Abilene Christian University (ACU) is a private Christian university located in Abilene, Texas. It was founded in 1906 by A.B. Barret and Charles Roberson as the Childers Classical Institute. The choice of the name of the school was based on a stipulation set forth by the owner who sold his land for a lower price for use of the school in exchange for the privilege of having it named after him. It formally changed its name to Abilene Christian College in 1912 after paying $4,000.00 to the Childers family. It obtained university status in 1976. The university is affiliated with the Churches of Christ.
Abilene Christian University considers it its primary mission to educate students for Christian service and leadership in all parts of the world. It aims to be the premier university for Christ-centered education for leaders. It openly acknowledges the importance of the Christian faith in the lives of students. It hopes to achieve its mission through exemplary teaching, significant research and meaningful service to society.
Accreditation is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Academic programs leading to bachelor’s and master’s degrees are provided by the different departments including the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Biblical Studies, College of Business Administration, College of Education and Human Services, School of Information Technology and Computing, School of Nursing, School of Social Work, Honors College, Graduate School and the Graduate School of Theology. The list of undergraduate majors is quite long ranging from Accounting to Youth and Family Ministry. Other non-major programs include Pre-Medical, Pre-Dental, and Pre-Veterinary.
Also offered are graduate degree programs in Accounting, Communication, Communication Science and Disorder, English, Liberal Arts, Marriage and Family Therapy, Nursing, Psychology, Social Work, and Theology. Online degree programs include Education, Organizational and Human Resources Development, Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation, and Higher Education. There are also certificate programs offered in Conflict Resolution, Leadership of Digital Learning, Superintendency, and Certificate in Conference Resolution.
Abilene Christian University is a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II and participates in the Lone Star Conference. Its teams are known as the Wildcats. The university fields competitive teams in several sport events including track and field, football, golf, cross-country, tennis, basketball, baseball, soccer, and volleyball. The Wildcats teams have won at least 57 NCAA national team championships, which makes it fifth in over-all ranking.
Total student population at Abilene Christian University is estimated at 4,500 while the academic staff numbers about 200. ACU’s students come from all states of the US as well as 60 foreign nations. All full-time undergraduate students are provided an iPod Touch or iPhone as part of the university’s mobile learning initiative. Student/faculty ratio is 16:1.
Estimated direct cost of resident students amounts to $33,336.00 inclusive of tuition based on 30 hours, required fees, as well as room and board. Indirect costs include $1,250.00 for books and supplies, $1,500.00 for transportation, and $1,914.00 for miscellaneous expenses. Commuter students pay an estimated annual cost of $25,270.00. Required fees include student activity and recreation, academic services, public safety, academic enrichment and technology, and healthcare. Optional expenses consist of mailbox and automobile registration.
Financial aid offered by Abilene Christian University includes scholarships, loans, and grants. Aside from need-based financial aid programs, non-need-based scholarships and grants are also available such as Academic Scholarships, Leadership Scholarships, and Religious Affiliation Scholarships, among others. Work-study programs are likewise offered.