April, 8, 2016

The Four Aims of a BYU Education

4 aims wall

By Reggie Voyce

In the Education in Zion Gallery there is a room devoted to the Four Aims of a BYU Education. This room provides an encompassing view of those great mission statements our university champions from our own excellent and exceptional leaders as well as extraordinarily admirable individuals in the world who embraced them. The room shows that the individual concepts of the four aims are not necessarily new, but the way all four have come together at BYU is truly unique.

We are to seek, while here, first and foremost to be spiritually strengthened. The world from the beginning was specifically created to be a place of effort and exertion, physical, spiritual and mental. Thus, to proactively seek strengthening for our particular tests is wisdom in action.

To delve into the exploration of our world is to enquire after the next aim of our education, to be intellectually enlarged.  What a grand and truly worthy goal!

Then comes the mission of character building. Brigham Young stated, “A firm, unchangeable course of righteousness through life is what secures to a person true intelligence.”
–Brigham Young 1

Last, but certainly not least is lifelong learning and service. Once again, President Young succinctly states the essence of this aim. “Our education should be such as to
improve our minds and fit us for increased usefulness; to make us of greater service to the human family.”

The Four Aims of a BYU Education are what make the university stand out among institutions of higher learning. They are grand goals meant to inspire the divine in each of Heavenly Father’s children who attend this school, which has been built up through sacrifice and dedication .
–Brigham Young 2

  1. Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses(hereafter JD), 8:32.
  2. Brigham Young, JD14:83.