Grand Canyon University… a “real” college?

By | September 11, 2015

I have been getting ph calls from them (seems like they’re soliciting). I have my bachelor’s in Communications and plan to work toward my Master’s degree in Elementary Ed. They apparently have an online program and said that if I take 2 classes every 8 wks, I can finish in a year to a year and a half.

But my question is, is this an accredited, credible, respected “university”? Apparently they have a campus and all that. Not that having a campus makes it legit…

Does anybody have any knowledge of this school, or any tips/ advice on how to find out if they’re legit? Thank you!!! :)

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3 thoughts on “Grand Canyon University… a “real” college?

  1. fcas80

    Here is a simple answer: Call the Board of Education, Human Resources department, of a school district you want to work in, and ask if they will accept GCU graduate credits. If they do, then nothing else matters. If they don’t, then nothing else matters.

    By the way, if you are not currently licensed to teach, you probably need a semester of in-person student teaching before you can become licensed, and you can’t do that online.

  2. ownpool

    Per the GCU website they are accredited. They have a very detailed description of their accreditation.

    May I suggest that a prospective master’s degree student should go directly to the primary source, rather than asking this sort of question here.

  3. Gregg DesElms

    Grand Canyon University
    3300 W. Camelback Rd.
    Phoenix, AZ 85017
    United States
    Phone: (602) 249-3300
    Fax: (602) 589-2538

    is fully ACCREDITED by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA-HLC), which is one of the so-called “big six” REGIONAL accreditors in the united states. And “regional” accreditation is the so-called “gold standard” for accreditation in this country.

    You’re confused, I’ll bet, because somewhere in the back of your mind, you recall hearing about a bona fide diploma mill with a similar name. And, if so, you’re right; you did. CANYON COLLEGE is a notorious diploma mill whose “degrees” aren’t worth the blasting powder it would take to blow them up. It’s worse than worthless.

    But GRAND CANYON UNIVERSITY is the real deal. Fear not.

    And don’t look down your nose at “online” (or other forms of distance learning) degrees, either. There is almost nothing which can’t be taught via various forms of distance education just as well as they can be taught in the classroom. Even this nation’s most impressive universities — the like of Harvard, Yale and MIT — all offer online programs now. It is no longer a “second class” form of education. And anyone who says otherwise is not keeping up. Even the US Department of Education (USDE) in a recent study (released in June 2009) that distance learners tend to work harder and are more self-motivated, and generally do better (grade-wise) than more traditional, in-the-classroom students.

    The trick with ANY school — of the distance learing type or otherwise — is to VERIFY that it is ACCREDITED by an agency approved by USDE and/or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

    EVERYONE should ALWAYS take a moment to LOOK-UP any school they’re interested in to ensure that it’s accredited by a USDE- and/or CHEA-approved agency. EVERYONE! ALWAYS! LOOK-UP!

    And here’s WHERE to look-up schools:

    A school can’t even BE in those databases unless it’s ACCREDITED by an agency approved by USDE and/or CHEA; so if you can’t find the school in which you’re interested in one or both of those databases, BEWARE!

    So, the bottom line answer(s) to your question(s) is(are): Yes, Grand Canyon University is a “real” college. It is accredited. And it is EXTREMELY credible… and very respected. It’s programs are legit, as are its marketing claims. You just have to do exactly what they tell you to do, and you’ll get the results claimed.

    And, actually, yes, to some degree, any school which has a REAL campus (not just a physical location… often little more than a storefront in a strip mall) is far more likely NOT to be anything even remotely close to being a diploma mill… even if it’s not accredited. With it as easy to dupe people online with a high-end web site, diploma mills won’t make the additional investment in an impressive-looking campus that’s little more than a ruse. There’s just no money in it. It’s far better to take the money which a mill might have spend on a capus, and sink it, instead, into all the little details which any good con artists knows one needs to cover in order to APPEAR more credible…. like an even better web site, or a fake accreditor and it’s very impressive web site, or a phone bank of people answering a toll-free number who will look you up and “verify” your fake degree if any employer wants to check on it… stuff like that.

    And with what I have written here, your last paragraph is also addressed. There is NEVER any reason to come to a place like this and ask if a school is credible and accredited. Begin by simply lookin-up the school in either the CHEA or the USDE database. If it’s not there, then it’s not accredited…

    …and even though many very respectable and serious and credible unaccredited schools exist out there, the mere fact that the school in which one’s interested isn’t accredited is typically reason enough for one to just move on.

    Oh… and by the way… checking with boards of education, and/or asking if entity B will accept credits from entity A is the LAST way you should be checking on a school. Beginning by simply looking it up in the CHEA and/or USDE databases (preferably the CHEA… it’s kept up-to-date just a little tiny bit better than USDE’s) is the BEST initial course of action. If the school’s not accredited, then it doesn’t matter one whit what the entity B’s of the world have to say.

    Hope that helps.

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