Abilene Christian University

Degree Subject

Abilene Christian University (ACU) is a private non-profit four-year university situated in Abilene, Texas. It is affiliated with the Churches of Christ and its mission is to provide education to students to promote them to pursue worldwide Christian service and leadership opportunities. ACU prides itself on being a lively, innovative, and Christ-centered learning community that engages students to promote their intellectual and spiritual growth and encourage them to make a significant impact on the world. In 2011, the U.S. News and World Report ranks Abilene Christian University as one of “America’s Best Colleges.

Abilene Christian University offers approximately 67 bachelor’s degree majors in over 125 areas of study, 25 master’s degree programs, and one doctoral degree program. Its online division is committed to providing courses that enhance the learning of adult students. It offers master’s degrees and certificates in education, arts, and science that were created by experienced faculty with sound knowledge of teaching and learning. Students are able to log in at any time from anywhere with an Internet connection. The online course platform allows students to submit assignments, receive feedback from instructors, and submit assignments. Online students receive multi-level support including admissions counselors, student service managers, small group instructors, faculty, and live technical support that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

A.B. Barrett founded Abilene Christian University in 1906 as the Childers Classical Institute that offered 11 primary and secondary grades. The school gained accreditation as a junior college in 1914 and senior college in 1919. It formally changed its name to Abilene Christian College in 1920. In 1951, the college officially received accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. It gained university status in 1976. Since the 1980s the university has continued to expand and add new schools of education and degree programs. Today, ACU educates about 4,700 from all 50 states and more than 42 countries around the world.


The Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools accredits Abilene Christian University.

Schools Of Education

College of Arts and Sciences: houses majority of the university’s core curricula and offers a broad range of programs in arts, mathematics, humanities, and natural, social, and behavioral sciences.

College of Biblical Studies: provides Christ-based education to prepare students for ministry.

College of Business Administration: offers programs in accounting, financial management, marketing, information systems, and management.

College of Education and Human Services: offers programs through four departments: Communication Sciences and Disorders, Social Work, Exercise Science and Health, and Teacher Education.

School of Information Technology and Computing: offers programs in computer science, information technology, information systems, and digital entertainment technology.

School of Social Work: offers a bachelor’s and master’s degree program in social work to prepare students to work with in a variety of social service settings.

Honors College: offers special honors classes and upper-division independent coursework in a student’s chosen major.

Graduate School: offers a variety of graduate programs including accounting, communication, English, social work, liberal arts, education, conflict resolution, and psychology.

Graduate School of Theology: offers graduate programs in ministry, missions, history and theology, Old Testament, and New Testament.

Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing: offers a bachelor’s and master’s degree in nursing.

Scholarships Offered

Abilene Christian University offers various scholarships based on financial need and academics including the ACU Grant, Dean’s Award, Barret Award, Stevens Award, Chancellor’s Award for Academic Excellence, Church Match Scholarship, Faith and Education Scholarship, iSchool Scholarship, Presidential Scholar Awards, Rachel Blasingame Memorial Scholarship, Tessie Eerligh Scharing Memorial Scholarship, Valedictorian Scholarship, and Transfer Merit Award. It also offers athletic scholarships and scholarships for children of employers of Christian academies, colleges, and missionaries.

Financing Options

Abilene Christian University participates in various financial aid programs including the Federal Pell Grant, Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG), Federal Direct Stafford Subsidized Loan, Federal Direct Stafford Unsubsidized Loan, Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG), Texas Tuition Equalization Grant (TEG), Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnership (LEAP), Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant (TEACH), and National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant (SMART), Federal Direct PLUS Loans, Federal Direct GRAD PLUS Loans, College Access Loan (CAL), Federal Work-Study, Texas College Work-Study, Federal Perkins Loans, and private loans. ACU also offers a payment plan and prepaid tuition plan.

Financing Options

Abilene Christian University grants transfer credit hours for up to 96 credits toward an undergraduate degree and no more than 66 credit hours can be earned from a community, junior, or other two-year institution. All transfer courses must have earned a grade of a C or better and students are required to submit official transcripts. ACU also grants credits for the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), Advanced Placement Program, and International Baccalaureate. Students may also challenge a course if past experience has provided the student with substantial knowledge equivalent to a particular course. To receive credit, students must pass an examination administered by the department of the certain course.