May 30, 2024  
NCU Catalog - July 2021 (Amended) 
NCU Catalog - July 2021 (Amended) [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

About NCU


Northcentral University educates students through access to inclusive, personalized, and innovative learning-centered experiences. We support every student in becoming life-long learners and promote their ability to make meaningful contributions to their personal and professional communities.


Northcentral University develops ethical leaders and professionals who successfully compete in a complex global society and continually strive to improve the human condition.

Values I.D.E.A.S. Founded on INTEGRITY

The NCU values of Integrity, Diversity, Excellence, Accountability, and Social Justice are supported by the Inclusive Excellence Framework, promoting a quality educational experience and ensuring that all members of the NCU community are held to the highest standards of professional and academic conduct in a favorable institutional climate for all. These values help us work together in a positive and equitable way, while always keeping student success and community engagement as our goal.

Innovation:  NCU actively embraces innovative, intentional, and growth-oriented change. While we respect the traditions of higher education, we understand that some traditions can become outdated. We are forward-thinking and are always growing and evolving. In order to lead in a global environment, we encourage the engagement, actions, and collaboration of our full community. We implore each member to see themselves as a change-agent as we work to face educational challenges and improve the quality of our program and services.

Diversity:  We are committed to expanding educational opportunities. We celebrate the diversity of thought, action, cultures, and social groups within our community and are committed to equity and inclusion for all people. We act on our belief that the educational journey will be enhanced when we actively promote respect and understanding among all cultures, social groups, and experiences. We commit to systemic transformation in order to dismantle inequities as we promote justice for all.

Excellence:  Our community is committed to the pursuit of the highest quality in academics and service and strives for continuous improvement in everything we do. We embrace a graduate culture, contribution to research, commitment to our professions, contribution to the field, intellectual honesty, and academic integrity. We define and measure outcomes and take action to ensure that our community’s passion for excellence is never compromised.

Accountability:  We have a personal and professional obligation to make our university and external communities better, to pursue excellence, and to do things in ways that further the mission, vision, and values of the university.

Social Justice: We recognize the socio-political history that shapes access to power and privilege as well as the experiences of oppression. We commit to policies, practices, and behaviors that lead to equitable outcomes and opportunities for all.

Distance Learning at NCU

In the distance-learning environment, students and faculty interact via the NCUOne Learning Management System (LMS). The University uses a personalized teaching model wherein students and faculty interact asynchronously during a course to achieve learning outcomes. Faculty members function as instructors, facilitators, guides, consultants, and evaluators. A complete list of salaried faculty and their qualifications can be found in the


All degree programs include a set of fundamental courses and a set of related specialization courses allowing the student to select coursework closely associated with their educational and career goals. Students complete a degree plan, guided by faculty and supported by traditional texts, technology, and electronic resources and databases. Where appropriate, students must satisfy general education and/or content area requirements. Elective courses are divided into specializations at the undergraduate level and specializations at the graduate level. Students choose from a carefully selected array of courses that support program objectives.

NCU utilizes its own proprietary Learning Management System (LMS), NCUOne, to provide an enriched online experience for students. NCUOne is tailored to NCU’s unique one-to-one teaching model and graduate program focus.


As an online university, NCU does not have a physical campus or equipment other than its state-of-the-art computing and networking resources to meet the needs of students working at a distance. Prospective students are informed of the computer capacity requirements for successful access to all NCU systems and learning resources. 

NCU Building Locations

  • Arizona: 8667 E. Hartford Drive Suite #100; Scottsdale, AZ 85255 (Service Center)
  • California: 9388 Lightwave Avenue, San Diego, CA 92123 (Administrative/Legal Headquarters)

Board of Trustees Members

  • Mr. Michael R. McGill, (Chair); President, MMS Design Associates
  • Dr. E. Lee Rice, (Vice Chair); CEO and Medical Director, Lifewellness Institute
  • Mr. Thomas Topuzes, (Secretary); President and CEO, Thomas Topuzes & Associates, LLC
  • Mr. Richard Chisholm, (Treasurer); Executive, Retired
  • Dr. Michael R. Cunningham (Ex Officio); Chancellor, National University System
  • Ms. Stacy Allison, Professional Speaker, Author
  • Ms. Ana Gomez Chapman, Managing Director, Institutional Client Group
  • Mr. Tom Clevinger, Managing Partner, Cornerstone Growth Advisors
  • Ms. Jeanne Connelly, President, Connelly Consulting
  • Ms. Kim Folsom, Serial High Tech, Venture-Backed Entrepreneur
  • Mr. Harold H. Greenberg, Executive, Retired
  • Dr. Ruthann Heinrich, Executive, President, Nuance Wines  
  • Dr. Erlinda J. Martinez, (Chair); Higher Education President, Retired
  • Ms. Joanne M. Pastula, Executive, Retired
  • Mr. Dan Pittard, Chairman and CEO, Pittard Partners LLC
  • Ms. Tahjar Roamartinez, Founder & CEO, Cyber Warfighters Group
  • Mr. Carlos Rodriguez, CEO, Rodriguez & Company
  • Ms. Lee Willis-Irvine, US Chief Diversity Officer, ASML
  • Mr. Gerald Czarnecki, (Trustee Emeritus); Chairman and CEO, Deltennium Group, Inc.
  • Mr. Robert Freelen, (Trustee Emeritus); VP Public Affairs, Stanford University

History and Accreditation of Northcentral University

Founded in 1996, NCU is a regionally accredited, private, online, and graduate-focused university, serving professionals globally. The University offers bachelor’s degrees in business, education, and psychology as well as master’s and doctoral programs, in business, technology, education, psychology, marriage and family therapy, and health sciences. Courses are taught one-to-one by a member of NCU’s 100 percent doctoral faculty, and there are no physical residency requirements. NCU is regionally accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), 985 Atlantic Avenue, Suite 100, Alameda, CA 94501, 510-748-9001,

Accreditation & Academic Alignment

  • NCU is regionally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
  • NCU Master of Business Administration (MBA), Masters of Science in Accounting (MSA), Master of Science in Organizational Leadership (MSOL), Doctor of Business Administration (DBA), and Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration (PhD-BA), and Doctor of Philosophy in Organizational Leadership (PhD-OL) programs in the School of Business are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
  • NCU offers the first primarily distance-based Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy (MAMFT) program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE)
  • NCU offers the first primarily distance-based Doctor of Philosophy in Marriage and Family Therapy (PhDMFT) program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education (COAMFTE)
  • The PhDMFT and MAMFT programs are accredited by the International Family Therapy Association (IFTA) accrediting body, International Accreditation Commission for Systemic Therapy Education (IACSTE)
  • The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has recognized Northcentral’s Human Resources Management specialization for the MBA program as fully aligned with SHRM standards
  • NCU’s Master of Social Work (MSW) program is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
  • NCU’s Master of Health Administration program has received candidacy status from the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME), the national organization that grants accreditation to graduate degree programs. The acceptance of the MHA program into CAHME Candidacy demonstrates the School of Health Sciences’ commitment to continuous quality improvement through a focus on attaining CAHME accreditation.
  • The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree programs are fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) (
  • The School of Law is accredited by The Committee of Bar Examiners of the State Bar of California
  • The Bachelor of Arts in Legal Studies and the Paralegal Certificate programs are approved by the American Bar Association

Institutional Learning Outcomes

Northcentral University Breaks and Holiday Closures

NCU offices are closed on the following dates and students are notified through the NCU’s messaging system of such closures:

Break/Holiday Upcoming Closure Dates
New Years Day Saturday, January 1, 2022
Martin Luther King Jr. Day Monday, January 17, 2022
Memorial Day Monday, May 30, 2022
Juneteenth Observed Monday, June 20, 2022
Summer Break Monday, July 4, 2021, through Sunday, July 10, 2022
Independence Day Monday, July 4, 2022
Labor Day Monday, September 5, 2022
Thanksgiving Thursday & Friday, November 24 & 25, 2022
Winter Break Friday, December 23, 2022, through Sunday, January 1, 2023

Commencement Calendar

The current commencement calendar and general information about the NCU commencement process and ceremony schedule can be found at