Western Governors University (WGU)

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School Overview

At Western Governors University – a private, nonprofit, online university – your competency is the ultimate focus of every degree program. By emphasizing mastery of essential skills and knowledge as opposed to accumulating credit hours or seat time, WGU’s innovative approach to online learning rewards focused, hard-working adult learners.

Progress toward your degree is based on passing rigorous assessments (such as tests, projects, assignments, etc.) which measure your skills and knowledge in your field of study. We call it competency-based learning.

“Average time to complete a bachelor’s degree is less than 3 years. Graduates experience an average salary increase of $9,000 within 3 years of graduation.”
WGU Website

Started in 1997 by 19 U.S. governors, WGU offers over 50-degree programs in teacher education, business, information technology, and healthcare (including nursing). These programs are best suited for individuals with at least one year of college experience.

WGU’s rigorous yet flexible learning model gives the university a unique advantage over other online programs. Here’s what the WGU advantage means to you:

  • Flexibility and affordability. Our competency-based approach to learning allows for extensive personalization of your degree program. With assessments determining your success instead of credit hours or seat time, you’ll enjoy an education that can fit into your schedule. In most cases, you will access course material or study independently at the time and place you choose. Also, if you come into your program with years of knowledge and experience, you may be able to complete your assessments faster. Since you pay for tuition at a flat rate per six-month term, you’re paying for the time you need to complete your assessments. The faster you finish your assessments, the more money you can save.
  • Credibility through accreditation. WGU is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. The Teachers College at WGU is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)-the first exclusively online teacher education institution to achieve this distinction. WGU’s nursing programs are also accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE, One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, 202-867-6791).
  • Commitment and support. As a WGU student, you’ll have the support of a team of mentors committed to your success. You will work with a dedicated student mentor as well as course mentors who will support you every step of the way through your degree program. You’ll also interact with an online learning community of students in your same program, so you’re never alone.

If you’re an organized, independent learner willing to devote at least 20 hours a week to your studies, but require flexibility in time and place to complete your education, WGU could be the smart choice.

As a nonprofit institution, WGU does not rely on state or federal funding and is not subject to review from funding agencies.

Below are a few of the many programs offered by Western Governors University. To view a complete list of programs, and to request more information from this school, Request Information.

*Note: In Indiana, Missouri, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington, through partnerships with these states, WGU operates as WGU Indiana, WGU Missouri, WGU Tennessee, WGU Texas, and WGU Washington respectively. Students who live in these states will receive information from and ultimately enroll in these state universities.

Western Governors University Highlights

School Information

Phone Number: (801) 274-3280
Website: www.wgu.edu
Type of School: 4-year, Private non-profit
Apply Online: wwwforms.wgu.edu/wgu/app/app_step0
Address: 4001 South 700 East Suite 700, Salt Lake City, UT 84107
Setting: Suburb: Large
Campus Housing: No

Students & Programs

Student Population: 136,139
6-yr Graduation Rate (Bachelor's): 38%
Student-to-faculty Ratio: 42 to 1
Distance Learning Programs: Yes
Distance Learning Students*: 0 (0% of total students)
Degree Levels Offered: Bachelor's, Master's

* Students taking at least 1 distance learning course

Tuition & Financial Aid*

In-state Tuition: $6,670
Out-of-state Tuition: $6,670
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid: 72%
Avg. Amount of Grant or Scholarship Aid Awarded: $5,369

* Full-time beginning undergraduate students. Financial aid is available to those who qualify.

Western Governors University Programs

See the degree programs that are offered at Western Governors University.

Degree Name Cert Assoc Bach Mast Doct
Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services 75
Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services 84
Education 61116
Health Professions and Related Programs 44
Grand total 63029

* Based on programs that produced 2019-2020 graduates

Tuition & Financial Aid

See what it costs to enroll at Western Governors University and how many students are receiving scholarships, grants, or loans as financial aid to help cover the costs of tuition.

Undergraduate Student Tuition

Average tuition and fees for academic year:

Tuition and Fees 2019-2020
In-state $6,670
Out-of-state $6,670
Books and supplies $200

Graduate Student Tuition

Average tuition and fees for academic year:

Tuition and Fees 2019-2020
In-state $7,790
Out-of-state $7,790

Undergraduate Student Financial Aid, 2018-2019

Full-time Beginning Undergraduate Students

Type of Aid Number Receiving Aid % Receiving Aid Avg. Amt. of Aid
Any student financial aid 149 72%
Grant or scholarship aid 88 43% $5,369
Student loan aid 125 61% $5,899

All Undergraduate Students

Type of Aid Number Receiving Aid % Receiving Aid Avg. Amt. of Aid
Grant or scholarship aid 32,760 37% $4,308
Federal student loans 42,100 47% $5,861

Admissions & Enrollment

See the admission requirements for Western Governors University. Find out how many students apply and how many are accepted. View a graphical breakdown of the gender, age, and ethnicity of currently enrolled Western Governors University students.

Admissions Considerations

Required Recommended Optional
Secondary school GPA
Secondary school rank
Secondary school record
Completion of college-preparatory program
Formal demonstration of competencies
Admission test scores
Other Test (Wonderlic, WISC-III, etc.)
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language

Western Governors University Enrollment, Fall 2020

Total Enrollment 136,139
Undergraduate enrollment 98,630
Graduate enrollment 37,509

Undergraduate Attendance

Undergraduate Gender

Undergraduate Age

Undergraduate Race/Ethnicity

Western Governors University Accreditation

This institution is accredited by Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

Specialized institution accreditations:

  • Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
    • Nursing (CNURED) - Nursing education programs at the baccalaureate degree levels
    • Nursing (CNURED) - Nursing education programs at the graduate degree levels
  • National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education
    • Teacher Education (TED) - Baccalaureate and graduate programs for the preparation of teachers and other professional personnel for elementary and secondary schools

*General information for this school has been gathered from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) database, a service provided by the U.S. Department of Education. CollegeAtlas.org does not guarantee the accuracy of information on this page. All information is subject to change. You should confirm all information with a college admissions officer.

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