Full Sail University

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Full Sail Real World Education)
Jump to: navigation, search
Full Sail University
Full sail university sign.JPG
Former names
Full Sail Real World Education
Full Sail Center for the Recording Arts
The Full Sail Recording Workshop
Type For-profit university
Established 1979
President Garry Jones
Administrative staff
2,300[citation needed]
Undergraduates 8900[1]
Postgraduates 170[2]
Location Winter Park, Florida, U.S.
Campus Suburban (210 acres)[citation needed]
Mascot DC-3 airplane
Website fullsail.edu
Full Sail University.svg

Full Sail University is a private, for-profit university in Winter Park, Florida.[3][4] The school was founded in 1979 in Dayton, Ohio as Full Sail Recording Workshop.[5] Full Sail relocated to Florida in 1980,[citation needed] adding video production and film production courses and, with the move in 1989 to its current campus, expanded its curriculum to include other entertainment and media-related areas of study. Full Sail began offering online degrees in 2007.[6] The school is partly owned by TA Associates, a private equity firm.[7][8]

Full Sail is nationally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) to award associate degrees, bachelor's degrees, and master's degrees in audio, film, design, computer animation, business, and other fields.[9][10] The school offers 50 degree programs and 2 graduate certificates.[citation needed] It has approximately 8900 undergraduate[1] and 170 postgrad students.[2]


Full Sail was founded by Jon Phelps in Dayton, Ohio, in 1979.[11] Operating under the name “Full Sail Recording Workshop” at that time, the school was established to train students on the production side of entertainment and music.[12] The curriculum was solely focused on recording arts at first, consisting of courses for students to learn how to become audio engineers.[13] The school relocated to Orlando, Florida, in 1980 and new courses were added to the core recording arts program. Later that decade, coursework expanded beyond audio-only programs—beginning with the addition of a film program in 1988.[citation needed] In 1989, Full Sail moved to its current location outside of Winter Park, Florida, in unincorporated Orange County;[13] the following year, it was accredited to grant specialized associate's degrees.[14]

Full Sail began to receive notice within the audio industry for its programs, and for three years in a row, 1989–1991, the school won Mix magazine's TEC (Technical Excellence and Creativity) award for Best Recording School/Program.[15]

Enrollment doubled between 1989 and 1991, at a time of increased interest in film and media studies.[16] Full Sail expanded accordingly by adding classrooms and equipment, and increasing the number of courses offered. This accelerated period of expansion was not without its challenges and the school encountered financial difficulties in 1992, which were subsequently resolved as it entered a period of more conservative growth.[17] Between 1995 and 1999, specialized associate degrees or associate degrees were added in computer animation, digital media, game design and development, and show production and touring. All of these degrees were later expanded into full bachelor's degree programs.[14]

In 2005 Rolling Stone called Full Sail “one of the five best music programs in the country”.[18] The first bachelor's degree program, a Bachelor of Science degree in entertainment business, was made available at the school in 2005.[19] In 2007, the first master's degree program was offered—also in entertainment business.[20] Online degree programs began in 2007 as well—the first of which was an online adaptation of the existing Entertainment Business Master of Science.[20]

In 2005, the school launched its first bachelor's degree program, in Entertainment Business. In 2007, the school introduced its first master's program, also in Entertainment Business,[21] launched a Graphic Design Associate of Science Degree, and announced its first online degree program — an online version of the Entertainment Business master's degree.[22] Full Sail's online offerings have expanded since that time to include fields not represented among their campus degrees, including Internet Marketing and Sports Management, as well as online versions of their campus degrees, such as Web Design & Development and Computer Animation.

The additions of the master's degree programs, among other factors, led to the school being recognized as a "university" by the state of Florida. Its name was officially changed from Full Sail Real World Education to Full Sail University in 2008, after attaining university status from the Florida Department of Education's Commission for Independent Education.[23] The campus expanded at this time with the addition of a 1,780-foot-long backlot with 18 city facades, designed to replicate the sets used in production of actual Hollywood films and television shows, which later expanded to 2,078 linear feet.[23]

As the university grew in size and student body between 2006 and 2011, the curriculum and degree programs were broadened as well,[24] adding programs such as a bachelor of science in sports marketing and media[25] and a master of science degree in game design.[26]

Full Sail drew national attention when 2012 presidential candidate Mitt Romney cited it as an example of the way rising costs of education can be solved. Romney did not mention that its chief executive, Bill Heavener, is a major campaign donor and fund-raiser.[27] Later that year, WWE began filming all episodes of its internet television show WWE NXT, which serves as the flagship show for WWE's developmental territory NXT, at Full Sail University.[28] Full Sail was also home to the U.S. syndicated morning television show The Daily Buzz, which like Full Sail also began in Dayton, Ohio, before moving to Orlando. In 2015 and 2016, Full Sail began to host two other WWE shows; the Reality TV series WWE Tough Enough that aired on the USA Network and the 10 episode summer series Cruiserweight Classic which aired on the WWE Network. It was again used in 2017 to host WWE show; The Mae Young Classic.


Full Sail University’s main campus is located outside of Winter Park, Florida, in unincorporated Orange County, 8.6 miles (13.8 km) northeast of downtown Orlando. The college campus contains the central administrative offices, university library, and academic buildings, including a production backlot, more than 110 studios and production environments, film backlot, auditorium, and Full Sail Studios. The university moved to Winter Park in 1989. Renovation and expansion into surrounding buildings began in 1995, growing into three additional buildings by 2004. In 2009, the university expanded into a fifth building, a 49,000-square-foot (4,600 m2) space near campus to accommodate educators for the online degree program.[29]

A 2.2 acre (0.89 ha) facility named Full Sail Studios opened in 2010, consisting of a 22,000-square-foot (2,000 m2) multi-purpose venue and a two-story 10,600-square-foot (980 m2) recording studio and game production studio named Blackmoor after the late Dave Arneson, co-creator of Dungeons & Dragons and instructor from 1999 to 2009. This addition also completed the film backlot, totaling 2078 linear ft (633 m) and 19 outdoor scenic environments.[30][31]

In November 2010 the Sports Lab Powered by ESPN was added to the campus, a facility for research and development of new studio and remote technologies. The lab works in association with the ESPN Innovation Lab located at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World and is the only sports technology lab to be constructed at a Florida college or university.[32] Two months later, approximately 200 Full Sail Online administration and support team employees moved into the Gateway Center in Downtown Orlando.[33][34] Also in 2011, the university announced plans to construct an 86,000-square-foot (8,000 m2) educational building to house 475 faculty and staff, additional film and television soundstages and classrooms, and is scheduled for completion in Spring 2012.[35]


Full Sail University is an entertainment media institution offering on-campus and online degrees, including 2 graduate certificates, 2 associate degrees, 25 bachelor's degrees, and 8 master's degrees.[citation needed] Academic degree programs are primarily focused on audio, film and media production,[36] video game design,[37] animation[38] and other studies related to the media and entertainment industries.[39] Over 70% of students and graduates have used financial aid to cover some or all of their education expenses. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before applying for student loans through the university.[citation needed]

The college’s education is accelerated, typically completed in half the time of a traditional four-year college — associate's programs are 12[citation needed] to 13[citation needed] months long, bachelor's programs are 20 to 36[citation needed] months long, and master's programs are 12[citation needed] months long. Degree programs begin monthly. Courses are generally four weeks in duration, with students taking an average of two courses at a time.[citation needed]

According to The New York Times, Full Sail has many of the same problems as other institutions in the for-profit college industry.[27] They reported that some of the university's academic programs have high loan burdens and low graduation rates. The $81,000 video game art program graduated 38 percent of its students, who carried a median debt load of nearly $59,000 in federal and private loans in 2008.[27] The Times cited other Full Sail degree programs as having higher graduation rates, noting that the master's in entertainment business, "a yearlong program with a $36,245 tuition, graduated 80 percent of its students, nearly 63 percent of them on time."[27] According to Inside Higher Ed, "a closer look at the numbers reveals that graduation rates are not a major problem at Full Sail: the overall graduation rate is a fairly high 78 percent, according to federal data."[9][40] In the same article, however, The New York Times noted that Full Sail's own students have posted criticisms of the school, including some that call Full Sail a "scam" because of its high costs, low placement, and difficulties with credit transfer.[27]

The college was named FAPSC School/College of the Year (an award for which only career colleges in Florida were eligible) by the Florida Association of Postsecondary Schools and Colleges (FAPSC) in 2008 and 2011,[41] 21st-century best practices in distance learning by the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) in 2011,[42] and was the recipient of a 2011 New Media Consortium Center for Excellence award.[43]

In 2007, Full Sail University offered its first online degree program, a master's degree in Entertainment Business.[22] Currently, the school offers a total of 22 online degree programs: seven master's degrees, thirteen bachelor's degrees, and two graduate certificate programs.[44] Nine of the online degree programs are directly based on campus-based degree programs, and the other thirteen are exclusive to Full Sail University Online. Online students at Full Sail utilize much of the same software and creative tools students use in campus-based programs.[45] Additionally, Full Sail custom-built a learning management system for use with their online courses; the LMS is Macintosh-based, and utilizes content created by an in-house curriculum development team in conjunction with campus-based instructors.[6][46] The curriculum used for Full Sail University Online is generated utilizing the same educators and advisory boards as campus-based programs.[47]

Although the university is not regionally accredited, it is nationally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).[9][48] The college has been subject to criticism regarding transferability of credits, as credits from nationally accredited schools often do not transfer to regionally accredited schools.[49][50][51]

Full Sail has a 55% overall graduation rate and a 21.1% student loan default rate,[52] higher than the national student loan default rate of 11.3%.[53]

Notable people[edit]

Among the alumni of the school are Gary Rizzo, Oscar Award winner for Best Achievement in the Sound Mixing category for his work on the films Inception and Dunkirk;[54][55] Sebastian Krys, eight-time Latin Grammy winner[56] and four-time Grammy winner;[57] three-time Grammy winner Phil Tan,[58] and Darren Lynn Bousman.[59][60] Notable graduates are recognized during an annual awards event named the Full Sail University Hall of Fame.[61]

Dungeons & Dragons co-creator Dave Arneson taught at the school from 2000[62] through 2008. Stedman Graham began teaching as an adjunct professor in 2009.[63]

Full Sail University's Hall of Fame

On April 20, 2009, Full Sail marked its 30th anniversary with the opening of the Full Sail University Hall of Fame.[64] In June 2010, a second set of inductees was selected and added to the Hall of Fame including Leslie Brathwaite (mix engineer and Grammy award winner), Marc Fishman (sound re-recording mixer, Emmy winner), and Martin "Tike" Santos (live sound engineer, Paul McCartney).[65] Machinedrum[66] and Michael Hicks also attended.[67]


  1. ^ a b Full Sail University (four-year college). Peterson's. Accessed November 2017.
  2. ^ a b Full Sail University (graduate school). Peterson's. Accessed November 2017.
  3. ^ "Carnegie Classification". National Center for Education Statistics Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System. Retrieved 9 May 2012. 
  4. ^ "Full Sail receives university status". Orlando Business Journal. 24 March 2008. Retrieved 9 May 2012. 
  5. ^ Full Sail Recording. Billboard Magazine. 1979-07-14. 
  6. ^ a b "Full Sail Program Booming". Orlando Business Journal. September 21, 2009. 
  7. ^ "Romney Offers Praise for a Donor’s Business" By Eric Lichtblau, The New York Times, January 14, 2012
  8. ^ Schouten, Fredreka; Locker, Ray (March 29, 2012). "Donors to Romney super PAC have ties to for-profit colleges". Des Moines Register. USA Today. Retrieved June 14, 2012. [permanent dead link]
  9. ^ a b c Fain, Paul (24 January 2012). "Full Sail in the Spotlight". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved December 20, 2016. 
  10. ^ "Directory – Full Sail University". Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. 
  11. ^ Shanklin, Mary (1 August 2010). "Full steam ahead at Full Sail, one of Orlando's few viable real-estate engines". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  12. ^ Carstensen, Melinda (30 August 2010). "Full Sail to launch 10 new degree programs". Orlando Business Journal. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  13. ^ a b CombatJack (15 September 2011). "Why You Should Consider Full Sail University". The Source. Archived from the original on 2011-10-23. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  14. ^ a b Krantz, Matt (3 December 2002). "Video game college is 'boot camp' for designers". USA Today. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  15. ^ "Former TEC Awards Winners". Mix Online. 
  16. ^ Welkos, Robert (18 January 2001). "Film School Daze". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  17. ^ Strother, Susan (9 March 1992). "Full Sail Weathers Stormy Year". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  18. ^ "'Rolling Stone' names Full Sail one of five best music programs". Orlando Business Journal. 1 August 2005. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  19. ^ Crabbe, Nathan (7 December 2011). "UF and Full Sail partnering in production programs". The Gainesville Sun. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  20. ^ a b Beck, Tiffany (9 April 2007). "Full Sail offers first master's in entertainment business". Orlando Business Journal. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  21. ^ Beck, Tiffany (April 9, 2007). "Full Sail Offers First Master's in Entertainment Business". Orlando Business Journal. 
  22. ^ a b "Full Sail University Awards Master's Degree to First Online Degree Graduate". PR Web. 
  23. ^ a b Horowitz, Etan (25 March 2008). "Full Sail digital media school achieves university status". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  24. ^ Carstensen, Melinda (30 August 2010). "Full Sail to launch 10 new degree programs". Orlando Business Journal. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  25. ^ "Full Sail, Wide World of Sports ink deal". Orlando Business Journal. 30 March 2011. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  26. ^ "Full Sail University to offer new master's degree in game design". Orlando Business Journal. 10 September 2008. Retrieved 31 January 2012. 
  27. ^ a b c d e Lichtblau, Eric (14 January 2012). "Romney Offers Praise for a Donor's Business". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  28. ^ "WWE Planning Major Changes with NXT". May 11, 2012. Retrieved May 14, 2012. 
  29. ^ Azam, Melanie (21 September 2009). "Full Sail program booming". Orlando Business Journal. Retrieved 22 November 2011. 
  30. ^ Abbott, Jim (11 March 2009). "Full Sail to add 500-seat performance space..." Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 22 November 2011. [permanent dead link]
  31. ^ McLean, Thomas (29 October 2010). "Full Sail Dedicates Facility to D&D Creator". Animation Magazine. Retrieved 22 November 2011. 
  32. ^ Giardina, Carolyn (18 November 2010). "ESPN Teaming With University for Research, Development Lab". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 22 November 2011. 
  33. ^ Hammel, Frank (28 July 2011). "Full Sail University Launches $10+ Million Design-Build Project". Projection, Lights and Staging News. Retrieved 22 November 2011. 
  34. ^ "Parkway Announces Leasing and Occupancy Update". The Wall Street Journal. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 22 November 2011. 
  35. ^ "Full Sail Groundbreaking". September 2011. Archived from the original on 23 April 2012. Retrieved 22 November 2011. 
  36. ^ Crabbe, Nathan (1 December 2011). "Trustees vote to extend Machen's contract a year". Ocala.com. Retrieved 5 January 2012. 
  37. ^ Pedersen, Roger E. (2009). Game design foundations (2nd ed.). Sudbury, MA: Wordware Pub. pp. 356–357. ISBN 978-1-59822-034-6. 
  38. ^ Chong, Derrick (2010). Arts Management (second edition) (2nd ed.). London: Routledge. p. 4. ISBN 978-0-415-42391-5. 
  39. ^ Steer, Daymond (26 December 2011). "Gifts, chocolate milk and tough questions for Romney during Conway town hall meeting". Conway Daily Sun. Archived from the original on 21 January 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2012. 
  40. ^ "Full Sail University". IPEDS Data Center. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  41. ^ "FAPSC Honors the Best Among Career Colleges in Florida During 2011". Retrieved 8 December 2011. 
  42. ^ "Full Sail University Receives Numerous Honors from USDLA". U.S. News. 6 May 2011. Archived from the original on 5 September 2011. Retrieved 9 December 2011. 
  43. ^ "Center of Excellence Awards". New Media Consortium. Retrieved 10 December 2011. 
  44. ^ "Full Sail Online Degrees". online.fullsail.edu. 
  45. ^ "Full Sail Announces Its First Online Degree Program". PR Web. 
  46. ^ "Full Sail Launches New Online Degrees". Pro Sound News. 
  47. ^ "Test Drive". Full Sail. 
  48. ^ "Full Sail University Accreditation Listing". Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. Retrieved 8 December 2011. 
  49. ^ Calhoun, Ada (11 February 2011). "The No-Name School That Mints Grammy Winners". Time Magazine. Retrieved 9 December 2011. 
  50. ^ Crabbe, Nathan (7 December 2011). "UF and Full Sail partnering in production programs". The Gainesville Sun. Retrieved 12 December 2011. 
  51. ^ Tussling Over Transfer of Credit, Inside Higher Ed, February 26, 2007 by Doug Lederman
  52. ^ "College Navigator - Full Sail University". Nces.ed.gov. 1986-06-29. Retrieved 2017-10-23. 
  53. ^ Douglas, Danielle (2016-09-28). "Student loan default rate dips, but 'considerable work remains,' education secretary says". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-10-23. 
  54. ^ "Gary Rizzo". Oscar. Retrieved 9 December 2011. 
  55. ^ "http://oscar.go.com/nominees/sound-mixing/dunkirk-6". oscar.go.com. Retrieved 2018-03-05.  External link in |title= (help)
  56. ^ "Past Latin Grammy Winner Sebastian Krys". Latin Grammy Awards. Retrieved 10 December 2011. 
  57. ^ "Past Grammy Winner Sebastian Krys". Grammy Awards. Retrieved 10 December 2011. 
  58. ^ "Past Winner Phil Tan". Grammy Awards. Retrieved 10 December 2011. 
  59. ^ "Darren Lynn Bousman". Hollywood. Retrieved 9 December 2011. 
  60. ^ "Darren Lynn Bousman". Horror Society. Retrieved 9 December 2011. 
  61. ^ "Full Sail University Honors Graduates". WESH 2 News. 7 November 2011. Retrieved 9 December 2011. [permanent dead link]
  62. ^ Horowitz, Etan (8 June 2008). "D&D co-creator Dave Arneson retiring from Full Sail". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 12 December 2011. [permanent dead link]
  63. ^ boedeker, hal (23 July 2009). "Stedman Graham to teach at Full Sail". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 9 December 2011. [permanent dead link]
  64. ^ "Full Sail University to Unveil Hall of Fame". Mix Online. 
  65. ^ "Full Sail opens Studios Gateway Project". Orlando Business Journal. June 7, 2010. 
  66. ^ "LET ME HEAR YOU 1, 2 STEP". Interview. Retrieved 26 May 2015. 
  67. ^ Kantrowitz, Sean. "Game Development Grad Launches Indie Game on PS4 & Xbox 360". Full Sail University Blog. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 28°35′41″N 81°18′11″W / 28.59472°N 81.30306°W / 28.59472; -81.30306