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WGU Privacy Policy

Effective September 15th, 2023


This privacy notice describes how Western Governors University and our affiliates (collectively,“WGU”) collects, uses, and shares your information when you visit this website (“Website”). This notice is designed to help you learn about our privacy practices and understand your privacy choices when you use our Website and explore our educational offerings.

WGU’s privacy commitments are fundamental to our mission to be the most student-obsessed university in the world. These commitments apply to everyone who has a relationship with us, including: prospective students, currently enrolled students, alums, partners, and website visitors. We strive to strike the right balance between collecting and using your data to provide a personalized experience designed to maximize the likelihood of your success while being mindful of your privacy interests. 

This privacy notice will apply to all information collected about you prior to enrollment, including information: 

  • We collect directly from you via our inquiry form, enrollment application, and other forms available on our Website or at our in-person events.
  • We collect automatically as you review our Website, such as cookie data and website analytics.
  • That is contained in emails, texts, calls, and other communications with you.
  • Provided to WGU from third parties and third-party websites, including advertising, publicly available information, and other applications linked to our Website.

This notice does not apply to how third parties, use, collect, or share personal data. We encourage you to read their privacy notices and know your privacy rights before interacting with any third-party websites (including through any links accessible from or through our Website). This notice also does not apply once you are enrolled in one of WGU’s programs. For more information about WGU’s student policies and practices, please review WGU’s Student Policy Handbook.

We collect several types of information about our Website users, including:

  • Information by which you may be personally identified such as name, mailing address, email address, phone number, and any other information which could be associated with or used to identify you (“Personal Data”).
  • Information that is about you but individually does not explicitly identify you, such as program of study, academic workload, and year in school.
  • More sensitive data including information relating to race, ethnic origin, trade union membership, or information about your health, disabilities, sexual orientation, gender identity, and transgender status. This may also include military or parental status.
  • National or state identifiers such as passport number, state/national identification number, social security number, or other government identification numbers.
  • Background information, including academic and professional qualifications, prior education, CV/resume, employment history, information regarding programs of interest to you, and background check data (where permissible under applicable law).
  • Financial information, including bank account details, tax information, salary, household income, and other information necessary to calculate tuition owed, secure payment, file taxes as required by the Internal Revenue Service (such as 1098-T Forms), and assess your eligibility for state and federal financial aid, scholarships, grants, and other types of aid.
  • Website analytics and performance data, such as information about how you use and interact with our site, your device and browser type, and geo-location information.
  • Social media information or other account information you may use to interact with us, including when you create an account with us.

We collect information about you in various ways, including:

  1. Directly from you when you submit information through our online forms, including inquiry forms and enrollment application.
  2. At your direction, such as information from your prior institutions, employer, or WGU’s university partners. This information may include transcripts and work history to help us evaluate transfer credits, or information from your employer to process employer-provided tuition assistance.
  3. Directly from third parties who may pass along certain information about your use of their services. For example, accessing your WGU account through a third-party connection or log-in (such as Facebook Connect, by “following,” “liking,” or adding the WGU application on your device) or linking your account to us.
  4. We also may collect publicly available information about you to provide a more personalized experience or otherwise validate the accuracy of our information.
  5. Through automated data tracking technologies, such as cookies, web beacons, or other similar technology (as described below).   

Our automated data collection technologies may collect various types of information, including: 

  • Details of your Website visits, including location data and traffic data. 
  • Date, time, and duration of your Website visit.
  • How you interact with the Website, including links clicked and a heat map of where you spend time on the Website.
  • Information about your internet connection, operating system, or browser type. 

This information helps us deliver a better and more personalized service by allowing us to: 

  • Estimate our audience size.
  • Estimate how our users interact with the Website.
  • Store information about your preferences, allowing us to customize the Website according to your interests. 
  • Deliver more personalized and relevant resources. 
  • Recognize you when you return to the Website. 
  • Improve our services.   

We use automated data tracking technologies (e.g., beacons, pixel tags, clear gifs, and device identifiers) to recognize you and/or your device(s) across different services (both WGU and third-party services), including for advertising purposes. We may now, or in the future, use the following technologies:  

Cookies: These are small files placed on your hard drive. You may reject or accept cookies from your browser settings. Click here for more information about WGU's use of Cookies. 

Web Beacons: Pages of our Website may contain small electronic files (also referred to as clear gifs, pixel tags, and single-pixel gifs) that permit us to track various non-personal website statistics, for example, which Website pages are the most visited.  

Flash Cookies: Certain features of the Website may use locally stored objects to collect and store information about your preferences and navigation to and on our Website. To learn how to control Flash cookie settings, visit the settings page on Adobe’s website.  

Some content or applications on the Website are served by third parties, including advertisers, content providers, and application providers. When you use the Website, these third parties may use cookies or other tracking technologies to collect your information. This information may include your Personal Data or information about your online activities over time and across different websites. They may use this information to provide you with interest-based (behavioral) advertising or other targeted content. WGU does not control third-party tracking technologies or how they may be used. You should contact the responsible third-party provider directly if you have questions about an advertisement or other targeted content.

We also use Google Analytics, which uses cookies or other tracking technologies to help us analyze how users interact with and use the Website, compile reports on activity, and provide other services related to activity and usage. Google Analytics may collect information such as your IP address, time of visit, whether you are a return visitor, and referring website. To learn more about how Google Analytics collects and processes data, you may visit

Broadly speaking, we use your information to contact you regarding programs you indicated you are interested in and, when you are ready, enroll you in those WGU programs. We may use your information to communicate with you about our educational offerings and send you updates as they become available. We also use the information we collect to administer our academic programs, conduct university business, provide services to our students, and make other products and services available. Occasionally, we may also use your information to notify you about changes to our Website or new educational programs we think you will find valuable. We also use data collected via cookies to optimize our products and services, including our Website.

Specifically, we use your information to:

  • Provide educational services, like those required to evaluate your application for admission, process your enrollment and payments for our programs, or determine your eligibility for financial aid, scholarships, grants, and other types of funding.  
  • Communicate with you by phone, text, and email regarding your interest in our programs and services, including sending marketing messages.
  • Personalize your experience, including marketing uses such as targeted advertising via social media and other digital channels, audience classification and creation, sharing social content, tracking leads for analytics and communications purposes, conducting market research, surveys, and similar inquiries to help us understand trends and needs of our prospective students, and offering newsletters, articles, event invitations and other information that we believe may interest you.
  • Enhancing the quality and relevance of our educational offerings, training our systems, including artificial intelligence systems, and improving products and services by optimizing Website content.
  • Comply with applicable law, including preventing and investigating any suspected unlawful activity or unauthorized access to our systems or data, enforcing our terms and conditions, and fulfilling any other purpose required for us to meet our legal, regulatory, and compliance obligations.
  • Respond to your requests.

In order to provide the best educational offerings and Website experience, we need to share your data to trusted business partners. We may disclose your information, including Personal Data: 

  • With your consent.  
  • To fulfill the purpose for which you provide it.  
  • To WGU-affiliated companies.  
  • To service providers we use to support our business operations. Our service providers are bound to keep such information confidential and may use it only for the purposes for which we disclose it to them, which may include training artificial intelligence systems we use now or in the future.  
  • To comply with any court order, law, regulation, or legal process, including responding to any government or regulatory request.  
  • For any purpose disclosed by us when you provide your information.  

We may also disclose information about you where there is a lawful basis for such disclosure if we determine that disclosure is reasonably necessary to enforce our terms and conditions, to protect our operations or users, or in anticipation of or in the event of a reorganization, merger, or sale.

We will not sell or otherwise share Personal Data with third parties or nonaffiliated companies except for those purposes described above or as required or permitted by law. However, we may freely share any data collected through the Website that is not Personal Data. We may use and disclose aggregated and de-identified information about our users without restriction.  

Using administrative, physical, and technical safeguards, WGU implements measures designed to secure your information under our control from accidental loss, unauthorized access, use, alteration, and disclosure.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we do our best to protect your information, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to our Website. Any transmission of information is at your own risk. We are not responsible for the circumvention of any privacy settings or security measures contained on the Website. While we cannot guarantee that loss, misuse, or alteration of your data will not occur, we use appropriate technical and organizational measures to prevent this. 

The safety and security of your information also depends on you. If you use a password to access certain parts of the Website, you are responsible for creating a strong password and for keeping the password confidential.

We believe you should know what data we have about you and how you can access it without being treated in a discriminatory way or receiving a lesser degree of service from WGU. For certain types of data, you can use this form to find out what information we have about you. You can also use the webform to request that we update incorrect information, delete your information, get a copy of your information, or appeal a decision we made regarding any of these requests. Please note that when we delete your information, we may retain cached or archived copies for a certain period of time.

In some circumstances we may not grant your request, including but not limited to when:

  • Granting your request would violate WGU’s legal obligations, including compliance with applicable law.
  • Granting your request would compromise the integrity of its admissions process.
  • Granting your request would compromise our security measures or pose a risk to our intellectual property.
  • Granting your request would jeopardize others’ privacy, be frivolous, or be exceptionally impractical.  
  • We cannot verify your identity.

If you make a request on someone else's behalf, you will still fill out this form but may need to provide additional information to authenticate the request. Please note that before we can act on any request, we must verify the authenticity and identity of the requester.

FERPA: WGU complies with the protections established under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA). For more information about FERPA and how it applies, please refer to the FERPA Section below.

To support a lifelong educational journey, we typically retain your information unless otherwise required by applicable law or you submit a request to delete your Personal Data here.

All calls with WGU and its affiliates may be recorded for quality and training purposes.

  • As a prospective student, you may opt out of outbound call recording at any time by,
    • updating your preferences in the enrollment portal upon completion of an admissions application or
    • emailing
  • As a WGU student, you may opt out of outbound call recording at any time by updating your call recording preference through the Security tab in the

Note: It may take WGU and its affiliates up to three business days to implement an opt-out request.

We do not use algorithms or profiling to make any decision that would significantly affect you without the opportunity for human review.

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) protects a student’s education records at institutions that receive funding from the U.S. Department of Education. FERPA governs the access and release of your educational records.

Scope of FERPA: FERPA protections take effect on a student’s first day of classes at a qualifying institution, like WGU. It does not apply to persons who were denied acceptance or decline their invitation to attend WGU.

How it Works: To find out more about our practices under FERPA, please review our FERPA policy in the WGU Student Handbook.

Our Websites and educational services are not intended for children under 13 years of age. WGU does not knowingly collect personal information from children under 13. If you are under 13 or are an adult with information about a child under 13, do not use or provide any such information on this Website. If we learn that we have collected about or received information from a child under 13, we will take appropriate action in accordance with applicable law. If you believe we might have any information from or about a child under 13, please contact us at  

If you are a resident of Canada, you have the right to access your Personal Data, rectify it, and withdraw any consent previously provided. You may exercise these rights via this form or by contacting us at Where applicable, you also have the right to lodge a complaint with your supervisory authority.

If you have any questions about this privacy notice or WGU’s privacy practices, please contact us at:

Western Governors University
ATTN: Privacy Team
4001 South 700 East, Suite 700
Salt Lake City, UT 84107

In certain jurisdictions, you may have the right to lodge a complaint with your local authority if you have concerns about how we are processing your Personal Data. We ask that you please attempt to resolve any issues with us first including via our appeals process described above, although you have a right to contact your supervisory authority at any time.


At any time, you may request that WGU discontinue further marketing communications with you via email, text/SMS, phone, or direct mail.

To opt out by mail: Send a written request containing your name and mailing address to:

Western Governors University
ATTN: Enrollment Department
4001 South 700 East, Suite 700
Salt Lake City, UT 84107

To opt out by phone: Call the WGU Enrollment Department toll-free 1-866-225-5948

To opt out via WGU’s website: Visit the WGU Preference Center

To opt out via email: You can send your request via email to

To opt out of text or SMS communications: You can reply to the text or SMS with the word “STOP.”

From time to time, we may update this privacy notice. If we make material changes to how we use your Personal Data, we will notify you by email to the email address specified in your account. You are responsible for ensuring the email you provide is an active and deliverable email address and to periodically visit our Website to check for privacy notice changes. The effective date identified at the top of the page is when the privacy notice was last revised. Please note that if there is a conflict between this notice and applicable law, the applicable law will apply to you.