Online University FAQ

Do you have questions about attending an online university? This FAQ provides answers to your most commonly asked questions about tuition, financial aid, online degree programs, accreditation, and much more. If you don’t find the answer to your question here, you can chat with an admissions counselor.

How much will a degree from Ashford University cost me?

Can I transfer all the credits I have earned from other schools I attended?

How long will it take me to earn my degree?

Is there any way that I can graduate in less than four years?

Is Ashford University an accredited school? What is the difference between regional and national accreditation?

How do Ashford University's online courses work?

How often do I need to participate in my online course?

Do I have to participate at a specific time?

What assistance does Ashford University offer to students who need extra academic support?

Do I have to complete an Associate's degree before I can start an Ashford University Bachelor's degree program?

Do I qualify for Financial Aid?

How does the commencement ceremony work for online students?

How do I request an official transcript?

What if I want to talk to a real human being and get more information?


How much will a degree from Ashford University cost me?

You'll find the affordable cost per credit hour is much less than most traditional private universities and colleges, whether on campus or online.

Learn more about online tuition and fees.

Can I transfer all the credits I have earned from other schools I attended?

You'll be thrilled to learn that students seeking a Bachelor's degree at Ashford may transfer up to 90 approved credits of previous coursework. Once you're enrolled, Ashford University will request your official transcripts and complete an evaluation to determine which credits are applicable to your program. Talk to an Admissions Counselor to find out how your credits can transfer. Learn more here about transferring credits.

Please note that transferring credits is always subject to Ashford University transfer credit policies, and requires the submission of official transcripts. Your official transcripts will be evaluated to determine the credits that will apply toward an Ashford University degree program.

How long will it take me to earn my degree?

Students who enroll in a Bachelor's degree program with zero transfer credits and stay continuously enrolled can expect to finish their degree in four years. Many students who transfer in a large number of credits from previous schools often graduate in a much shorter time frame. For example, if you transfer in 60 semester credits and stay continuously enrolled, you could finish in two years.

Courses run continuously, rather than in semesters. Typically, you take one course at a time and move on to the next course without a break. Opportunities to enroll and begin a course sequence in a degree program are available almost every week.

Is there any way that I can graduate in less than four years?

Yes! One way is to transfer in credits from previous coursework. You may also choose to take two classes at once if you meet the requirements of our Concurrent Courses Registration Policy. Work with your Admissions Counselor and Student Advisor to learn more about this option or reference the Academic Catalog for more information.

Another way to speed your success is to turn your work and life experience into transferable credits through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). From work training, workshops, and other sources, you can earn credit for nontraditional learning experiences. You may transfer in up to 30 PLA credits into a Bachelor’s degree program. The PLA Documentation Guide will provide you with more information.

Is Ashford University an accredited school? What is the difference between regional and national accreditation?

Yes, Ashford University is accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission, 985 Atlantic Avenue, Suite 100, Alameda, CA 94501, 510.748.9001, www.wascsenior.org

National accreditation is primarily limited to vocational or trade schools. Regional accreditors typically certify more traditional universities that offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

How do Ashford University's online courses work?

To preview, visit the Ashford Experience. Your online courses take place in Ashford University's online platform. The online learning platform is an asynchronous environment, meaning that you can log in at any time at your convenience. You will communicate with your instructor and fellow students, talk about diverse topics via discussion boards, read assigned texts, access course digital materials, and submit your assignments all through the online learning platform.

How often do I need to participate in my online course?

Students taking online courses at Ashford are expected to attend every week of the course. Attendance is defined as posting in a graded discussion forum or submitting a written assignment, journal entry, quiz, or exam. In most cases, you should expect to academically participate in your course at least two times per week. 

In addition, you must meet Ashford's minimum attendance requirements. Students enrolled in undergraduate introductory courses must attend at least once in any seven consecutive day period. Students enrolled in non-introductory courses must attend at least once in any fourteen consecutive day period in order to avoid being administratively withdrawn.

Failure to meet academic participation requirements may negatively impact an assignment and/or course grade. 

Do I have to participate at a specific time?

No, you get to choose when and where to log in for participation in your class, which allows you to fit your class requirements into your busy schedule. Your online classroom takes place in an asynchronous environment, which means that you are free to participate at your own pace, so long as you meet the minimum attendance and academic participation requirements for your courses.

What assistance does Ashford University offer to students who need extra academic support?

If you are like most Ashford University online students, then you are probably a working adult, and maybe it has been some time since you took a college-level class. Have no fear! Ashford University's online degree programs are specifically designed for adult learners. You will have your own personal Student Advisor who will support you through the entire process, and help answer many of your questions. Your instructors strive to be very understanding, supportive, and easy to contact.

Do I have to complete an Associate's degree before I can start an Ashford University Bachelor's degree program?

No. You can enroll in an online Associate's or Bachelor's degree program at Ashford University if you meet all of our admission requirements, even if you have never attended a college or university before.

Do I qualify for Financial Aid?

You will partner with a Financial Services Advisor to determine whether you can benefit from the various Financial Aid options offered. Financial Aid programs include Federal Direct Loans, the Federal PLUS Loan, and in some cases, the Federal Pell Grant.

How does the commencement ceremony work for online students?

No matter where you live, you are invited to participate in commencement ceremonies held at our campus in Clinton, Iowa. If you are visiting from out of town, you are responsible for arranging your own travel and accommodations. Remember that all students, both on campus and online, are required to submit the appropriate paperwork to graduate. Visit the graduation page to learn more

How do I request an official transcript?

To request a transcript from Ashford University, please visit the Transcript Request page. If you were a student at the former Bridgepoint Education / TeleUniversity, dba Charter Learning / Advanced Learning Network and need to request an official transcript, please complete and return a transcript request form.

What if I want to talk to a real human being and get more information?

No problem! Don't wait; call us today toll-free at 1.866.711.1700. An experienced Admissions Counselor is ready for your call.