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National University

106 Reviews

Salary Score







58% of 106 students said this degree improved their career prospects
47% of 106 students said they would recommend this school to others
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By the OnlineU team | Updated 2/13/2023

National University (NU) is a private, nonprofit institution based in Southern California, serving over 17,000 students, more than half of which attend college remotely. NU offers over 100 fully online degrees, including 4 associate degrees, 44 bachelor's degrees, 46 master's degrees, 23 doctoral degrees, and even 55 certificate programs. It's also a military-friendly institution, with almost 7,000 students receiving post-9/11 GI Bill benefits or Department of Defense funds toward tuition.

Fast Facts

Average Financial Aid: $1,666

Accreditation: National University is acredited by 6 agencies

Find an Online Degree:

Salary Score for Online Degrees at National University

Associate's Degrees

Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities $11,793 $40,395 100

Bachelor's Degrees

History $31,250 $44,540 99
Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions $28,911 $94,452 99
Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing $34,375 $85,563 97
Public Administration Not Reported $61,249 97
Business/Corporate Communications Not Reported $54,414 96
Psychology, General $28,625 $36,571 96
Business Administration, Management and Operations $31,164 $54,361 93
Construction Engineering Not Reported $79,856 92
Homeland Security $23,438 $71,714 91
Health Services/Allied Health/Health Sciences, General $31,694 $47,121 86
Sociology $27,687 $35,735 81
Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods $30,595 $39,572 77
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies, General $32,385 $35,518 77
Computer Science $31,299 $69,756 57
Accounting and Related Services $30,812 $43,957 31
Clinical/Medical Laboratory Science/Research and Allied Professions $27,521 $51,109 28

Master's Degrees

English Language and Literature, General $28,729 $61,524 99
Educational Administration and Supervision $23,552 $84,898 99
Educational/Instructional Media Design $26,008 $71,709 97
Special Education and Teaching $51,895 $62,820 95
Public Administration $33,292 $67,545 89
Education, General $38,507 $58,901 86
Clinical, Counseling and Applied Psychology $30,756 $55,141 84
Psychology, General $34,410 $46,907 62
Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods $27,499 $48,771 59
Communication and Media Studies $26,846 $49,269 56
Public Health $46,122 $50,622 42
Business Administration, Management and Operations $39,427 $63,716 37
Criminal Justice and Corrections $34,416 $45,879 36
Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing $91,035 $91,418 36
Human Resources Management and Services $36,464 $55,949 33
Health and Medical Administrative Services $49,440 $52,576 23
Medical Illustration and Informatics $34,577 $63,715 22
Computer Science $37,932 $80,729 19
Accounting and Related Services $41,000 $54,100 16

FAQs About National University

Is National University a Good School?

NU has ranked at the top of several OnlineU lists, including #1 spots — such as Best Online Colleges in California and Best Online Public Administration Degrees

OnlineU's Salary Score rankings for bachelor's and master's degrees at NU are also high. For example, a bachelor's degree in criminal justice has a perfect salary score of 100, and a master's degree in English has a score of 99.

Is National University Online?

Yes, NU is online and offers dozens of degree and certificate programs for students to complete remotely at all levels. You can choose from various areas of study, such as teaching and educationhealthcare and nursingcriminal justice and law, and science and math. Classes last four weeks, so students can focus on one at a time. This is a convenient option for students juggling busy schedules, working full-time, or on active duty with the military. 

NU also supports its online learners by offering remote access to student services, such as career counseling, job fairs, tech support, behavioral health, and tutoring.

Are Online Degrees From National University Respected by Employers?

Employers respect NU's online degrees because an accredited institution confers them. Accreditation shows prospective students that a college or university manages their finances responsibly and delivers high quality academic programming. It also means you can transfer credits from one school to another. 

OnlineU only includes accredited online institutions on its site. 

Specifically, NU is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) — a U.S. Department of Education-recognized accrediting agency. 

What Is National University Known For?

NU is known for being military-friendly and offering both convenience and flexibility to its students on active duty worldwide. Over the past 50 years, NU has become a top educator of the U.S. military. 

NU is #3 on our list of colleges with the best student veteran resources and salary outcomes. It's also a Yellow Ribbon school that can help students pay for higher tuition and fees that the post-9/11 GI Bill doesn't cover.

Which Degrees at National University Provide the Highest Earnings for Graduates?

According to federal data from College Scorecard, NU's online bachelor's degrees in allied healthnursing, and management information systems provide the highest earnings for graduates. Around three years after graduation, alumni in these fields earn median annual salaries of approximately $97,500, $90,100, and $70,900, respectively. 

Another metric to consider when contemplating a degree's overall worth is OnlineU's proprietary Salary Score, which ranks colleges by alumni earnings in certain degree categories compared to graduates with the same degrees nationwide. NU has high salary scores, including 92 out of 100 total points for its bachelor's degrees, and it scores 83 for its master's degrees.

Who Owns National University?

No one owns NU. It was founded in 1971 by former U.S. Navy Captain David Chigos and organized as a private, nonprofit school serving working adults. As a nonprofit college, it is not allowed to keep revenue and must reinvest it back into the school in order to support its students and academic programming. A Board of Trustees generally oversees this process. It is also responsible for hiring and appointing NU's high-level executive staff to ensure the school meets its goals. 

What Are the Admission Requirements for National University?

NU's admission requirements are similar to applying to other online colleges and universities. Admission at NU is evidence-based and includes reviewing students' academic records, test scores, and professional experience. While NU doesn't require entrance exams, such as the SAT or ACT, it may require students without prior college-level math and English courses to take the ACCUPLACER evaluation to determine placement.

Additionally, NU's undergraduate applicants must submit the following:

  • A completed application 
  • A $60 application fee
  • A completed enrollment agreement
  • Official high school transcripts or their equivalent
  • Official college transcripts, if transferring credits
  • Military transcripts, if applicable
  • A resume or professional portfolio, if applying for prior learning credit

An enrollment advisor may help identify additional requirements for individual degree programs. Overall, College Scorecard's data shows that NU accepts 89% of applicants.

If you’re still deciding what school is right for you, our list of the most popular online colleges offers additional options to explore.

Student Reviews

Student Reviews

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Reviewed: 3/16/2023

Degree: School Counseling

Prior to enrolling in the MS in Educational Counseling program, I was not told that I would have to find my own internship and practicum hours placement. Miscommunication/lack of communication from the very start. The MS in Educational Counseling program lacked a lot in terms of communication and despite being an asynchronous program, teachers still required us to attend classes despite informing them that I would be at work during those class sessions. Out of all the instructors that I had, I feel... Read More


Reviewed: 2/27/2023

Degree: Education

I have worked extremely hard in the doctoral program and I carry almost a 4.0. I went to booth camp as well. When I finally became a doctoral candidate. My chair deliberately delay my feed back so I would go into a B session. I was also given a SME from Nigeria who looks down and provides personal critical feedback. I am so disappointed in the dissertation phase. The chair and SME gets plenty of time to return assignments, however, they delay to allow the University to make more money. This is no... Read More


Reviewed: 12/19/2022

Degree: Psychology

I have to admit, I had high expectations for this University when I saw the variety of programs offered. A quick, online inquiry awarded me with SIX different enrollment specialists who all returned my call within 10 minutes. I was then connected with an 'Enrollment Advisor', and that's the end. The communication is horrific and as a result, I missed out on my desired start date. I considered other programs (because that is initially what drew me to NU), but ultimately always had more questions than... Read More


Reviewed: 12/8/2022

Degree: Psychology

Firstly, the loans you will take out for your program is an incredible waste of time. When I first started, I had no money for books because my loan had gone to all of my courses. Considering the amount I took out I was surprised that there was nothing left over to help with books, cost of living etc (all things the financial advisors will tell you your loan goes to LIES). You eventually get a refund of some sort after taking so many courses and it fluctuates. Most of the classes I have taken so... Read More


Reviewed: 11/18/2022

Degree: Marketing

I was enrolled in the MS in Marketing program. The program itself was fine. It was fast-paced and I felt like not enough hands-on learning but not much you can do with 4 weeks per class. I did learn valuable information for my career. My frustration is with the school itself, not the program. I had a month that I got a lower grade than my typical on a course I took due to family illness. I wanted to retake the course, but of course it wasn't offered again for several months. That one course took... Read More

Kristen Clark

Reviewed: 6/30/2022

Degree: Education

I enrolled in the a masters program with a teaching credential. I intended to transfer from WGU as they did not have an internship agreement with California. I was to begin my program at National on July 5. On June 2 I contacted advisor to ask what courses would transfer from WGU. He said he would get back to me. He never did. I then learned that I was not intern eligible as I needed four classes. I emailed my advisor to ask when I could take these classes and how long this would take . He never... Read More


Reviewed: 3/20/2022

Degree: Education Administration

Attended: July 2014 to December 2017, MSE graduated with distinction. The one course a month model allowed me to do one course for a month, then take one month off. Hence, the longer time it took me to graduate. The advisors guiding me were great and even assisted in getting me to right folks in financial aid. Tuition a little higher than other programs, but worth it under the one course a month model. Online course layout was easy to use, but they changed it during my last year, made things more... Read More


Reviewed: 1/19/2022

Degree: Liberal Studies

Unlike some reviewers, I had mostly positive experiences with my professors. There was only one professor who was disappointing, and midway in the semester she was let go and replaced. I completed my bachelor's degree at NU years before enrolling in the Master's program. Most of my courses were classroom for the bachelor's program, and I completed the last few online because I relocated. I actually found the in person courses much more satisfying than online. The professors were very encouraging.... Read More

A Buck

Reviewed: 10/11/2021

Degree: Teaching

I am currently enrolled at NU receiving my BA in mathematics with a single subject teaching credential. All my courses have been online and online professors do not care about you. All the classes are the same. You do a weekly assignment and a discussion board and reply to two people. Professors don't even really check your assignment or get on a Zoom call. This school is fine for you if you're an independent student. Financial aid is horrible and takes a long time. If you call regarding your financial... Read More


Reviewed: 10/3/2021

Degree: Psychology

I work a lot, and I have to juggle my time between work, school and family. National University is suppose to be designed toward a working student. Now, they have made there online curriculm so that you can't access all of your assignments the Sunday before. One time, I turned in work early, which was a huge issue to my teacher, but she didn't say not to do it. She just removed my work without telling me. If I hadn't caught what she did, and reposted it, I would have received partial credit or no... Read More