Many of them work full-time & take care of a family. 2017 University of the People student survey reveals why 97% of current students would recommend UoPeople to a friend.
The University of the People was founded to help as many people as possible gain access to higher education, create social mobility and help you turn your dreams into reality.
That’s why it’s important for us to check in with you every year, to hear directly from you what works for you and what doesn’t, so we can keep improving and keep making this virtual campus the best it can possibly be to support you in your journey.
As in every year, we were humbled to hear what you had to say and humbled that 93% of you have achieved, or are on your way to achieving, the goals you had when you started this journey with us, and are satisfied with your studies.
We’re also humbled that 89% of you said you would probably – and most of you said you would definitely – enroll in the program again if you had to start over.
So let’s drill into the numbers, and learn a little about who you are and what helps you succeed in your studies. This time, we’ll also quote some of you in your own words. Of course, the survey’s anonymity will remain intact, and, as promised, to protect your privacy, we won’t reveal any names.
Meet the Students of the University of the People
65% of our students are studying toward their undergraduate students, but almost a third (28%) are currently working on their MAs.
Either way, 46% of the students major in computer science and 44% in business administration, while 10% are working toward a degree in community and public health.
One area we consistently work on improving is making higher education more accessible to women. In 2017, a third (33%) of our student body was women, which is a good number, but there’s still work to be done to make our virtual classroom more equal.
Most Students Work a Full-Time Job and Balance Family Responsibilities
An overwhelming 72% of our students are responsible for at least one other human being – a spouse, a child, and/or a parent.
For 82% of our students, family responsibilities affect the time they have to dedicate to their studies. For 51% of them, that happens often or very often.
And that’s before you count how much they work to make a living. 63% of our students work either full time, something close to full time, or more than full time.
To be specific, 47% of them work for pay for 40 or more hours every week during the schoolyear, and another 16% work “only” 31-40 hours a week.
With such hectic lives and complex schedules, it’s critical for students like ours to find a university experience that’s worth their effort.
“It is not easy juggling work and family [and] at the same time maintaining my grades at UoP, but I value the life learning experience that I get from my studies and interactions with my peers. UoP has been an enriching experience,”
one student told us.
Why 97% of University of the People Students Would Recommend this Online University to a Friend
When we got back the survey results and saw that 97% of our students would recommend the University of the People to a friend, we felt incredibly grateful. We started this university to democratize higher education, and each of you that shares this message with a friend is helping to create this movement, nd a more equal world.
When we asked our students what makes the University of the People work so well for them, this is what they said:
High Quality of Education Combined with High Quality of Service
When we drill down into the numbers, we see that student satisfaction is a combination of quality education and quality service.
“The studies here are of very high quality,” said one of the students, and another added, “I really enjoy my studies in UoPeople and I have been intellectually equipped.”
Students especially appreciate both the relevancy of instructional materials, and the service level provided by the program advisors. Both aspects got a very high 4.3 out of 5 score.
Other university aspects that got a very high score (4.2) were the overall quality of instruction, faculty responsiveness to student needs, and technical support with the system.
“My studies at the university have been going beyond my expectations. Everything is well organized… It makes my life very easy, as I can navigate the Moodle [system] with ease. The departments are well arranged, [so] that one cannot be lost that easily,” told us one of the survey participants.
And speaking of the system, 44% of our students access our virtual campus from their phone or another mobile device often or very often (and another 21% access it via mobile on occasion) – a clear indication you can study anywhere, anytime.
But the support at the University of the People goes deeper than technical challenges. As one of our participants explained,
“I had a very hard time to have a ‘good standing’ last year, but my advisor helped me a lot to get back on track with very positive and encouraging emails. All my respect for Bassey, my advisor. I am very satisfied with University of the people.”
The Chance to Get Higher Education Against the Odds
When we talk about making higher education accessible, we usually talk about the high cost of traditional university and college tuition, which often leaves many people believing they have no option but to drop out of college (link to the recent “Does college still matter?” article), or not apply in the first place.
Many of our students have faced this question, and here’s what one of them had to say:
“The UoPeople has afforded me a great chance to study for a business administration degree, which I would not have afforded [otherwise]. Thank you very much, as I am now confident, and share my experience at the university with my colleagues and family.”
For other students, joining the University of the People was a chance to study in the way that works best for them.
“I honestly love this university so much because it has had a positive impact on my life,” said another one of our students. “Seriously, whatever style of teaching you’re using is the best for the world, or at least for me, since traditional style didn’t help me.”
Either way, the topic of access to education repeated itself across the survey.
“My studies at U of People have been enriching and fulfilling. I am grateful for the opportunity. It has given someone like me a second chance at education. I believe in the value of what the institution provides society, and I commend everyone who gives of their valuable time and knowledge,”
said another student.
The University of the People Students are Committed to Giving Back Once They Graduate
One of the things we love most about our students is how passionate they are about giving back once they graduate, and carrying the university’s mission to make this world a better place.
One student put it best:
“I love [the] University of [the] People, as it helps me be closer to my dream despite all the difficulties that surround me in my life. I hope that one day I will graduate from UoPeople and change the region I live into a better place.”
By realizing your dreams, you realize ours. We’ll keep cheering for you and believing you have what it takes to live your dream life every step of the way.