Please everyone, DO NOT ATTEND SOUTH UNIVERSITY. It is a horrible school, extremely expensive and certainly not worth the money. They do have "ground schools", they are private and that is why the expense is so high, 30k plus for an Associates, 60K plus for a bachelors. Granted there are many schools in this country that cost that for one year alone but I would have thought that doing a degree online would be cheaper because one is not using the same materials. The only positive about online schools is the ability to complete your degree that offers you flexibility in a daily schedule. You don't have to be at school at a certain time as the classes are open 24/7. However, the teachers hardly teach. You READ A LOT and complete assignments, but there is little interaction or not the valuable interaction that a classroom forum offers. In an actual classroom you benefit from a lecture where in most cases the professor sheds insight into readings and fellow classmates ask questions that you get to hear. If your an auditory learner, then this is the way to go. In an online classroom, your instructors do respond to your assignments but traditionally they respond by asking additional questions and not really critiquing your paper to the extent that it should be. You do get to hear from other people in the classroom but you have to take the time to read all of the responses and I ask "Do you really get the same effect?".
Anyway, the time, many say faster, but thats only if you go as a full time student. Be prepared to spend at least 10 to 15 hours in a given week per class. Do you have the time to spend 30 hours per week if you go as a full time student at South University? This will help you shave about 6 months to maybe a year off your degree but many of us have full time jobs and families to take care of. And in actuality if you go to school at South University, and do it in a comfortable time frame you could be looking at a longer period than in a ground school.
When you speak with an enrollment advisor be prepared to be "WOW'd" because you will be. These are trained salespeople. Their goal is to sell sell sell you on the school so they meet their quotas. Its a fact, face it. They say things like "I'm interested in what you want to do" "How do you think you will feel when you get that degree, good right" "what are your goals" and that might make you feel like they care about you, but trust me, they don't. They may go onto pressuring you to go to school, "But I thought you wanted to get a degree for financial success, or that promotion or to take care of your darling children?". They care about keeping their jobs and making more money by the number of students that they seat in a class, and that is it.
Financial Aid - Ok let's talk Pell Grants - First off you are not eligible for Pell if you have already obtained a bachelors degree level. Currently the most you can get is 5350 per school year. However bear in mind that your spending about 20k per year for this school. BOOKS ARE NOT INCLUDED WITH TUITION. Financial aid can come by tuition reimbursement but most companies may only pay 1000 per year. Yes there are student loans but do you really then want to pay even more for your education? What if you get into a financial burden, what if you quit school, you will need to start paying back your loans 6 months after you leave.
If you don't mind working independently, only learning from what you read and paying a lot of money for school, by all means go to South University. But if you want a quality education, DON'T attend South University.