North Central University is a unique college located in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The university focuses on the idea of combining religious learning with higher education. Established in 1930, it originally functioned as Bible institution that gave students the chance to learn more about religious teachings. Many of its early students later accepted positions as teachers at the school, as ministers and in jobs working for church organizations. Though NCU accepted female students during its early years, it only offered housing for male students. Female students often lived at home or lived with local church members and worked for those members.
While NCU now offers a wide range of programs, it retains its original emphasis on spirituality and faith-based learning. Students enrolled in lower level programs must complete several religious courses as part of their studies. Its higher level programs, including its Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology, ask students to incorporate faith into their daily lives and to use religious teachings in their future careers. The college also has its own unique code of conduct, and students caught violating those regulations face expulsion. Though NCU cannot demand that students follow its code of conduct while taking online classes, it does ask that students remain respectful to that code.
North Central University Accreditation Details
North Central University is extremely proud of its accreditation and informs students of this fact before they enroll. Accreditation is a long and involved process completed by organizations across the country. It usually involves several distinct steps. Accreditation begins with a peer review, where professionals working for the organization meet with representatives from the school to talk about the courses offered, requirements for graduation, acceptance requirements and other factors. Schools that pass this phase must go through a series of other steps that may involve the organization speaking with students and going through information about graduation rates and job placement rates.
NCU now has accreditation from four different organizations. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs granted the school accreditation for its business programs, and its teaching and education programs have accreditation from the Teacher Education Accreditation Council. The Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education awarded NCU accreditation for its psychology and therapy programs. The university also has general accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. This gives the school the right to award degrees at all three major levels to students taking classes on campus and its online students.
North Central University Application Requirements
North Central University requires that all students apply for admission online and that students complete the application prior to the deadline for admission. Students must also ensure that any supplementary materials reach the school prior to that deadline. The doctoral psychology degree program has three admission policies: direct entry, evaluation and specialization.
Those with a graduate degree in psychology, counseling, social work or a related field can enter the program right away. Applicants with a graduate degree in another field must take several introductory courses and meet with a panel of professors to discuss their reasons for entering the program. If the student has a graduate degree and currently works as a marriage and family therapist, the student can use those qualifications to apply for admission and enter the program.
After submitting an application, students must meet with a professor over the phone or in person. The professor will evaluate the student and determine if the student deserves a spot in the program. All applications must include a signed copy of the an agreement letter to attend the school and follow its rules of conduct, a degree plan and a list of courses the student wants to take. Students must also pay the application fee online when submitting that information.
Tuition and Financial Aid
North Central University charges a set rate per course, and this rate applies both to classes taken on campus and online courses. Students entering one of the doctoral programs will pay just over $2,900 for every course they take in the program. NCU estimates the total cost students will pay for the whole program at around $58,000. This does not include the supplies needed for those courses. Some students may need a faster and better computer for their online classes, and most students will need two or more textbooks for each class they take.
Though this figure might seem high, there are various ways to pay those tuition costs. All students have access to different student aid from the federal government, but they do need to send in a completed copy of the FAFSA. Some of the options available to students include subsidized and unsubsidized student loans. Students may have the chance to borrow $10,000 or more each year they take a full course load. NCU also accepts payments from the government for military service men and women, their spouses and their dependents. The university occasionally offers grants for new and current students, and students can also request a payment plan from NCU.
Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology
The Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology is an online program offered by North Central University for students who already possess a graduate degree in psychology or a similar field. Former students claim they chose the program because it gave them the chance to work with some of the top names in the psychology field and from professors who went the extra mile to help their students. Those with the ability to work long hours on their own will find the program beneficial.
NCU offers several specializations for students enrolling in the program:
- Gender diversity
- Health psychology
- Industrial Organizational psychology
- General psychology
- Mental health policy and practice
Students enrolling in the program must complete at least 60 credit hours of higher level courses and maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Those transferring into the program from another school must take at least 48 credit hours or courses through NCU.
Requirements for completing the program include the successful completion of at least 12 credit hours in courses like social psychology and the history of psychology. Students will then take a minimum of 18 credit hours of courses in their specializations. The remaining credits needed for graduation come from the student's dissertation. North Central University offers rolling enrollment, which lets students apply and start classes in this program right away.