About WGU

Education for Life™

Our Mission

The principal mission of Western Governors University is to improve quality and expand access to post-secondary educational opportunities by providing a means for individuals to learn independent of time and place and to earn competency-based degrees and other credentials that are credible to both academic institutions and employers.

An Online University for the 21st Century

Western Governors University is an online university driven by a mission to expand access to higher education through online, competency-based degree programs. WGU has flourished into a national university, serving more than 50,000 students from all 50 states.

The university continues to open doors for adult learners who need flexibility to achieve their education and career goals. WGU’s innovative competency-based academic approach makes it possible, allowing individuals to fit their education into their lives, not the other way around.

A Unique History in Higher Education

WGU was founded by the governors of 19 U.S. states. At no other time in the history of higher education have the governors of several states joined together to create a university. WGU is also supported by over 20 major corporations and foundations who believe in WGU’s commitment to producing highly competent graduates.

View the WGU Timeline of the first 15 years

About WGU’s Faculty

The primary focus of the faculty at WGU is student learning. Because of our unique student-centric, competency-based approach, faculty serve in different roles compared to traditional schools and other online schools. Read more.

Explore the links below to learn about WGU:

The WGU Story

WGU is mission driven. Created to expand access to higher education, WGU’s mission has remained one of helping hard-working adults meet their educational goals and improve their career opportunities.
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How We’re Different

Designed to be different in powerful ways, WGU is one of the best values in online education. WGU provides a more student-centric, convenient, cost-effective way for self-directed adults to earn a challenging degree.
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What Others Say

Our focus on developing competent graduates is valued by employers. Perhaps that’s why 90 percent of employers who hire WGU graduates rate their preparation for the workforce as "Good" or "Excellent."
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Accreditation and Recognition

WGU is regionally, NCATE, and CCNE* accredited. WGU is also a USDLA Best Practices in Distance Learning Award recipient.
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About Our Students

WGU students come from urban, suburban, and rural areas. Most are working full-time or part-time jobs while they are students. The average age of the WGU student is about 36.
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WGU’s Online Library

WGU offers a central online library with 24-hour access to full-text articles for use with assessments.
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University Governance

WGU was founded by 19 U.S. governors and is supported by over 20 major corporations and foundations who believe in WGU’s commitment to producing highly competent graduates.
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Employment at WGU

The university looks for leaders with a strong commitment to our mission of expanding access to higher education.
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The University of You

At WGU, we believe everyone has the right to earn a college degree. And we believe the path to that degree should be accessible, flexible and affordable. We believe life experience should count for something, independent learning should be celebrated, and focus and determination rewarded. We believe in you. Read More >>

Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Policies

WGU does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic or national origin, gender, religion, sex, disability, age, military or veteran status in regards to admissions, programs, student services, or employment. Read more >>

Learn more about employment opportunities at WGU.

* 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).

 

Questions & Answers

Click a question, see the answer to the right.

Why would I choose WGU?

Because your professional success is our goal. If you’re seriously considering an online degree program, you want high-quality academic content that’s relevant to your career, tuition that’s affordable, flexibility that fits your lifestyle, and a strong support system to help you stay on track. These are the critical attributes of WGU as a nonprofit university founded by the governors of 19 U.S. states to expand educational access for the working adult.

Why is "competency-based" important?

The "competency-based" approach benefits you in two ways. First, you know you’re being trained to be competent in your field. You want high-quality academic content that’s relevant to your career. We make sure you know your stuff. Second, the approach lets you advance as quickly as you can demonstrate your competence through our rigorous assessments. It really is a "Show me what you know" approach that lets you take advantage of knowledge you already possess. You can use this knowledge, work hard in your program, and accelerate your time to completion. You could save both time and money. An Enrollment Counselor can explain this approach further.

What is WGU’s Mission Statement?

"The principal mission of Western Governors University is to improve quality and expand access to post-secondary educational opportunities by providing a means for individuals to learn independent of time and place and to earn competency-based degrees and other credentials that are credible to both academic institutions and employers."

What is WGU’s Promise Statement?

"We help our students achieve their dreams for a degree and career success by providing a personal, flexible, and affordable education based on real world competencies."