Arkansas State University enjoys a reputation as a quality regional institution of higher education and is recognized for offering special services to the people of the Arkansas Delta. It is the only comprehensive public university located in this region. Dedicated to teaching, research and service, the university provides students with the broad educational foundations that help develop critical thinking and analytical skills, decision-making capabilities, and communication skills.
This institution was founded in Jonesboro in 1909 by the Arkansas Legislature as a regional agricultural training school. It began offering a two-year college program in 1918, then became "First District Agricultural and Mechanical College" in 1925. A four-year degree program was begun in 1930, then A & M College became "Arkansas State College" in 1933. The Arkansas Legislature elevated the college to university status and changed the name to Arkansas State University in 1967. Today, the institution has more than 59,000 alumni.
Master's degree graduate programs were initiated in 1955, and ASU began offering its first doctoral degree, in educational leadership, in the fall of 1992. A second doctoral program, in environmental science, was begun in the fall of 1997, and the doctoral program in heritage studies began in the fall of 2001. The doctoral program in molecular biosciences began in the spring of 2006. Programs at the specialist's, master's, bachelor's and associate's degree levels are available through the various colleges: Agriculture, Business, Communications, Education, Engineering, Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Nursing and Health Professions, Sciences and Mathematics, and University College. Classes also are offered through The Honors College and the independent Department of Military Science.
Arkansas State University's commitment to excellence in higher education is demonstrated by its accreditation by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, as well as 18 specialized accrediting organizations. In addition, the university holds membership in several national organizations which support the highest educational standards.