A reputation built on academic quality, affordability and innovation.
Founded by James P. Etter, a retired Marine Corps officer and instructor, American Military University (AMU) was established in 1991 to serve the unique needs of a highly mobile military community. A decade later, AMU expanded into the American Public University System (APUS) and established American Public University (APU) to serve the needs of public service professionals and various civilian communities. Since then, APUS has evolved into a leading institution of online higher education offering a broad curriculum serving an increasingly diverse body of more than 100,000 students.
Winner of the Sloan Consortium’s Ralph E. Gomory Award for Quality Online Education and two-time recipient of Sloan’s Effective Practice Award, APUS is widely recognized for the best practices in online learning. Academic rigor is our top priority. Our curriculum encompasses 92 online degree programs ranging from liberal arts, business and information technology to highly specialized degrees in fields such as fire science, space studies, intelligence studies, retail management, logistics management, and emergency and disaster management.
Our faculty is made up of researchers, scholars and experts in their respective fields. In 2012 alone, they submitted or published more than 4,000 books and articles, received more than 180 awards, and presented at more than 1,000 conferences. The APUS faculty includes former astronauts, former intelligence officials and scientists; professionals in public health, emergency response and disaster management; and leaders in industries such as retail, hospitality and sports. They bring real-life experience to the classroom, which enriches the curriculum and engages the students.
The average class size at AMU and APU is 16 students and we limit the number of students in each class to 25. Smaller classes encourage greater faculty-student interaction and student success. We believe the diversity of our student base further enriches the classroom experience at APUS.
APUS is recognized as a leader in matters of affordability in higher education as well as for the quality of its academic programs. In its second annual qualitative ranking of top online education degree programs, U.S. News & World Report ranked APUS #22 out of 237 schools offering online bachelor’s degree programs, or in the top 10% overall.
In an environment where prospective students are increasingly discerning, APUS offers an attractive and unique value proposition—access to a quality higher education at an affordable price. Our combined tuition, fees and books are roughly 19% less for undergraduate and 33% less for graduate students than the average in-state cost at a public university. Among 10 leading providers of online education, AMU and APU are on average 42% lower for undergraduate and 33% lower for graduate students.
We build meaningful, substantive relationships with our students and graduates by providing quality academic programs and support—a fact reflected in high levels of student satisfaction, high referral rates and a high percentage of students returning for a second degree. APUS is a vibrant, active community of teachers and learners. We encourage the faculty to work closely with students and we provide them with the tools they need to support student success, including sophisticated digital and social media.
We collaborate with our community college, corporate and non-profit association partners to assess their unique academic, knowledge and workforce needs, an approach that benefits our students and our partners. These partnerships help make our student base more diverse. Finally, we enrich our curriculum and keep it relevant through close working relationships with leaders in a variety of fields, through long-standing relationships with the military and public service communities, and through our industry advisory councils. Our reputation is built on these relationships.
Since our founding, we have kept tuition affordable, enhanced student services and supported student success through innovation and automation. Such initiatives range from the development of a proprietary information technology system to pioneering research in predictive analytics and adaptive learning; from creating social networks that help facilitate faculty interaction to initiatives that combat inflation in the price of textbooks. As a full-online institution, APUS is inherently more cost efficient and environmentally friendly than many other universities. Technology innovations, such as our propriety information technology system and automated credit transfer evaluation process, make us even more so.