In the Bay State, the flagship school is the University of Massachusetts. An online school is affiliated with it: the University of Massachusetts Global (UMass Global). If you want an online degree that potential employers will respect, you may be wondering whether or not you should earn it at UMass Global.
In general, the University of Massachusetts Global is a good school for career- and family-focused learners. As a matter of fact, 90% of its students work while working on a degree, while 56% balance studying and parenting. UMass Global is ideal for students who would like to earn a business or psychology degree.
Before adding UMass Global to your college list or sending your application to it, read on!
This post is all about the University of Massachusetts Global — its accreditor, brief history, cost of attendance, admission requirements, ranking and others.
Related Article: Best Online Colleges in the US
Is the University of Massachusetts Global a Diploma Mill?
Being affiliated with the University of Massachusetts, a five-campus public university system, the University of Massachusetts Global is not a diploma mill. Unlike diploma mills, it’s accredited by a US Department of Education- and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA)-recognized accreditor.
In the US, only six regional accreditors are in existence. One of them is the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), which is the one that has given UMass Global its accreditation.
There is one more thing about UMass Global that proves it’s not a diploma mill: it has physical locations.
In California and Washington, there are 25 UMass Global campuses serving attendees who are taking hybrid classes, or classes that are a combination of online and on-campus learning. At the University of Massachusetts Global, all hybrid classes are conducted in the evenings in order to accommodate working adults.
Students in hybrid classes meet once a week for three hours.
When was the University of Massachusetts Global Established?
The University of Massachusetts Global per se came into being only in 2021. However, its roots can be traced back to 1958, when the professors of Chapman College delivered classes to service members and civilian students in various locations. Chapman College became Brandman University, which became UMass Global.
Heard about Brandman University, which was popular for providing educational opportunities to working adults? Well, the Irvine, California-based private, non-profit institution is no longer around.
In May 2021, it partnered with the University of Massachusetts and, later that year, became UMass Global.
Since then, UMass Global’s programs, which are built around the knowledge base, skill set and experience its students will need, have grown to more than 90 programs, from associate, bachelor’s to master’s degrees and from certificates to credential and authorization programs, divided into five schools:
- Arts and Sciences
- Business and Professional Studies
- Extended Education
- Nursing and Health Professions
And just like its predecessor, the University of Massachusetts Global is focused on non-traditional students, although first-time, first-year students are welcome, too, thus giving the online school a diverse student body.
What is the University of Massachusetts Global Known For?
The University of Massachusetts Global is known for being formerly called Brandman University. It is also known as an online school affiliated with the University of Massachusetts. UMass Global is popular for helping military personnel earn degrees even before being rebranded into what it is today.
Not all online schools are affiliated with an actual college or university. Similarly, not all online schools have physical locations where students can experience traditional learning.
UMass Global is not only affiliated with a flagship school but also has a total of 25 campuses.
Those campuses are where its students taking hybrid classes meet on a weekly basis, although most of its students, especially professional ones, are attending UMass Global fully online.
Some of the most popular majors at the University of Massachusetts Global include:
- Liberal Arts and Humanities
- Social Work and Youth Services
- Criminal Justice and Safety Studies
- Early Childhood Education
- Social Science Research Methods
- Information Science
- Legal Studies
How Much Does It Cost to Attend the University of Massachusetts Global?
At the University of Massachusetts Global, the cost of earning a degree varies from one program to the next. Associate and bachelor’s degrees cost $500 per credit unit. Meanwhile, a graduate degree from UMass Global can cost anywhere from $680 to $1,185 per credit unit. The rates are lower for active-duty military and spouses.
Unlike some online schools affiliated with public colleges and universities, UMass Global charges residents and non-residents similarly — there is no need to worry about paying more just because you are an out-of-state student.
Whether you are from Massachusetts or elsewhere, you will pay $500 per credit unit.
This means that a three-credit course will cost you $1,500. This is true whether it’s an associate degree or a bachelor’s degree you will work on. Doing the math, going to the University of Massachusetts to earn an associate degree, which has a total of 60 credits, will cost you $30,000.
On the other hand, earning a bachelor’s degree, which has a total of 120 credits, will cost you $60,000.
As of this writing, the average estimated cost of an associate degree is $31,496. On the other hand, the average estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree is $101,948 at an in-state college or $172,644 at an out-of-state college or $212,868 at a private non-profit college. Clearly, an online bachelor’s degree from UMass Global is significantly cheaper.
The cost of attending UMass Global is cheaper for active-duty military personnel and their spouses. An associate and bachelor’s degree, for instance, costs only $250 per credit unit. Besides lowered tuition, the online school also offers benefits for military service personnel and dependents — we will discuss this matter in a few.
Does the University of Massachusetts Global Accept Financial Aid?
The University of Massachusetts awards eligible undergraduate students with financial aid in the form of grants, scholarships, work-study and loans. In 2022, UMass Global launched a new scholarship, the UStart Scholarship, which is designed to reduce a student’s overall tuition costs by as much as 30%.
According to UMass Global itself, first-time, first-year students should complete the FAFSA as soon as they decide to apply to the online school, using the Federal School Code 041618.
What’s nice about attending UMass Global is that you will be assigned a One Stop Specialist.
Simply put, your One Stop Specialist will get in touch with you upon getting admitted into the University of Massachusetts Global and having your financial aid requirements processed in order to review your award letter as well as estimate your costs. Your One Stop Specialist can also answer your financial aid-related questions.
As mentioned earlier, there is a new type of scholarship available at UMass Global: the UStart Scholarship. The goal of this scholarship is to encourage individuals hesitating to attend an online school to give earning a degree a try.
Those who qualify for the UStart Scholarship can enjoy awards amounting to up to $450 a course. Those who need to complete the entire 120 credits that make up a bachelor’s degree can receive awards worth up to $18,000. As of this writing, interested undergraduate students should apply for the UStart Scholarship by August 15.
Does the University of Massachusetts Global Offer Special Benefits for Military Personnel?
There are various programs the University of Massachusetts Global offers to active duty members and veterans of the US military as well as their spouses and children in order to support their educational needs. After all, the beginnings of UMass Global are rooted in bringing education to military personnel.
UMass Global was once Chapman College, which opened a campus at El Toro Marine Corps Air station near Irvine, California with the quest of serving the specific needs of active-duty students stationed there.
Because of its long tradition of commitment to making education accessible to military personnel, it isn’t surprising why the University of Massachusetts Global has a variety of programs available for them, which are separate from various GI Bill benefits many colleges and universities accept.
Some active-duty programs at UMass Global include:
- Air University Associate-to-Baccalaureate Cooperative (AU-ABC) program
- General Education Mobile (GEM) program
- Army Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (COOL) program
- Troops to Teachers (TTT) program
- Tuition Assistance (TA) program
Some programs available for military spouses and dependents attending UMass Global are:
- My Career Advancement Account (MyCAA) scholarship
- Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA)
- Fry Scholarship
What GPA Do You Need to Get Into the University of Massachusetts Global?
The University of Massachusetts Global requires students applying for undergraduate admission to have a high school GPA of at least 2.0. The requirement applies to those who wish to enroll in associate and bachelor’s degree programs. No published GPA requirement for transferees with 12 or more transferrable credits exists.
It is said that you should have a GPA of 3.5 at least if you are looking to gain admission into selective colleges with an acceptance rate of less than 60%.
Meanwhile, to get into most of the rest of colleges and universities, a GPA of at least 2.0 will usually do.
Whether you are applying as a first-time, first-year student to an associate or bachelor’s degree program at UMass Global, you should have a minimum GPA of 2.0 in order for your application to be considered. Those who are applying to an associate degree program, however, will have to pass an English and Math entrance exam.
Does the University of Massachusetts Global Require SAT or ACT?
According to an enrollment coach at the University of Massachusetts Global, the admissions process at the online school doesn’t involve consideration of SAT or ACT scores. So, in other words, UMass has a test-blind admissions policy. Meanwhile, the University of Massachusetts itself is a test-optional school.
Many colleges and universities are test-optional — they let applicants decide whether or not to submit test scores.
One of them is the University of Massachusetts. Meanwhile, UMass Global, which is affiliated with it, is test-blind.
Simply put, it does not require applicants to submit their SAT or ACT scores. And even if they choose to submit theirs, the admissions officers at the University of Massachusetts Global will not take a look at them.
With fewer requirements and no minimum scores to meet, applying to UMass Global is simpler and easier.
Speaking of applying, UMass Global accepts not only a high school diploma or the official high school transcript from freshmen applicants but also an equivalent, such as a General Education Diploma (GED) or any other high school diploma equivalent that’s recognized by the US Department of Education.
How Many Transfer Credits Does the University of Massachusetts Global Accept?
The University of Massachusetts Global does not have any published number of maximum credits it can accept from an accredited four-year institution. Instead, it provides transferees with enrollment coaches to help them map the road to earning a bachelor’s degree. All credits from a California community college are accepted.
Got an Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) from one of the 116 community colleges in California? Then you are guaranteed admission into UMass Global if you want to pursue a bachelor’s degree online.
What’s more, all 60 credits you have earned will be accepted by UMass Global!
According to the University of Massachusetts Global itself, one of its goals is for the students to get their respective degrees as quickly and economically as possible. This is why it turns what applicants already have into credits towards the completion of their preferred online degree programs:
- Community college credits
- Four-year institution credits
- Military service or experience
- Test out of classes
How Much Time is Spent Online by the University of Massachusetts Global Students?
Because the University of Massachusetts Global curricula are just as rigorous as the curricula of the University of Massachusetts itself, online students have to devote the same amount of time to studying as on-campus students. Generally speaking, students have to spend two to three hours for every credit hour.
Many students who are looking to have a college degree turn to online schools thinking that it will be so much easier for them to complete an academic program.
If truth be told, in most instances, online and traditional programs have the same difficulty level.
This is most especially true if the online institution is affiliated with a physical college or university — more often than not, they share the very same curricula. It’s for this reason exactly why, as a UMass Global student, you will also have to exhibit dedication and hard work as a University of Massachusetts student would if you want to graduate.
As mentioned earlier, for every credit hour, you will have to spend two to three hours doing your various coursework tasks. This means that every course, which usually consists of three credits, requires at least six hours of studying.
One of the nicest things about the University of Massachusetts Global is that it offers flexible learning types. For instance, you can choose to earn your degree 100% online. However, keep in mind that some of the classes are the synchronous kind, which means you will have to participate in real-time online discussions.
UMass Global also offers hybrid classes, which means that some classes are held online while others are held in an actual classroom. However, it’s only intended for students residing in California or near Seattle, Washington because it’s only where the 25 campuses of UMass Global are located.
What is the Ranking of the University of Massachusetts Global?
There are various online undergraduate degree programs from the University of Massachusetts Global that are ranked by US News. A couple of its online graduate degree programs are ranked by the popular college ranker, too. The school it’s affiliated with, which is the University of Massachusetts, is a high-ranking institution.
Besides being affiliated with the flagship school of Massachusetts and accredited by a US Department of Education- and CHEA-recognized accreditor, which is WSCUC, there is one more proof that UMass Global is a legit online school and not a diploma mill: it is ranked by US News, which is a trusted college ranking site.
While UMass Global itself doesn’t have a US News ranking, many of its degree programs have.
For instance, it’s #40 in Best Online Bachelor’s in Psychology Programs and #125 in Best Online Bachelor’s in Business Programs. Being a military personnel-friendly online school, it isn’t really surprising why US News ranks the University of Massachusetts Global #68 in Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans.
Ranked UMass Global graduate degree programs by US News include:
- #103 in Best Online Master’s in Business Programs (Excluding MBA)
- #130 in Best Online Master’s in Education Programs
- #191 in Best Online MBA Programs
Just Before You Apply to the University of Massachusetts Global
The University of Massachusetts Global is not a diploma mill — not only is it regionally accredited by WSCUC but it’s also affiliated with the flagship school of the state of Massachusetts.
UMass Global is also a good school for first-time, first-year students, transferees as well as military personnel and their dependents who would like to get their hands on ranked online degrees. And with the availability of hybrid classes for California and Seattle, Washington residents, it allows non-traditional students to become well-rounded ones.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the College Reality Check.