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A 2009 lawsuit filed in Dallas was settled in December 2013 between former students and Argosy’s parent company, EDMC. The lawsuit was launched due to complains that students enrolled in doctorate programs were led to believe the school was accredited by the American Psychological Association for its 2 doctorate psychology programs. After enrollment, students were later told Argosy University hadn’t received accreditation yet but was working on it. At the time of the lawsuit, the school still had not applied to be granted APA approval. Parent company, EDMC, indicated that many Texas jurisdictions didn’t require any accreditation status for licence to practice and stated it was not guilty of fraud. The settlement of $3.3 million was reached but this meant the Argosy University lawsuit did not force the school to admit liability
The 2010 Government Accountability report listed Argosy University along with 14 additional schools. Undercover applicants had been sent to the university and it was discovered that students were being told misleading and untrue statements regarding its accreditation status in order to get them enrolled. The school later appeared on Frontline, a PBS program under College Inc. exposing the disreputable and questionable practices of the school. The Florida Attorney general was also forced to investigate after it received eight complaints from consumers.
Attorney General, John Suthers, stated that the complaints filed complained that the school was marketing two PhD programs, one for a doctorate in clinical psychology, the other for a doctorate of education in counselling psychology. Students were led to believe they could work as licenced psychologists in their field even though the state of Colorado requires all psychologists to graduate from an APA accredited program. The other program would never have qualified anyway as it was automatically excluded due to the fact that it was only taught on weekends, against APA requirements.
In June 2010, students were lied to and informed that the program wouldn’t be meeting the state requirements as the rules had recently changed. The rules were the same as they had been and this was just an attempt to pacify. Argosy then required its students to sign a document which stated they were in the program with full knowledge that there was no guarantee they would ever be able to receive a licence to practice.
The settlement resulted in Argosy reimbursing 66 students for their tuition costs and was reached in a Denver District Court in December of 2013 and reiterated that Argosy University takes its students as its top priority. Although the students in the lawsuit may have received a portion of the settlement, they must return to school under an APA accredited program should they ever wish to work as licenced individuals in their field of study.
By the time the lawsuit was settle, no student who had taken part in the program was working as a licenced psychologist in Colorado or any other state. The school was also instructed to cease enrolling students in its program and to remove them. A year and a half later, Argosy still has the two programs listed on their website and has still not been APA accredited.
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