An investigative story by ABC news reports that for-profit online higher education giant University of Phoenix made false promises to several want-to-be teachers. Apparently, recruiters for the online university promised students who were considering enrolling in the College of Education program that upon graduation, they would be certified to teach in their state. After taking out thousands of dollars in student loans and starting classes, the truth became clear: a degree from the program would not certify teachers in the state where they wanted to teach.
An ABC News producer called into the University of Phoenix to verify these claims. The abridged transcript of that conversation appears below:
Producer: I just want to understand clearly. I can go to University of Phoenix, do my bachelor's degree, and 100 percent for sure I can go back to either Texas, or New York and I can sit for those exams and once I finish those exams...I can teach. Recruiter: Then you can become a teacher. Yes. That is true. What's your e-mail address?
“Despite her assurances, the recruiter’s claim was not true. Even with successful completion of the required certification testing, a degree from the University of Phoenix does not guarantee a teaching certificate in either of those states,” the story found.
Although this particular case is specific to higher education, the story should be a warning to thoroughly research all online programs before enrolling. For more information about how to choose an online program that’s right for you or your child, as well as what questions to ask to when researching programs, check out A Parent’s Guide to Choosing the Right Online Program, by iNACOL.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Digital Education blog.