Pacific Oaks College


Pacific Oaks College is a not-for-profit higher education institution offering bachelor's-completion, master's, and certificate programs in human development, counseling, education, early childhood education, and teacher credentialing.

In addition to its main campus in Pasadena, California, Pacific Oaks College offers courses in Sacramento, Salinas, Visalia, Santa Cruz, and Los Angeles, as well as human development and early childhood education programs online.

Online Studies at Pacific Oaks College

Online programs at Pacific Oaks College are offered through Canvas. The interactive, distance-learning tool collects coursework and learning materials in one convenient place. Instructors and students could easily post or upload assignments from their own home. Students that have issues connecting to Canvas are able to contact the Pacific Oaks Help Desk.

Besides completing these programs outside the traditional classroom, not much else has been changed. Pacific Oaks College strives to maintain the quality of its online programs so that they mimic the rigor of their on-campus counterparts.

Online classes are typically offered in short, 7-week sessions.

Is Pacific Oaks an Accredited School?

Pacific Oaks is accredited by the Western Association of Schools & Colleges Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). The commission specifically accredits public and private higher education schools in California, Hawaii, and the Pacific. WSCUC pushes programs to continuously work towards enhancing their programs with new material, technology, and teaching methods.

The Western Association of Schools & Colleges accrediting agency is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.*

Pacific Oaks Admissions Process

Application requirements for Pacific Oaks College may vary by degree program. For example, education degree programs may not be looking for the same things as a human development degree program.

Despite this, there are some general requirements students could look for in the program. For example, each degree program and level require students to submit a personal statement. In this essay, students may be asked to answer one of several questions provided at

Pacific Oaks College accepts students year-round. Online students have the choice of six starting dates throughout spring, summer, and fall.

Below are some more examples of admissions materials for each degree level.

Bachelors Programs at Pacific Oaks College

For starters, the bachelors programs at Pacific Oaks College may ask students to submit a 2.0 or higher required GPA. While many programs may accept high school transcripts, other may require students to have earned a related associates degree in their desired field.

Programs may require that applicants have previous class experience before applying. For example, students may be asked to have taken several years or credits worth of the following classes.

  • Humanities
  • Oral or Written Communication
  • Social Science
  • Science & Math

Prerequisite classes may differ by degree program.

Some programs may also offer credit from learning experience (CLE). In these cases, work experience could be put towards valuable undergraduate credits. For these programs, students may be asked to submit proof of 5 to 10 years of verifiable work experience in their field.

Applicants may be required to submit a $55 undergraduate application fee when applying.i

Masters Programs at Pacific Oaks College

When applying to masters program at Pacific Oaks College, students may be asked to submit transcripts from a related bachelors degree program.  Students who are applying to an unrelated graduate program could still apply. But, are required to take related coursework form an accredited college or university.

Enrolling in Pacific Oaks College

As of fall 2015, 1,267 students were enrolled in Pacific Oaks College programs. Of those students, 543 were undergraduate students. The remaining 724 students were enrolled in the graduate level programs. In terms of student population, 92% of students enrolled in programs were women and 8% were men.

Many students at Pacific Oaks College undergraduate students pursue their education part-time. In fact, 99% of the student body was enrolled part-time in 2015. Graduate students are similar in their study habits. 91% of 2015 graduate students were enrolled part-time.

How Many Students at Pacific Oaks College Take Online Classes?

Students looking to pursue an online degree program may be encouraged that a large portion of the student body take part in distance learning in some capacity. 35% of undergraduate students take part in only distance education. Another 8% split their time between distance learning and the physical classroom. Graduate students aren’t much different, with 27% of students only participating in distance education.ii

Applying for Pacific Oaks College Financial Aid

In the 2014-2015 school year, 80% of students of Pacific Oaks College students received grant or scholarship aid. Students received a median of $4,287 in this type of aid. Additionally, 81% of students received federal student loans. In these cases, students received a median of $11,859 in aid.iii

Online Degree Programs at Pacific Oaks College

Pacific Oaks college offers many online degree programs at both the undergraduate and graduate level. Students looking to a pursue a bachelors degree program could consider some of the following options.

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Human Development

Potential masters students could choose to pursue some of the following program offerings.

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Education
  • Human Development
  • Organizational Leadership

Further concentrations in these programs could be available. Check with the admissions department for more information on degree offerings and concentrations.

Earning an Online BA in Early Childhood Education at Pacific Oaks

A popular online offering a Pacific Oaks College is their online BA in early childhood education (ECE). Courses cover childhood development as well as teaching practices. This combination of courses could help you better address the unique learning needs of your students. During your program, you could have the chance to take some of the following courses.

  • Foundations of ECE and Current Issues in Education
  • Creating Inclusive Environments
  • Creative Arts in Early Childhood Education

Students may have the chance to further refine their early childhood education studies in the following dual degree offerings and specializations.

  • Trauma
  • STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics)
  • Dual California Teaching Credential
  • Preliminary Multiple Subject California Teaching Credential

This program is designed for students who have already earned a related associates degree. Due to this, students may only be required to complete 60 credits to graduate. Students may also be able to apply their work experience to their education. You could potentially earn up to 24 credits for knowledge gained in your workplace.

Students could potentially earn a BA in ECE in 2 years if enrolled full-time. Part-time students could possibly earn a degree in 4 years.

Pacific Oaks Faculty

Pacific Oaks College strives to ensure that its students receive individual attention from their professors. To do this, the school employees 15 full-time and 202 part-time professors to teach students. It’s important to note that faculty members do not conduct research during their time with Pacific Oaks College. Professors’ time is completely devoted to instructing students.

Additionally, Pacific Oaks College does not offer graduate assistant opportunities. Classes are solely taught by employed professors and not by graduate students in the department.iv

The Unique Pacific Oaks Experience

Pacific Oaks not only strives to create welcoming academic environment, but an overall supportive education experience. Below are several unique factors that demonstrate Pacific Oaks’ devotion to their students.

The Center for Achievement, Resources, and Enrichment (CARE)

As you may have seen by now, Pacific Oaks College consistently works to support their online students. The Center of Achievement, Resources, and Enrichment is an extension of this goal. CARE aims to address many obstacles that students face during their program. For example, CARE’s core values are the following.

  • Career Support
  • Learning Assistance
  • Student Support

By holding these as its core values, CARE hopes to holistically address challenges in students' lives by providing vital services. Depending on your own needs, the center could provide some of the following resources.

  • Career Services
  • Disability Support Services
  • Health Insurance
  • International Student Support
  • Substance Abuse Resources
  • Counseling Services

While not on campus, online students at Pacific Oaks college could also have access to these resources.

Study Abroad Opportunities

Just because you’re earning your degree online doesn’t mean you can’t study abroad! Pacific Oaks works to help students join the global community. The school has partnerships with both Teach with Africa and Education Beyond Borders.

Professors may even come along for the journey! Pacific Oaks directly sponsors some programs that pair current faculty with study abroad programs. This could be a great opportunity to continue your current education and see the world.  

Graduating from Pacific Oaks College

After starting your degree program with Pacific Oaks College, you may not want to leave! In fact, in 2015, 80% of full time and 75% of part-time bachelors students returned to continue their education.

47% of undergraduate students that started their career in 2007 earned their degree in 4 years. Another 58% earned their degree 6 years after enrolling. To make it simpler, Pacific Oaks College awarded 541 bachelor’s degree in 2015. And, they also awarded 92 graduate degrees. Below are some examples of degrees earned in different bachelors program concentrations.

  • Business, Management, Marketing: 142
  • Health Professions: 76
  • Social Sciences: 58
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences: 53
  • Education: 54v

Pursue a Degree at Pacific Oaks College!

Online programs at Pacific Oaks College could be a great way for you to move towards completing your academic goals. The digital classroom not only provides flexible courses, but also instant access to Pacific Oaks’ support systems. Professors, advisors, and other services might only be a few clicks away.

For more information about degree programs and online learning, head over to

*This is for informational purposes only. Education Dynamics is a private company that is not affiliated with or endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education.

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