Initially founded in 1785 as America's first state-chartered higher learning institution, the University of Georgia has an illustrious history on its 759-acre urban campus in the lively college of Athens within the rolling hills an hour east of Atlanta. This selective flagship land-grant and sea-grant research university is often called a "Public Ivy" for its academic rigor and superstar faculty. UGA currently enrolls more than 35,100 students in its over 140 programs across its 18 academic schools and colleges. In addition to its satellite campuses in Tifton, Griffin, Atlanta, and Lawrenceville, UGA has an Online Learning division offering distance degrees.

Featuring a student-faculty ratio of 17:1, the University of Georgia is currently ranked as the 62nd best university and 20th top public school in the nation by the U.S. News and World Report. In particular, UGA has America's 33rd best education school with the 28th best online graduate education degrees. UGA was crowned one of Kiplinger's top 10 best values in public higher education for low graduation debt. Thanks to its focus on service learning, UGA ranked 17th nationwide in the Peace Corps' best volunteer-producing universities. The University of Georgia is also esteemed for having the 15th highest number of students studying abroad.

University of Georgia Accreditation Details

The University of Georgia is formally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), which is one of the six regional accrediting bodies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Furthermore, more than 70 of UGA's academic programs have received discipline-specific accreditation from professional associations. For instance, the College of Education is accredited by the National Council on Teacher Education (NCATE) and will be approved by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) starting in 2020. Teaching programs are also given the stamp of approval from the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GAPSC) to meet certification requirements.

University of Georgia Application Requirements

UGA is quite selective with an acceptance rate of just 54.7 percent, so interested students will need to meet some extensive requirements for admissions. Incoming freshmen must have a diploma or GED equivalent from an accredited educational institution. Students must have four units of English, four units of math, four units of science, three units of social science, and two units of foreign language. Freshmen should have a minimum high school GPA of 2.0. First-year students must also submit official standardized test scores with a minimum grade of 17 on the ACT and 830 on the SAT.

Students wishing to transfer to UGA must have completed 30 to 60 transferrable college credit hours at a regionally accredited institution. Transfers must have graduated from high school at least 12 months and finished one full year of college prior to application. For admissions in online programs, transfer students must hold a minimum calculated GPA of 2.8, but Athens students are required to have a 3.2 or higher.

Graduates looking to enroll in the University of Georgia must already hold a bachelor's degree or a foreign equivalent from an accredited institution. Applicants should have completed an undergraduate major in their proposed field of study and ranked in the upper half of their graduating class. Many programs mandate a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the junior and senior years. Depending on the UGA degree, graduate students may have to submit entrance test scores for the GMAT, MAT, or GRE exam with the institutional code of 5813.

Before the specified deadlines, interested students should submit their application with the following materials to the UGA Admissions Office:

  • Official high school and/or college transcripts
  • Standardized testing scores
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Certification of finances forms
  • A $60 non-refundable processing fee

Tuition and Financial Aid

Online learners at the University of Georgia will pay a flat-rate tuition fee based on the number of courses being taken every semester. Undergraduate students who reside in Georgia must pay $2,552 for six credits or less and $4,295 for more than six credits of online courses. Non-residents taking online undergraduate courses must afford $7,952 for six credits or less and $13,400 for more than six credits per semester. Graduate tuition rates typically vary by degree at UGA. However, the standard rate of in-state residents in online graduate programs is $337 per credit hour or $4,044 total for full-time enrollment every semester. Out-of-state online learners earning their master's or doctoral degree must pay $975 per credit or $11,694 per semester for 12 credits.

To help afford these costs, the University of Georgia automatically considers students for financial aid upon matriculation. Students can fill their financial aid packages with Federal Direct loans, Perkins loans, PLUS loans, or private loans, but these must be repaid later. Free gifted money is available for financially needy students through the Federal Pell Grant, TEACH Grant, FSEOG Grant, Georgia Public Safety Memorial Grant, and Hope Grant. UGA also provides abundant scholarship opportunities. For instance, online students may qualify to reduce their tuition with the Zell Miller Scholarship, Georgia Hero Scholarship, ROTC Scholarship, UGA Ambassadors Scholarship, and more.

Online Degrees Available

For over a decade, the Online Learning division at UGA has given a broad portfolio of online degrees for highly motivated students to conveniently enhance their profession from anywhere. There's currently two bachelor's degrees, 14 master's degrees, one specialist degree, and nine certificate programs offered fully online by UGA. All online offerings are taught by the same faculty and held to the same high standards of a University of Georgia education. Within the College of Education, students can earn an online:

Bachelor of Science in Special Education (B.S.Ed.)

As an online degree completion program, the Bachelor of Science in Special Education (B.S.Ed.) is devised for students seeking to become certified for PreK-12 in Georgia. Students are trained to become special education teachers for working with children with mild to moderate disabilities. Requiring just two campus visits and student teaching, the program requires the completion of 61 credits beyond the associate's level.

Master of Education (M.Ed.)

Operating in a cohort-based model, the Master of Education (M.Ed.) program at UGA is offered fully online with no campus visits for busying working educators looking to fine-tune their skills. M.Ed. students can select a concentration in Adult Education, Educational Psychology, Human Resources and Organizational Development, Learning Design and Technology, Reading Education, or Workforce Education. A minimum of 34 credit hours is required.

Master of Music Education (M.M.Ed.)

Through the Hugh Hodgson School of Music, the Master of Music Education (M.M.Ed.) program is delivered wholly online for certified music teachers wishing to enhance their skills in choral or instrumental music for academic leadership. Featuring NASM and NCATE accreditation, the degree follows an approved curriculum of 33 credits. M.M.Ed. students also have the opportunity to participate in a six-week Summer Educational Advancement for Teachers (SEAT) workshop at the University of Georgia.