American Public University System Reviews

Updated March 22, 2015
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3.3
57 Reviews
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Dr. Wallace E. Boston
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Pros
  • Also, there are plenty of opportunities to work from home (in 4 reviews)

  • Respectful of work/life balance, and able to impact the lives of others (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • LOW pay and believe they are not paying minimum wage (in 5 reviews)

  • is the executive level and HR's attitude towards staff (in 3 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. APUS Review

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at American Public University System

    Pros

    great benefits, free education, excellent co-workers

    Cons

    none that I can think of

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  2. Excellent company to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Student and Alumni Affairs Department
    Current Employee - Student and Alumni Affairs Department

    I have been working at American Public University System full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Management that cares about its people, flexible schedules, an honorable mission, investment into employee development and good benefits.

    Cons

    salaries on the lower end of pay scales for industry, no real career paths.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3. Most of us stay for the flexibility...

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at American Public University System full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    You work from home full time, so it is up to you generally to manage your time. You can live anywhere in the world and there's no disruption in your employment. Great benefits packages (401K, health insurance with low premiums, healthy lifestyle incentives). Some amazing senior leaders who truly love teaching.

    Cons

    No pay raises, despite ever increasing responsibilities for full-time professors (course management, developing course materials, teaching several hundred students at once). One month of vacation isn't really one month - it's barely two weeks once you finish grades then prep your future sections. You always have to manage students on extension. No such thing as a holiday or weekend.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Better management of program directors. Some are downright abusive. Even a skilled professor can be a terrible manager.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
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  5. People Come First

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    Current Employee - Student Ambassador in Browns Mills, NJ
    Current Employee - Student Ambassador in Browns Mills, NJ

    I have been working at American Public University System (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Quick responses, excellent working staff, friendly

    Cons

    None. As an ambassador, the entire staff was there to help make things easier or me, so I could make them easier on prospective students.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep up the great work!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  6. 1 person found this helpful

    APUS used to be an innovator in the field, but now it's being passed by every other institution

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Adjunct
    Current Employee - Adjunct

    I have been working at American Public University System part-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    I have been a adjunct (part-time) faculty member here for almost 8 years. This was my first position teaching, and I will always be grateful to APUS for giving me my first shot. The work is flexible in terms of times and location. The students are unquestionably the best in the market. It's incredible to me that a student will spend 12 hours on patrol in Iraq and then go back to his bunk and write a paper. No student in any other school has that level of work ethic.

    When I first started there were more students than we could handle and it was a great team environment working to meet this demand. We were working a burgeoning area of education, we were innovative, we were serving the some of best students in the world serving in some of the worse places, we were providing them education where almost no other options existed, and we were doing something great. However, as the years have passed...

    Cons

    ...as the years have passed, the school has lost a lot of the things that made it great. Gone is the free thinking, gone is the exciting directions of growth and student engagement, and gone is the real world applicability of the material. These have been replaced by massively rigid systems, ineffective "discussion" boards, antiquated content, and a factory line mentality. Most of these problems (in my opinion) are driven by cost saving measures. Shifting to E books saves the school money but keeps quality literature away from the students. Shifting to rigid systems means that courses are easier to manage but don't allow for innovation. These systems allow faculty to "teach" more students with less work, but with a significant reduction in quality. Reliance on full time faculty means that more students can be taught at a cheaper rate (full time faculty are on a salary so they get paid the same regardless of how many students they teach and are cheaper per student, whereas adjuncts get paid per student so adjuncts cost more per student to teach).

    I'm certain that APUS is far more economically efficient than we were when I started, which is exactly what one would expect from a for-profit school But also like one would expect from a for-profit school, APUS is now delivering a less than quality product. This is not how it was when I started, but efficiency and effectiveness are two different concepts, and in times of growth and in times of crisis an organization shows it's true nature. As it grew, if focused on efficiency and now that it's declining you can bet that it will make efficiency its top priority in order to keep stock prices high.

    In comparison to other schools, APUS has begun to lag behind. Most schools are doing production-quality videos, true discussion with students (not a series of mini papers), using emerging literature, and connecting everything to the real world. APUS may have created the impactful category of online learning, but now that APUS has proven demand non-profit and state schools have begun to fill it. APUS had the opportunity to respond and innovate and improve over the last eight years, but the only real changes APUS has made is how to squeeze more money out of their product.

    Predictably, the students are noticing. Enrollment is down. Student completion rates are down. Finally, the dirty little secret of APUS is that for students that are not already in the field, the degree isn't worth very much. The degrees may work for promotions, but employers looking to hire someone off the street are looking for a quality degree. Even if a student learned the exact same thing at Whatever State University, the degree would look better than APUS.

    The bottom line is that if there's no reputation and no longer any innovation or real world impact, that means that there's no longer any advantage over other programs. From an employee standpoint, I suspect that means I'll very quickly no longer have a job. I love the mission of serving military and public service students, but these same students love having a worthwhile degree and they're discovering that those degrees come from somewhere else. I'll ride this out as long as I can, but I wouldn't recommend starting a career here.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There are numerous barriers that a for-profit school faces that do not afflict non-profit and state schools. We have to deliver a better product than these schools just to stay relevant, but we're doing the exact opposite. While we are efficient, we've lost our innovation and tenacity (hallmarks of any growing business) and have move to rely on rigid systems and uniformity. We tell ourselves that we're Google but I fear that we're Compuserve.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful

    Interesting projects, good teams but very political environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Information Technology in Charles Town, WV
    Former Employee - Information Technology in Charles Town, WV

    I worked at American Public University System

    Pros

    Projects are not extraordinarily long which provides variety. Most projects are technically challenging and most people want to a good job.

    Cons

    There is a lot of red tape in trying to get your job done. The environment is very political and advancement is very much "who you know". Certain problem employees are allowed to remain and they have driven away many good and talented people.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees. You hired them because they were excellent workers. Allow them to be innovative and deal with problem employees. Stop allowing nepotism to permeate the organization.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  8. Excellent

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Knowledge and Documentation Specialist in Charles Town, WV
    Former Employee - Knowledge and Documentation Specialist in Charles Town, WV

    I worked at American Public University System full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    APUS was a great place to work. We had great benefits, great work-life balance and I enjoyed the people most of all. There was a lot of positive energy there.

    Cons

    Unfortunately there are budget cuts. APUS is readjusting to market changes and re-accessing its priorities.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9. Really thought this would be a good company.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Charles Town, WV
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Charles Town, WV

    I have been working at American Public University System

    Pros

    Work for the most part is interesting.

    Cons

    Compensation for hard work is not rewarded. Career advancement is at a standstill unless you are one of the favorites. There is no promotion checkpoints. At most companies you can work towards and complete career milestones which lead to promotions. Promotions here are handed out to favorites and yes-men instead of given to the people that have worked hard and deserve them.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop promoting favorites or spineless individuals. The company culture is going downhill and it is showing with the amount of people leaving the company. Re-evaluate the pay scales. Pay the good employees what they are worth, cut the dead weight if PIPS are not met, and maybe people will stay with the company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10. Review

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at American Public University System

    Pros

    Flexible Schedule
    Variety of classes
    Pretty good pay

    Cons

    Some Small Class sizes
    Schedule should be equal throughout the year

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Need more consistent schedule

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful

    still here but wondering

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Admissions Representative in Charles Town, WV
    Current Employee - Admissions Representative in Charles Town, WV

    I have been working at American Public University System full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    ok salary for the area
    ok benefits

    Cons

    call center environment
    managers who are never around
    unclear guidelines for promotions
    favoritism
    possible ageism

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    management needs to develop better communication skills, and to pay more attention to employees with real world experience, not the flaming braggarts they love to promote

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

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