Is National University legit? Yes, National University (NU) is legit but not the best school out there. It is a real school with a real degree, although questionable by some employers. Now, the legitimacy of NU is questioned by the fact that it is the largest private university in San Diego. However, most people commonly refer to a private school like this one as a ‘degree mill’. This refers to a school that isn’t highly competitive and churns out lots of graduates. The positives are that the National University is nonprofit, and is regionally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
National University has been changing the way education works. They have a unique method called Whole Human Education, which helps students perform well. This is good for adults with busy lives and people working full-time.
Their courses tend to be shorter and can last either 4 or 8 weeks, and you can take them online. Also, they offer a lot of support – not just in academics, but also financially, in your career, with your family, and even emotionally. So, let’s delve right into the various aspects you should consider before applying for this expensive university.
About National University
NU is a Veteran-founded, San Diego-based nonprofit school. Since 1971, their primary goal has been to provide accessible, achievable, higher education to adult learners. However, they now educate students from across the U.S. and internationally.
So, how did NU come about? About 50 years ago, U.S. Navy Captain Dr. David Chigos saw that soldiers and veterans needed more opportunities for education and support. He wanted to help these students, who often had different needs from regular students. So, in 1971, he started the National University but focused on adults and those who were working while studying. Today, NU is the largest private nonprofit university in San Diego known for educating many people in the U.S. military.
In 2022, National University merged with Northcentral University, another regionally accredited school, which added more than 10,000 students and around 80 programs for graduate and doctoral studies.
Is National University Legit?
Yes, National University is legit like 100%. No, they are not a degree mill, and certainly not a scam. This school is fairly respected and very reputable. Moreover, it is a nonprofit university.
People tend to have issues with online education in general, which is one of the characteristics of critics of this school. However, apart from this, and the fact that this is a private university, there is nothing really demeaning about the school for what it has to offer. However, the tuition can be expensive.
Apart from the fact that this school is legit and real, it is best for employed professionals here in the San Diego area who need a second degree. If you fit into this category, then NU is your go-to university. If you are a high school graduate, this one is not recommended for you.
Is National University Regionally Accredited?
National University is regionally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission since 1977.
Being regionally accredited means that the U.S. government acknowledges the quality of education provided by NU and is willing to fund tuition for eligible students. This support is a testament to the university’s legitimacy, distinguishing it from so-called “degree mills.”
The program-specific accreditations include:
- Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET)
- Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
- Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
- Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA)
- Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE)
- Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
- International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE)
- International Accreditation Commission for Systemic Therapy Education (IACSTE)
- National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)
Is National University For Profit?
National University is a not-for-profit school and is well-run and focused on learning, not stock prices like for-profits such as the University of Phoenix.
The value of degrees conferred by for profit institutions declines whereas a non-profit university like the National University remains free from such questionable activities.
NU Offers Support in Many Ways
They offer one-on-one help with financial aid, a generous policy for transferring credits, a grant for those who need help with tuition, and over $77 million in scholarships. Also, the fact that the government covers tuition for students at NU highlights its perceived value and credibility.
NU also provides 4- and 8-week online classes, unlimited free tutoring, personal coaching, a writing center, and over 190 degree programs, credentials, and certificates.
The NU Mentoring Network gives personal career guidance to students and alumni. They also offer professional development, access to job listings, and tailored career support.
Social & Emotional Support
They have free online mental health counseling, wellness resources, and a Student Wellness Center for personal support with life’s challenges.
NU is Flexible with Many Degree Programs
A big aspect of the National University is the flexibility it provides. Students can choose to study online or on-site, which means they can tailor their education to fit their lifestyle and commitments. Also, the university offers year-round enrollment, so students can start their studies at a time that suits them best or at their own pace.
With over 190 degree programs available, you have options to choose from. So, you can easily find a program that aligns with your interests and career goals.
NU is Military Friendly
National University is known for being military-friendly, offering support and resources tailored to the unique needs of military students and their families. It’s like 90% of students using their GI bill (from the military). Two other very military-friendly online universities I’ve reviewed are Walden University and American Public University.
National University Merged with Northcentral University in 2022
NU’s recent acquisition of Northcentral University (NCU), another regionally accredited institution, further strengthens its academic standing.
Northcentral University was established in 1996 as a graduate-oriented online university offering doctoral, master’s, and undergraduate programs.
In 2019, NCU joined the National University System and is regionally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). Northcentral University merged with National University in fall 2022.
Is National University Respected?
National University is fairly reputable and respected, and this is partly because it is regionally accredited. However, hiring managers judge differently, especially if you do not have the experience. For example, you might put National Univeristy on your resume and a hiring manager will put you at the bottom of the pile, even when compared to someone who just put “I audited classes at a regular university.” So, it’s often really up to the employer’s perception, and many employers don’t really care about your school.
The best thing is to look at where achievements in your field of study are happening. Also, do your homework before applying for NU. Remember that a degree does not automatically qualify you for a job; it’s just a slip of paper, so you should prioritize getting ahead of the curve.
Is National University Worth It?
Yes, if you are an employed professional here in the San Diego area who needs a second degree, National University is 100% worth it.
Now, the estimated duration you require to complete a Ph.D. program at NU, typically between 4.5 to 5.5 years, contradicts any notions of it being a degree mill. Criticisms or biases against NU degrees, such as managers undervaluing them, are misinformed. Graduates from NU are well-positioned for federal jobs, as the government recognizes NU degrees and offers tuition reimbursement for its programs.
Again, it is not a great choice if you are coming out of high school or looking for a traditional college experience.
Conclusion—Is National University Legit?
All in all, NU is legit and they work hard to retain their regional accreditation. So, as an employed professional who is always busy with work and looking to add a second degree to your name, the National University is the way to go.
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