Academic Quality


As a faith-based liberal arts university, PLNU offers an academic experience committed to excellence, focused on holistic student development, and rooted in a Christian understanding of the world. We offer more than 60 undergraduate areas of study in addition to a range of graduate and accelerated undergraduate programs.

Quality and Excellence

PLNU strives to shape critical, thoughtful, and engaged individuals who contribute to every realm of human industry for the betterment of their communities and world. This happens through an educational framework centered around your academic, personal, and spiritual development. It's also why all undergraduate students pass through a Foundational Explorations general education curriculum program that exposes them to a balanced curriculum in both the sciences and humanities.

Accomplished faculty who combine deep theoretical knowledge with real-world experience, a diverse student body made up of individuals committed to enriching their college experience through vibrant academic opportunities, and an underlying mission to provide holistic formation make for a collegiate environment that not only prepares you for a career but helps you uncover your vocation and calling in the world.

In addition to a nationally recognized reputation, PLNU’s commitment to academic excellence is reflected in the quality of students who enroll and graduate. Our students have a 90% admittance rate for medical, dental, optometry, pharmacy, and veterinary schools and are ranked in the Top 3 for CPA exam results among all California universities. Many of our undergraduate students continue their education at the nation’s top graduate schools, while other undergraduate, graduate, and degree completion students go on to pursue meaningful careers in business, the sciences, ministry, teaching, nursing, and many other fields.


Academic Mentorship

A primary aspect of PLNU’s academic excellence consists of faculty who will invest deeply in your academic, spiritual, and personal growth. Through small class sizes and personalized attention, professors establish meaningful conversations, expansive thinking, and sound understanding of complex ideas within their classrooms — and get to know you on a personal level. Faculty members understand their role at PLNU is not simply to be a teacher, but also a mentor who helps equip you to meet the demands of an ever-changing world once you graduate.

Additionally, a faculty advisor is assigned to every single undergraduate student to help them complete his or her academic plan. This intentional relationship helps you decide on an area of study that best fits your passions and interest, finish college in four years, and pursue a meaningful career after you graduate.


“I have loved every aspect of the academic mentoring process. When it comes time to write them a letter of recommendation — for graduate school, a job, or an internship — it's such an honor to be able to speak to my students’ strengths. Because we are a small, liberal arts school, I know my students very well. I go far beyond their academic achievements (though I boast of these as well), and touch on their level of engagement, maturity, and problem-solving skills. I can reference personal challenges they faced and how they overcame them. I can speak at length about a research project and how I saw their passion come through with their work. I can recall conversations we've had about their ambitions and their goals. In short, I can speak honestly and from the heart about the whole person — not just their academic performance.”

Lindsey Lupo, Ph.D., History and Political Science Department Co-Chair

Opportunities for Enrichment

PLNU also provides several opportunities to further your intellectual, professional, and spiritual enrichment.

A Hub of Vibrant Thinking

PLNU hosts a number of events each year aimed at fostering intellectual, cultural, and spiritual engagement. Some of these events include the Writer’s Symposium by the Sea, an annual event that features interviews with well-known writers, authors, and artists such as Ray Bradbury, Anne Lamott, and Joyce Carol Oates. Our Perspectives on Science monthly seminar series for science graduate students allows a space to explore recent developments in various areas of scientific research. Brewed Awakening discussions let students hear from passionate speakers and dialogue about social justice issues and action over fair trade coffee and tea. And the H. Orton Wiley Lectures series offers lectures and events that promote dialogue around chosen topics related to philosophy, theology, church history, and biblical studies.

Student and Faculty Accomplishments

PLNU is proud of the hard work and achievements of our students and faculty alike. Read more about their accomplishments over the years.

University Accreditation

PLNU is among those institutions of higher education that meet or exceed the rigorous standards of accrediting associations and commissions. PLNU is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WSCUC), for which it periodically completes a self-study that addresses recognized standards and principles of excellence. See all of PLNU’s professional/program accreditations.

Since 1902, we're honored by the number of ways PLNU has been recognized for serving students — from close faculty relationships in top academic programs to the ways students get involved in San Diego and around the world. Above all, however, we're most proud of the number of ways our students never stop serving and discovering who they're called to be

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PLNU: More than a number