Online University Reviews of Philippine Schools Help Americans Save Money

Updated: October 14, 2013

I have been quite busy recently so please let me just share with you today an article submitted to me a few days back.

This post comes from an American student currently enrolled in the University of the Philippines’ Open University program.

In it, he shares some information regarding UPOU and how such programs are helping many people save money on their education.

I hope you can take the time to read through this interesting piece by Richard. Thanks.

When looking for the right higher education school in the Philippines, it is necessary to compare online university reviews. The Philippines more than America, even though their culture and law is based off America, seems to embrace online learning.

As an American it could very well be quite a bit less expensive to choose a Philippines online program versus an American online program, because of the differences in cost of living and educational expenses. Plus, finance is huge there, so if your considering a finance degree or an accounting degrees online, it could really be a great option.

While there are only about six schools in the Philippines currently offering distance learning programs – one of them, University of the Philippines, has its distance learning portion called the University of Philippines Open School (better referred to as UPOU). The chance to be able to study in the Philippines without traveling there saves you the traveling costs, the room and board, and passport fees. You would have the chance to learn about another country, experience the people, and even speak with natives.

In 2011, they recently announced the addition of five more distance learning programs: Bachelor of Education Studies, Diploma in International Health, Diploma in Land Valuation and Management, Master of International Health, and Master of Land Valuation and Management. Through the release of more and more programs in such a short amount of time, the Filipinos are offering the distance learning to natives as well as for those oversee.

First and foremost, UPOU program’s overall mission is to reach out to Filipinos who would not consider education before in the first place including those in remote areas and those working one or several jobs. To reach those in underlying areas, the University of Philippines have partnered with various government entities in Laguna and Cebu to get those living in the countryside access to equality education. UPOU has also taken it upon them to partner with traditional schools in other parts of Asia to formulate an Asian studies degree to be released sometime in the future for the global student.

With the release of the Asian Studies degree, an American could potentially save thousands of dollars, get to travel to the Philippines, and learn about neighboring Asian countries with the fraction of the price of studying abroad in a traditional setting.

Unfortunately in America, although online schools profess that getting an education online is often affordable and easy, it seems that those seeking an online education are often privileged and just trying to get their degree as fast as possible.

In the Philippines, it’s about getting the highest quality education and the type of degree the distance learner is looking for. The UPOU Chancellor, Dr. Grace Javier Alfonso knows that Filipinos are not looking for a fast degree, but a different learning style Alfonso has said: “Students are now called learners and education is now participatory, not just one-way. The teacher and learner are co-creators of texts and new concepts. If our educational system does not respond to the changing times and if our students have a different way of thinking, we will definitely be left out.”

Whereas in America, it seems that online schools and online degree programs sometimes try to get Americans to change for the school setting, rather than creating programs that cannot be unmatched. Americans can engage in unique programs in an Asian land, without having to learn a new language or study abroad.

The Filipino school has even worked with their in-house faculty and outside adjuncts to give students easy access to online tutorials as they complete their distance learn. There is no question that American online schools could learn a thing or two from the Filipino higher education institutions. But in either case, whether an American chooses to attend an American online school or a Filipino distance learning program, all future graduates need to consider these pieces of information: they need to check to see whether their online/distance program is accredited through the National Education Association.

They need to speak with an online admission counselor to inquire about the school’s student teacher support systems that are in place. A prospective student needs to read all the program descriptions from each school. The student needs to read testimonies of students’ experiences with the online program of choice. If a perspective student can visit a physical campus associated with the online school, they need to arrange for such a visit. And last but not least, the student needs to inquire about program length and required credit hours, and the average length of completion for the particular program of interest.

Checking out all of these components besides viewing online university reviews for online/distance learning programs will save both Americans a lot of money and stress that study-abroad programs create for university students.

This article was written by Richard Cheah, an Asian Studies student of UPOU.

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  1. I must say traditional education is still the best method of learning. In UPOU, you can finish one subject w/o knowing if your understanding of the lesson is correct because nobody will tell you. Your gauge is your grade. Student to professor interaction is poor, the professor will not talk to you, they will just release/post the assignments and lessons online on schedule. If you ask clarifications, nobody will attend to you. The good thing is…students are very helpful. They try to help their fellow students. I’ve experienced this in 3 subjects already, I hope not all subjects will be like that.

  2. I am taking a diploma program here. my experience has been generally positive. we’ve had very good interactions online. my teacher in my first subject summarizes the all our online discussions.

  3. I agree with CL (above comment) The release of grades is pain in the ass, the professors does not reply on time. I wonder why UP System allows this to happen they hire incompetent professors. I am thinking to transfer in another school.

  4. I agree with CL too. (above comment) Yeah, I thought my submission of FMA, DB, and Assignment, was correct but in the final grade they gave me a failed grade. Professor did not inform to the student that the submission was incorrect. Yeah, Student to Professor interaction is poor, the professor didn’t talk, they just release/post the assignments and lessons online on schedule, nobody attend when ask clarifications. Professors, gave failed grade without informing to the student, before the end of the semester. So I would say it is better traditional education is best method of learning because when I was in traditional education, my professor informed me, about my submission of the paper was incorrect and gave some advice. I realized that it is really hard to get a passing grade in UPOU. I would say, lack of interaction between student and professor is the problem, and also when taking the final exam there is no hint, for student which lesson or specific topic that we will have to study so that we can prepare before the exam. This is my experienced in UPOU. I had been three years in UPOU as an offshore part-time student, and had lots of failed grade. I wonder why this UPOU continue like this. Hoping that Professor of UPOU will change their character, to inform the students, if it is incorrect submission or misunderstood the instruction.

  5. For GM, Ryan and CL:

    Have you ever experienced the UP Education System (traditional)? If yes, I am wondering why you are caught unaware of how UP system works. For CL and Ryan, if you are concerned about Student-Professor interaction, that is not much of a difference even when you are dealing with the traditional classroom setup in UP.

    When I took my Masters and PhD in Chemical Engineering, there is not really much of interaction and professors are expecting that their students are MATURED and RESPONSIBLE enough to handle their subjects otherwise, they should probably be enrolled in a different university. Let us face the fact, the reason you have chosen UP among any other Open Universities in the Philippines is because of its excellence which is embodied in its name.

    For GM, it seems that you are not truly qualified to continue your online degree in UP as shown in the history of your academic performance. Probably it is time for you to reflect if you are truly in the right place or possibly you need to look for alternative university that will fit your level of understanding.

    This is not being one-sided and proud, this is what it really takes to earn the coveted degree in the premier state university of the Philippines, whether it is on the traditional way or not.

  6. I totally agree with Ravio. I’m in the UPOU program and it is indeed expected that you’re mature enough to handle things. It’s the same story if you’re doing face to face learning in UP. I once had a prof who just came into class and wrote down page numbers for us to read. It was like read “2,10, 14, 24. Exam tomorrow.” and that wasn’t even a Masters degree.

    In UP, they don’t spoon feed it to you like other schools do. You need to have the passion to learn in order to succeed. If by any chance you see yourself failing, then either you did not study, did not follow instructions, or you do not have enough passion to study your course.

    Plus, the tuition is less than other schools. So if you want a lenient, spoon fed system, then enroll in other schools. I don’t mean to boast but it’s kinda like a survival of the fittest culture in UP. If you can’t take it, don’t study there :) It’s that simple

    My two cents

  7. Hi,

    Do you know any other open university other than UP that offer online courses?

    Thanks and hope to hear from you soon. :)

  8. It is better to study in Recto University. Diploma and transcript of records can be released in five minutes — without going through the hardship of studying in other schools!

  9. Hello, anybody could help find me an open university here in Ph with a very low tuition fee???

  10. Hi, I flunked out of college years before. I’m planning to FINISH my education and get a degree for once. Do they allow people like me? :/

  11. I guess it is safe to say that the three students above got the shock of their life thinking that UPOU will be different from traditional classes in UP. Having finished both my undergrad and graduate degress in Diliman, I can attest to what Ravio and Plakard mentioned about how things happen and how professors conduct themselves in your ‘typical’ UP set-up. If I am not mistaken, the faculties-in-charge are still your regular UP profs, so no surprise there. They usually expect a high-level of autonomy from their students and you seldom see spoonfeeding professors even in the traditional sense.

    I am planning to take another post-graduate course in the coming months under UPOU, and hopefully I could give a more well-rounded feedback soon from both sides of the coin.

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