Prison Schoolin’

I’m looking for a masters degree program that I can complete during my imprisonment. Call me snooty, but I want to find one that’s intellectually rigorous. The issue is not a dearth of distance-learning masters programs, but my lack of internet access. There are very few universities that offer paper-based courses and even fewer that offer them at the graduate level. The only program I’ve found is from a school in California that has no regional accreditation and a catalogue that looks like a 10-year-old could may have made it using Microsoft Paint.

Sigh. Aren’t there any old people out there with no computers (possibly word-processors?!) who want to earn their master’s degrees from home? There’s gotta be something. Just because I have a lot of time on my hands doesn’t mean I want to waste it (and my money) on a worthless degree.


2 thoughts on “Prison Schoolin’

  1. Understand your desire to get an advanced degree, but don’t wait to get enrolled in a program to start reading, researching and writing. Don’t want to crush your dreams, but most higher education (not counting the hard sciences) is so much glorified common sense. What subjects are you interested in? The folks at KU have gone out of their way to design programs for wounded vets; who knows they might be willing to design a program for you. In the meantime, have you read ‘The Odyssey,’ ‘Heart of Darkness,’ or ‘Les Miserables’? Good places to start.

  2. The Open University in the UK has a long tradition of enabling British prisoners to access its courses (some are not available because, for example, the practical part of the course requires components that cannot be sent into the prison system).
    It also accepts overseas students; I belief there is some affiliate arrangement that allows it to take American students.

    There are no entrance requirements for its undergraduate courses (i.e. those working towards a Bachelor’s degree). For a Master’s degree, they will require you to have a first or second class honours degree already. The Open University only teaches by distance learning, but is a mainstream British uinversity.

    A rarer alternative is – I think – the University of London. This university used to run the option of “External degrees”. By this method the student is simply supplied with a reading list, and told what the examination will cover. Any actual tuition has to be arranged privately. However, once you have passed their examination, there is no distinction between internal (taken by students physically attending lectures) and external degrees.

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