Undergraduate Catalog 2012-2013 [Archived Catalog] [Archived Catalog]
Larry Shackleton, B.A., M.S.
Vice President for Academic Information Management/ Registrar
W. Michael Floyd, B.S., M.A.R.
Associate Registrar for Online Academic Operations
Helene Vance, B.A., M.B.A.
Assistant Registrar for Online Undergraduate Programs
SEMESTER CREDIT SYSTEM
The University operates on the semester system. The unit for counting credit is the semester hour. A semester hour of credit consists of the equivalent of one 50-minute period of class work for fifteen weeks, with an assumption of two hours of outside preparation or two 50-minute periods of laboratory work for each semester hour.
PART TIME vs. FULL TIME
To qualify as a full-time undergraduate student, you must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours. A part-time student must be enrolled from six to 11 credit hours.
SEMESTER LOAD AND OVERLOAD
The Liberty University Online semesters consist of several sub-terms. Most sub-terms are 8-weeks or 16-weeks in length, and may begin and end at different times within the semester.
For Financial Aid purposes, full-time/part-time status will be determined by the number of hours for which the student initially enrolled in the semester. For example, if a student enrolls for the first time in the semester in the third sub-term, the number of hours the student takes in that sub-term will determine full-time/part-time status. A part-time student who adds courses for subsequent sub-terms of the same semester will still be considered part-time for the entire semester and will not be eligible to use additional financial aid until the following semester.
The usual semester load for full-time undergraduate online students is 12 hours per semester. Students must secure permission to take more than 18 hours in a semester. A student who has established a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or better may, with the approval of the Associate Registrar, take up to 21 hours; 22-24 hours requires approval of the Associate Registrar and a cumulative GPA of 3.50.
The classification of students at Liberty is based on their degree level and number of earned semester hours.
Classification Semester Hours
Freshman 0—23.99 Sophomore 24.00—47.99 Junior 48.00—71.99 Senior 72.00—and above
GRADES, QUALITY POINTS, AND GRADE POINT AVERAGE (GPA)
All work is graded by letters, which are assigned quality points as indicated below:
Quality Points Per Semester Hour A Excellent 4 AU Audit 0 B Good 3 C Average 2 D Poor 1 F Failure 0 FN Failure for Non-Attendance 0 I Incomplete 0 IP In Progress 0 NP Did Not Pass 0 P Pass 0 Q Academic Amnesty 0 R Course Repeated 0 W Withdrew 0
To determine the grade point average, (GPA) the quality points earned are divided by the semester hours attempted (quality hours). Only courses taken at Liberty are used in computing the GPA. Only grades of A, B, C, D, F, and FN are used in the calculation of the GPA.
Undergraduate students who earn 12 or more hours in the fall or spring semester with a GPA of 3.50 or above are placed on the Dean’s List.
Students are expected to have adequate experience in computer applications such as word processing, spreadsheets, database, Internet research, media presentations, and email communication. Students lacking such experience should register for INFT 110, Computer Concepts and Applications, in their first semester.
TRANSFER OF CREDITS
Only courses and degrees from a regionally accredited institution or those nationally accredited by accrediting agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (e.g., SACS, TRACS, ABHE, etc.) will be evaluated for transfer of credit. Applicants must request that official transcripts be sent directly from the Registrar(s) of the previous school(s) to the Office of Admissions.
Credit will be accepted for those courses that are college level in which applicants have made a grade of C or better. Transcripts are evaluated under the guidelines established by the Senate Committee on Academic and Admissions Standards. Students may appeal their transfer evaluation with a course description and Transfer Inquiry Form.
At any point prior to degree conferral, students may petition to have courses that are listed as electives substitute for required courses by using the Course Substitution form.
INTERNATIONAL TRANSFER CREDIT
The evaluation of international transfer credit requires students to submit a translated official transcript in conjunction with course descriptions prior to the approval process.
International transfer credit is accepted only from an institution recognized by the government of the country in which the institution is located.
Foreign students are encouraged and sometimes required to use foreign credential evaluation services such as World Education Services (www.wes.org) to have their transcripts validated and evaluated before sending them to Liberty University. A credential evaluation service must be a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (www.naces.org) before it can be accepted at Liberty University.
CREDIT BY EXAMINATION
Liberty University offers students the opportunity to be awarded academic credit toward their undergraduate degrees through testing. Credit may be earned through the Advanced Placement, CLEP, ICE, DSST, Excelsior and Federal Aviation Administration programs.
ADVANCED PLACEMENT (AP)
Students who receive a score of 3 or higher on the following College Board Advanced Placement examinations will be awarded academic credit toward an undergraduate degree. Credit will be awarded only in those areas applicable to the Liberty curriculum.
AP Title Required
LU Course(s) Credit
Art History 3 HUMN 101 3 Biology 3 BIOL 101 / 103 4 Calculus AB 3 MATH 131 4 5 MATH 131 / 132 8 Calculus BC 3 MATH 131 4 4 MATH 131 / 132 8 Calculus AB Sub-score 3 MATH 131 4 Chemistry 3 CHEM 121 / 122 8 Comparative Politics 3 GOVT 330 3 Computer Science AB 3 CSCI 111 / 112 6 Economics - Micro 3 ECON 213 3 Economics - Macro 3 ECON 214 3 English Language 3 ENGL 101 3 English Literature 3 ENGL 102 3 European History 3 HIEU 201 / 202 6 French Language 3 FREN 101 / 102 6 4 FREN 101 / 102 / 201 9 5 FREN 101 / 102 / 201 / 202 12 German Language 3 GRMN 101 / 102 6 4 GRMN 101 / 102 / 201 9 5 GRMN 101 / 102 / 201 / 202 12 Government & Politics: U.S. 3 GOVT 220 3 Human Geography 3 GEOG 200 3 Physics B 3 PHYS 201 4 4 PHYS 201 / 202 8 Physics C - Mechanics 3 PHYS 231 4 Physics C - Electricity 3 PHYS 232 4 Psychology 3 PSYC 101 3 Spanish Language 3 SPAN 101 / 102 6 4 SPAN 101 / 102 / 201 9 5 SPAN 101 / 102 / 201 / 202 12 Statistics 3 MATH 201 3 Studio Art - Drawing 3 ARTS 210 3 U.S. History 3 HIUS 221 / 222 6 World History 3 HIEU 201 / 202 6
Information about these examinations may be obtained by writing to: The College Board; Advanced Placement Examination; PO Box 977; Princeton, New Jersey 08450.
COLLEGE-LEVEL EXAMINATION PROGRAM (CLEP)
The College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), sponsored by The College Board, offers a unique opportunity to gain college credit for knowledge that a student has acquired. CLEP’s are national general and subject exams. A list of courses that are accepted at Liberty University via CLEP is included below. Students are encouraged to check the minimum score requirement prior to taking the exam. Students may take the CLEP exam at a local testing center in their area. Students can find an approved testing center by checking www.collegeboard.com/clep. Upon completion of the CLEP exam, students should request the official scores to be sent directly to Liberty University for evaluation.
Subject Area Minimum Score LU Course(s) Credit Hours American Government 50 GOVT 220 3 American Literature 50 ENGL 201/202 6 Analyzing and Interpreting Literature 50 ENGL 2XX 3 Business Law 50 BUSI 301 3 Calculus Elem Functions 50 MATH 131 4 College Algebra 50 MATH 121 3 College Math 50 MATH 115 3 College Composition 50 ENGL 101 3 College Composition Modular 60 ENGL 101 3 Educational Psychology 50 PSYC 311 3 English Literature 50 ENGL 215/216 6 Financial Accounting 50 ACCT 211 3 General Biology 50 BIOL 101/102 6 General Chemistry 50 CHEM 121/122 8 French Language 50 FREN 101/102 6 59 FREN 101/ 102/ 201/202 12 German Language 50 GRMN 101/102 6 60 GRMN 101/102/ 201/202 12 History of US I 50 HIUS 221 3 History of US II 50 HIUS 222 3 Human Growth & Development 50 PSYC 210 3 Humanities 50 HUMN 101, ENGL 2XX 6 Information Systems and Computer Applications 50 INFT 1XX 3 Introduction to Psychology 50 PSYC 101 3 Introduction to Sociology 50 SOCI 200 3 Macro-Economics 50 ECON 214 3 Management 53 BUSI 310 3 Marketing 50 BUSI 330 3 Micro-Economics 50 ECON 213 3 Natural Sciences 50 BIOL 101, PHYS 101 6 Pre-Calculus 50 MATH 128 3 Social Sciences and History 50 SOCI 200, HIST 2XX 6 Spanish Language 50 SPAN 101/102 6 63 SPAN 101/102/201/202 12 Western Civilization I 50 HIEU 201 3 Western Civilization II 50 HIEU 202 3
INSTITUTIONAL CHALLENGE EXAMINATIONS (ICE)
To apply for credit by examination, students must submit the ICE Request form to the ICE Coordinator. A registration fee of $50 will be charged for each ICE attempted. A $45 passing fee will only be applied if a student should pass the exam. Such requests are subject to the following guidelines:
BIBL 104 Survey of Biblical Literature BIBL 105 Old Testament Survey BIBL 110 New Testament Survey BIBL 323 The Gospel of John BIBL 364 Study of Acts BIBL 425 Study of Romans CHHI 301 History of the Christian Church CHHI 302 History of the Christian Church II BMIS 200 Enterprise Business Applications and Communications BMIS 208 Application Programming THEO 104 Introduction to Christian Thought THEO 201 Theology Survey I THEO 202 Theology Survey II
DANTES SUBJECT STANDARDIZED TESTS (DSSTs)
DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSSTs) exams are approved for credit in the Liberty University Online program. Undergraduate college credit may be earned through the DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSSTs) program. The DSST program is administered by Educational Testing Services (ETS) in conjunction with DANTES. Examinations are available to both military personnel and civilians. Students may find an approved testing center and view fact sheets for various tests that are offered at www.getcollegecredit.com. A complete list of accepted exams, course equivalency and the minimum required score is available at http://www.luonline.com/index.cfm?PID=16931.
EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING CREDIT
A maximum of 30 hours of Life Experience credits can be awarded and applied towards an undergraduate degree at Liberty University.
A precedent has been established for the following fields, and these credits will be awarded to students who can document proof of licenses, certificates, and training programs in the fields below. Students are not required to enroll in GEED 205 or submit portfolios for the following:
There are some portfolios/courses that will not be admitted, such as COMS courses, GOVT 200, internship courses, capstone courses, as well as other courses not approved by academic departments. Please note that admission of a portfolio does not guarantee that credit will be awarded.
Students may petition for credit via portfolio for courses in which they feel they can show sufficient proof of learning and knowledge. The Portfolio Guidelines are as follows:
Liberty University will evaluate students’ prior military experience and develop a degree plan for each student to follow. Evaluations will be based solely upon the recommendations of the American Council of Education (ACE) guidebook, Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. Students will generally find that the Interdisciplinary major maximizes the use of their existing credits.
COURSEWORK AT OTHER INSTITUTIONS
Prior to registering for any course at another institution, students must submit a Transient Request form. The online form can be found at http://www.luonline.com/index.cfm?PID=14241.
CREDIT FOR SEMINARS
As part of the “action-oriented” curriculum at Liberty, certain seminars and travel opportunities are offered for academic credit. Students who wish to obtain credit for such activities must receive prior approval from the Registrar.
CHANGE OF MAJOR
Liberty University Online students select their major when they apply. If a student decides to change their major, the online student must contact the Academic Advising Department and request to change his/her major via phone or Liberty University webmail account. Major changes become effective for the semester following their request.
Students who wish to complete a double major must contact the Academic Advising Department and declare the double major via phone or their Liberty University webmail account.
Students must have 30 unique hours within the core of the second major or degree. The foundational and investigative studies may be shared if they are the same, however, if any requirements are different, the student must fulfill the higher of the two requirements.
The requirements from one major can be used as electives for the second major, and vice versa. At least 50% of the course work in each major must be earned at Liberty University.
Students who wish to earn an A.A. degree with two majors must have at least 15 unique hours in the core of the second major.
Students with a conferred A.A. degree who wish to earn a second A.A. degree must complete at least 15 additional hours, and there must be at least 15 unique hours in the core of the second major.
Students who currently hold a bachelor’s degree and want to pursue an associate’s degree will need to take a minimum of 15-hours of which 15-hours must be unique in the core of the major.
DEGREE COMPLETION PLAN (DCP) AUDIT
The Degree Completion Plan (DCP) Audit provides real-time advice and counsel, making it possible for students to track progress towards degree completion at their convenience. It also enables students to immediately see how their credits will apply towards a different degree program. PDF versions of all DCPs are available online at http://www.liberty.edu/dcps.
GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS FOR OUT OF STATE STUDENTS
In addition to Liberty University’s general education requirements, distance education students may also be required to fulfill additional requirements set by their home states. Details by state will be added to the Degree Completion Plan. Specific Degree Completion Plans for each state whose requirements differ are available from Liberty University Online Advising.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING INTERNSHIPS AND CLINICAL PLACEMENTS
Students who are pursuing degrees leading to application for professional licensure or certification, and/or who will be participating in clinical placements, internships, or practica through their Liberty University program should be aware that their host facility may require a criminal background check, finger printing, or drug screening. In such situations, each student is responsible for obtaining and paying for the background check or other screening process and for delivering required documentation to the facility. Although the university will make reasonable efforts to place admitted students in field experiences and internship, it will be up to the host facility to determine whether a student will be allowed to work at that facility.
Students should further be aware that a criminal record may jeopardize licensure by the State certification body. Students seeking licensure are urged to contact the relevant licensing agency to determine the licensing requirements for the jurisdiction. Successful completion of a program of study at Liberty University does not guarantee licensure, certification, or employment in the relevant occupation.
Students at Liberty University are not required to complete a minor. Those who wish to declare a minor, however, are encouraged to contact the Academic Advising Department to review the requirements for that minor. A minor on the student’s transcript indicates the completion of a block of courses that academic departments have specified as meeting the requirements of their minor.
Consequently, since the selection of a minor is not a graduation requirement for any major at Liberty, students may use courses required for any given major to also count toward a minor if such courses are required for the minor. Students must earn a “C” or higher in all upper level courses in their chosen minor. At least 50% of the course work must be earned at Liberty University.
SPECIAL STUDENT REGISTRATION
COURSE REGISTRATION, ACTIVATION, AND COMPLETION DATES
Students may register for courses online through ASIST. A student’s enrollment period (course activation) begins the first day of the upcoming sub-term, provided that the student is in good academic standing and has completed Financial Check-In. Students are encouraged to allow sufficient time to review their course materials before the beginning of the sub-term. See the University calendar for sub-term dates.
The student has 8 weeks from the sub-term course activation date to complete the course. In some cases, courses are 16 weeks in length. For these courses, the student has 16 weeks from the sub-term course activation date to complete the course. Students are expected to submit tests and course work throughout the term. At the end of the first week of each sub-term, courses are reviewed to determine if the student is attending in the course. If the student has not submitted an academic assignment (such as the course requirements checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic event), the student will be dropped from the course roster at the end of week one and will not be allowed to submit further course work. The student may appeal to their instructor to remain in the course.
Students who begin attendance by submitting an academic assignment but eventually cease progressing toward the completion of the course will be assigned a grade of FN during the semester.
If the student receives all FNs in a term, the student is subject to the Unofficial Withdrawal procedure which includes the reduction and/or return of all Financial Aid.
Students receiving all Fs in a term must appeal to Financial Aid to receive aid in their next term of enrollment.
Students may drop a course for a full refund, through the day prior to the sub-term begin date. Beginning on the first day of the sub-term, students may withdraw from a course for a grade of W. Failure to submit any or all of the coursework may result in a grade of F or FN.
ONLINE CLASS ATTENDANCE
Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. Students who do not attend within the first week of a sub-term by submitting an academic assignment (such as the course requirements checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic event) will be dropped from the course roster at the end of week one and will not be allowed to submit further course work. The student may appeal to their instructor to remain in the course.
The student alone assumes responsibility for course work missed from non-attendance. A student who presents the instructor with an adequate and documented reason for absence may be given an opportunity to make up the work missed.
Students who begin attendance by submitting an academic assignment but eventually cease progressing toward the completion of the course will be assigned a grade of FN during the semester.
CLASS CANCELLATION POLICY
From time to time it may be necessary to cancel a class because of insufficient enrollment or other extenuating circumstances. The decision for such a cancellation is ultimately that of the Provost of the University. Every effort will be made to provide notice of the cancellation at least two weeks prior to the first scheduled meeting of the class. The Registrar’s Office will advise the student of the cancellation and any other options including the possible rescheduling of the class. The University does not assume responsibility for any delay in the anticipated graduation date of individual students that might result from such class cancellations.
Students who wish to audit an online course may do so for a fee. Audited courses will not be used to determine full- or part-time status. Auditors will not be expected to take quizzes or examinations. A grade of AU will be recorded on the auditor’s permanent record.
Course audits may not be added via ASIST, but must be requested by emailing the Registrar’s Office. Requests to audit a course will only be accepted during the registration timeframes before a term starts. Audit requests will be processed and added, pending availability. A student wishing to change from credit to audit status for a course may only do so until the last day of the registration deadline. Requests to change to or from audit status after the registration deadline will be denied.
DROPPING, ADDING, WITHDRAWING FROM COURSES
Liberty University Online students may drop a course at any time prior to the sub-term begin date for a full refund. After this time period, no class may be added or dropped without a grade. Students may drop the course by selecting ‘drop via web’ on their current schedule through the add/drop page under registration on the “Student” tab on ASIST (up until two weeks before the start of the course), or by calling Liberty University Online Advising by phone or email any time before the first day. The course must be dropped prior to the start date of the course. This is also possible during the first week of class until students have submitted an academic assignment (such as the course requirements checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic event). Beginning on the first day of the sub-term through the last day of the sub-term, students that have begun attending a course by submitting an academic assignment may withdraw with a grade of W and receive a pro-rated tuition credit based on the date of the withdrawal and attendance in the course.
An intensive may be dropped without a grade or a tuition charge through the end of the first day of class. After the close of the first day through noon of the last day, a course may be withdrawn with a grade of W and the student will be liable for tuition and fees.
Students who do not attend any sessions of an intensive in which they are enrolled will be dropped from the course and will be charged an administrative fee.
REMEMBER: Any change in status (i.e., from full-time to part-time, etc.) may cause the reduction or cancellation of your financial aid award. In other words, your out-of-pocket expenses may increase.
WITHDRAWAL FROM COURSES
Students requesting to withdraw from courses during the semester must submit a request to their academic advisor. Generally, the withdrawal date will be the date the student submitted the email to their academic advisor. A grade of W will be assigned to all courses from which the student withdraws.
UNDERGRADUATE REPEAT POLICY
The Liberty University Undergraduate Repeat Policy is designed to assist undergraduate students in raising their cumulative grade point average by repeating courses in which they previously performed unsatisfactorily and by removing the previous grade from the GPA calculation.
Undergraduate students are subject to the following conditions:
*Final grade has been earned and posted
In accordance with Title IV regulations which require that universities have a mechanism in place for determining whether or not a student who began a course and received or could have received a disbursement of Title IV funds unofficially withdrew, the University has established a procedure for students enrolled in the online courses. This procedure is used to determine if students are progressing toward the completion of their courses.
Students who cease submitting any academic assignments (such as an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic event) during the enrollment period will be assigned grades of FN. Students receiving all FNs in a semester will be processed as an unofficial withdrawal. The withdrawal date will be the last date an academic assignment was submitted during the enrollment period. A Title IV withdrawal calculation will be performed for the student and the student will be reported as withdrawn. Students will be notified of the results of the Title IV withdrawal calculation by the Financial Aid Office.
WITHDRAWAL FROM LIBERTY
Online students withdrawing from the University must contact the Academic Advising Department via the student’s Liberty University email account. The withdrawal date will generally be the date the student submitted the email to the Academic Advising Department. If the withdrawal request is mailed or faxed to the Academic Advising Department, the withdrawal date will generally be the date the withdrawal request is received by the University or the last date an academic assignment was submitted (such as a course requirements checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic event). The Academic Advising Department will notify the Financial Aid Office, Student Accounts Office and Registrar’s Office.
Grades of W will be recorded for all courses from which the individual withdraws. A student may not withdraw after the last official day of the course. For intensive courses, a student may not withdraw after the final exam has begun. Students requesting to withdraw will be subject to the Title IV withdrawal calculation. The Title IV withdrawal calculation will result in the reduction and/or cancellation of all Financial Aid. See Financial Information section.
Students who wish to withdraw from one or more courses in a given semester must contact the Academic Advising Department in writing or via their Liberty University email account. Students who withdraw from all courses in which they are enrolled will be subject to the Title IV withdrawal regulations and will be reported as withdrawn from the University. However, it will not be necessary to reapply unless more than 12 months have elapsed since the original deadline date of the student’s last enrollment period. Students only withdrawing from all courses in a given semester, and not the University, will be allowed to re-enroll in the next semester. However, the student will be subject to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy administered by the Financial Aid Office.
BREAK IN ENROLLMENT
A break in enrollment occurs when a student is not actively taking a class each academic year. The academic year begins with start of the fall semester and ends with the conclusion of the summer term.
Students who break enrollment will be required to follow the degree requirements in effect at the time of re-entry to the University.
Students must maintain satisfactory academic standing in order to remain at Liberty. Satisfactory academic standing for students enrolled in and undergraduate programs is:
Level 1 (0-23.99 hours) 1.50 Level 2 ( 24-47.99 hours) 1.65 Level 3 (48-71.99 hours) 1.85 Level 4 (72-95.99 hours) 2.00 Level 5 (96 or more hours) 2.00
Academic Standing for Liberty University Online students is calculated only at the end of the Fall, Spring and Summer terms.
Students failing to attain and maintain the scholastic standing required are placed on Academic Warning. During the next semester, Liberty University Online undergraduate students should plan to limit enrollment to a 13-semester-hour course load and may be required to take CLST 100 or 101.
At the end of the semester on Academic Warning, students who fail to raise the GPA to a satisfactory level (see above) are placed on Academic Probation. During the next semester of attendance, Liberty University Online undergraduate students should plan to limit enrollment to a 13-semester-hour course load, and may be required to take CLST 100 or 101.
At the end of the semester on Academic Probation, students who fail to raise the GPA to the required academic level (see above) are placed on Academic Suspension. Students who desire to continue their studies must submit a written appeal to the Registrar’s Office. The Associate Registrar will review the appeal, and if it is approved, an Academic Contract will be formulated. The student must agree in writing to abide by the terms of the contract before being permitted to register for courses. If a student is a re-applicant to Liberty University Online, the student must agree in writing to abide by the terms of the contract prior to being approved for re-admission.
Students who are enrolled for 12 or more hours and fail all courses will be Academically Suspended.
Students who are permitted to take classes while on the status of Academic Suspension and who fail to raise the GPA to the required academic level (see above) by the end of the semester or fail to meet the terms of their Academic Contract will be Academically Dismissed, and will not be allowed to return to Liberty unless qualifying for Academic Amnesty.
At the end of each semester, students on Academic Warning, Probation, Suspension, and Dismissal will be sent a notification by the Registrar’s Office.
Approval for readmission under Academic Amnesty must be granted by the Office of the Provost. To qualify for academic amnesty, a student must have been academically suspended or academically dismissed from the University, as well as must satisfy the subsequent guidelines for readmission.
Liberty University students, faculty, administrators, and staff together form a Christian community based upon the values and goals of the Bible. These are defined in our foundational statements, including our Doctrinal Statement, our Philosophy of Education and Mission Statement, the Statement of Professional Ethics for the Faculty, and our Student Code. Together, these statements situate Liberty University within the long tradition of university culture, which in its beginnings was distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth.
Anyone, whether Christian or non-Christian, who shares our values and goals, is both welcome and valued in our community. We want all students to feel comfortable in our community of learning, and we extend to all of our students our spiritual and academic resources, with the goal of fostering spiritual growth, character development, and academic maturity.
Communities are based upon shared values and practices. This Code of Honor, an expression of the values inherent in our Doctrinal Statement, defines the rules and principles by which our community functions. At the core of this Code are two key concepts: a belief in the dignity of all persons and an insistence on the existence of objective truth.
While we understand that everyone will not agree with the statements that follow, we do expect that our students respect and uphold these standards while registered at Liberty University. Abiding by the principles and behaviors established in this Code of Honor makes possible the success of our students and the strengthening of the Liberty community.
Plagiarism is the intentional failure to give sufficient attribution to the words, ideas, or data of others that the student has incorporated into his/her work for the purpose of misleading the reader. In some cases, a student may be careless and fail to give credit to the words, ideas or data of others. In such situations, plagiarism has still occurred, but the professor may choose a sanction as deemed appropriate. In order to avoid plagiarism, students must conscientiously provide sufficient attribution. Attribution is sufficient if it adequately informs and, therefore, does not materially mislead a reasonable reader as to the true source of the words, ideas, or data. Students who have any doubt as to whether they have provided sufficient attribution have the responsibility to obtain guidance from their professor or other person to whom they are submitting their work.
Plagiarism in papers, projects or any assignment prepared for a class shall include the following:
Cheating is a form of dishonesty in which a student gives the appearance of a level of knowledge or skill that the student has not obtained, provides unauthorized aid, or wrongly takes advantage of another’s work. Examples include, but are not limited to:
Falsification is a form of dishonesty in which a student misrepresents the truth, invents facts, or distorts the origin or content of information used as authority. Examples include, but are not limited to:
B. PROCEDURES FOR THE INVESTIGATION, ADJUDICATION, AND LEVELING OF SANCTIONS FOR THE VIOLATIONS OF THE ACADEMIC CODE OF HONOR
1. Processing Allegations
When an alleged violation of the Academic Code of Honor has been reported to the instructor or administration, the instructor will confront the student within ten business days of the discovery of the infraction. The instructor may issue an oral or written reprimand, send written notification to the Online Department Chair, reduce a grade, adjust credit on an assignment and/or require additional work. The instructor may determine that a failing grade for the course is the appropriate sanction. In any event, the instructor will inform the student of his or her decision.
The reporting procedure is as follows:
If the professor determines that a sanction is called for, the professor may issue an oral or written reprimand, adjust credit, and/or require additional work. The professor also maintains the right to assign the grade of F for the course if the investigation determines that it is the appropriate sanction. In this instance, the Registrar will record the F and it will appear on the student’s transcript. The repeat policy may not be applied to this grade.
If the student is found guilty of academic dishonesty (blatant or non- blatant) in any subsequent course where a grade of F is posted, he or she will be dismissed from Liberty University.
In determining the sanction to be imposed, the following will be considered: the student’s intent to violate the Code of Honor, the degree of carelessness, the gravity of the offense and the student’s overall conduct while enrolled at Liberty University. The Office of Student Affairs and the Registrar’s Office may be consulted during this process.
In cases where the Dean perceives a clear conflict of interest or faulty judgment on the part of the Online Associate Dean, or where the sanctions suggested by the Online Associate Dean are demonstrably inconsistent with those that resulted from other similar instances of academic misconduct, the Dean reserves the right to adjust the sanction(s) as appropriate.
A written copy of the decision shall be mailed or e-mailed to the student.
Please Note: All cases of alleged academic dishonesty will be resolved with the utmost concern for strict confidentiality by those individuals involved in the proceedings. Information concerning the academic misconduct will be provided only to those with a need to know in order to perform their job duties.
3. Appeal Procedure
In cases where an allegation of any Academic Code of Honor violation occurs and the student does not admit guilt, he/she may pursue the process below. The student will be given an opportunity to provide written evidence in opposition to the charge. Persons who threaten or conduct other acts of retaliation against those individuals who acted in good faith (i.e., honestly and with intentions of being fair) in reporting (even if mistakenly) alleged instances of academic dishonesty will be subject to disciplinary action, including possible suspension or expulsion from Liberty. Any report of alleged academic dishonesty not made in good faith will also be subject to disciplinary action.
Examples of retaliation include, but are not limited to:
A complete overview of the appeal process follows:
A. CONDUCT THAT UNDERMINES THE SAFETY, MISSION, OR REPUTATION OF LIBERTY UNIVERSITY
Acts that may undermine the safety, mission, or reputation of Liberty University are violations of the Personal Code of Honor. Examples of such acts include, but are not limited to:
- Flagrant violations of institutional policies and standards of dress when visiting campus (see Appendix A for dress code)
- Causing public embarrassment to the University, or their representatives or employees.
- Any attempt to provide or support residential students with the opportunity to break the Residential Code of Honor (The Liberty Way).
1. Sexual, Physical, Written or Verbal Misconduct
Respect for the dignity of each individual as a person created in God’s image is fundamental to the institutional culture desired at Liberty University. Misconduct that is contrary to the teachings of the Christian faith (thus constituting a violation of Liberty University’s Personal Code of Honor) includes, but is not limited to:
- Sexually-oriented joking or comments
- Harassment of an individual based on race or gender
- Unwelcome touching or any touching of a sexual nature
- Verbal or physical abuse
- Verbal or written disrespect to a faculty or staff member (this includes e-mails)
- Offensive or crude language directed at individuals
- Display of objects or pictures that depict nudity or are otherwise sexual in nature
- Persistent, unwanted attempts to change a casual or friendly relationship into a romantic or more intimate one
Non-marital sexual relations and the encouragement or advocacy of any form of sexual behavior that would undermine the Christian identity or faith mission of the University are morally inappropriate sexual misconduct and constitute violations of this Personal Code of Honor.
2. Sexual Harassment
Liberty University is committed to providing students and employees with an environment free of harassment in any form. Any act of harassment (i.e., physical, psychological, verbal or sexual) that threatens a person or persons is considered a serious offense and will not be tolerated or condoned. Any person or group who commits acts of harassment based upon race, ethnicity, gender or disability on or off campus will be subject to disciplinary action, which could result in dismissal from the University. Behavior that constitutes sexual harassment, which is a form of sexual discrimination prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, includes but is not limited to unwanted sexual attention, requests for sexual favors and/or other verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature which negatively affects another person.
Any student who believes that he/she has been the subject of harassment in any form should report the incident immediately to the Online Student Affairs Office. The student will be given the opportunity to express his/her concerns and will then be appraised of the recourse available to him/her under school policy and local and state statutes.
Any student of Liberty University, who engages in the aforementioned behavior(s), is subject to disciplinary action, which may result in community service or possible dismissal. Since the University takes such charges seriously, where the results of an investigation reveal a complaint of harassment /sexual harassment to be frivolous or groundless, the individual having made such a complaint may be subject to the same disciplinary action.
Involvement with pornographic, obscene, indecent, or other similarly offensive materials, expressions, or conduct is inconsistent with the Personal Code of Honor and the Christian faith. Use of the University's computing network to obtain or distribute such materials constitutes a violation of the Personal Code of Honor.
4. Alcohol and Drug Use
Liberty University is dedicated to providing a learning environment that promotes reverence for the Word of God, a commitment to the highest ideals of academic excellence, health, and responsible social behavior. This includes recognizing the rights of others and respecting the Christian ideals of Liberty University.
The following are strictly prohibited: any illegal use of a controlled substance, any use of alcohol or tobacco by any Liberty University Online student on the property of Thomas Road Baptist Church or Liberty University, or any use of alcohol or tobacco as any part of a Thomas Road Baptist Church or Liberty University related or sponsored program off campus (this includes school sponsored courses or missions trips in the United States or overseas).
All Liberty University Online students, whether on or off-campus, are expected to conduct themselves at all times in a manner supportive of the Christian character and reputation of Liberty University. Keeping in mind that the public will judge Liberty University and its Christian ideals by the actions of its students, Liberty University will not tolerate conduct by any student, whether on or off-campus, which is deemed by the administration to reflect negatively on the public image of the University.
B. PROCEDURES FOR THE INVESTIGATION, ADJUDICATION, AND SANCTIONING OF VIOLATIONS OF THE PERSONAL CODE OF HONOR
1. Processing Allegations
When an alleged violation of the Personal Code of Honor has come to the attention of the faculty, staff, or administration, that allegation shall be passed on to Student Affairs, who shall determine (with assistance from the appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean) whether formal discipline is warranted and, if so, the nature of the appropriate sanction(s).
Pastoral or professional counseling may be recommended in some instances. Any cost associated with such counseling shall be borne by the student. If counseling is deemed to have been sufficient to address the student's misconduct, Liberty University reserves the right to remove the record from the student’s permanent file. If counseling was deemed to have been ineffective, then Liberty University reserves the right to retain permanent records and dismiss the student from the University.
2. Conduct Review
Where evidence exists that a violation of the Personal Code of Honor may have occurred, Student Affairs shall refer the matter to the appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean. They along with Student Affairs shall deliberate and determine the appropriate penalty.
Should no violation be found, the Director’s report indicating such shall be forwarded to the appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean. Where a violation is found, Student Affairs may notify the student verbally, but will also notify the student in writing (by e-mail or letter) of the sanction(s). The appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean shall receive a copy of the final decision.
The Findings of Student Affairs along with any recommendations for further action will be carefully reviewed by the appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean. These two individuals may accept, reject or modify the Student Affairs report and shall determine the final disposition of the matter.
The appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean may direct that the records of a disciplinary action be retained in a student’s file, noted on transcripts or be disclosed to the appropriate entities responsible for assessing the character and fitness of the student as an applicant to a chosen profession.
In addition to any personal communication of the decision to the student involved, a written copy of the decision shall be sent to the student by e-mail or registered, return receipt mail.
C. APPEAL PROCEDURE
Students are provided the opportunity to appeal any disciplinary decision to the Student Affairs office, appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean. The outcome of an appeal may include an overturn of the proposed action or disciplinary probation, the assignment of disciplinary community service, retention or administrative withdrawal. The appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean may either accept or overturn a previous decision to withdraw a student from Liberty University. Records documenting this process are maintained by the Office of Student Affairs and the Registrar.
If a student is administratively withdrawn or asked not to return, he/she must submit a written request for readmission to Student Affairs. The student is to provide a thorough account of the actions that led to his/her dismissal or non-return and the student’s strategy for successfully continuing studies at the University. In addition, the following is required:
- Separate letters of recommendation from a counselor and civic leader
- One letter of recommendation from a pastor or Liberty University faculty member
Only after the aforementioned information is received will consideration for reinstatement occur. Readmission to the University will be subject to any stipulations made by the appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean and the Office of Student Affairs. This process does not guarantee readmission. If readmission is granted, the Office of Student Affairs will notify the Office of Admissions. The Office of Admissions will notify the student.
2. Administrative Withdrawal
Students, who are reported to have violated the policies or regulations of the University that require an administrative withdrawal, are required to meet (in person or by phone) with Student Affairs for a personal conference. Student Affairs will present the alleged violation(s) to the student and the student will then be given full opportunity to present his/her position concerning the allegation. Student Affairs will conduct an investigation of the alleged violation(s). When the investigation is complete, and the allegation is determined to be true, Student Affairs will consider the facts and relevant information concerning the violation(s), including the student's prior disciplinary record. Student Affairs will consult with the appropriate Online Associate Dean and Online Dean before making a decision. NOTE: During the investigative process, the student is allowed to continue attending classes, unless they are a perceived threat to the campus community or a disruption to the learning environment.
3. Administrative Withdrawal Process and Appeal
- The student has 24 hours, after receiving notification of the decision, to decide whether he/she wishes to accept the decision.
Note: Failure to meet the 24-hour deadline will result in an automatic administrative withdrawal.
- If the student decides to appeal the decision, the time of the appeal hearing will be determined and the student will be notified by Student Affairs who will schedule the hearing within seven business days of the student’s request for appeal.
Note: During the appeal process, the student is allowed to continue attending classes, unless they are a perceived threat to the campus community or a disruption to the learning environment.
- If the administrative withdrawal is upheld, all academic work is lost for the semester except classes that have been completed before the time of the decision.
- Once the student has been administratively withdrawn, he/she will not be permitted to visit the campus until his/her student status has been reinstated.
- Reapplication is subject to administrative review after a six-month period of absence from the University.
- Readmission will be considered after a minimum one-year absence from the University for the commission of a felony, assault, drug and/or stealing dismissals and is also subject to administrative review and approval.
STANDARD OF DRESS (When Visiting Campus)
Class Dress: Students are expected to dress in a neat and professional manner and are to dress according to the individual guidelines set by faculty in the respective Online Graduate and Online Undergraduate Programs.
Casual Dress: Student are expected to dress modestly
Women – Swimwear is only appropriate at the swimming pool. Students are to wear appropriate casual or sport attire (as stated in The Liberty Way) going to and from the pool. Women are required to wear a one-piece suit that is in good taste. Swimsuits that are see-through/mesh, expose the midriff and/or are low in the front or back or cut high on the legs are not acceptable.
Men – Swimwear is only appropriate at the swimming pool. Students are to wear appropriate casual or sport attire going to and from the pool. Speedos, spandex suits, or cut-off jeans are not acceptable.
Note: Academic Programs may choose to add requirements to the dress code policy.
This information is available on the Internet at http://www.liberty.edu/academics/graduate/index.cfm?PID=19459.
Students who are unable to complete coursework by the last day of class due to unavoidable circumstances such as personal illness/injury or family emergencies may appeal to their instructor for a temporary course grade of “I” (Incomplete). The authority for the decision to grant an incomplete completely lies with the instructor. Denial of the request for an incomplete may include, but is not limited to, the student’s inability to earn a passing grade with completion of the remaining requirements, as well as an insufficient reason for the request. Students must initiate the request for an incomplete directly to the instructor by the last day of class (before the final exam period for residential classes).
The instructor will establish a new deadline for the completion of the remaining coursework, based on the circumstances. The instructor may grant up to two weeks beyond the last day of the term (or sub-term for Liberty University Online courses) for non-medical circumstances and up to four weeks beyond the last day of the term (or sub-term for Liberty University Online courses) for personal medical circumstances.
For extreme personal medical circumstances, a maximum of eight weeks for Liberty University Online courses and 16 weeks for residential courses may be given as long as sufficient medical documentation (from a medical professional) is presented along with the request. However, while the decision to grant an extended incomplete remains with the instructor, the request and medical documentation needs to be submitted to the registrar’s office. The instructor will be responsible to communicate the remaining requirements, as well as the extended deadline, to the student.
The instructor will post a final grade within two weeks from the deadline established for the incomplete. If a final grade is not posted within two weeks of the deadline, a grade of “F” will be posted by the registrar’s office. A grade of “I” may not be changed to a withdrawal.
The GPA is unaffected by the incomplete until a final grade is posted after the deadline. However, grades of “I” will count as hours attempted and not completed, and will negatively affect a student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
Liberty University understands the demands placed on today’s servicemember and we are willing to work with our students when their military duty causes delays in their academic progress. According to military policy for Tuition Assistance, the University must posts grades within 30-days of the end date of the course. If a military student needs additional time to complete their course requirements due to deployments, extended cruises, unit operational tempo, or other duty-related extenuating circumstances, they have two options:
Military students must notify their Military Education Office of a course Incomplete if they are receiving Tuition Assistance. Incomplete requests and supporting documents may be faxed to (434) 455-1287 or scanned and emailed to email@example.com, or mailed to: Liberty University; Liberty University Online; Office of Military Affairs; 1971 University Blvd.; Lynchburg, VA 24502.
A course substitution should not be made from one discipline to another. An exception may be made in cases where the title and description of the course clearly show relationship to another discipline. Each department will develop a list of courses which may fall into this category.
Course substitutions should be made with discretion. Course substitutions are not for the purpose of giving the student a concentration which does not exist at Liberty, nor are they to be utilized merely to enable a student to graduate on time.
Students desiring to use another course in place of a required course must complete a “Course Substitution Request” form and submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
GRADING POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
Liberty University Faculty members, both residential and online, must submit final grades for all students to the Registrar at the end of each term. Faculty teaching online courses should have grades submitted to the Registrar on or before the second Wednesday after the course ends. Faculty teaching residential courses should have grades submitted to the Registrar one week after the end of each semester. Liberty University Faculty members, both residential and online, are urged to promptly complete and submit final course grades. Confidentiality of student grades falls under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974. Please see the FERPA section and policies for more information.
Liberty University incorporates a standardized 1,000 point system across all undergraduate and graduate programs. The undergraduate utilizes a 100 point scale to differentiate between letter grades, while the graduate programs utilize three distinct scales: 80, 70 and 60 point scales to differentiate between letter grades. Each academic department determines the scale used within the department. The grading scale for each course will be posted within the syllabus for each course. Students are encouraged to review the syllabus for each course individually to verify the grade scale.
Undergraduate Grading Scale
(100 point scale)
A 900 to 1,000 B 800 to 899 C 700 to 799 D 600 to 699 F 599 and below
RECORDING OF GRADES
All grades will be recorded in the Registrar’s Office as reported by the instructors in charge of the various courses. Requests for grade changes may be submitted in writing only by the instructor.
Any extra credit assignments that are a part of the instructor’s syllabus must be completed prior to the final exam for the course. A student may not submit assignments for extra credit after the semester has ended and a final exam has been given.
FERPA – PRIVACY OF STUDENT RECORDS: FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT
Students attending, or who have attended, Liberty University are given certain rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended (20 U.S.C. 1232g) and Rules of the Department of Education (34 C.F.R. Part 99) implementing this Act.
Additional information and University policies regarding the protection of student records are published online at http://www.liberty.edu/ferpa.
GRADE APPEAL PROCESS
Liberty encourages students to have open and respectful communication with their professor to resolve any concerns regarding individual course assignment grades and/or the final grade for the course.
Criteria for appeal:
Only final posted grades may be appealed beyond the professor. Appeals are accepted only when the grade assigned conflicts with:
Appeals, other than those mentioned above, will not be reviewed.
The student must provide written documentation that demonstrates the occurrence of one or more of the above grounds for appeal. Documentation may be in the form of email correspondence, graded assignments, proof of timely submission, etc.
A student wishing to appeal a final grade must submit the appeal to their professor and seek to resolve the situation with them. If the student wishes to appeal further they must follow the process outlined below:
Official transcripts are made only at the written, signed request of the student concerned. No transcript will be issued for anyone who has failed to meet all financial obligations to the University. Requests for transcripts are to be made directly to the Registrar’s Office. There is a $10.00 fee for one transcript. Additional transcript requests made at the same time are $1.00 each.
Honors for graduation will be determined by the cumulative grade point average earned at Liberty. Bachelor’s degree students who have earned 60 or more hours at Liberty must meet the following GPA standards to earn the corresponding academic distinction:
3.50 - 3.66 cum laude 3.67 - 3.84 magna cum laude 3.85 and above summa cum laude
Those who have earned less than 60 hours at Liberty must meet the following GPA standards:
3.60 - 3.76 cum laude 3.77 - 3.94 magna cum laude 3.95 and above summa cum laude
The final cumulative GPA will be determined after all grades have been recorded and that final cumulative GPA will determine the specific honor that will be printed on the diploma and transcript.
Associate degree students who have a 3.50 cumulative GPA will receive honors at Commencement.
All matriculated students, whether Resident or Liberty University Online, must meet the same academic requirements for graduation. Undergraduate students must have all courses in the General Education core and in the declared major and minor completed before being considered candidates for graduation.
All candidates for graduation must be approved by the Faculty and the Board of Trustees.
Degrees are granted throughout the academic school year. All candidates for degrees may participate in the annual graduation exercises which take place in May.
TIME LIMITS FOR DEGREE COMPLETION
Students pursuing an associate’s degree must complete the degree requirements within seven (7) years of the date of matriculation.
Students pursuing a bachelor’s degree must complete the degree requirement within 10 years of the date of matriculation.
Any student who does not complete coursework within the permissible time limit for any reason, including discontinued enrollment, must reapply for readmission and will be subject to the requirements of the Catalog and Degree Completion Plan (DCP) in effect at the time of his/her readmission.
A break in enrollment occurs when the student fails to enroll in at least one course during an academic year. The academic year begins with the start of the fall semester and ends with the conclusion of the summer term. Students who break enrollment must apply for readmission and will be subject to the requirements of the Catalog and degree requirements in effect at the time of their readmission.
Highlighted text indicates a change from the official version of the catalog.