ITT Technical Institute / poor quality education, inflexible system
I finished up a two year degree in Computers and IT at a two year college and decided to further my education by returning to school for a Bachelor's at ITT Tech.
I began speaking with my recruiter, who was very pleasant but pretty much rushed me into a meeting with her. I met with the recruiter and I took the entrance exam, yes ITT Tech actually has an entrance exam, after I passed I was shown a nice powerpoint that pretty much made me feel like this was the perfect decision to make. When I told her that I already possessed an associate's degree in IT work she basically told me, "too bad, tough luck." I was then informed that I would have to repeat the associates program through ITT Tech in order to even begin working on the bachelor's degree. They told me some of my credits would transfer, and they did, but I still have to complete five quarters out of eight just for the associates. So think twice before deciding whether to go to ITT Tech if you plan to grow from associate's degree to bachelor's.
I got through all of the registration and began my first quarter, thinking that completing another associate's would be no problem. The first quarter went smoothly and I got two A's and a B. I thought for sure I would get an A in that last class but for some reason all the questions on the final were things that were never covered in class. The reason I did get a B was thanks to my homework that I had completed. After the grades came in I went to my dean and asked for four classes per quarter. I was given the go ahead but I never saw that fourth class.
I began my second quarter during December and that's where all my major problems began occuring. First day of class and my books weren't in stock. Nearly every class has homework issued on the first night and I couldn't do it because only five people had books. When I went back to get the books on week two the books that had already come in were already out of stock, again! I didn't recieve my book until the third week of class. And it put me behind horribly, as the amount of work for the class was quite heavy and I've been playing catch up ever since.
On the first day of class we were having lecture and all of a sudden a group of people over in the corner were beginning to get kind of loud. Our teacher called over to them, "Can you guys quiet down, I'm trying to teach a class." One of them replied with, "So am I." ITT actually scheduled more than one class in that room at one time. That's just the tip of the iceburg, we only had access to the lab for an hour and a half before moving into a lecture room for the rest of class. How are we supposed to learn in a class that requires a lot of hands on, if we spend most of the night in a lecture room? I had two classes where we switched out like this. One was WAN Technology and the other was Linux. How can you learn these concepts without a computer to work on?
One day I got to school early and plugged in my netbook at a station and then a staff member kicks me and another student out of our room so that they can have a faculty meeting in there. That one sent me over the top. I sent the nastiest e-mail I think I've ever written to ITT's feedback line detailing just about every problem I have listed in this complaint. A week later I got a call from my department head telling me he needs to meet with me. I met with him and the Associate Dean. They told me I had to appologize for the letter I had sent. I appologized for the language I used, the worst of which was the word "stupid". The Associate Dean told me that our campus was not over capacity and that all ITT Tech schools practice the class rotation system. She said there aren't enough computers for all the students to have access to one, thanks for stating that obvious point, so we have to rotate out. If they are lacking that many computers then I think they need to get more computers, not limit our time on them. We did address the faculty meetings, which in my letter I had called stupid and was made to appologize for. I think this aspect has been cleared up. Ever since our talk I have not encountered a faculty meeting since. I also complained about one of my teachers and I was told that they would talk to him and have him adapt his methods since the entire class was clueless. We would sit and watch him put Linux commands into his computer and never understand why he was doing what he was doing. After speaking with the Associate Dean, my teacher has still not changed his methods and as the final draws close the class still has no clue.
Also know that ITT Tech has almost all their books written for them. The books are generally horribly planned out, full of errors and at times make absolutely no sense at all.
The teachers are almost always adjunct, and this in itself can be a double edged blade. Generally adjunct teachers work in the field in which they teach. This means that they have great real world experience and can really be great teachers, however they aren't usually great teachers, as they either don't care enough about teaching or they just don't know how to teach. Knowing something and being able to teach it are two entirely different things. ITT Tech doesn't seem to have a very good screening process for teachers.
Being a career college you would expect more flexabilty in scheduling. This coming quarter I have been scheduled for two of the three days that I currently work at my job. I was told that in order to change my schedule I must have a letter, written on my employers letterhead, stating that I can't come to school those days. Are you kidding me? I pay thousands of dollars a quarter and your telling me I don't even have full control over my schedule, and I have to involve my employers in the process. I'm sorry but if I pay you money you had better do everything in your power to make me the happiest person alive. ITT Tech is a for-profit school and you really can tell what matters more to them when it comes to students or money. I got the written letter from my work and turned it in to the registrar. I was then told that no classes were available for me and I was basically either gonna have to choose between work or school. Thanks a lot ITT Tech. I understand that the campus is small and not every class is offered every quarter but come on, don't you dare make me jump through hoops only to find out it was all for nothing.
ITT Tech also forces you to use this thing called the Virtual Library for your research projects. It's a virtual collection of articles and books. They push this on the students because they pay for it and have to have so many students accessing it. I have not found a good reason to use this tool. It's cumbersome and clumsy and generally it's more helpful, and faster, just to find the information online, but most projects state in them that one of your sources MUST come from the Virtual Library. When you use it every link will open one more browser window and you will end up with a screen cluttered with Internet browsers.
ITT Tech is by far the most irritating school I've ever dealt with. They don't care about the students needs and when students complain, the complaints are generally swept under the rug. I would stop going but with all the money I've put into it, I feel I need to get something out of this miserable experience, so I plan to finish this associate's degree and then be done with ITT Tech for good. I'll try my luck at a real four year school that actually cares about me as a student. Do not believe the commercials, they are trained actors, not actually real ITT students. They actually make you sign a release form when you start here saying that you would be willing to participate in a commercial, just so you actually think the commercials are real. I mean the release form doesn't even look legit. It was faded and messy, and just looked like it was thrown together. Don't take my word for this though, I just have a very high suspicion that they aren't actually real students in the commercials.
If you are considering ITT Tech try looking many other places before committing yourself to this. Always check the complaints and the success stories when looking at schools. It is always up to you to weed through all the hecklers and find the true complaints from people who are actually dissatisfied and not out just to harm the school. Trust me I was extremely excited when I started at ITT Tech, and it all seemed great but after all the problems I stated above I really don't think I can say the same anymore. I hope I save someone from making the same mistake I did. Perhaps ITT Tech isn't the school for me and it's perfectly right for you, just do your research first and be aware of what you are getting into before you commit.
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