The article gushes about this online university in glowing terms. It highlights the McGraw Prize in Education received by the President of WGU, Robert Mendenhall, which cited the university's "flexibility, accessibility and affordability"; it notes that Time magazine once called it "the best college you've never heard of" (the original quote was, actually, "the best relatively cheap university you've never heard of"); and it quotes words of praise by the chief executive of the nation's largest education foundation (Lumina Foundation), Jamie Merisotis, who calls WGU "a 'disruptive innovator' that's likely to push the entire education system to change in positive ways." The article further mentions that the "National Study of Student Engagement, which rates both traditional universities, showed WGU as performing equal to or better than other private, nonprofit universities not directly supported by governmental bodies. The ratings were based on academic challenge, quality of advisors and overall educational experience."
Intrigued by all this positive press, I dug around a little further on my own. From looking at the course offerings described on WGU's own website, it seems to be geared primarily towards working adults looking to complete a bachelor's degree so they can list it on their resume. The offered majors are not very diverse, and what is on offer focuses less on mind-broadening education than on "marketable/market-oriented" subjects, such as business and teacher's education and narrowly defined information technology domains. For example, most closely related to my area of networks is their degree of B.S. in Information Technology - Networks Design and Management. Their description of this degree reads:
Our network design degree will launch your network systems engineering career. The B.S. in Information Technology—Networks Design and Management will give you leading-edge networks design and engineering skills that employers demand along with eight recognized industry certifications including your Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP) Enterprise Administrator certification. You will become a better networks designer and network systems engineer.
I enrolled in the WGU IT program in September 2008. Unfortunately I wasn't told that there weren't "real" IT classes, but that I would be working on getting certificates... So if you want to attend WGU, take all the certifications on your own, and then transfer them in. You could save over $6000+! Also be aware that you won't get basic CS foundational courses such as OOP, Data Structures, etc. It seems that they don't have any of their own curriculum, and everything is outsourced. ... This can be a good school, but be careful, and ask a lot of questions before you enroll. However, because of the lack of advanced classes (Calculus, etc) I don't think you would be a first pick by an employer.