It is said that President James A. Garfield once described the ideal University as “[a renowned teacher] on one end of a log and a student on the other.” Founded in 1996, Northcentral University replaced the 19th-century log with the 21st-century Internet to connect faculty to motivated students seeking a quality education that is accessible, professionally relevant and applicable in today’s diverse global society.

“The principles behind Northcentral’s approach have a long history in the world’s most renowned brick-and-mortar universities. But we’ve taken it to a higher degree by developing our one-to-one mentoring model, partnering one student with one faculty member in each course for a class size of one. Like the log idea, the goal was to create a more personalized learning experience where each student has the benefit of working directly with a professor who can pass down his or her expert knowledge and professional experience.”

In 2003, Northcentral University was accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. In addition, Northcentral’s business programs in the School of Business are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). NCU was one of the first online universities to have ACBSP accreditation across bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs.

In 2009, Northcentral University received certification from the United States Department of Education to participate in Title IV Financial Aid Programs. While committed to providing competitively priced degree programs, NCU wanted to ensure that all students have the opportunity to learn without worrying about paying for their education out-of-pocket. NCU students can apply for all applicable federal student aid programs, including Unsubsidized Federal Stafford loans, Subsidized Federal Stafford loans, Federal PLUS (Parent) loans and Federal Pell Grants. Visit our Financing page for more information.

In 2015, Northcentral University was accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).

Recent Enhancements and Achievements

With each passing year, Northcentral continues to make strides in fulfilling its Mission and realizing its Vision in becoming a global leader in providing unprecedented access to U.S. regionally accredited higher education.

  • Northcentral University offers an accelerated track options for its MBA and MEd programs. 
  • The Marriage and Family Therapy master's (MA) and doctoral (PhD) degree programs at NCU were designed to follow the Educational Guidelines of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT). Additionally, the Master of Arts program in MFT was the first program that uses distance education to be awarded accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE). 
  • Northcentral University is a Registered Education Provider (R.E.P.) for Project Management Institute (PMI)® and Project Management courses can be recognized for academic credit. 
  • Northcentral’s Applied Computer Science, Computer Information Security, and Management Information Systems majors can be recognized by the Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS). 
  • The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has acknowledged that NCU's Bachelor of Business Administration/Human Resources Management specialization and its Master of Business Administration/Human Resources Management specialization fully align with SHRM's HR Curriculum Guidebook and Templates, which were developed by SHRM to define the minimum HR content areas that should be studied by HR students at the undergraduate and graduate levels.