Pros and Cons of The Art Institute Online

I often get asked if I enjoyed attending school online or if I would still do it if I had to do it all over again. I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Interactive Media Design from the Art Institute Online, which is actually the “online division” of The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. As I finished my degree in 2006, I decided to ask fellow students for some pros & cons of attending The Art Institute Online (AIO). Let me start by saying that this website is not sponsored nor endorsed by The Art Institutes so everything you read here are honest opinions and will not be sugarcoated. Students just tell it like it is on this site. So here is a list of their most popular responses in no particular order (keep in mind this is a collection of actual comments from students as described in August 2006):

Pros

  • Flexible Schedule – Do assignments and read lectures, books, websites, etc whenever and wherever you want
  • Learn Anywhere – Wherever there is an internet connection, you can be in class.
  • Few “tests” – Most grades are based on projects that help show individual talent and understanding rather than simple memorization.
  • Convenience & Flexibility – It’s good for those that prefer to work independently, but it does require a bit of discipline.
  • Convenience – Don’t have to worry about weather issues (like snow).
  • Anonymity – Because this is somewhat anonymous, people may participate more than they probably would in a traditional classroom setting where they would shy away from discussions.
  • Dealing with professionals in my line of work – Most everyone is already in the creative field in one way or another, so we can relate.

Cons

  • Cost – Currently about $70k for a bachelor degree)
  • Many classes are dated – Quite a bit of interactive media assignments aren’t currently being used in the real world. I don’t care what the facilitators try to tell you, Authorware is dead…let it go.
  • Lack of Social Aspect – There is no face-to-face interaction that students of ground schools get to experience. Network and socializing is somewhat more difficult and less effective
  • Lack of Traditional Benefits – Due to it’s nature there are no benefits like you would find at a traditional campus, such as student gyms, doctors, social programs, stocked library, ect.
  • Lack of Advice – The school only provides a minimum amount of guidance when pursuing financial aid and career guidance.
  • Class Lecture Material/Textbook Choices – Most times, the information is so old in the lectures and even more often than that, the information included is not in depth enough. Quite often, the textbooks are less than helpful as well. There are many students that do not even buy textbooks…ever…and still make straight A’s.
  • Anonymity – Yes, this is both a pro and a con. Sometimes it’s hard to be so alone…it’s not just being alone as far as classes go. It is being anonymous when it comes to administration, too. Academic advisers would seem to be more apt to help out if we were right in front of them.
  • Waiting Period – Sometimes it makes things difficult when you have questions for an instructor and you have to wait for a response through e-mail or in the discussions….sometimes takes days. On rare occasions, the facilitator may not even respond, which negatively impacts assignments.
  • Facilitators – They should still be teachers. Just because we are online and this is self-based learning, does that mean that they should simply give grades and feedback. We want the wisdom of their experience. There are some good ones out there, those that go above and beyond to do whatever they can to make the learning experience a positive one. Far too often, though, the bad ones outweigh the good ones…and a bad facilitator makes it a painful experience when you feel like you’re wasting 5 1/2 weeks and $1300+ dollars!
  • Pre-structured Classes – The teachers basically have little or no input into what material we cover and how we cover it since it is all laid out in advance. Many facilitators blame the material rather than fixing it as they go. Then again, some facilitators step up and fix the mistakes, errors, and outdated material.
  • State grants (outside of PA) will not be accepted at The Art Institute Online since AIO is a division of The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. If you receive a state grant outside of PA…well…you’re out of luck.
  • No connection with most of the classmates! I mean yeah, we have bios on the first day of class but other than that, the postings are just blah and it’s easy to disconnect with people. It would be nice if we had a section in each class for more personal topics if someone wants to post whats new with them, life, pictures, to share what they did over the weekend, whatever. There is a student lounge for such posts, but the “new” classroom format makes it easy for cobwebs to form in that section of the forums.
  • Session 2 of every quarter – The Art Institute Online arguably has the most screwed up schedule for “semesters”. There are two sessions in a quarter. Each session is 5 1/2 weeks long. The first session runs basically from Monday-Sunday (yes…you can be in class any day of the week, but the first 5 are typically the busiest). The second session though runs Thursday-Wednesday which means you do the bulk of assignments on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday! It makes it incredibly difficult to get into any sort of schedule with work and life as you are forced to move everything around the changing school schedule. It flat out sucks.

Summary

So there you have it…a rather extensive, honest list from actual students of the pros and cons of The Art Institute Online. Hopefully this will give people interested in attending AIO an inside scoop on what might be expected. I hope it also serves as a list of issues for The Art Institute that the students are most concerned about. A few of the cons are minor issues that could easily be resolved within the administration, which would make an immediate impact. The #1 pro was “convenience” as students like the ability to attend class wherever and whenever. I, personally, had an extremely hard time justifying the cost of the online version needing to be $100 more per class than the on-ground version at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh and I have never received a straight-up and honest answer for the cost. I’ve been led to believe (based on my experience as well as others) they can charge whatever they feel like since they are are private institute and operate it as more of a business than an educational institution…students just have to deal with it. Students simply do not get all of the advantages as campus students with computers, labs, software, library, face-to-face & immediate feedback, etc. Online learning may be the wave of the future, but the Art Institute is wading about ankle deep and not fully utilizing nor teaching many of the latest technology (as far as “Interactive Media Design” goes)…it’s still a rather rough and turbulent ride as they work out the kinks. If you can attend an on-ground campus, then I strongly suggest doing so. If your schedule prohibits that, then The Art Institute Online can still offer an opportunity to hang a degree on your wall.

Be sure to also read the numerous comments below posted by actual students as well as people who went through the application process for The Art Institute Online. You’ll find many reviews for the Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online Division below.

Finally, here are a few other sources of student reviews of The Art Institute Online:
studentsreviews.com
associatedcontent.com
getdregrees.com
onlinedegreereviews.org

Do you have something you’d like to share about The Art Institute Online? Please do so in the comment section below!

38 Responses to “Pros and Cons of The Art Institute Online”


  • Since I’ve wasted thousands upon thousands of dollars and enormous debt at AIO I thought I would post this from today:

    For-Profit College Corporation Accused Of Violating Federal Law By States, Justice Department

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/08/justice-department-for-profit-college_n_921661.html

    “The U.S. Justice Department and four states sued the nation’s second-largest for-profit college corporation on Monday, alleging in a wide-ranging complaint that Education Management Corp. violated federal laws by giving bonuses and raises to college recruiters based entirely on the number of students they enrolled.

    By unlawfully incentivizing its sales force to recruit as many students as possible, Pittsburgh-based EDMC also illegally took in federal student aid money by making false assurances to the government that its admissions counselors were complying with the government recruiting guidelines, the government alleged.”

    hit the link for the full monty.

    (That’s The Art Institutes parent company, fyi)

    Of course, they only have the student’s education as their top priority…

  • Wow, Michael, thanks for the tip on the story. Based on the numerous comments that have been posted here, I can’t say this is a surprise…

  • It is Saturday morning, I woke up early and have ready every single comment. I am also thankful to have come across this information. I too requested information, received the masses of phone calls and got the 2hr pitch. My gut said it was wrong to have someone rushing me into something so quickly. I could also tell the dialog was being read from a script. I sat through the call…but then made an excuse to get off the phone and have not called back since. I TRULY wanted to research things further. I have since received masses of phone calls, emails, etc….but something was just not right. Think I feel I understand what my gut was telling me now….. thanks to all. I am a single mom and could not have afforded the financial pitfall they were attempting to lead me into.

  • I am currently enrolled at AI Online Pitt Division and was happy when I started until tonight that I had 45k in debt and not one degree to show for it. I transferred from Kaplan due to them keeping the stipend checks that was owed to me,and then wanted to charge me for them saying that I wasnt supposed to get them. AI classes are not what I figured design classes would be, I am not learning anything that I couldnt teach myself by Googling stuff on the internet. I have had five financial advisors and four academic advisors since I have been there and I started in August of last year. They told me that you are only allowed 57K of financial aid, and I am at 45K right now because my aid carried over from Kaplan. So basically, I have 12 more grand and then I am screwed because I will have to pay out of pocket. I can NOT afford to pay out of pocket, there is just no way that this will be possible. He told me in emails that I was due a 472 stipend and now they are saying that I will only get 89 dollars, but then he called me back and said that I might not get anything. I depend on some of those stipends for art supplies that I honestly dont think that I should have to buy because they charge almost 400 dollars per term for books/supplies. Where are these books and supplies? I dont ever receive anything, atleast from Kaplan I got a book or two every term. I dont receive crap from this school, I cant honestly even tell you how many credits that I have because the website MAKES NO SENSE. They keep playing it off that the government is the reason that I cant get my money any quicker but, I found out tonight that my advisor didnt finish out my file and it pushed my funding even further out. They said where I had a balance carried over from 2010, that now my funding has to pay for it and the balance that I have now wont be paid for?????? Does any of that make sense to you? It damn sure doesnt to me.
    This is what I am dealing with on a weekly basis, they never call and just go over this with me let alone tell me that I only have 12K of funding left and then if I decide to go to any other school I am screwed. Is that right? Does anyone know this?So if I use all my funding at this POS school, and decide that I want to go paralegal something that I wanted to do in the first place am I screwed? Will I have to pay out of pocket for everything there? I wish that I had found this site before I got sucked into the debt that I have now. Mom told me that I should quit school and file bankruptcy. It sounds like a good idea. Mom wanted me to go to school and now after she has seen the stress that I have had, she says that I should file bankruptcy amazing how schools get away with this….By the way, I dont live at home. I am happily married and 33 years old.

  • Wow, I wish I found this site a week sooner. I just got suckered into applying so I can view my financial plan. I did not submit my application cause I was not sure until an admission rep said they would pay. Big mistake ever! I am not enrolled or I have not given them permission to enroll me. Im currently at one of the best colleges in the nation but decided to go to school online. The rep is encouraging that I withdraw from my school and start their school now. I do not think so. All I wanted was to see what my options were. Now, I am regretting ever considering this school. I emailed the admission rep and plan to call with my mom today and make sure they do not go any further into this process. If they do enroll me and bill me, legal action will be taken. If your are considering this school, please do research and make an educated decision. College is meant to be one of the funniest times in a young college student’s life, go to a traditional campus and enjoy it like its meant to be. Hopefully this is all just and dream and does not become a nightmare for me. UCF, go Knights! They offer most of these degrees on campus with an amazing college town. I will never again consider an online degree.

  • i got interested in the aio, looked up their curriculum and was super excited to start. but first i did some research. among many others i came across this. I read most of the comments, which are negative, keeping in mind that most people write reviews when they are unsatisfied with something. I never ended up attending, and made this decision by looking at diff. online school ratings and the aio had 3 and a had starts out of 5, and is with one accreditation, and no awards for “best online school” bla bla. I am glad to say that with a LOT of research I found a school with a great rating, multiple accreditation and awards… and almost half the price for tuition for a bachelor. From what I’ve seen I wouldn’t recommend this school, but I do not have a personal experience there. one of the most problematic things with this school for me, is that it seems to not be well respected among employers. Good luck everyone and thanks for all the reviews and the dude that made this site 😀

  • i agree with tereza i have seen alot of bad reviews from mainly the employers which affects an undergraduate decisions. I to was sort of rushed and i just received my financial plan friday and can view everything.classes start monday 9/26/2011 and im enrolled for online classes but i havent agreed to being a part time or fulltime student yet.

  • I have taken now 3 classes at AIO. I agree they are really expensive. I just re-enrolled after leaving for about 6 months or so. I was doing some research because I am looking into other schools and I came across this. I am glad I came across it now rather than later. I am taking an English class right now but at the end of it I intend to leave the school. After reading about that poor person that is in 45k debt I just don’t want to do it. I don’t want to get to that. The reason I was looking into changing schools is because I am tired of dealing with the company Journey ED. It is the company that AIO goes through to order Computer programs such as Microsoft Office and Adobe CS5. Well I have been screwed by them like 4 times and I’m sick of it. Seriously sick of it. AIO don’t help worth a crap if there is something wrong with a order either. So I guess I’ll just walk away with having to pay 4k and say screw the whole online school thing. Thank you all for posting this stuff for naive people like me to see. I’m sorry for anyone that has gotten screwed by things like this. It’s just not fair!

    Jill

  • Professor at Aionline

    Hello,

    I am writing after reading through these posts to tell you the side of the Adjunct (a fancy word for part time) Professor at the Art Institute.

    I make $1600 per 6 week class. Which may sound like a lot of money, but if you subtract taxes, and divide this amount by 6 weeks, I get $225/week for one class. Opening, reading and evaluating a students work takes time. And, classes have 3/4 assignments a week. $225/week per class divided by 10 hours is $22.5, divided by 20 hours is $11.25 and divided by 30 hours is $7.5 an hour. But, my pay rate is not hourly. It is a flat fee of $1600, whether I teach for 10 hours or 30 a week.

    Another way to think about this is if I teach 20 hours I make $11.25/hour and if there are 15 students and 4 assignments in a week, that is 60 total assignments that I have 20 hours to evaluate giving me 20 minutes per assignment, not including responding to emails, problems and solutions or questions for the professor. Also, this job does not give me healthcare. I pay 600$ per month out of pocket for independent coverage.

    However, I choose to be a professor because I love design and want to mentor students. And, most of the time I really do the best that I can. Some days I do not reply to every email because I have just worked 10 hours at my other jobs. I think that many students at the art institute do not realize that most of their teachers are part time. I am not a full time, tenured professor with great benefits happily working from home ignoring you. I am a part time adjunct professor that does not do this job for the money. I do care about you and your work and want to help you improve. I just feel badly that I can not spend more time teaching here, as it does not pay enough to be my only job. But, I feel that the classes I teach are strong, and the work completed in them is excellent.

    What is funny is that I used to teach at a public state funded community college that offered the same classes taught by the same teacher (me) for a total cost of less than $5000 for a full 2-year degree with outstanding financial aid. Many of the students posting here that are most concerned about cost, might be better off enrolling in their local community college. Most of the teachers that teach at Ai also teach elsewhere. A design education is what you make of it, regardless of where you go. And, when you look for a job later, it is your portfolio that matters, not your degree or where you got it from.

  • Wow. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO POSTED!!

    I had a feeling I should check to see what the pros and cons of AIO were before enrolling this next week. So, needless to say…I won’t be enrolling.

    Thanks…and best wishes to everyone still wading in all that debt for a degree they feel was worthless.

  • I would say to anyone that would want to attend the AIO for art media and animation to dont even think about it. I graduated in March of 2010 with bachelors that is good as blank piece of paper The classes are out dated and dont offer any type of update tod date instruction or software that companies use today. How can a school not offer ZBrush in modeling. I found most teachers dont even care about students, just pass them and move them along for the money. I did have one teacher fail me and not even explain why he did, he even belittled many students during that class. The funny thing was he no longer part of AOI the next semester. The finacial department is a joke, I was told my tutition was 67,000 but now it’s 87,000, how does that happen. I went through six different academic advisors, and one actually told me she had 450 students to work with and didn’t have time to help me with my problem…seriously I was told that. This school should be investaged for fraud and misrepresentation, more student and a few past teachers have posted about the problems of this school on other websites. I for one am currently talking with my lawyer about my situation and what steps to take. Stay away from AOI and Sally Mae for any student loans.

  • I’ve taken two online courses and I would highly recommend staying away from the Art Institute online courses. Complete waste of money and time.

  • I wish I would have found this site a few months ago. It would have saved me a lot of money and stress. The first 2 classes I took weren’t too bad. I enjoyed the online learning and my flexible schedule. My color theory class was the only good thing about this so far. The instructor was very helpful did video feedback and was fair about grading. Now I’m in my 3rd class which is college algebra 101. THIS CLASS IS A JOKE! The instructor sucks. The material covered barely relates to the assignments and quizzes. There has been multiple times I have answered things correctly and was told it was wrong. I ask why and I don’t get a response. I had to actually call her to get clarification. In the end I was correct the whole time and she blamed it on the “answer key” she received from the school. That’s the best she could do. She must not have even looked at the work too much to know what was right or wrong.

    I was so frustrated with this that I emailed everyone in the class to see if it was just me. NOPE, turns out over half the class was having issues and a majority of them stopped caring about it entirely, only doing what it took to pass the class. I wrote a formal complaint about the issue along with the responses I received from the other students. I never received a follow up from this still.

    This has been one of the worst experiences I’ve had…so far. I’m on the verge of transferring to a different school. I like the online environment but this bs you have to deal with doesn’t seem worth it. I’ve learned more things online about algebra than I actually did in class. Same goes for a majority of it. Its almost just a paid guidance or “keep you on track” than a school.

    Basically I would suggest that anyone that is considering to attend AIO to pass and find another option. I’m only 3 classes in and I’m ready to get out of it.

    AIO is a joke!

  • Hi, everyone; I`m 17 years old, live in Queens, New York and i was planning on attending The art institutes of Philadelphia – Online – Media arts and animation – Bachelor degree because i thought that it was better than CUNY Queens College, but now I think I`ve change my mind and I will chose CUNY Queens College – Digital media programs.

    Please, somebody with experience, help me chose between these or another.

    Does anybody have studied on CUNY Queens College – Digital media programs?
    I want some opinions and experiences about it.

    Please, I am exhausted of doing a very comprehensive and deep Google Research! 🙂

  • I have graduated with a diploma and an Associates degree from AiO and now starting my Bachelor’s. The only reason i am staying at AiO is because none of my classes will transfer. My experience here has been horrible. There are some teachers that care and help but the majority don’t teach they just collect assignments and give you links to outside sources to look up the stuff yourself. They tell you one thing and then grade differently. They even send you videos helping you and when you do it, you get points deducted because you didn’t do the assignment correctly. Unbelievable! I was the only student in one class and I got points off for not commenting on other students posts. THERE WERE NO OTHER STUDENTS!! All the posts by the teacher were copied and pasted because they talked about the entrie class and how some were having roblems and others were doing well. I even asked one for help on a problem and he told me he did not know. The new program that the course was based on was putting color blocks on my assignment. I redid the assignment 4 times and it kept doing it and I asked for help over 10 times. I got an F on my final because I did not figure out how to take off the color blocks but he admitted he did not know how to do it himself only that I should have contacted the software company and solved the problem. Oh and all the assignments up to the final that still had the color blocks on them I got a’s and B’s but it dropped to an A when I reported the problem to my counselor. This is just a few of my encounters with the teachers. Don’t even get me started on the billing department. All I got to say is CHECK YOUR BILL AND ASK FOR THEIR STATEMENT NOT THE ONE YOU SEE ONLINE…. IT DOES NOT SHOW EVERYTHING AND THEY WILL NOT TELL YOU THAT UNTIL YOU GRADUATE AND THEY HOLD YOUR DIPLOMA UNTIL YOU PAY IN FULL!!!!!!! IT HAPPENED WITH BOTH OF MY DEGREES.

  • Another Aio Instructor

    I agree with pretty much everything “Professor at Aionline” said further upstream.

    AIO is a pretty terrible place to try and actually teach, the workload placed on our shoulders is incredible, we work non-stop, and are paid an absolute pittance. Probably 95% or more of the instructors you see at AIO teach at other institutions in order to cover their basic living needs. I know, I know, it is really hard to believe given how high the tuition is. All I can say is that someone is getting rich (EDMC is, after all, a corporation), and it ain’t us.

    Every session or so we get another round of new duties that are added to our already over-filled plates. Basically, we are on call ALL THE TIME. Our class sizes get larger every year. There has not been an increase in class pay for a decade or more.

    We get evaluated by a random, anonymous person every few weeks, and once a year by another faceless person. There is no person-to-person contact, we get our evaluations through a website. These evaluations often contain many errors, and we have virtually no recourse (technically we do, but in practice, not). We actually cannot teach what we really want to or know, oh sure, we can try to sneak it into the classroom, but at the end of the day we are bound to teach the assignments they give us, and to grade they way they want us to. If we change assignments, we can be penalized for doing so.

    Take my word for it, there are many really, really good instructors, the vast majority seriously care about the students, but are just barely scrambling to meet their workload and pay their bills.

    Yes, there are some full-time faculty, and they DO have a better time of it, and have more stability to resources to work with students. But as of yesterday, the school is laying off large numbers of full-time, they say they are economically strapped. It is hard to believe, of course, given the huge amounts of tuition you guys pay. So now, there is even more chance the instructor you get will be a virtual migrant worker. Please don’t blame us, we are on your side, we ALL want to work for a GOOD school that values skills and experience, and allows us to teach well.

    This school IS NOT RUN BY ARTISTS OR DESIGNERS. We have NO SAY in how things go down here. It is all about the bottom line. If they really cared about you, they would care about us. As the saying goes, if you want to know how you will be treated as a customer, look to how the employees are treated. If they are unhappy, you don’t want to do business with them.

    If you want a good art education, get together a really good portfolio, and apply to a top tier school where they put money and resources into the students.

  • Isn’t there something we can do about this?

    Yesterday I had submitted this email to my instructor and my academic counselor. I also forwarded the email to some previous instructors.

    “Dear Elise,

    I hope this email finds you well. I regret to inform you that I will not be completing my assignment for this evening as a result of an extremely discouraging and frustrating series of interactions with The Art Institute. Based on my treatment and the lack of faith that I have in the school, I’ve decided to withdraw from the Cognitive Psychology course, and will finalize my withdrawal tomorrow with the appropriate office.

    Since my start at AiO in 2009, I’ve been nothing but an eager and driven student. However, over the past year I’ve run into issues while tirelessly attempting to attain a firm graduation date from my academic counselors. On at least two instances, I was told that it would be “_____”. I planned my life accordingly and worked towards my goal. As those dates approached, and I followed up with my academic counselor(s), the dates were constantly being pushed back. Unable to get a definitive response about my graduation date, I decided to complete my own degree audit.

    Through this audit, I discovered that four of the classes completed at AiO were not even on my required curriculum. This was something that shocked me, as I had been lead to believe that all of my credits were going towards my major. To date, I have not gotten a clear answer from the school and still do not know when I will graduate. I feel that I was mislead as to which courses were necessary especially since it is the school that selects my courses for me based on the curriculum.. After paying $5,000 in tuition last week and thousands more over the last year, and getting the runaround from an accredited academic institution, I feel unsatisfied, mislead and very discouraged. I do not feel that the school is forthcoming, or has their students’ academic interests in mind.”

    I’ve spoken to my academic counselor 2-3 times in January and her response is that she’s “working on it”. This has been a waste of time and money, and I’ve decided to withdraw from the school which results in another ~$500 down the drain. One of my professors told me to contact the Dean or Academic Director. I’ve called the school for this information and still haven’t heard back from anyone. Has anyone contacted the Pennsylvania Department of Education? I’m going to call them on Monday if I don’t get a response in the next day or so.

  • Hello to all,
    This is my first quarter at the Aio. My program of study is bachelor of interior design. I’m a foreign student. Also I’m not an American citizen an don’t live in United States as well. It’s very important to me to make sure that can I pursue my education and study master of architecture or interior design on campus ( not online) after finishing my Aio bachelor’s program? I mean is it considered as a real and accredited bachelor degree that I need to have to get admission for my future master education not online but on campus? I know it’s accredited for getting job and my future career, but I would like to know that is it acceptable as a bachelor degree if I want to get admission for master education on campus from a university In the future? It’s very very important to me. Please write something about that if you can help me. Thank you So much

    Halle

  • To the poster above me, Grace,

    First and foremost, I fully understand where you are coming from. While my situation may not be exactly the same as yours; it was similar to the point that compelled me to rely. You are not alone.

    I have been attending The Art Institute of Pittsburgh-Online Division since 2009 for an associates degree in Graphic Design. With the exception of only a couple of instructors, the overall learning experience has been, in my own case, decent. However, the conduct from all of my advisory staff is a completely different story.

    My counselors, both academic and financial have been changed multiple times. I would say I have had 3-4 of each since I began. I believe this is where part of the problem lies. Keep in mind, I also understand that I am not the only student who is assigned to these new counselors. Anyway, in June-July of 2011 I received a form in my email stating that my program of Graphic Design had undergone a change. Seven or so classes had been cut from the 104 credit program which turned it into a 91 credit program. The same form with said information presented me with a button to accept these changes and become apart of the new 91 credit program. Before proceeding, I contacted my academic counselor asking in detail (with a copy of the email I had received) what I needed to do and most importantly at the time, what exactly this meant for me if I decided to accept the changes. My academic counselor replied to my email stating that by accepting to be apart of the 91 credit program would allow me to and I quote, “graduate sooner.” Another tidbit in the email also reassured me that there would be no financial ramifications and would actually benefit me in this regard by taking fewer classes. He also stated all I had to do was to accept the changes and I would be in the new program. A couple of months later, he had contacted me for one reason or another, and I spoke with him about graduation date. He told me I would be graduated by Spring of 2012 as I only had 20 credits left to go. Beyond excited, I told my family and my friends my projected graduation date. My own mother even planned to pay for a vacation to celebrate my graduation because she proud of me.

    Fast forward to February of this year, I notice some questionable items going on in my financial aid summary (a loan was “stuck”) that prompted me to get ahold of my financial aid counselor. She told me that I had reached my loan limit and at this point I needed to begin figuring out alternative ways to pay for my remaining schooling. It was at that point that she told me I still had five classes left to take, which was an incredible blow to me. She then put me on hold and contacted my academic counselor, who I was transferred to after my financial aid counselor had a word with her. Interestingly enough, the academic counselor I was now speaking to was NOT the same one listed on my campus common page who was assigned to me two weeks prior to this phone call. As of today, it still lists the same person who I have never spoken to as my academic counselor. Nevertheless, this academic counselor told me that I had an option of switching to the 91 degree credit program because I was still in the 104 credit program and instead of five additional classes I would only have four so that meant I could graduate in September of 2012! What? I told her that to my knowledge, I was in the new program since I hit accept on the form I received in July 2011. I still have this form, it doesn’t have any other requirements besides accept agreement. I told her that I thought I was in the 91 credit program and she replied, “You had to accept this agreement verbally. What I think must have happened is your counselor at the time couldn’t reach you by phone and this is where the problem lies.” Essentially, she has placed all of the blame on me. All of this despite the fact that I was in contact with my academic counselor the entire time the program had changed. I still have a copy of the email from me to my counselor at the time asking what exactly I had to do and what it meant. I still have the email from my counselor stating all I needed to do was accept the changes if I wanted into the new program. Not to mention the financial benefits it meant to accept on top of the most important aspect to me– sooner graduation date.

    Immediately after breaking this news to me, while I sat there in shock, I was quickly transferred back to my financial counselor who began speaking about private loans and sending me emails for a ton of websites who provided loans. She also ensured me that I would finish school and that I could even make a payment plan if I needed to pay out of pocket. Lastly, she FINALLY realized the original intent of my contact with them (the “stuck” loan) and said she just realized that I DID have some money left from my loans that could be applied. She then told me to give her a week and she promised to call me back to let me know exactly how much was applied from the loans to know where we stood. It has been almost three weeks now and she has not tried to contact me back and I received a bill for over $1000 to be paid or I cannot move on to my next class in two weeks. Needless to say, I am beyond livid.

    I’m sitting here with these emails and I am not sure what kind of action I should take. I have full on proof that in July of 2011 I should have been in the 91 degree credit program, and graduated within a couple of weeks. If that were the case, I would have had just enough loans to cover my entire tuition costs to receive my diploma without an outstanding balance. Because of the failure on their part, I unknowingly took classes that didn’t apply to the new program!!

    I have read other stories of students who tried to voice their concerns in a civilized matter and were basically threatened by their counselors. With that being said, I’m afraid to bring up this e-mail proof that I have to them first because I am thinking of speaking to a lawyer about it first. It’s either that, or should I try and contact the dean of the schools with my concerns and copies of the proof? I am conflicted here because I don’t know if it’s the best idea to bring up this undeniable proof to my counselors, or to go above and beyond for assistance.

    I wish you the best of luck to you Grace and to all of the other students who may be facing similar roadblocks to getting their degree.

    James

  • Another Aio Instructor

    Just an update, online instructors were told last week that they would now have to carry 3 classes per session (instead of 2) for the same pay, meaning they will be working 45 hours a week in the classroom, great, huh? You get an overworked, underpaid instructor for all the ton of money you pay. This is their ‘cost cutting’ measures. Guess how much the CEO of parent company, EDMC, gets paid? He has made $13,185,559 since joining the company in 2007.

  • Current Academic Counselor

    Most of the current stuff here is pretty legit from what I see internally. It’s important to know that some of the much earlier complaints (such as Finance and Academic Counselors having hundreds of students assigned to them) have been fixed. We now have between 150-225ish each which is much more manageable in my opinion. FYI…this downsizing of assigned students was the reason there were so many changes in who people were assigned to. You may have been reassigned to someone’s manager when they transitioned out to a new position (or quit), then transferred to a newer Academic person, then transitioned again to align with someone that specifically worked that degree. There have been a lot of changes as far as this goes…most for the better.

    Seeing bad reviews isn’t shocking…and shouldn’t be to most people. A simple Google search for any company, private or public, will likely yield the same results. I’m no Ai supporter for those wondering. I feel we’re overworked the same as the instructors posted above. However, I think this is pretty widespread at any proprietary (read as FOR-PROFIT) school. Full Sail, Univ. of Phoenix, Westwood…they’re all the same and all have a lot of negative feedback on the internet from places just like this one. Seriously, go to a state school where you can apply for the federal Pell grand AND state grants. Ai-Online doesn’t and can’t accept state funded grants…even in PA where they are based. Go to a state school and receive funds you don’t have to repay with interest. Ai and schools of the sort pay off for some…but rarely as far as I can tell.

  • Dear Grace,

    The exact same thing happened to me. I did my own audit and discovered that not all the classes from the Associates Program transfer to the Bachelors program which is what I was told when I first enrolled. The Recruiter, knowing my educational goals up front, lied and said that all credits transferred. Then I discovered that three of the classes I had taken did not apply to the program that I’ve been enrolled in. I am so livid. Wednesday was supposed to be my last day. I have also been given the run around. I spoke with Ashley Long, the Director of Academics. She basically told me there was nothing she or anyone else could do and maybe I would be reimbursed for those classes they scheduled me for but that weren’t required.

    I don’t know if this will help but the Dean’s name is Jennifer Cooper. Ashley Long’s number is 412-395-7779. I am so upset. I have been going to school at for SIX years have over 180 credits and still am not eligible to graduate. Sadly, after so much blood, sweat and tears of working full-time, going to school and raising a child on my own, I cannot say that I will be very proud about receiving a degree from this poor excuse for a school.

  • Stephen Castiglia

    This is all very true and to this day none of these problems have even been resolved. I emailed AI just the other day about these very problems because they were effecting my grades and still I have not received a response from any one of my counselors. Its like the second you find out their horrible secrets is the day they stop caring about you. This site is no joke and neither are the cons of going to this school. I recommend not going here for an online degree but rather you should go to a campus or even any other online institute besides AI. The lack of teaching from the instructors it self is staggering they are here for a pay check and only that, most instructors wont even return your emails or answer you questions so your pretty much left to teach your self and grade your own papers.

    I still attend unfortunately, but I plan of making a difference here for all the students that will come after me.

  • I have been attending AIO since November of 2011 and am a half time student. Thus far, my overall experience has been positive though there have been some negatives along the way.

    Enrollment was pretty easy and straightforward. My admissions representative did a nice job of blowing smoke up my ass to get me in quickly.

    My financial aid advisor put things together in a timely manner and seemed surprised when I turned it all in immediately. There were no hangups there.

    My Academic Advisor calls me near the end of every class to check up on me and makes himself available if I have any issues or concerns.

    Technical Support may not be awesome, but they get the job done in a timely manner from my experience.

    Faculty are hit and miss, but so are the students and anyone you will ever encounter. Most of my instructors have been reasonably present in class, some have gone above and beyond and one did not seem to even know the subject she was teaching.

    Online school is very expensive and solitary. If you have the option to attend a community college or art school near you, it is probably better in terms of feedback and cost. However, AIO seems to be striving to improve and for the time being I am satisfied with my experience. I’m bookmarking this page and will provide additional feedback as I progress toward earning my BS degree in Game Art and Design.

  • I am currently attending the Art Institute of Houston. Yesterday we received news that 34 of the faculty and staff were going to be laid off at the end of this session. Layoffs include Department Chairmen, student advisers, and instructors. In the midst of the $11 billion lawsuit that EDMC (Ai’s parent company) is battling with the federal government, I’m not surprised at the mass layoffs. However, I am wondering what will happen to the schools if that lawsuit is lost? Will the Ai school system go bankrupt?

  • I’ve been with Ai for two years now and I have had about six career counselors. Everytime I get a new one all the classes that had been scheduled are no longer so. You can almost never get a hold of them and when you do you have to explaine everything all over again. As soon as you get it straight you get a new counselor. Same goes for your financial counselor. When you try to get a hold of the head person again you get no reply, you just have wait and hope someone gets back to you before the class you need is full. For the military students that are using TA pay attention, the school never sent the grades in sothe now the military is taking the money back from my pay. There needs to be another way to file complaints.

  • I’m finishing up my degree there now. I WILL NEVER go back and I urge all of you who I are serious about your degree turn and run the other way! I chose this school originally because I’m on the go all the time with the military. I’m lucky I have a little bit of raw talent! I’m pretty much paying for a piece of paper and going through the motions. I have not been taught one thing that is vital to the graphic arts industry! All the classes are misleading, the teachers are apathetic and EVERYONE passes so long as they TRY! Let me tell you folks, you need a lot more than just TRYING to get into this industry! AIoPO only wants your money (news there right?) They don’t care who graduates! I have a portfolio class coming up and I wanted to get a head start on an internship and asked for help, know where they sent me? Indeed.com. How nice is that? I am a decent artist and make a small living doing so. I’m no spring chicken! For those of you new to this industry or perusing a hobby GO TO A PHYSICAL BRICK AND MORTAR SCHOOL!!!! You will be lost in this online college and no one will care! I am an independent person and have already completed half my classes at a community college before transferring to the AIoPO. Which brings me to another point. I’ve been enrolled into 4 classes that are essentially the SAME CLASS! This place is total crap! On top of that, I got no support what so ever! None. YOU ARE ON YOUR OWN at this school! BUYER BEWARE!!!

  • I was enrolled a little over a year ago in their 3D animation program it was a hassle. I was unable to download the software I needed which was a problem and ended up having to wait a week and a half to get actual disks from their store because they were back ordered. Then the Professor never accepted the first weeks assignements, even though under law they are required to provide us with all necessary tools to do the assignments. I know this because my cousin runs the online division for another university. Do to the lack of the first weeks assignments the Professor never gave me a final grade and so I now stand to have to retake the course if I ever go back.
    Further more they made it seem as if it was my fault I was having difficulties not theirs. I will never deal with them in this capacity again. I don’t think that they teach anything that you cannot learn on your own through a book. In fact most of their assignments pretty much come right out of books. I would encourage anyone interested in 3D animation to find a junoir college that has a few courses and start there.

  • I have been enrolled at Ai since May of this year. I signed up was FASFA and my Post GI Bill. I just kept getting more and more leery about this school. After reading ALL of the comments posted I think I need to talk with someone from the VA. Like most of the people here I have been having issues with the financial adviser as well as my councilor. In order to get my benefits from the GI Bill I need to be full time and they keep putting me on a 2-1 class schedule EVEN AFTER TELLING THEM I WANT FULL TIME; cutting me out of all my money for GI. Meaning that my months are counting down but my Bachelors will take longer leaving me no choice but to pay out of my own pocket. Another gripe would be this magical FASFA that is suppose to relieve my finance woos which I have never seen it go to anything and I am sure next years will disappear just as magically as the first.
    Oh and did I mention that they ‘forgot’ to send my enrollment paper to the Government but still had me going to class. Now, I know that most people wouldn’t understand how the GI Bill fully works… ‘Not even the people who do the GI know’ But, I served my country and worked hard to be able to say I don’t need this kind of stress when all I want to worry about is getting my degree. I need answers and maybe some advice on what the best move is here. I anyone had some sound suggestions I would like to hear from you.
    Should I just change schools altogether?

  • I just finished my Associate of Science in Graphic Design degree in September. I am trying to stay positive but my financial counselor will not return my phone calls. My Academic Counselor has made up a million and one stories as to why my calls are not being returned and proceeds to tell me that I will not receive my degree to hang on the wall until I pay back the loan in full.
    I was very excited at the age of 32 to finish college and loved the convenience of taking classes Online. I would have recommended taking Online classes to anyone but Unfortunately, I feel that I have been slapped in the face and I have a horrible feeling that I have been scammed.

  • I live in Houston and am taking an online course through the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. Boy what a mistake that was! I have an instructor who is terrible! I am 35 and am maintaining straight A’s on campus in Houston where I’ve been attending for 2 years. I do all my homework and sometimes have to complete it early b/c I work in the Oil and Gas industry and can not always be sitting at a computer 24 hours a day. If you turn in assignments even a day early to this instructor she deletes them. Its juvenile and ignorant and just plain asinine!
    I love my teachers on campus and have a great relationship with them and they treat you as an adult. I am talked to like I am a child by this instructor. Its people like this that ruin programs at schools. It’s sad I go overseas through three deployments and come back to be treated like an irresponsible child. it makes me sick to fight in a war for this type of person!

  • I’ve worked in computer graphics for many years in the Printing Industry, and as an Art Director but didn’t finish my first degree goal at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana. i find for the most part signing up at The Art Institute they have really good teachers, and the education part pretty good compared to ground college. I see them teach things I use in professional work now in 2013, so they do well with the classes I’ve taken so far, only one that got me aggravated was repeating history class I already studied in my former college, and I let them know straight up it pissed me off, but did it any way.

    The con for me is them taking a senior level transcript and dropping me down to a sophomore, now almost a junior level student, then making me take things I’ve already studied like the history course. I told them that was a rip off, no response from them! LOL! I also dislike highly they expect us students to follow MLA and not cheat or lie on our work and be highly ethical, and yet AIO is being sued by the Federal Government for stealing money basically in scholarship funding and guaranteed student loans by using what I’ve read to be “boiler room tactics” to get people to sign up, the new students. I’ve never myself been pressured to do anything i don’t want to do, I’m a mean old guy and been in my share of physical fights standing up for myself, not afraid of any person or entity or school and tell people exactly what I think. So it is hard for people to intimidate me into doing something I’m not interested in doing, for others it may be different.

    AIO has a great teacher base in my experience, but I have dropped teachers I did not like, with forceful action when I had time before a class started letting them know if they want me as a student, they have to provide a decent teacher or I will withdraw, I don’t put up with crap, I take my education very serious. You have to stand up for yourself as a student, and I’m an old guy, been around the block a few times and then some. You pay them to teach you, and I look at it from that perspective, if I’m paying, I’m the boss, and if they don’t like it, then to hell with them, I can finish my degree some place else.

    So far I haven’t had to withdraw, and I’m learning things I need for my career, that increase my skills. So I like AIO for my schedule, and usually even in a 5 1/2 week class can work and stay a week ahead in most courses unless it is super difficult material I’m not good at, like the math, and finished off my final mathematics with meeting the schedule and earned an A in all of them, and that is my worst subject.

    The only big problem I see with AIO right now is the ownership of it by Goldman Sachs, the “for profit” status that is causing admissions to do anything they can to boost students that enroll, and behaving in a way that is highly unethical, which if any student did what they are being sued for would get a student in a lot of trouble. And if any us went to a convenience store and walked out forgetting to pay a candy bar, the store would throw us in jail, no forgiveness at all even it it was a mistake. So I think the responsible management teams for AIO and the Corporate bosses causing the problems with ethical behaviour should be fined big time, and JAILED as an example, and then maybe the rest of the college experience would settle back down to the part where teaching students is the reason the school exists, not just a high “profit margin” for investors, Goldman Sachs is in the wrong business if they think they can run a school like selling stocks of bubble gum trying to get as many people as possible to chew it. It doesn’t work like that, not every person can chew the bubble gum they are trying to sell, and not every one is college material. I’ve heard some stories of them taking students that can’t even spell, and on and on, so the problem is with the corporate management style at AIO, and it has to be fixed for the rest to wrok correctly, and no college is perfect.

    I like what I’m learning at AIO, and see the biggest problems being the greed going on through the corporate style management, and if they are guilty, I look forward to seeing the guilty get treated just like a normal citizen with fines, and jail time for the crime.

    If it ruins the reputation of AIO as far as the educational value goes for the degree I’ll withdraw and finish some place else, but if they can root out the bad apples and continue with what is available and even get better with what they do teaching, I’ll continue.

    Right now I continue as a student waiting to see what the courts will decide, keeping that in my “balance scale” for the “benefit versus cons” ratio. When it tips out of favor for AIO, i’ll find a better route to take if I’ve not earned my degree by the time the coursts make a decision.

    Don’t like negative things the management does to reflect bad on the degree I’m going to earn, a Bachelor of Science degree, so will have to see what happens, so far I like what I’ve learned, it is effective and useful for my career.

  • I just graduated last weekend from AIO for the Bachelor of Science in computer animation, so my experience is still really fresh. Overall, it was a great experience. The cost is very expensive, but first, you’re going to a specialized school, and second, you’re (at least in my case) going to all online classes. Both of these will cost more. However, for that extra money, you also get amazing resources, their online library is fantastic, you get free access to royalty free sounds and pictures, and free access to Lynda.com and Digital Tutors, and this would normally cost you over $100 a month. Also, free tutoring, if you’re stuck. So I think the cost is worth it. I agree with some of the statements about being disconnected, but that’s expected with online-only classes. For me, with a family and full-time job, online school was the only way I could go. All the driving to and from classes and being in classes would have made it impossible for me to attend. But I used social media with some of my classmates, we emailed outside of class, and I would often see the same students from class to class, just like I would in a traditional school.

    There was an issue with financing, where half-way through my schooling, I ran out of funding for subsidized loans. The school should have been able to tell me that up front, however, they did work with me and came up with a payment plan so that I could continue school. I also got a scholarship from them after they reviewed my grades half-way through.

    The teachers are mostly really good. Sometimes you get someone who goes through the motions, but most of them would answer your questions fairly timely, and a couple would do personal video reviews of your work each week. I’ve been working on trying to build a render farm at work, and a few of my teachers have assisted me through email, even though I’m no longer enrolled at AIO. But, you know when you go this route, that you’re going to have to spend a lot of your own time researching when you have problems. i will say I learned how to do a LOT through my classes. I had never done any photoshop or cg work before starting school, and after graduating I have the fundamentals down, and am now teaching myself to be more expert in those skillsets. You can see a lot of the work I did for school here: http://www.minorjoystudios.com I went to school half-time, and in a traditional school, this would have taken 8 years. At AIO, the rigorous schedule allowed me to graduate in 6 years, instead. That was taking one class at a time. Again, remember this is accelerated learning. You are getting full credit for a 5 1/2 week course that would generally take 11 weeks at a traditional school. It is going to be a rough schedule. Know that up front.

    It was tough, sometimes frustrating, very expensive, and time consuming, sometimes I wanted to quit, but this is no different than any other school. Just know ahead of time what you’re going to have to do if you decide to go this non-traditional route.

  • I’ve posted here a couple of years ago while I attended and now that I haven’t been enrolled for a year now, the after affect is ongoing. Just recently they discovered that someone working for the AI made a mistake with paying every students enrollment fee with their financial aid not even telling the students the cost of the enrollment or mentioning that this was being done.

    They discovered that is actually ILLEGAL to pay an enrollment fee with financial aid. So what they did was “supposedly” sent out a stipend check in that amount to the students hoping they will then pay the outstanding balance every student now has. I’m still waiting on the check. It was a shock to me when I received a call and an email telling me I owe money. I was even more shocked when I heard the reasoning. I called in and spoke with some guy about this issue. He admitted that they made a mistake and it affects thousands of students. I explained how if I made a mistake in life regardless if it’s money related or not that I would be the one to pay for it no matter what. I went onto say how if they admitted to this mistake it’s unfair to all those students to have to pay for it. I understand there’s a stipend check to cover it (yet I haven’t seen it yet) but for a big school that charges an arm and a leg for their classes and still pays the professors jack, they should take the hit.

    I told him that I was now aware of the situation. He asked for a payment and I told him “I’m now aware of this” and hung up. I didn’t say I would or would not pay it but within a week I was sent a collections notice. I was actually sent 2 dated a day apart from 2 different creditors. This really got to me since I never said I wasn’t going to pay it nor was I given a time frame to pay it. Plus, I still haven’t received the check I was told I would get. This is just a big mess that could have been avoided. I get that its only $100 but not everyone is living financial well that can just get a short notice “you owe money” pay this bill kind of thing. Be advised of this school and really consider alternative options.

  • I struggled to finish, had to pull out two private loans because I didn’t have enough to cover the cost. Worst school ever to attend. Employers who see a Art Institute Bachelor degree will simply look the other way. The school is not set up to train you to master anything. You’ll experience everything under the CONS list. The Cost for a class doesn’t make sense at all. They said I’ll be done in 2 years, ended up being 3 1/2. Don’t waste your money, being in $75,000 in debt is no joke when you have a useless degree that employers don’t acknowledge. EDMC needs to pardon current and past alumni loans. They scammed us to thinking their education is the best. It’s a far cry from that, the things they teach you can be self taught at your local bookstore. Your better off spending $75,000 buying the equipment and books to teach yourself. They will tell you they have connections and will help you get a job after your done, that’s bull.

    Warning: Don’t sign up, you’ll regret it.
    Do your research on Art Institute recent protest and lawsuits.

  • I am so at a standstill. I currently enrolled into a mid-quarter. Everything was fine and then my classes got dropped for no apparent reason. I had to trek back there to re register then they added a class I had swapped. Now I am trying to contact financial aid to re work my financial aid plan and no response even being an on-ground student. I have been reading and reading and re reading posts and I am not sure if I have made the right choice in investing time for something (education) that might not be worth anything.

    Worse part is, they put advertising student, interior design students, graphics student, animation student in the same drawing class. I am not boasting nor far from a great artist but there should be perimeters in required classes.

    I was also told they would request my college transcripts and I have a hold because when i started my adviser told me I should request them because its easier for me to get them than they.

    I am taking out loans in crazy amounts to better myself not to screw myself to make some else’s house, kids education nor life better. And on top of that the staff gets paid top dollar. Where everyone I have spoken to says they cant find work.

    Should I just dish it? My primary courses are on ground but I am taking one online class now. She seems very together and responsive but one good apple can’t make up for 3 future bad years.

    HELP!!

    DC

  • So…I ordered my transcripts online two weeks ago and the recipient has still not received them.
    So I called AIO (Art Institute Online) and am told it never went through. I asked politely if I could order my official transcripts right now over the phone and pay for it to be expedited. Answer: No sorry, can’t expedite them because the original request didn’t take. Repeated that I am now placing a NEW order for my transcripts and could I please pay to have them expedited. Answer: can’t expedite because the original request didn’t take.
    Told that I have to pay by phone and then fill in the form online and then call this person back and then they will send it out by regular mail. Even if I PAY to expedite it they can’t do it because guess what? Yeah – the original order didn’t take.
    Repeat the above more than twice and then I ask for Supervisor. Answer: Sorry I don’t have a supervisor. You’re the boss? SERIOUSLY? No wonder the process sucks. Can you say “stuck in an endless loop”?
    Are you EFFING kidding me? What ONLINE school has an ONLINE ONLY form for the request but you have to CALL to make payment? They can’t integrate payment into their online submission form? Incompetence * n.
    Then they can’t expedite it even if you pay for it? And are stuck on the fact that the original request didn’t TAKE (because their system SUCKS)?
    I’m so seriously P*D off right now I feel like screaming … I can now kiss my 2016 application to graduate school goodbye because of Art Institute Online transcript request process INEFFECTIVENESS and their staff’s UNWILLINGNESS to help.
    I’m going to go and scream now…maybe kick some tires.

  • Hello everyone.
    Let me just let you all know that this online course requires extreme self discipline. If your pc is having an error u call the tech guys and receive a code so your current Professor knows something broke n their end. Every single Professor has never cared even once if I was a day or 2 late on an assignment. I have had 2 Professors that really needed to be fired for never replying to anyone for 2 weeks. Place these 2 problems instructors aside for a minute, and focus on all my extremely helpful Professors that make 45 minute videos to critique my work, and give massive amounts of detailed information on what to do to improve my scenes in the 3D software. Yes I am mastering Maya and Mudbox, both are up to date and very extensive programs. I have worlds created and textured ready for game playing, I have characters battling each other and killing one another in animation courses. I play with Photoshop like there is no tomorrow, and build my own movies, and fix other classmates file errors when they have problems. The absolute bottom line is 92% of the students passing their courses is only due to the strict grading rubric the Professors have to follow when grading, and must always lead toward positive comments to uplift the students. I am here to tell you that the hardest part of my school is commenting on the no skill, no talent, no artistic ability students that somehow actually manage to pass with absolutely no effort or thought into what they are drawing or creating. I am an extreme avid video gamer across all platforms, for many many years, I am sure many of you can relate to this 🙂 We love our games, but if you cant draw then don’t pay to try, then fail out or give up, go back to playing on easy and sipping your girly drinks. School is not a video game, and neither is your responsibility to know, research, and gather your own facts for your own adult lives like how well you can manage money. My Professors are barely making it by on crap pay, but they always help me out no matter what, they always give me their phone numbers and email addresses in case the are not in office. you can post your assignments at anytime before the due date, but no one really ever does. I did a 5 & 1/2 week math course in a matter of 4 days so me and my wife could go see a friend married, and my Professor did not care, and was actually happy about it. This online course is not for the faint of heart, I had to wait till I turned 26 years old before starting school, cause fed goverment loans would not cover my schooling enough in the end. I did my research that is only a few buttons away from viewing. I planned my time to go to school, so I did not end up like my poor, broke, abusive father who was always stressed from debt. You and only you can manage your lives, and make your own decisions, Not some sweet talking lady who HELPED me get into college when I called her first! I dont have kids yet because i planned my life, and im silly so i wrap my willy until im ready to start my family when i say so, not someone else, no matter how much they beg me to. you plan your finances, you plan your life, you plan your schooling, this school may be a for profit, but the Professors are masters in their trade non the less. If your scared then dont do it your not ready, if your unsure of it, then dont do it your not ready, I worked my fingers to the bone until I turned of age I knew i could finally start school, and finish what i started, thats the goverments fault not the schools. The less there are of you weak minded and ill prepared fools in my schools, then the less head ache i have commenting on your crap. Either you can or you cant in real life, there is no save point to fall back to, only forward. You signed the documents without asking the right questions, and without the proper knowledge of what you were doing. AI may be flawed, but not as bad as you dumb stupid people who just sign something that deals with thousands and thousands of dollars before thinking about what your doing. I have straight A-s because i care and apply myself to building the best portfolio i possibly can, and most of my professors tells me exactly how to tweak my models and enhance them before uploading them to my portfolio. I dont give a S41t about grades, and neither does someone looking at my artwork. This world is far from perfect, critique the beam in your own eye, before you point out the toothpick in someonelses. Maybe you should go learn computer coding for software, because all those simple people behind the phones just run the system, they dont create it, we are artist not coders stupid! The entire process is online because, when you pick up a phone it used to have a line to it, thank the gods for cells, and the internet is also online, its your private info, and they cannot give the system the authorization it requires from you ONLY!!! Man up people and turn the difficulty to LEGENDARY because life is real, get used to it!

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