About USU Online

Leading Innovation & Online Success

As a proud land-grant institution, USU's mission has always been deeply intertwined with extension and distance education. From the days of dedicated professors traversing vast distances — on horseback, train, and even planes — to deliver knowledge to eager learners, a spirit of innovation has been ingrained in our history and our future.

USU Online continues to lead the charge in shaping the future of education, providing students with transformative and enriching learning experiences.

Accredited Since 1888



Brought program offerings up to 60+ with new degrees, like: Master of Management Information Systems, Master of Human Resources, bachelor's in criminal justice, and more.

Ranked #5 university in the U.S. for veterans earning their online bachelor’s degrees by U.S. News & World Report.


Ranked #14 for online bachelor’s in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.

Launched Destiny One, a new CEU registration platform. This integrated with Banner to allow for program growth and create a seamless registration for working professionals seeking continuing education credits.


Introduced Earned Admissions program. This initiative allowed students who didn’t meet GPA requirements to qualify for admission to the university upon completing three self-paced online courses.

Began offering our Online Peer Mentor program to help students get support and feel connected to online community.


Debuted our Smarter Measure assessment. This allows students to describe their personality, technical skills, and habits to determining how ready they are for self-regulated online learning — including helpful resources for improvement.

The entire university transitioned to online coursework due to the COVID-19 pandemic, thanks to the Instruction Technology & Learning Sciences department — including student volunteers.


Obtained state accreditation to deliver online courses using competency-based (CBE) teaching and launched our first online CBE degree.

Online graduate education ranked No. 3 by U.S. News & World Report.

Named one of “The Biggest Movers Online” list from Inside Higher Ed based on online student enrollments.


Piloted Peer Mentoring program so online students could connect with those familiar with the challenges of online learning.

Ranked No. 5 in the nation for best online bachelor’s programs by U.S. News & World Report.

Also ranked No. 4 in Utah for “Best Online College” by College Choice.


Ranked No. 12 in the nation for best online bachelor’s programs by U.S. News & World Report.

Also ranked No. 17 in the nation for “Best Return on Investment” by The Best Schools.com.


Developed and launched CIDI-Labs, a technology company that sells and supports e-learning tools. It is now used by 500+ schools worldwide.


Quality education ranked No. 13 in the nation for best online bachelor’s programs by U.S. News & World Report.

Ranked No. 2 in U.S. for most affordable online graduate schools for master’s degrees by College Choice.


Lowered online course tuition to match in-person USU classes. This increased affordability of online classes for all USU students and, subsequently, increased the number of online enrollments.


After utilizing Canvas Data’s Student Analytics platform to continually improve e-learning experiences, the Center for Student Analytics was created to determine data-driven ways to improve students’ success through graduation.


Became one of the first colleges to adopt the Canvas Learning Management System — including working together to create a fantastic experience for students and faculty.


Welcomed our first USU Online students in China.

Established online course quality standards (and all online courses were receiving quality reviews within two years).


Debuted the first fully online American Sign Language Course in the world with the College of Education. Complete with ASL Dictionary, this course proved more effective than traditional face-to-face versions.

Developed 250+ online courses, plus multiple 100% online degrees and certificates — thanks in part to the Xerox Live Works© board, letting faculty make live changes to materials across statewide locations.


Offered first fully online distance education courses, including Music 1010 and “The Science of Music and Sound.”


Began using the statewide satellite system to bridge students together from multiple locations via satellite broadcast.

Offered the first completely online composition course to 23 students scattered across Utah.


Became one of the first universities in the state to adopt online education by moving paper-based Independent Study courses to using email to send assignments back and forth.


Utilized the national AG-SAT telecommunication network to provide full motion video and visual broadcast in both Extension and distance education courses. The university also invested in a specialized cadre of expert professors in distance education.