Why You Shouldn’t Trust Online College Rankings – A Cautionary Tale
Since I’m also in the business of helping students find affordable, quality schools that provide a high ROI I needed to check this out!
According to the site their rankings are based on “affordability and return on investment, while also considering factors such as graduation and retention rates according to NCES College Navigator reporting.”
OK, sounds fair enough. Let’s take a look.
The site includes as supportive information the retention rate of 97%, a grad rate of 92% and a ROI of $559,000. Impressive!
However…the University of Michigan announced its Online Master’s programs, done in partnership with Coursera and Noodle, will launch in Fall of 2019.
So the flagship campus of the #1 ranked Online College in this site’s “Best of 2019-20” hasn’t even started offering online degrees! In fact, the retention and grad rates that it mentions are based on every program that UM offers EXCEPT for the very programs that the rankings are based on!
I also noticed elsewhere on the site they have a ranking of the top Online Colleges in Florida.
University of North Florida is ranked THIRD on that list.
So the #3 ranked online college in all of these United States is not the top online college in its own state? I live in Florida so I know it’s a bit different, but c’mon.
So in other words these rankings, as is the case with most online college rankings, are worth about as much as the paper they’re not even printed on. They are designed to create clicks and generate leads for paying customers, and certainly not to help students find the right school.
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