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Started in 1949, Grand Canyon University is a private, for-profit, Christian college in Arizona. The school awards bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees both online and in a traditional setting.


Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 by the Southern Baptist Church. Then known as Grand Canyon College, its first campus was located in an abandoned armory building in Prescott, Ariz. Two years later, the school relocated to Phoenix, where it has developed a strong reputation as a premier Christian institution. In 2004, the school moved to a for-profit model.

The business school at Grand Canyon University is named for Dr. Ken Blanchard. A global leader in workplace learning, employer productivity, leadership and team effectiveness, Blanchard is a business consultant, speaker and writer. He is co-author of the best-seller “The One Minute Manager” and principal author of dozens of other titles including the leadership manuscript “Leading at a Higher Level.”


The Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor have accredited Grand Canyon University continually since 1968. The school obtained its most recent 10-year re-accreditation in 2007. In addition, the university has received specialized accreditations and approvals for its core program offerings in the Ken Blanchard College of Business from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools & Programs.


Grand Canyon University offers degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. At the bachelor’s level, degrees are available in accounting, applied management, business administration, entrepreneurial studies, finance and economics, health care administration, marketing, public safety administration, public safety and emergency management, and sports management. There’s also an option to receive a bachelor’s in business administration with an emphasis on business intelligence. At the master’s level, Grand Canyon offers an executive MBA and a general MBA as well as emphases in public administration, accounting, health care administration, health care logistics, health care informatics, leadership, disaster preparedness leadership and executive fire leadership. There is also a master’s in public administration with an emphasis in government and policy or health care management. At the doctoral level, Grand Canyon offers an online Doctor of Business Administration with an emphasis on management program.


Students who are interested in earning a bachelor’s degree must have a high school diploma or GED. Work experience is also recommended. Applicants to the graduate programs may be accepted for admission by meeting one of these criteria: an undergraduate degree from an accredited, Grand Canyon University-approved college, university or program with a grade point average of at least 2.8 or a graduate degree from an accredited, Grand Canyon University-approved college, university or program. Applicants to the doctoral programs may be accepted for admission by meeting these criteria: Students must have earned a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution with an overall GPA of 3.4 or better. Applicants with a GPA of 3.0 to 3.39 will be accepted with specifications, including a letter of intent.

Student Resources

Students can purchase many textbooks in a digital or e-book version through the school’s Canyon Connect program.

GCU’s Center for Learning and Advancement offers personal tutoring services on a variety of topics including writing, statistics, accounting, nursing and math. GCU also provides an extensive video collection of tutorials that demonstrate how to use the online learning system and other software.

Students, staff and faculty are able to share video and audio files with GCU through iTunes. The content is available free, and students can easily add it to their iPhones, iPods or iPads.

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