that matters. The education you achieve should be notable in your communication, your judgment, and your professionalism. Education gives one the confident to go out and compete for any career. Key word being “compete”. You can have a degree from Harvard or Stanford but if you are not confident in your abilities you will fail. I have no doubt that I am much more competitive now that I was when I did not have a degree.

  13. UOP is a decent school if you can just get passed the lazy and incompetent staffing. The only two good things about this school is that it provides decent education and excellent instructors. I received a Bachelors in Criminal Justice and about to Receive a Masters online as well. I found my time a UOP fulfilling in regards to my education, but frustrated when dealing with academic and financial councilors, who tend to be nothing but problems. Most of UOP staffing is made up of UOP students who work part time while working on their education. During my 4 years of attending UOP, I have come to conclude that UOP is only cares about the money and is full of excuses. My recommendation to anyone who is looking to attend UOP, make sure this school is the right school for you and remember, where ever you go you will have problems, but remember you education is all that counts. Good Luck!

  14. FUTURE STUDENTS BEWARE! Make sure before you sign up with this college that you are well aware at how much it is really going to cost you. Into finishing two of my blocks my son got sick and we found that he had a form of lung cancer. I tried to explain that I needed to drop out because I wouldn’t have the time to attend. By the way they advertise attending on line on your own schedule. “What a joke” They would only allow me to be out for 90 days. Does anyone know that in 90 days cancer is cured? In the end I lost my financial aid because I hadn’t attended long enough. I paid this crappy school over $1900.00 and can you believe they sent me to collections for a balance of $170.00 which by the way when I signed up I was suppose to get my material free $70.00 per class which leaves a balance of $30.00. They state they gave it back to financial aid. All this college does is have these counselors roping you into signing up and it’s all about money. NOT YOUR EDUCATION!!

  15. Would someone please clear up this mess.. I hav ebeen seeing the ads for this ‘university’ for years. I am a National Merti scholar and just not in a position to attend school duting any structured hours. But , I need not waste either my time or energy and mind ( a mind is a terrible thing to waste… sometimes just a terrigle thing…:))
    Anyone have anything good to say about the school or the acceptability of its degrees in the professional workplace, oarticularly in IT settings ?

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