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Grand Canyon University

Grand Canyon University is a private, for-profit Christian institution based in Phoenix. Founded in 1949 by the Southern Baptist Convention, the university has since evolved into an inter-denominational university. GCU aims to provide a distinctive higher education by focusing on four pillars: academic advancement, Christian camaraderie, extracurricular excellence, and wellness and well-being. While the university offers many traditional programs from its main campus, it also serves nontraditional students, such as working adults, by providing high-quality distance learning options. College Prowler gave GCU a grade of “A” for its online courses, which speaks to the quality and convenience of GCU’s online courses.

Programs Offered

Grand Canyon University offers undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as post-graduate certificates. These programs are offered through seven colleges, including the College of Theology, Ken Blanchard College of Business, College of Nursing, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Fine Arts and Production, College of Education, and College of Doctoral Studies. Notable programs include the Master of Business Administration (MBA), Executive MBA, and Doctor of Business Administration (DBA), all of which can be earned fully online. However, some of GCU’s most recognized programs are its online graduate programs in nursing, which were highly ranked in the category of student engagement and accreditation by U.S. News & World Report. Online students at GCU take courses one at a time and have 24/7 access to their online courses, according to the GCU website. The online learning platform allows students to access their syllabus, submit assignments, and participate in online discussions from one convenient location online.


Grand Canyon University has been regionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission since 1968. The university’s baccalaureate and graduate programs in nursing also hold specialized accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, according to College Navigator.


Undergraduate applicants to Grand Canyon University must be at least 16 years old, have either a high school diploma or GED, and preferably some work experience. Admission is not guaranteed to students applying to undergraduate programs that are considered more rigorous than others, and students should check the most recent catalog for further admissions requirements for certain programs. Students will fill out an application online, after which they will be contacted by an enrollment counselor who will guide applicants through the next steps in the admissions process. Graduate applicants must possess a minimum of a bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 2.8 or better from a GCU-approved institution, and doctoral applicants must possess a minimum of a master’s degree with a GPA of 3.4 or better from a GCU-approved institution, and submit a letter of intent. For further details on undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral admissions see the university website.


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