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Western Governors University

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Western Governors University Overview

Located in Salt Lake City, Utah, Western Governors University is a private not-for-profit institution. The suburban atmosphere of Salt Lake City makes it a great place for students who want the amenities of city life without actually living in the middle of a constant hustle and bustle.

What Is Western Governors University Known For?

24,676 Undergraduate Awards
  • The 4% student loan default rate at WGU is better than the national rate of 10.1%. That's a good sign that you may be able to pay off student loans easier than your peers at other schools can.
  • The master's degree is the highest award offered at WGU.
  • In 2017-2018, 76% of the faculty were full-time.
  • Students who graduate from WGU with a bachelor's degree make about $41,900 a year. That's 3% more than those who graduate from other schools.

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Western Governors University Rankings

WGU is ranked #422 out of 2,587 schools in the nation for overall quality on our 2022 Best Colleges list. It is also ranked #1 out of 19 schools in Utah.

These rankings may look different from those published by other outlets, because we use an outcomes-based approach rather than a subjective one. We get our data from a number of places, including the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and the College Scorecard. For more information, check out our rankings and methodology page.

WGU has also been awarded the following overall awards by our latest rankings.

Rank Ranking Name Share
#227 Best Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It

Program Level Awards

These are highlights of some of the most noteworthy awards granted to specific programs at WGU.

Rank Ranking Name Share
#5 Best Information Technology Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#5 Best Computer Programming Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#31 Best Human Resource Management Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#67 Best Computer Information Systems Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#80 Best Computer & Information Sciences Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#85 Best Nursing Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#97 Best Marketing Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#132 Best Business Administration & Management Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#143 Best Health Professions Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#183 Best Business, Management & Marketing Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It

Awards From Around the Web

The following table lists some notable awards WGU has earned from around the web.

Rank Ranking Name Source
#11 Best Computer Programming Schools College Factual
#19 Best Information Technology Schools College Factual
#78 Best Nursing Schools College Factual
#95 Best Computer & Information Sciences Schools College Factual
#105 Best Nursing Schools Nursing Degree Search
#179 Best Health Professions Schools College Factual

Where Is Western Governors University?


Contact details for WGU are given below.

Contact Details
Address: 4001 South 700 East Suite 700, Salt Lake City, UT 84107
Phone: 801-274-3280

How Do I Get Into WGU?

You can apply to WGU online at:

As long as you submit the requested materials to Western Governors University when applying, you shouldn't have to worry about getting in since the school has an open admissions policy.

Can I Afford Western Governors University?

68% Take Out Loans
4.1% Loan Default Rate

Student Loan Debt

Almost 66% of college students who graduated with the class of 2018 took out student loans, but that percentage varies from school to school. At WGU, approximately 68% of students took out student loans averaging $5,590 a year. That adds up to $22,360 over four years for those students.

The student loan default rate at WGU is 4.1%. This is significantly lower than the national default rate of 10.1%, which is a good sign that you'll be able to pay back your student loans.

Western Governors University Undergraduate Student Diversity

104,919 Full-Time Undergraduates
63% Women
28% Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
There are also 42,947 graduate students at the school.

Gender Diversity

Of the 104,919 full-time undergraduates at WGU, 37% are male and 63% are female.


Racial-Ethnic Diversity

The racial-ethnic breakdown of Western Governors University students is as follows.

Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 3,562
Black or African American 9,971
Hispanic or Latino 11,484
White 63,686
International Students 89
Other Races/Ethnicities 16,127

Online Learning at Western Governors University

147,866 Took All Classes Online
147,866 Took At Least One Class Online
15.2% Avg Growth Over 4 Years
There are 30 bachelor’s degree and 29 master’s degree programs available online at WGU. In 2019-2020, 147,866 students took at least one online class at the school.

The following chart shows how the online learning population at WGU has changed over the last few years.


This school is the most popular in Utah for online learning according to the online graduations recorded by the Department of Education for the academic year 2019-2020.

Online Affordability Rankings of WGU Rankings

The following table shows how WGU is ranked for affordability for both in-state and out-of-state students among colleges and universities that are mostly online.

Major Tuition for In-State Students Tuition for Out-of-State Students
Computer Systems Networking #1 #1
Medical Illustration & Informatics #1 #1
Teaching English or French #1 #1
Teacher Education Grade Specific #1 #1
Educational Assessment #1 #1
General Sales & Marketing #1 #1
Curriculum & Instruction #1 #1
Computer Programming #1 #1
Computer Science #1 #1
Accounting #1 #1
Computer Software & Applications #4 #4
Computer Information Systems #4 #4
Health Professions #4 #1
Management Information Systems #4 #4
Instructional Media Design #4 #1
Special Education #4 #1
Information Technology #5 #5
Nursing #7 #4
Human Resource Management #7 #7
Educational Administration #7 #4
Health Sciences & Services #7 #4
Health & Medical Administrative Services #10 #10
Marketing #10 #7
Business Administration & Management #22 #13

Online Growth Rankings of WGU

The average growth rate over the last four years of online students at Western Governors University was 15.2%. This is the #722 largest growth rate of all schools that are mostly online. This refers to all students at WGU regardless of major.

The following table shows the 1-year growth rate of WGU majors that offer at least one online course. This table only includes majors with positive growth.

Major 1-Year Growth Rate
Accounting 29%
Business Administration & Management 15%
Business, Management & Marketing 16%
Computer & Information Sciences 33%
Computer Information Systems 28%
Computer Programming 5%
Computer Science 88%
Computer Software & Applications 44%
Curriculum & Instruction 37%
Education 19%
Educational Administration 11%
Educational Assessment 25%
Health & Medical Administrative Services 40%
Health Professions 20%
Human Resource Management 12%
Information Technology 34%
Instructional Media Design 25%
Management Information Systems 21%
Marketing 5%
Nursing 11%
Special Education 9%
Teacher Education Grade Specific 18%
Teaching English or French 20%

The table below shows how the average growth rate over 4 years at WGU ranks compared to all other mostly online schools that offer a specific major.

Major Growth Rate Rank
Educational Assessment #16
Medical Illustration & Informatics #23
General Sales & Marketing #43
Computer Systems Networking #45
Teaching English or French #47
Computer Science #50
Health Sciences & Services #58
Curriculum & Instruction #73
Management Information Systems #89
Computer Software & Applications #90
Computer Programming #95
Instructional Media Design #104
Teacher Education Subject Specific #150
Marketing #150
Special Education #155
Educational Administration #178
Human Resource Management #182
Information Technology #211
Nursing #226
Computer Information Systems #236
Teacher Education Grade Specific #251
Health & Medical Administrative Services #347
Accounting #377
Computer & Information Sciences #473

When we speak of partially online, we are referring to schools whose online population is less than 50% of its total student body. Mostly online refers to those with online populations greater than or equal to 50%.

Western Governors University Undergraduate Concentrations

The table below shows the number of awards for each concentration.

Major Bachelor’s Graduate Certificate Master’s TOTAL
Nursing 11,863 0 2,579 14,442
Business Administration & Management 2,887 0 5,220 8,107
Information Technology 1,547 0 830 2,377
Teacher Education Grade Specific 1,657 43 458 2,158
Curriculum & Instruction 0 0 1,917 1,917
Instructional Media Design 0 0 1,457 1,457
Health & Medical Administrative Services 971 0 404 1,375
Management Information Systems 657 0 587 1,244
Teacher Education Subject Specific 246 10 981 1,237
Accounting 861 0 264 1,125
Special Education 769 0 337 1,106
Computer Information Systems 660 0 442 1,102
Human Resource Management 844 0 0 844
Educational Assessment 571 0 15 586
Educational Administration 0 112 438 550
Marketing 517 0 0 517
Teaching English or French 0 49 381 430
Computer Programming 399 0 0 399
Computer Software & Applications 55 0 259 314
Computer Science 135 0 0 135
Computer Systems Networking 26 0 0 26
General Sales & Marketing 10 0 0 10
Health Sciences & Services 1 0 0 1
Medical Illustration & Informatics 0 0 0 0
TOTAL 24,676 214 16,569 41,459


*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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