About Western Governors University

Founded 15 years ago by governors from 19 states, Western Governors University offers online bachelor’s and master’s degrees focused on providing in-demand skills for the workplace. Instead of being credit-based like most other universities, WGU works on a competency-based model that rewards a student’s real-world experience when it comes to assessments. In other words, the more experience you have within your field of study, the more time and money you’ll save.

With tuition that is about half that of most other online universities, Western Governors University graduates more than 10,000 students each year in over 50 different degree programs. Students are represented across all 50 states, range in age from their early 20s to late 60s, and almost all are working at least part time while attending the University.

Western Governors University Degrees & Programs

WGU offers more than 50 bachelor’s and master’s degree programs, spread across four schools:

  • Teacher’s College
  • College of Business
  • College of Information Technology
  • College of Health Professions

WGU Accreditations & Awards

Western Governors University holds the following accreditations and awards:

  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities accreditation, one of the major accrediting commissions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
  • The bachelor’s and master’s nursing degree programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • The Teacher’s College is the first exclusively online university to receive NCATE accreditation for its degree programs that lead to teacher licensure from the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).
  • Two International Distance Learning Awards by the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) in 2008 and 2011

Western Governors University Online Experience & Support

The MyWGU Portal provides students with everything they needs to study, complete coursework, view weekly schedules and assignment deadlines, connect with faculty and other students, review degree plans and financial aid, as well as many other resources, including their 24-hours virtual library. Unlike many other online universities, the Portal is very user-friendly, and can be viewed on a desktop, tablet, or mobile phone.

Another difference is that Western Governors University focuses on a competency-based approach to online learning, meaning that the skills and knowledge you’ve already obtained can be applied to your curriculum. Instead of attending class, you complete challenging assignments at your own pace—and the more assignments you complete, the faster you’ll graduate, and the more money you’ll save. In addition, each WGU student is assigned a mentor upon enrollment, who will help you formulate a degree plan, determine the best learning resources based on your strengths and employment background, and to stay on track throughout the process.

The WGU Career Services department helps students and alumni network with one another about possible employment opportunities. They include information on how to craft resumes and cover letters, as well as finding jobs based on your core competencies.

Western Governors University Tuition & Financial Aid

Instead of charging tuition on a per-credit basis, WGU instead charges a flat rate of $2,890 for every six months you attend, which is half the cost of other online colleges such as Capella, Walden, University of Phoenix, Grand Canyon University, or Kaplan. This means that the faster you can complete your program, the more money you’ll save. However, even though part of Western Governors University’s mission is to keep tuition affordable, there are a wide variety of financial aid, grant, and scholarship options available.

For VA and Military students, WGU was voted as one of the “Top Military-Friendly Colleges and Universities” by Military Advanced Education Magazine, six years in a row. Their online degree programs are approved for Veterans Administration (VA) education benefits under the Montgomery GI Bill, as well as Tuition Assistance for active-duty, reserve, and National Guard service members.

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2 Customer Reviews for Western Governors University

Average Customer Rating: 3.5
Rating Snapshot:
5 stars: 1 4 stars: 0 3 stars: 0 2 stars: 1 1 stars: 0
Bottom Line: 50% would recommend it to a friend
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  • I was looking for an IT education and didn't qualify, but they won't stop contacting me

    • Atlanta, GA,
    • Jul 26, 2015

    I have a B.S. and an Advanced Degree. I called the Western Governors University wanting information about securing an IT degree. Because my degree was older and I did not have the needed IT work experience, I do not qualify for admission in their IT degree program. The admissions lady was helpful, told me to go get one of the certificates that I would earn during the course work, then apply. That was the good part. I get calls several times a week to please call to talk to the admissions person so I "can get started with my WGU education" and of course a series of Emails touting the school and encouraging me to take action. (Yes, I called and left messages and emails asking them to cease the endless emails and after about a month, now I just get the emails.) Do not really know about the school except even though they would not admit me (a good thing I believe) they continue to harass me (Their choice that I am not part of this session, but they do not seem to communicate with those saying come on down and those saying not so fast my friend).

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Distance learning for less

    • California,
    • Mar 17, 2014

    I graduated with an MBA in 2011. The plus was my mentor and the personal attention I received from each professor. Although it was distance learning; I attended webinars and was able to set up private tutoring sessions if I needed a little extra assistance. I was researching this school for my son; but decided to attend myself; as earning my MBA was lifelong dream that I had finally been able to achieve.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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