For-Profit Colleges: Here’s Everything You Should Know

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For-Profit Colleges

Choosing the right college that offers online training can be a challenging process.

In most cases, for-profit colleges are a great option for any prospective student.

Do you have questions like:

“What are for-profit colleges?”


“Why it is better to choose a for-profit college?”

In this article, you can find answers to all your questions.

Some of the for-profit colleges may have a bad rap but still, there are some absolutely great options and they can be perfect for some students.

Just keep in mind that your decision should be well-researched and evaluated.

If you collected all the possible info and thought it over, enrolling in a program offered by a for-profit college can be really beneficially.

If you want to get answers for some common questions, keep reading and learn everything you need to know.

What is a for-profit college?

For-profit colleges – it is higher education facilities that are founded and owned by private organizations.

In fact, such colleges and universities can be rather controversial.

There are lots of stories about less reputable for-profit schools that have high debt rates and flat promises of a bright future and amazing career.

As a result, it leads to the fact that most students see such institutions as something bad and lose some great benefits for-profit colleges can offer them.

In this article, you’ll be able to learn about all the advantages and disadvantages of for-profit colleges.

If you want to have a successful experience in a for-profit college, you need to make sure that your decision was well-informed and thoughtful.

Of course, there are lots of for-profit colleges that make students enroll in their training quickly while racking enormous debts and getting no closer to their career goals.

At the same time, there is a bunch of for-profit colleges that can provide you with such benefits as accessible training programs, an opportunity to get useful skills, and a transition to a career.

You just need to be able to see the difference and this guide can provide you with all the necessary info.

Knowing all the pros, cons, differences, similarities of these colleges, you’ll be able to make the right choice.

What is the difference between for-profit and non-profit colleges?

Of course, there are numerous differences between for-profit and non-profit colleges.


The main point that should be mentioned is that the last ones are not owned by someone concrete and all the received profit is used only for the facility purposes.

As you may suggest, the owner of a college is the one who makes decisions so it may affect your education significantly.

When it comes to for-profit schools, it is shareholders who make decisions while non-profit schools are regulated by a board of directors.

Depending on the school:

It may have a big impact on you so make sure to learn about such aspects as the leadership, reputation, and track record at all schools you are interested in.

Why a for-profit college can be something worrisome?

There are some schools that are interested in profit solely without paying attention to the students’ needs.

Are for-profit schools accredited?

There is no certain answer for this question as some for-profit colleges have an accreditation while others haven’t.

It can be either national or regional accreditation.

Both of them are provided by various accreditation agencies that are recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

You should know that only accredited colleges and universities have an opportunity to accept various forms of financial aid such as Pell Grants or student loans.

In other words, accreditation is an absolutely important aspect.

Regional accreditation is usually obtained by schools that offer a curriculum focused on academic aspects.

Speaking of national accreditation:

It is usually obtained by schools that are focused on professional development, technical skills, or religious education.

In most cases, national accreditation is obtained by online colleges while regional accreditation isn’t bounded to any specific area.

Most for-profit colleges have national accreditation but of course, there are also schools that have regional accreditation.

When it comes to regionally accredited schools.

They usually offer some more comprehensive education and opportunity to transfer credits to another regionally accredited college.

Just keep in mind that it may be not so easy to transfer your credits if you are a student of a nationally accredited college to regionally accredited one.

If you want to get info about accredited schools, you can use the US Department of Education’s College Navigator tool.

There, you can get access to profiles of all accredited schools where you can read all the important info.

Just make sure to get info about the accreditation of schools you are interested in.

It will help you understand what benefits you’ll get access to and how it may influence your education and career.

Education, For-Profit Colleges, Guide

The Benefits of For-Profit College

In fact, for-profit colleges and schools can be a great opportunity to obtain the required training so you can start your career successfully.

Also, some students may not be able to apply for non-profit schools and for-profit colleges are the only option for them.

Acceptance Rates

In most cases, for-profit colleges have higher rates of acceptance than non-profit ones.

It is because of the most part of for-profit colleges have an open admissions policy.

In other words, they are ready to accept everyone who can meet some simple criteria that have nothing to do with such issues as test scores, grades, and so on.

Typically, you only need to provide your high-school diploma or GED to be qualified for a program.

It is a great option for those who weren’t able to gain admission to schools that have competitive admissions requirements.


Most for-profit colleges can provide with more flexibility.

In fact, they offer rolling admissions that is a great option for you to start working towards your degree at any time.

Also, lots of for-profit colleges offer online training programs that make it even easier to obtain a degree or a certification.

Career Skills and Certifications

Lots of students give preference to certification programs and trade schools and it is exactly where most for-profit colleges really stand out.

It’s a great option for anyone who wants to get a certificate or degree in a specific field.

When it comes to such spheres as culinary arts, computer science, and cosmetology:

For-profit colleges are the best options as they can provide you with all of the required skills.

It will give you an opportunity to get access to a whole variety of jobs in the field you are interested in without spending lots of time and money.

There are some career fields where a degree provided by a for-profit college can be a good starting point:

The Risks of For-Profit Colleges

Before applying for a training program provided by a for-profit college, you should learn all the possible risks.

For-profit colleges are often significantly criticized because of the various issues.

In this section, we are going to tell you about all the risks related to training at a for-profit college.

This info will help you to make the right choice.


When applying for a training program at a for-profit college:

You should be ready that the course price will be higher than one offered by a non-profit college.

According to the researches, the price of a course at a for-profit college is two times more than at a non-profit college.

In other words, if in a non-profit college you need to pay $325 for your training, in a for-profit college – it will be $650.

So, if you have a tight budget, a for-profit college is probably not the best option for you.

Especially if it is not accredited by an agency recognized by the Department of Education as you won’t be able to get a loan or a grant.

Moreover, there is always a risk of getting an enormous student loan debt.

In other words, check all the information properly before applying for a student loan.

To get more info on the issue, use the Student Financial Aid Source website.


One other point you should pay attention to is to learn about school’s or college’s reputation.

It is really important as the attitude of professionals in your field towards your school is really important and can significantly influence your career.

Some you employers may think that a non-profit program is much better than a course provided by a for-profit school.

In other words, before making a choice, you need to discuss your choice with professionals that work in your sphere of interest.

Just keep in mind that the broader public reputation of a for-profit school is not the main point you should pay attention to.

It is because it not always have something to do with your goals.

College reputation varies significantly depending on industry, field and even sector.

In other words:

Making a final decision, you need to pay more attention to professional reviews than just to feedbacks published on the Internet.

Nevertheless, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pay any attention to these reviews especially when it comes to scandals, corruption, and so on.

For-Profit College vs. Diploma Mill

Most people think that a for-profit college – it is a “degree mill” or “diploma mill” as there are lots of such colleges that offer unified courses without paying attention to students’ needs.

Also, it is because lots of for-profit colleges aim for profit and for providing an appropriate level of education for their students.

Unfortunately, it is 100% true in some cases and many for-profit colleges were shut because of it.

Nevertheless, there is a variety of for-profit schools that provide absolutely affordable and flexible programs oriented on students interests.

In other words, it is important to be able to see the difference between a good for-profit school and a diploma mill.

A For-Profit College Might Be for You If…

If you are able to meet one of the following criteria, a for-profit school is a perfect option for you.

First of all, it is a great option if you have low test scores and/or grades.

If your application profile contains something that can make it hard for you to enter a competitive school, a for-profit college is exactly what you need.

In other words, you can get an education and some great career options even if you have low grades and scores.

Secondly, it is a perfect opportunity for those who look for certification in some specific fields.

There are some certain certification options that can be received only at for-profit colleges.

If you want to get some knowledge and skills in such fields as culinary arts or cosmetology.

Thirdly, you need to make a proper research.

Before making a final decision:

It’s important to get all possible info about for-profit colleges you are interested in including such points as pros, cons, reputation, cost, return on investment, and overall value.

Only if all these aspects suit your needs and goals, you can apply for the college.

Finally, for-profit schools are great for those who look for online training programs.

There are some degree programs that can be hardly available online and for-profit colleges can be your only option.

For example, when it comes to doctoral programs, most of them are available only on the on-campus basis.


Now as you get some better understanding of all the important aspects of for-profit colleges.

It is time to make a search and decide on your training program.

Make sure to collect all info you can find about for-profit colleges you are interested in.

And, of course, don’t forget to check the rankings of for-profit colleges.

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