Grand Canyon University


Grand Canyon University online and on-campus programs provide their students with the support they need to get ahead. And they have a track record of doing exactly that. In fact, GCU has a 65-year history of commitment to their students. They offer over two hundred online and on-campus degree programs throughout seven colleges, and a vibrant, family-oriented school culture. Grand Canyon University aims not just to educate the leaders of tomorrow, but also to help students develop empathy and global citizenship—whether they’re a new college student entering at the bachelor’s level, or an experienced professional hoping to earn a doctorate.


Who Are Grand Canyon University?

Grand Canyon University wants to act as your gateway to success. They strive to achieve this through their holistic approach to education, Christian heritage, and their avowed commitment to the world community.

Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 by the Southern Baptist Church in Prescott, AZ, with the goal of offering a quality education at an affordable price, anchored in core values of empathy and leadership. GCU moved to their current home in Phoenix two years later. As part of the Phoenix community, they make continuing efforts to give back, using their resources and dedication to provide important services to local families and businesses.

Grand Canyon University Values

GCU’s commitment to their students and their community is expressed through their core values. This informs every aspect of their programs, whether you're attending Grand Canyon University online or face to face. Through scholarship, service, and culture, GCU upholds the values of:

  • Global Citizenship: To Grand Canyon University, global citizenship means embracing the inherent diversity of the world around us. GCU believes in avoiding ethnocentrism, and, through both scholarship and service, striving to understand different cultural, religious, and socioeconomic perspectives.
  • Critical Thinking: Asking questions is a major component of the pursuit of knowledge. GCU encourages its students to pursue knowledge actively, by questioning ideas and the world around them, and applying analytic reasoning skills to better understand the curriculum, one another, and the world.
  • Effective Communication:  Communication isn’t just about speaking. It’s a cooperative effort to foster understanding—whatever medium you’re using. GCU aims to help students develop their communication skills in and out of the classroom, whether that’s writing a coherent, effective essay, working together with peers, social media, or in one’s community.
  • Responsible Leadership: GCU’s ultimate goal is to foster the leadership of tomorrow, in the hopes that their students will use the skills, empathy, and knowledge as leaders to make a real difference.

Is Grand Canyon University Accredited?

Grand Canyon University holds several regional, college, and program-specific accreditations. Accrediting bodies that recognize GCU include:

  • The Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Arizona State Board for Private Post-Secondary Education
  • Veterans Administration

In addition, individual degree programs and colleges hold discipline-specific accreditations. For more information about Grand Canyon University Accreditation, reach out to your admissions counselor.

Grand Canyon University Online Programs

GCU knows that, while many do, not every student takes the traditional path—that is, graduating high school, going straight into a residential four-year campus program. Grand Canyon wants to be there for all their students, no matter what path they take toward earning their degree. That’s what Grand Canyon University Online degrees are meant for: helping busy professionals can achieve their academic dreams without slacking on the job or missing out at home.

GCU students could choose to earn their full degree online, or to take individual online courses to test the waters and brush up on their skills. Already earned your degree, and looking to maintain a professional certification? Grand Canyon also offers a variety of continuing education options online.

The Grand Canyon University Online platform is robust, not to mention well established. After all, it’s been in action for more than ten years. Students have access to an online learning management system, which includes a digital classroom environment, assignment submission, forum discussions, and organizational tools like a home page overview and online assignment calendar. Students also have access to online library resources 24/7.

Grand Canyon University Campus Life

In addition to GCU online degrees, Grand Canyon University also offers a variety of campus programs for local students and residents alike. They make a consistent effort to improve their campus offerings, so as to provide the students there with the best experience they can. Over the years, GCU has grown to accommodate the needs of their students in many ways. This includes recreation and fitness centers, residence halls, the GCU health center, and a state of the art stadium and arena. But it’s not just about fun—they also provide a variety of campus resources to help students on the path to academic success. Students might use The Learning Lounge, career counseling and support services, student services counselor, and more.

GCU Majors

While the campus and culture are huge parts of what make GCU great, GCU majors are the heart of student life. After all, that’s most likely why you’re enrolling in the first place! Whether you’re an undergrad fresh out of high school living on campus, or a professional looking for GCU masters programs, GCU degrees could be what you’re looking for. GCU offers an array of options in each of its seven colleges.

  • Colangelo College of Business: At its core, GCU’s business school is all about entrepreneurship—whether you’re planning to launch a startup or not. They emphasize creative thinking, business acumen, hard work, and social responsibility, in a student-centric program. Students have the opportunity to gain hands on experience in conjunction with theoretical learning. And through their educational alliances, Colangelo College of Business is able to connect students with real employers in their field, setting them on the path to success.
  • College of Education: The GCU College of Education believes that education can change people’s lives. Whether your passion lies in the classroom or outside it, in administration or policymaking, for example, GCU wants to help you make an impact on your community. GCU’s teaching program values servant leadership, innovation, and service. Their rigorous education curriculum provides a balance of theory and practice, including field experience, to help students prepare to inspire minds young and old.
  • College of Fine Arts and Production: Have a passion for creativity? Let GCU’s College of Fine Arts and Production nurture that creative spirit. Students might study theatre, dance, music, digital design, film, or even advertising or screenwriting! These programs are cross-disciplinary, meaning students could hone their creative skills alongside the practical skills they might need to turn it into a career. Best of all, you might be able to learn from and alongside industry professionals!
  • College of Humanities and Social Sciences: GCU’s College of Humanities includes a broad array of programs, each designed to nurture the skills and expertise you’d need in a range of fields. This is also the college responsible for the majority of GCU’s general education courses. The College of Humanities—whether in gen ed courses or a degree program—emphasizes communication, analysis, and critical thinking. Programs may be available ranging from psychology to public administration to English, just to name a few.
  • College of Nursing and Health Care Professions: Whether you’re passionate about bedside care, research, or healthcare administration, the College of Nursing and Health Care Professions at GCU may have the program for you. Grand Canyon University nursing and other health care programs emphasize professionalism, ethics, critical thinking, and accountability. They are designed to provide opportunities for classroom learning, discussion, lab simulations and hands-on experience.
  • College of Science, Engineering and Technology: Passionate about STEM? So is GCU! The College of Science, Engineering and Technology offers a broad range of programs, each designed to provide the expertise and practical skills to thrive in these competitive fields. This is also the home of GCU’s biology programs, which are rooted in scientific theory, and may be a solid foundation for earning advanced degrees in health care fields later on.
  • College of Theology: If you’re looking for a passionate, faith-based degree program, GCU might have a lot to offer. GCU’s school of ministry primarily serves the evangelical Christian community. They offer focused training in theology and ministry, with a strong emphasis on scripture. Some programs within the College of Theology may require that participating students commit to GCU’s Doctrinal Statement and Covenant.

How To Apply To Grand Canyon University Online & Campus Programs

Grand Canyon University accepts applications from potential students age 16 or older, of all backgrounds, faiths, interests and perspectives, so long as they are academically qualified according to the requirements of their selected program. Specific prerequisites may vary based on degree level, major, and program type.

If you’re interested in applying to GCU Online programs, follow the steps listed here.

  1. Fill out the online contact form and specify what program you’re interested in and other related details.
  2. Request transcripts from all schools you’ve attended. These can be submitted by mail, fax, or delivered in person if convenient.
  3. Fill out your FAFSA.
  4. A university counselor will contact you to guide you through the rest of the application process

Registering as a campus student involves a similar process.

  1. Submit the online contact form expressing your interest in GCU.
  2. Submit your transcripts through the Student Portal.
  3. Schedule your visit to see life at the GCU campus in person for yourself!
  4. Meet with your admissions counselor to guide you through the rest of the process and help you register for class.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Figuring out how to pay for school can be an involved process. Depending on your unique situation, you may be eligible for federal financial aid, decided by your FAFSA. But what if that doesn’t cover it? In addition to taking out private student loans, you might also consider GCU scholarships or grants.

GCU offers a variety of campus scholarships, each designed to help students in slightly different situations. Each scholarship may have its own requirements for consideration. Examples you might apply for are listed below.

  • Direct Start Scholarships (for recent high school graduates)
  • Indirect Start Scholarships (for students who took time off after high school, or international students)
  • Priority Registration Grant
  • Computer Science/Information Technology/Engineering Program Grant (CSTEP)
  • Phi Theta Kappa Grant
  • Grand Canyon University Grant (in-state)
  • Grand Canyon University Grant (out-of-state)
  • Canyon Christian Schools Consortium (CCSC) Scholarship

For more information about these and other scholarships and grants offered at GCU, reach out to your admissions counselor.

Learn More About Grand Canyon University Online

To find out more about Grand Canyon University online and campus programs, visit their website or fill out the contact form to get in touch. You could request additional information, set up a meeting or a campus visit, or even start the application process!


Student Reviews

I choose Grand Canyon for the smaller class sizes and the personal relationships you develop with each instructor. The academic advisors are really helpful.

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