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Western Governors University is regionally accredited, which is considered the highest form of accreditation given to institutions. The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities is responsible for WGU’s accreditation as well as that of other major institutions such as the University of Washington, University of Oregon, Gonzaga University, University of Utah, University of Idaho, and Brigham Young University, to name just a few.
The WGU Teachers College is the first exclusively online university to receive accreditation for its degree programs that lead to teacher licensure from the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). The NCATE accrediting team extensively reviewed the entire WGU Teachers College curriculum to ensure that "candidates have the knowledge and skills to be effective in helping all students learn." NCATE is the premier specialized accrediting body for teacher preparation and is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. It accredits colleges of education that produce over two-thirds of the nation’s new teacher graduates annually.
The bachelor’s and master’s nursing degree programs at WGU are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (One Dupont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, 202-887-6791).
WGU’s Health Informatics program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).
WGU was presented International Distance Learning Awards by the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) in 2008 and 2011:
These awards are in recognition of WGU’s achievements as an online university and our success in expanding access to higher education for adults seeking bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Read more about the USDLA awards.
Awarded to Dr. Robert Mendenhall, President of WGU, for his outstanding work in post secondary education. Read more about the McGraw Prize.
In its 2014 review of 2,400 teacher education programs nationwide, "Teacher Prep Review 2014," the National Council on Teacher Quality recognized WGU as the #1 program in the country for secondary teacher programs, proving once again that WGU’s competency-based model is a highly effective way to learn. Additionally, WGU’s degree programs for elementary education ranked 16th in the nation—one of only 26 elementary programs to be recognized for high quality. WGU was one of only 10 institutions named to the top lists for both elementary and secondary teacher education. Read more about the NCTQ Honor Roll.
WGU has the distinction of being the only university to receive regional accreditation
from four regional accrediting commissions at the same time. In part because of our
founding by the 19 U.S.governors, who represent a wide geographic region,
WGU was simultaneously reviewed by a special committee—the Inter-Regional Accrediting
Committee—comprised of representatives from four regional accrediting commissions.
In February 2003, the committee awarded WGU accreditation in all four regions, a
unique and unprecedented recognition. The Northwest
Commission is considered WGU’s "home" accrediting body because the university’s
main offices are located in Utah, which falls under the review of the commission.
WGU still continues to be an institution with a broad focus and a mission to expand
access to higher education. The university serves students in all 50 states and
military installations abroad.
Read more about the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
Accreditation status can give you an indication of a university’s general quality
and reputation. According to Peterson’s, a premier educational resource, by attending
a regionally accredited university:
Absolutely. Accreditation by a regional commission that’s recognized by the U.S. Department
of Education is important. It’s your proof that outside evaluators have carefully
reviewed an institution’s programs and policies. Many businesses, school districts,
and other organizations prefer to hire graduates of programs that are regionally
accredited. Regional accreditation also allows you to transfer more easily to other
universities and assures employers that you've earned a credible, respected degree.
Regional accreditation means that WGU’s competency-based programs meet the same
educational standards for performance, integrity, and quality as those found at
other more traditional universities, from large state schools to Ivy League universities.
A team of evaluators representing four associations made on-site visits to WGU over
a period of two years to review WGU’s operations. Based on the reviews and the visiting
team’s report to the accrediting commissions, WGU was granted regional accreditation.
Find out why fast company calls WGU one of the world's 50 most innovative companies, CNN says we're "a school without boundaries", and major news outlets from NPR to Bloomberg BusinessWeek are touting WGU's "potential to transform the higher education industry."
WGU has an innovative working model for helping adults earn bachelor's and master's degrees. Learn more about how it can help you.
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