Has anyone in Tennessee heard of Accelerated Learning Center? PLEASE HELP! - page 3

I am an LPN trying to become an RN. I am looking at a place called Accelerated Learning Center. Has anyone heard of it? I met 2 nurses during my clinicals that were going through them and they had... Read More

  1. Visit  Murse901 profile page
    1
    I can certainly understand the owner of the business in question wanting to come here to defend the business. However, having reviewed the rnsooner website, it does seem deceptive to use the words "our nursing school" and "our nursing program". Leads people to believe that rnsooner is actually a nursing school and not a prep company like The College Network.

    I've never had any experience with ALC, so I can't say whether or not their prep program is good or bad. However, potential students should be aware that it's much cheaper to avoid these prep programs and just go straight into Excelsior.

    Additionally, who is teaching these courses? Neither the owner nor the CFO have any healthcare credentials according to TN Dept of Health. I assume you have licensed nurses or physicians teaching the nursing prep classes?
    Last edit by Murse901 on Mar 9, '11
    redhead_NURSE98! likes this.
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  3. Visit  drgraden profile page
    0
    @DonaldJ:

    You make some valid points. I really don't mean to be misleading, but here is what I'm faced with.

    1. In this day and age, a website is one of the most important tools in any businesses marketing arsenal.

    There are a lot of factors to consider when building a website, but one we all struggle with is what content to include that not only explains what we do, but let's Google know that the site is relevant for those searching certain keywords.

    Frankly, most of the people looking for a program like ours search terms like "Nursing School" or "RN Bridge Programs". For Google to list us in their search results, we have to use these terms about 2% - 3% of the time in our content, as well as in the headings, titles, etc.

    No one is searching for a "Test Prep Center", so using that term buries us in the search results and no one would ever find our website. Since most of our students come from visiting the website, we simply can't afford to ignore this.

    2. While it is indeed cheaper not to use a prep program, the sad truth is that most who do never finish their degrees. Excelsior does not publish their pass rates on purpose, but the military does and their Excelsior students only pass these tests 26% of the time. And they get some extra help with tutoring. Our pass rate is closer to 94%. In 6 years, none of our students have failed the NCLEX and only 2 had to repeat the CPNE. Big difference!

    Plus we let our students who do fail take the class over for free. Try finding that in a traditional college.

    Also, while there are additional expenses, many employers reimburse our students for our program. One area hospital sent us 16 of their LPNs last Nov/Dec and are paying their way for them.

    3. As our website states, all of our instructors hold Masters or Doctoral degrees. Our nursing instructors are solid clinically and do a great job.

    Finally, about half of our students tried College Network, Rue or Chancellors in the past unsuccessfully. Where they failed there, they are succeeding here.

    Thanks for your insights. I hope that clears things up and if Google ever changes how they rank websites, I'll be the first to change those terms.
  4. Visit  Michael55 profile page
    1
    Dr. Graden,
    As you can see from these posts there are serious questions about your business. As the owner the onus is on you to show that your business is worthy of the hard earned money of prospective students. In your latest response you justified and admitted labeling your program something it is not - a school. In a previous response to one of my postings you stated that your courses are "nowhere near 10,000" and yet you recently quoted a friend of minewho is a LPN just under 10,000 for a RN-ASN (and no, she did not require any pre-req or remedial classes).
    Enough.
    If you are reputable I call on you to release the following:
    1. Costs of your classes including associated costs
    2. A realistic and accurate accounting of the number of students that enroll with you vs. the number of students that attain their degree. Remember, it is you who stated that students are more likely to drop out of an online course if they are not enrolled in a program like yours.

    You constantly refer people to the BBB website to verify you have an "A" rating, yet you have admitted in your previous post to deceptive advertising which is a flagrant violation of their policies. It is also important to note that most students do not complain to the BBB about a school because it is impossible to prove that a school (or program) did not "adequately instruct".
    redhead_NURSE98! likes this.
  5. Visit  drgraden profile page
    0
    @Michael55

    I'm not going to rehash this with you.

    All this information is readily available should you choose to come in for an appointment.
  6. Visit  Murse901 profile page
    0
    Quote from drgraden
    @DonaldJ:

    You make some valid points. I really don't mean to be misleading, but here is what I'm faced with.

    1. In this day and age, a website is one of the most important tools in any businesses marketing arsenal.

    <snipped for brevity>

    No one is searching for a "Test Prep Center", so using that term buries us in the search results and no one would ever find our website. Since most of our students come from visiting the website, we simply can't afford to ignore this.
    While I can certainly empathize with your position as a business owner, this is not really a valid defense to presenting your program as a nursing school. There are other ways to promote your page on Google, including paying for Google Adwords. Taking the route that you're taking simply throws up a gigantic red flag to anyone familiar with nursing education and, as you've experienced in this forum, ticks off a few folks.

    It could also be a violation of T.C.A. 63-7-120, section a6 to claim to be a nursing school, even for advertising purposes. I'm not a lawyer, however, so I can't say for sure. Hopefully, your business attorney has already researched this.

    2. While it is indeed cheaper not to use a prep program, the sad truth is that most who do never finish their degrees. Excelsior does not publish their pass rates on purpose, but the military does and their Excelsior students only pass these tests 26% of the time. And they get some extra help with tutoring. Our pass rate is closer to 94%. In 6 years, none of our students have failed the NCLEX and only 2 had to repeat the CPNE. Big difference!

    Plus we let our students who do fail take the class over for free. Try finding that in a traditional college.

    Also, while there are additional expenses, many employers reimburse our students for our program. One area hospital sent us 16 of their LPNs last Nov/Dec and are paying their way for them.
    It really isn't a fair comparison to use military pass rates. Military students can take EC tests for free or at a significant discount, using the G.I. Bill. I would imagine that this leads to a lot of "testing the waters", i.e. taking a test just to see if they can pass. I was given the opportunity to take a UExcel exam for free, and I took PolSci cold, just to see if I could pass without studying. While n=1 means nothing, it's a fair assumption that this happens with military students, which would lead to an artificially low pass rate.

    I would agree that an unusually large number of EC students never finish. However, I can't see how a prep program would help to motivate the student. Additionally, I would be interested to find out the actual number of students that enroll in your program vs. the number that complete it.

    As for letting your students re-take your classes at no cost, you are attempting to compare your program with a college. Failing one of your courses has no detrimental effect on the student's GPA or overall progress in EC. And, in fact, it's in your company's best interests to allow the student to re-take the class as often as they'd like, to ensure that they continue with your program.


    3. As our website states, all of our instructors hold Masters or Doctoral degrees. Our nursing instructors are solid clinically and do a great job.

    Finally, about half of our students tried College Network, Rue or Chancellors in the past unsuccessfully. Where they failed there, they are succeeding here.

    Thanks for your insights. I hope that clears things up and if Google ever changes how they rank websites, I'll be the first to change those terms.
    Thank you for the information on your instructors. I had only skimmed the website. And, to be honest, the website is very busy in design.

    As it stands right now, I don't think you'll find much acceptance from the nursing community here, simply because your website is promoting your program as a nursing school, which it is not. Unfortunately for you, programs like The College Network and RUE have left a generally bad taste in the mouth of the nursing community, so there's going to be a lot of resistance to EC prep programs.

    Good luck in your endeavors.
  7. Visit  Michael55 profile page
    0
    Upon reviewing this thread I think it is fair to conclude that Dr. Graden is not willing to make many disclosures about his program regarding fees or success rates. This should be of concern to all prospective students. Even Excelsior College, which this program claims to help you graduate from, lists it's course fees on it's website.
    Again, this does not mean this is a bad program, but suspicions are raised when a business presents itself the way this one does.

    Are there any students out there who have taken this course and might provide some personal observations? Any current or former course instructors who would be willing to share their thoughts?
  8. Visit  drgraden profile page
    0
    Okay everyone,

    This is my last attempt to clear things up here.

    1. I had the website changed to clearly state that we are an "alternative" to traditional nursing schools, as I felt that your points in this area were valid.

    2. Most of the concerns/questions presented in the above threads are clearly covered on our website. Taking a few minutes to read it first would save everyone a lot of time.

    3. As far as fees go, all you have to do is come in for a free evaluation and "EVERY PENNY" is disclosed. Not just our fees, but what you would expect to pay for books, exams, CPNE, NCLEX and Excelsior College Fees. We frequently offer sales and area employers often pay or reimburse for our program, so it's just too complicated to get into on a forum such as this. Also, I believe the moderators would find it to be advertising, which they charge for. That's why I don't give the website URL here either, but we are easy to find on the web.

    Good luck to you all!
  9. Visit  gwenf profile page
    0
    Quote from allizfulloflove
    I am an LPN trying to become an RN. I am looking at a place called Accelerated Learning Center. Has anyone heard of it? I met 2 nurses during my clinicals that were going through them and they had nothing but good things to say about it,but I cant find anything else about it ANYWHERE! Please help!
    I know this is dated from 2010, but I just saw it today. I am an Excelsior student and I have been attending Accelerated Learning Center, and I wanted to give my opinion on my experience. ALC is a test prep company that prepares you to take the Excelsior exams. I have passed all of my Excelsior exams and am currently taking Excelsior's 2 online FCCA classes and then I'll be ready for the CPNE. (I already had my gen ed classes completed, so I only needed the nursing classes, A&P, microbiology, and lifespan psychology.) While a person can do Excelsior without any help, and I'm sure that a lot of people do, I have found that Accelerated's program has been very helpful to prepare me for Excelsior's exams. The instructors are seasoned nurses that are very knowledgeable and helpful. They want to see the students succeed, and they make themselves available even outside of class. ALC also has study guide books which put the needed information into a concise form that makes studying more focused. Another thing that isn't discussed much, but does happen with ALC is, because the classes are small, you get to know your classmates, and oftentimes informal study groups are formed among the students. With attending the ALC classes and doing studying on my own, I was able to pass all of my exams on the first attempt. (Not everyone does, but if you don't, you can retake the classes for free, if you meet ALC's guidelines). I personally found that attending ALC has helped to keep me focused on my goal. I did also take Excelsior's practice exams, which I found to be helpful too...but those are actually through Excelsior, not Accelerated. About the cost: nursing school isn't going to be cheap no matter where you go. But ALC does have payment options that they will discuss with you when you go in to talk to them. I found that they were upfront with me, and did give me a breakdown of the costs before I signed up. All in all, I have been pleased with my experience at ALC, and I do recommend it to others that are considering the Excelsior program. And about Excelsior: it is the only distance learning program that the Tennessee Board of Nursing approves. Some states do have additional guidelines about the Excelsior program, so a person would need to check with their individual state board of nursing about their acceptance of the Excelsior program.
  10. Visit  LPN15 profile page
    0
    Who all qualifies for this program? I am really interested in this program and tried looking on the website, but it wouldn't let me watch the videos.


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