We’re in this together! Stay safe with our COVID-19 guide

  • Bookmark

    American Public University

American Public University

Is this your business?
45 reviews
Corporate Values


American Public University has a consumer rating of 2.25 stars from 45 reviews indicating that most customers are generally dissatisfied with their purchases. Consumers complaining about American Public University most frequently mention financial aid problems. American Public University ranks 115th among Education Other sites.

  • Service
  • Value
  • Returns
  • Quality
Positive reviews (last 12 months): 40%
View ratings trends
See all photos

What reviewers want you to know

Positive highlights

No positive highlights yet

Critical highlights

  • Over the past three years, I've watched the school quickly plummet into a terrible place.
  • The other students are morons, and don't expect to be challenged to think in any way.
How would you rate American Public University?
Top Positive Review

“Great School”

Suzanne A.

Great School I received my BA in Psychology from APUS and It was worth every penny. Most staff was friendly and helped you get through your classes. I would definitely recommend this school for quality of education and it wasn't a huge price tag to attend the University like other schools.

See positive reviews
Top Critical Review


Meredyth J.

I have attended online and hybrid classes in the past from a real school and never had any problems as I have at this place. I can say it was the worse experience ever. The course material did not match the lesson and I had a different textbook that did not go along with the class, I emailed the instructor to inform him and he did not respond in a timely fashion, and when they did it was two words. WTH. If you are willing to teach yourself and write 10-15 page papers with no direction, then this is the right place for you.

See critical reviews

Reviews (45)




Reviews that mention popular keywords

school (28) students (19) aid department (4) financial aid (16) american military university (3)
1 review
1 helpful vote
August 2nd, 2020
I have attended online and hybrid classes in the past from a real school and never had any problems as I have at this place. I can say it was the worse experience ever. The course material did not match the lesson and I had a different textbook that did not go along with the class, I emailed the instructor to inform him and he did not respond in a timely fashion, and when they did it was two words. WTH. If you are willing to teach yourself and write 10-15 page papers with no direction, then this is the right place for you.
1 review
1 helpful vote
May 18th, 2020
I do not recommend this university to anyone. This school does not care about it's students. They do not answer questions in a timely manner no do they resolve issues between the student and teachers. You pay almost $900.00 to teach yourself. All the teachers do is grade your papers. There are better universities out there I don't recommend this school to anyone.
1 review
1 helpful vote
May 10th, 2020
Great School I received my BA in Psychology from APUS and It was worth every penny. Most staff was friendly and helped you get through your classes. I would definitely recommend this school for quality of education and it wasn't a huge price tag to attend the University like other schools.
1 review
2 helpful votes
September 28th, 2020
When you have to do a quality review on your class while taking the class, it makes it hard. Military people know how to deal with bumps in the road and will find a way to succeed. When you do not have much help from the "Professor" that does not want to do their job, that is a different problem. When you have to go and fix quizzes and make sure the grades are correct after every single assignment on top of everything, it is time to find a new school. They do not care about a class or student, just the money that keeps rolling in, find a better school.
1 review
4 helpful votes
April 22nd, 2019
Someone took out two student loans in my name and they took my tax refund because of it. I need to know what I need to do to get my $3,921 back.
1 review
2 helpful votes
May 30th, 2020
After earning my first master's degree with APUS a few years ago, I have returned to earn another in an adjacent discipline. The real-world knowledge I gained in my studies had a monumentally positive impact on my career. As for any naysayers about this institution (all universities have them), I say that as with any venture, your benefit is dependent upon the effort you put in!
1 review
1 helpful vote
October 21st, 2020
If you want a college that doesn't know the meaning of empathy or down right don't give a hoot about the customers they claim to care about or put first. Then this is the place for you! I am not going to out by right trash AMU however, there are things that could of been handled better. I hope the staff and the instructors receive the same understanding as I received from them. My mother passed away three days into my classes. I did not neglect my program. II just had other matters that needed my immediate attention. I flew five hours over the Pacific Ocean to reach my home of record. I had to help my father navigate the tremendous amount of paperwork in the wake of my mothers passing. My father cannot read and I had to assist him. I reached out to one instructor left my cell number, personal and professional email and no response. I also reached out to an administrator or some office person and let them know what I was dealing with. So, adding insult to injury and still mourning the loss of my mother. I received an F have to pay back 1500. 00. I have spent 18 years and five months serving this nation. I will advise other service members to seek out other institutions of higher learning.

Thank you

M. Ortega
1 review
1 helpful vote
March 10th, 2020
I attended this university for my Criminal Justice Degree- Had trouble with one of my classes asked for help and was denied by professor went to academics and ask for helped was told that an extension was requested was denied the extension- start my second semester and was kicked out due to I needed help and the professor denied me help so APUS sent me an email saying I needed to submit all documentation on where I requested for help and they still kicked me out and took my Financial Aid away from-- I had 9 months to graduate and now I am Pissed because instead of helping me or putting me on probation they told me to pay for it another way. Well being a single parent that does not make enough money now can not pay for school and take care of a family. Thanks APUS you are horrible
1 review
2 helpful votes
October 31st, 2019
Instructors teach their opinion. If you want a paper mill degree this is the place to get one. One had an obvious hatred for President Trump. The fact that all he did was bash the president without offering a way to critical think with an objective opinion is immature, especially for a masters program. I don't need to be enrolled in AMU to learn how to blame the world for my problems. The American Military University is just a title its a company.
1 review
12 helpful votes
June 14th, 2020
I see a lot of people complaining about this college for various reason. Mostly saying that it is a scam and a waste of money, well welcome to collage kids, every collage is a scam just trying to get your money. In todays world it doesn't matter if you went to Harvard or APU. If you have a degree and do the job good you will be hired.

I also see people saying that you do not learn from APU, well its an online school, learning is the students responsibility, you get what you put into it, if you want to excel at your field of study than research and do well, if you want to gaff it off and not learn anything then do so and don't succeed anywhere in your field.

For those people who claim that the instructors never give students the time of day. Again its an online school and the student needs to be self motivated. As someone who has attended other collages and sat in classes I didn't get much one on one time with those teachers either.

Bottom line is you get what you put into it, if you are trying to better yourself and progress in a career than APU is great start. I bet you don't ask your doctor where they got their degree. If it can get you going into the next step of life then what wrong with that. I currently love APU and will be using it as a stepping stone to reach my personal goals.
1 review
2 helpful votes
July 11th, 2020
Instructor FiFi selects students to elevate and others to suppress. Even though my assigned APA style essays and papers were correct, this instructor choose the grades she thought each student should receive. She showed favoritism to the students with European names and scam points of students without European names. This school and its instructors are biased towards students. This is not only insulting it is illegal and requires legal action.
1 review
5 helpful votes
July 29th, 2020
I am a little over my second year into taking classes at APUS. I have no idea what any of these negative reviews are talking about, in the time I have been here the staff have made everything easy for me. From applying and enrolling to classes, to my financial aid, to actually taking the courses. I saw someone state that they will pass anyone? That is definitely not the case for me. I struggled hard in my last math class but luckily passed because my instructor worked with me endlessly to help me understand how to do the work. In fact, all of my professors have been quick to answer any questions and assist when needed. I have by no means been passed easily, I have to actually put in work to pass my classes. A lot of people do not seem to understand that choosing an online education requires YOU to have dedication and time management, etc. The fact that people are mad about this is beyond me. I think if you are someone who is determined to achieve their goals and not just someone that expects to put in the least amount of work possible then this school is great. All these negative reviews are quite baffling and some even seem fake...
1 review
1 helpful vote
March 13th, 2020
I found most courses to be pretty easy to get through but when I ran into issues with how quizzes were graded from a Mr. William Whitley who is an instructor that won't allow anyone to see what they get incorrect or correct for that matter on their tests. I complained and absolutely no one would help find a solution. I was treated like a student and with no regard. I followed all the procedures to make my complaint but heard nothing back. I know from personal experience that seeing incorrect answers on homework and tests helps me to understand where I went wrong and what I need to either review again or change. Sometimes, most of the time, it's an error due to how the system wants to see the number vs an actual incorrect answer. I would recommend finding a school that is much more focused on teaching their students rather than just whizzing them through the courses, good, bad or indifferent.
1 review
2 helpful votes
April 18th, 2020
The idea of military friendly is that you can work on your degree with flexibility, this is AMU's biggest lie. I started working on my degree two years into my military career and consistently took 3-5 classes a year for three years as military Tuition Assistance(TA) benefits would allow. I requested a 3 year hold due to one of my tours being more higher tempo, in a remote locations and the additional responsibilities that came with my rank. I was granted the academic hold, but this is where the problem started. Upon completion of my tour, I began taking 1-3 classes a year again since military TA benefits were reduced and that's what it would cover. I finished my last class on December 2019 and tried to register for my next class in the winter of 2020 and this is where the problem popped up. By no means I'm new to AMU and was 30 credits away from finishing my degree, but was suddenly informed that I could not register because my credits were no longer valid(The same credit I got at AMU). Besides being surpised that credit somehow expired(which they don't), I contacted my advisor and asked what was going on with credits, this is when I found out my academic hold was never put in place after it was approved and the plan for me was to lose credits that I gained with them in order to continue at AMU. This is a classic bait and switch, and it's a decitful practice and illegal. AMU is notorius for scrubing the internet of former student's remarks and replacing them with positive one. Let that be your warning, nothing in life is always 5 stars. Learn from my dilema with them and stay away. They are not military friendly, they are not flexible and without a doubt are a forprofit university with one goal in mind and that is how to scam you out of you military educational benefits. I'm active duty, have a 3.60 GPA and always did my work and it meant nothing to them. I was always worried something like this would happen, but rather than change school as more online option starter to appear, I stayed because I did not want to lose hard earned credits. The education is mediocre, the professors teach their own opinion not facts and the service is car salesman like. Stay away, save your benefits for an actual school. As for me, I transfered into a more recognized school with a long history in accreditation, state runned and willing to help active duty. I will pay a portion out of pocket, but the security and reliability is worth it. Stay Away from AMU.
1 review
5 helpful votes
February 26th, 2020
I received my MPA from APUS and have gone on for professional learning via undergraduate certificates with them. For the MPA, all of the courses were solid courses with a good level of instructor interaction except for the final capstone! I feel like they have since offered more research support and strengthened that course, so I will give them some redemption for that. Since then, I've undertaken some undergraduate learning and the school has implemented some student service upgrades, such as sending out texts and phone calls to connect students to their learning tracks. The school offers some extracurricular engagement opportunities and online career fairs.

The college offers great tuition for its courses, and undergraduate students do not need to purchase books as the university uses e-books and digital academic libraries for course reading materials. It's always a game with which instructor one will get for a course. Some instructors really know how to engage students in an online platform and offer a well-rounded learning environment while other through reading and written assignments at the students with nothing more than canned responses and a few comments on the written assignments. Even in the latter situation, an independent student interested in learning will gain something useful from the programs, and for that reason, APUS is a very decent, worthy educational institution.

Remember, most post-secondary institutions are reputable on very arbitrary standards--graduation rates (great if they are only accepting high-level high school grads); accreditation (APUS/AMU is regionally accredited); sports and other activities (this college is for veterans and adults, so it's not comparable to a higher learning institution geared to recent high school grads); and entrance requirements. APUS/AMU is a decent school. Students who want to learn will.
1 review
2 helpful votes
November 15th, 2019
I received my MPA in 2012 from APU and found the experience to be very rewarding. Rec'd a raise and have since moved into another career on the strength of that degree!
1 review
9 helpful votes
September 12th, 2018
Hard work and self-discipline are required when taking online courses. I worked my butt off and had earned both a BA and an MA in History at APUS. I found the majority of Professors I had to be very helpful and did not experience anywhere near the issue's others have posted on this site with my classes, and or for that matter, Financial Aid either. Over the years I have attended brick and mortar schools, both traditional and expedited, and can tell you I never had to work as hard to accomplish my goals. It took self-discipline and determination to achieve what I did not expect others to hand over.
1 review
8 helpful votes
March 21st, 2019
American Public University System has become a sham of a school. I worked there for 8 years as an adjunct and never got a single raise, even though they continually increased the amount of work. The students were also ripped off by this university. Many of this school's students are military or former military. When they started coming back after serving, many had PTSD (I taught psychology and recognized it) and weren't able to do passing class work. Because I had principles, I had to fail those students, which broke my heart.

Adding insult to injury for these students was the fact that the school permits students to withdraw from classes countless times, which insures they will get their financial aid. And they are permitted to withdraw until the DAY the class ends! So, those who should and would be failed are getting government money on the scam of a withdrawal when the truth was students would be retaking (and paying again for) the same class, term after term.

This university should lose its licensing. They aren't fit to call themselves an institution of education. They are a sham and a diploma mill. Students, don't be fooled by their lower prices--remember, you get what you pay for.
1 review
0 helpful votes
July 10th, 2020
OVERALL MY EXPERIENCE WITH APUS is fair. THE DISTURBING PART IS THAT Academic advisors WANTED ME TO CHECK IN WITH THEM WEEKLY. Why? If I have a 3.0 GPA. I should only had to checkin when register new courses. Therefore this problem was disputed never resolved.

Tip for consumers:
Before investing... be wise to turn the other way

Products used:
Some courses

1 review
0 helpful votes
September 18th, 2020
Okay. First this is a purely online school. I have attended both brick and mortar schools as well as online institutions. I have been a higher education student for over 40 years since graduating from high school in 1976. I have attended state supported, private, public, community colleges, Unaccredited schools, nationally accredited colleges, regionally accredited colleges, and was part of the leading edge of correspondence education that was transformed into online education in the 1990s. APUS at least was a pretty good institution but as an online institution was only as good as the effort you as a student put in. I may have been blessed but I had with one exception great instructors at APUS who were invested in my understanding and success. In fact I was diagnosed with Congested Heart Failure while attending and instructors made a great number of allowances on assignment deadlines for me. Without the support of my Academic faculty advisor I would never have graduated if truth be told. The assignments were relevant and timely. As a working professional in the public arena almost all the lessons had direct application at the time. What more could you want? At the time I was a 30 plus year management and IT professional with at least 20 years of government (national, state and local) experience. It is not often that one finds that level of relevant instruction. Many of the classes helped make previous experiences make more sense. I had 35 plus credits in MBA courses when I enrolled at APUS and only 6 credits transferred. After earning a completely unacceptable and unaccredited MBA degree in the early 2000s, the accreditation standings for APUS were very important to me. The only real issue I had with APUS was the lack of standards especially for foreign students pertaining to the command of the English language. Some of the posted Forum assignments would not have passed my high school English teacher's grading quite frankly failing at multiple levels and ways. I felt a little cheated that these assignments were graded at all because they were written so poorly. Like so many here I will reiterate that you get out what you put in. I have a few things that I would pick with the school administration about not the least of which is multiple degree earning at APUS and the difficulty the school puts in place for alumni but my experience was a positive one. I graduated with a 3.97 GPA but I haven't had a GPA below 3.44 since 1981 and I was a National Achievement Scholarship Commended Student coming out of high school so I have a long history of academic excellence. It would be a shame if the standards at the school have fallen since I graduated.
2 reviews
5 helpful votes
October 17th, 2018
One warning- the school is regionally but not ABET accredited.
Second issue- when requesting document such as diplomas expect 8 weeks for them to just get it out of their office. Expect another 2 months to receive it by mail if you live out of country. All of my other universities can get documents to me in 2 weeks and not 4 months. Severe lack of professionalism.
1 review
25 helpful votes
August 4th, 2017
I've been a FT faculty member at APUS for 7 years. Over the past three years, I've watched the school quickly plummet into a terrible place. As an instructor, I regularly teach 5 classes at one time for 11 months a year (new classes start each month). We're talking 100 active students at any one time. Is it any wonder why learner's are so unhappy? We don't have the time to actually teach because of recently imposed electronic sweatshop rules... rules that can change on a whim.

We're intimidated by an uncaring management team with middle managers that often like to make examples out of instructors by firing them. It wasn't always this way. Really. But the focus now is on the money and working faculty to the bone.

I can honestly say (and it pains me to do this) that I would not recommend this school to anyone I know. It shouldn't receive accreditation again because of the way it treats faculty. Students receive a substandard education because faculty don't have time to truly develop learner's. Think about it - how could anyone mentor students with that kind of teaching load.

I encourage students and faculty to visit the Higher Learning Commission website to leave public comments to the accreditation team. You can easily Google this. Tell them about your experience as a student and faculty member.

The only thing APUS understands is money. If enough people speak out, maybe they'll listen. I'm prepared to be unemployed as opposed to being treated like a dog and feeling guilty because I know students are being ripped off.

Tip for consumers:
Register your complaints on the Higher Learning Commission website. Tell them your experience. American Public University doesn't deserve to be re-accredited.

1 review
5 helpful votes
August 23rd, 2017
I am a current student, but this would be my last course. They are selling illiteracy. You will get A for not even opening a book. The financial aid dept loves to torture students and to find any way to cut your federal financial aid down, and pay you a month after the start of the semester. I been two years with them, my GPA is 3.8, but still quitting.
1 review
15 helpful votes
March 29th, 2018
You couldn't believe what I saw. Rampant plagiarism without any penalty--all they want is the money. Students coming back from Afghanistan and Iraq who weren't able to concentrate, yet the school kept them "on the hook" by allowing them to withdraw term after term, while charging them each new class. This is truly a horrible university. They don't update classes and don't provide textbooks (or ones that aren't 10 years old). I have never been more embarrassed to work for a university. The only good thing were the students, whom I loved--and who I feel so sorry for because they'll never get a job from this crap-show of a university. Total diploma mill.
1 review
22 helpful votes
August 10th, 2019
I EARNED by Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice from APUS/AMU (with honors), then went on to complete my Master's Degree in Homeland Security (also with honors, and my thesis was chosen for publication). I work in law enforcement, more specifically, within the Intelligence Community (IC). One of my specialties is pattern recognition, and by reading the posts on this thread, I spotted patterns in the grammar and sentence structure of the posters -- meaning there are people on here making multiple posts to discredit the university, all because they didn't get the amount of financial aid they wanted, or they didn't do something right and blame the University. Key words such as "morons" used in several posts, indicate it's the same person. There is a "former professor" on here who has made at least three posts to discredit the University. Please do your homework before you believe the lies told by people on here. Take Adam C's post for example: he says he might lose his job because he got a degree that was not ABET accredited. That is NOT the fault of APUS -- that's his fault. They plainly list all of their accreditations, so if he did not bother to check on that first, sorry.

Another thing... the "former professor" stated that she knows of financial aid fraud because they allow students to withdraw up until the end of a course and they still get their refund back. That is INCORRECT. Of course, students can withdraw at any time, but if she really knew what she was talking about or really worked at the school, she'd know that there is a policy in place that scales the amount of tuition you can get back. For example, if you take an 8-week course and withdraw in week 3 or 4, you are going to get 75% of your tuition back. If you wait until week 7 or 8, you are not getting anything -- what school in the world would let you take a full class, and give you all of your money back if you withdraw at the very end? Not one.

There is another person (Dominique E) blaming the school because someone supposedly took out student loans in his/her name. That's not the school's fault. Your loans are awarded by completing FAFSA and tax return information, then that information is supplied to the school. If someone took out a loan in your name and it was not you, then they committed fraud and used your identity -- not the school.

Additionally, the moderator of this page should really review posts for true and accurate information. If anything is a sham, it is this website.

Q&A (3)


If you find out let me know! I am beyond mad at this school. Email me if you get any info. sandrajean68@yahoo.com

By Sandy M.

Can’t see your question? Ask to get answers from the American Public University staff and other customers.

Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • How long does shipping take?
  • What is the return policy?
  • Where is the company located?

Sitejabber for Business

Gain trust and grow your business with customer reviews

About the business

APUS provides accredited online college programs for adult learners through American Military University & American Public University. 877-755-2787

How do I know I can trust these reviews about American Public University?

  • Sitejabber’s sole mission is to increase online transparency for consumers and businesses
  • Sitejabber has helped over 100M consumers make better purchasing decisions online
  • Suspicious reviews are flagged by our algorithms, moderators, and community members
Have a question about American Public University?

Is this your business?

Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and manage your listing.

Claim Your Business