Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?

Steve Wozniak’s Woz U is 'a $13,000 e-book,' former students say

The online program may not be living up to its promises, according to a CBS News investigation.

Marrian Zhou Staff Reporter
Marrian Zhou is a Beijing-born Californian living in New York City. She joined CNET as a staff reporter upon graduation from Columbia Journalism School. When Marrian is not reporting, she is probably binge watching, playing saxophone or eating hot pot.
Marrian Zhou
2 min read
Steve Wozniak

Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple with Steve Jobs and more recently creator of Woz U. 

James Martin/CNET

Steve Wozniak's Woz U may not give students the programming skills they need.

A number of former students and employees told CBS News the 33-week online program has many problems that make it not worth the $13,200 tuition fee. Wozniak, who co-founded Apple with Steve Jobs in 1976, launched the digital institute in 2017.

Among the complaints, former student Bill Duerr told CBS News that the course is like "a $13,000 e-book." The content reportedly has typos, "live lectures" are pre-recorded and outdated, student mentors lack qualifications, course content sometimes doesn't work or "just hyperlinks to Microsoft documents," or to Wikipedia. CBS News said it spoke with more than two dozen current and former Woz U students and employees. (Editors' note: CNET is owned by CBS.)

"The opinions expressed, and comments made during the CBS News story are matters that we do not take lightly," said Chris Coleman, president of Woz U, in an email statement. "Student feedback is vital to us as we have developed our programs throughout the first year of Woz U and as we continue to refine the curriculum for our programs to enhance the learning experience for students. We have proceeded to address concerns during the early-stages of the company and have rectified them with improvements to our course offerings."

Tim Mionske, an enrollment counselor responsible for sales, told CBS News, "It's drive, drive, drive the sales" for people working at Woz U. "Your job's on the line."

"I would want [Wozniak] to really look more into -- is this really education or is this really about profit?" he said.

Representatives for Wozniak didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.