Graduate Catalog 2018-2019 [Archived Catalog] [Archived Catalog]
PDF copy: Academic Information and Policies.pdf
Helene Vance, B.A., M.B.A.
Lori Baker, B.S., M.A.
Senior Associate Registrar for Student Services and Records
Program Manager for Commencement
Jaime Velastegui, B.S., M.A.
Assistant Registrar for Student Services and Records
Martin Granda, B.S., M.A.
Assistant Registrar for Transfer Evaluations
Associate Registrar for Academic Operations
Kelli Goins, B.S.
Assistant Registrar for Academic Operations
Sarah Dohme, B.S., M.Ed.
Assistant Registrar for Academic Support
Tracy Godsey, B.S.
Associate Registrar for Academic Policy
Amanda Collins, B.S.
Assistant Registrar for Academic Policy
Tom Calvert, B.S., M.A.
Associate Registrar for Academic Success
Ashley Coleman, B.S., M.Ed.
Assistant Registrar for Academic Success
Dina Johnston, B.S., M.A.
Associate Registrar for Degree Conferral
Carrie Hodges, B.S., M.A.
Assistant Registrar for Graduate Degree Conferral
Rebecca Saville, B.S., M.A.
Assistant Registrar for Undergraduate Degree Conferral
Luke Gentala, B.S, M.A.R.
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 15 weeks, with an assumption of two hours of outside preparation or two 50-minute periods of laboratory work for each semester hour. Online courses are equivalent to the number of classroom contact hours (750 minutes per credit hour) expected in a synchronous residential course.
A student is enrolled when they are registered for a course and have attended the course and/or completed academic work for the course after its start date. For enrollment verification purposes, the University policy can be viewed at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?pid=30130#/policy/355.
Master’s-level graduate students are considered to be full-time when enrolled in nine or more hours per semester. All doctoral graduate students are considered full-time with a semester load of six or more semester hours.
Graduate students must secure permission from the appropriate Associate Dean or Program Director and from the Associate Registrar for Degree Conferral to take more than 15 hours.
GRADES, QUALITY POINTS, AND GPA
All work is graded by letters which are assigned quality points as indicated below:
|Grade||Meaning||Quality Points Per
|A-||Excellent to Good||3.67|
|B+||Good to Excellent||3.33|
|B-||Good to Average||2.67|
|C+||Average to Good||2.33|
|C-||Average to Poor||1.67|
|D+||Poor to Average||1.33|
|FN||Failure for Non-Attendance||.00|
|NF|| Failure for Non-Attendance
(for Pass/Fail courses)
|NP||Non-Pass (for Pass/Fail courses)||.00|
A student’s cumulative GPA comprises all Liberty University coursework completed at the current academic level (Undergraduate, Graduate or Doctoral) regardless of prior degree conferral, broken enrollment or a program/major change. To determine the grade point average (GPA), the quality points earned are divided by GPA hours completed. GPA hours are hours that are used in the calculation of the GPA. The following grades are included in GPA hours: A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, D-, F, and FN. Grades of AU, I, IP, NF, NP, P, Q, R, and W are not included in GPA hours. A grade of B, for example, in a course bearing three semester hours of credit would be assigned nine quality points and a grade of C in that course, six quality points. Thus, if a student takes 16 semester hours of work and earns 40 quality points, his GPA is 2.50 (40 quality points divided by 16 semester hours). Only courses taken at Liberty are used in computing the GPA. Cumulative GPA is calculated to the hundredths place and is not rounded.
The classification of students at Liberty is based on their degree level and number of earned semester hours.
Semester Hours Earned
|First Year Graduate||0—29.99|
|Second Year Graduate||30.00—59.99|
|Third Year Graduate||60.00—89.99|
|Fourth Year Graduate||90.00+|
|Doctoral||Pursuing a doctoral degree|
ADVISORS AND COURSE SELECTION
Each resident student will be assigned a faculty advisor upon acceptance to the University. The advisors will guide students in course selection. All questions concerning academic issues should be directed to the advisors. Students are encouraged to contact their advisors for help with any school-related problems they may encounter during the academic year.
Liberty University Online will assist online students throughout their studies. Liberty University Online serves to guide students in their course selection as well as help answer questions regarding academic issues or school-related problems.
A course planning schedule is provided in order for students to plan their classes for upcoming semesters. The planning schedule presents every class offered and the terms where it is scheduled to be taught. This schedule is sorted alphabetically by class. You can find the course planning schedule by visiting the following site: http://www.liberty.edu/academics/registrar/index.cfm?PID=23103.
TRANSFER OF CREDIT
Only courses and degrees from institutions accredited by agencies recognized by the Department of Education will be evaluated for transfer credit (e.g., SACSCOC, TRACS, ABHE, etc.). Applicants must request official transcripts to be sent directly from the Registrar(s) of the previous school(s) to the Offices of Graduate Admissions. These transcripts must be received before an admission decision will be made. Credits transferred from other institutions are awarded grades of P for Pass, and do not impact a student’s Liberty University GPA or academic standing.
In order to receive direct credit for a course, the description must overlap the Liberty University course content at least 80%. Courses that do not match a Liberty University course by at least 80% are eligible to transfer as elective credit where allowable. Elective credit is coded as 5XX to 9XX, depending on the level of the course.
Course work from a degree on the same academic level previously earned through Liberty University is considered transfer credit, and is subject to the same restrictions as course work completed through other institutions.
See additional information about the evaluation of graduate transfer in the Graduate Admissions Section.
Students seeking certificates are not eligible for transfer credit.
EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING CREDIT
In order to demonstrate they have met the learning outcomes of a course, students who have already applied to Liberty University may submit an Experience Plus portfolio. Students are responsible for identifying the courses for which they intend to show equivalency, but they are encouraged to first make sure that their program does not involve any kind of licensure or other certifications that are received from state or other government entities or military branches as these circumstances prevent a student from going through this process. The portfolio review requires a nonrefundable $100 assessment fee. Students seeking credit for more than one course must submit a separate portfolio per course for which credit is requested. A maximum of 50% of experiential learning credits can be awarded and applied toward a graduate degree at Liberty University.
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.
PRIORITY REGISTRATION FOR MILITARY STUDENTS
All residential students who have verified their status as a current military service member or veteran will be assigned a unique PIN number before registration opens each semester. The PIN will be emailed to students and allow access to course registration on the early registration date associated with Special Groups. More information about the specific dates in the registration schedule will be posted on the Registrar's Course Registration web page each semester.
Online students may register for courses online through ASIST. A student’s enrollment period (course activation) begins the first day of the sub-term, provided the student is in good academic standing and has paid the tuition or secured financial aid approval. 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 full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/178.
ONLINE COURSE MATERIALS
Online students must purchase all course materials from MBS Direct. Materials for some practicums and intensives may be purchased from the University Bookstore. Students should purchase materials after registration but prior to the sub-term begin date (course activation). Liberty does not guarantee that required course materials will be available after the sub-term activation date. Tuition does not cover the cost of course materials.
Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. The U.S. Department of Education requires that every university monitor the attendance of their students.
The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/195.
LATE ASSIGNMENT POLICY FOR ONLINE COURSES – Effective Spring 2018
Course assignments, including discussion boards, exams, and other graded assignments, should be submitted on time.
If the student is unable to complete an assignment on time, he/she must contact the instructor immediately by email.
Assignments that are submitted after the due date without prior approval from the instructor will receive the following deductions:
Special circumstances (e.g., death in the family, personal health issues) will be reviewed by the instructor on a case-by-case basis.
Students who wish to audit an online course may do so for a fee (see Expenses and Financial Policy section). Audit fees are not covered in block-rate tuition, and 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.
Audited courses will not count toward graduation requirements.
Resident students: Course audits may not be added via ASIST, but must be requested in person at the Registrar’s Office. Requests to audit a course will only be accepted during add/drop week (or the week before the start of a summer term for summer courses). Audit requests will be processed and added on the last day of the add/drop period, pending seat availability. A student wishing to change from credit to audit status for a course may only do so until the last day of the add/drop period. Requests to change to or from audit status after the add/drop period will be denied. Lecture-only courses may be audited. Courses considered lecture/lab, labs, private instruction, etc. may not be audited.
Online students: Course audits may not be added via ASIST, but must be requested by emailing the Registrar’s Office at email@example.com. 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.
Students must maintain satisfactory academic standing to remain at Liberty.
Academic standing is calculated at the end of each Fall, Spring, and Summer term, or upon completion of all courses within a term, and is based on the student's cumulative GPA. Please refer to the end of this sub-section for a chart listing the cumulative GPA’s required for good academic standing for all current degree programs.
A student’s cumulative GPA comprises all coursework completed at the current academic level (Undergraduate, Graduate or Doctoral) regardless of prior degree conferral, broken enrollment or a program/major change.
Students failing to attain and maintain the cumulative GPA required for good academic standing in their degree program will be placed on Academic Warning. Students on Academic Warning will be required to take GRST 501 in their next semester of enrollment, unless they have already taken and passed the course.
At the end of the term on Academic Warning, students who fail to raise their cumulative GPA to the required level will be placed on Academic Probation. Students on Academic Probation will be required to take GRST 501 in their next semester of enrollment, unless they have already taken and passed the course.
Additionally, students who are enrolled full-time and fail all courses will be placed on Academic Probation, unless they were previously on Academic Probation or Academic Suspension. Students who are enrolled fulltime and fail all courses while on Academic Probation or Suspension will progress to the next academic standing level.
At the end of the term on Academic Probation, students who fail to raise their cumulative GPA to the required academic level will be placed on Academic Suspension.
All graduate and doctoral students, both residential and online, who desire to return to Liberty in the future must appeal to the Registrar’s Office in writing through the designated portal. Appeals will be considered by the academic department. If the student’s appeal 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.
Students who fail to raise their cumulative GPA to the required academic level (see above) by the end of the subsequent term and/or who fail to meet the terms of their Academic Contract will be Academically Dismissed and will not be allowed to appeal to return to Liberty unless a period of at least three academic years has passed.
When academic standing is updated, students on Academic Warning, Probation, Suspension, and Dismissal will be sent a notification by the Registrar’s Office.
Students on Academic Suspension or Academic Dismissal are not eligible for admission as Special (non-degree-seeking) Students.
All Graduate Certificates
Master of Arts in Biblical Exposition (MA)
Master of Arts in Christian Leadership Studies (MA)*
Master of Arts in Christian Ministry (MACM)
Master of Arts in Religion (MAR)
Master of Arts in Sports Chaplaincy (MA)
Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS)
Master of Arts in Worship Studies (MA)
Master of Divinity (MDiv)
Master of Divinity-Chaplaincy - 72-hour (MDiv)*
Master of Divinity-Chaplaincy - 75-hour (MDiv)
Master of Divinity-Chaplaincy - 93-hour (MDiv)*
Master of Religious Education (MRE)
Master of Arts in Executive Leadership (MA)
Master of Arts in Human Services (MA)*
Master of Arts in Human Services Counseling (MA)
Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (MA)
Master of Arts in Management and Leadership (MAML)*
Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling (MA)
Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction (MEd)
Master of Education in Teaching and Learning (MEd)*
Master of Education in Higher Education (MEd)
Accelerated Master of Divinity - 75-hour (MDiv)*
Doctor of Education in Christian Leadership (EdD)
Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)
Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction (EdD)
Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership (EdD)
Doctor of Ministry (DMin)
Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
Doctor of Philosophy in Anatomy and Cell Biology (PhD)
Doctor of Philosophy in Counseling (PhD)*
Doctor of Philosophy in Counselor Education and Supervision (PhD)
Doctor of Philosophy in Criminal Justice (PhD)
Doctor of Philosophy in Education (PhD)
Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education Administration (PhD)
Doctor of Philosophy in Public Policy (PhD)
Doctor of Philosophy in Theology and Apologetics (PhD)
Doctor of Strategic Leadership (DSL)
Doctor of Worship Studies (DWS)
Education Specialist in Curriculum and Instruction (EdS)
Education Specialist in Educational Leadership (EdS)
Education Specialist in Higher Education Administration (EdS)
Juris Master (JM)
Juris Master in American Legal Studies (JM)
Juris Master in International Legal Studies (JM)
Master of Arts in Addiction Counseling (MA)
Master of Arts in Applied Psychology (MA)
Master of Arts in Biblical Studies (MABS)
Master of Arts in Christian Apologetics (MA)
Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA)
Master of Arts in Communication (MA)*
Master of Arts in English (MA)
Master of Arts in Ethnomusicology (MA)
Master of Arts in Global Studies (MAGS)
Master of Arts in Global Studies - Practicum & Thesis (MAGS)*
Master of Arts in History - Thesis & Comprehensive (MA)
Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Counseling (MA)
Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy (MA)
Master of Arts in Medical Sciences (MA)
Master of Arts in Music and Worship (MA)
Master of Arts in Music Education (MA)
Master of Arts in Philosophical Studies (MAPS)*
Master of Arts in Professional Counseling - 48-hour (MA)*
Master of Arts in Professional Counseling - 60-hour (MA)
Master of Arts in Professional Writing (MA)
Master of Arts in Promotion and Video Content (MA)
Master of Arts in Public Policy (MAPP)
Master of Arts in Strategic Communication (MA)
Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)
Master of Arts in Teaching English as a Second Language (MA)
Master of Arts in Visual Communication Design (MA)
Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Master of Divinity in Academic/Pre-PhD (MDiv)*
Master of Education (MEd)
Master of Education in School Counseling (MEd)
Master of Fine Arts in Graphic Design (MFA)
Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art (MFA)
Master of Fine Arts in Studio and Digital Arts (MFA)*
Master of Laws in International Legal Studies (LLM)
Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Master of Public Health (MPH)
Master of Science in Accounting (MS)
Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences (MS)
Master of Science in Criminal Justice (MS)
Master of Science in Cyber Security (MS)
Master of Science in Exercise Science and Wellness (MS)
Master of Science in Finance (MS)
Master of Science in Healthcare Administration (MS)
Master of Science in Health Informatics (MSHI)
Master of Science in Human Performance (MS)
Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS)
Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT)
Master of Science in International Relations (MS)
Master of Science in Marketing (MS)
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) / Master of Business Administration (MBA) - dual degree
Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) / Master of Science in Healthcare Administration (MS) - dual degree
Master of Science in Political Science (MS)
Master of Science in Project Management (MS)
Master of Science in Psychology (MS)
Master of Science in Social Media Management (MS)
Master of Science in Sport Management (MS)
Master of Theology (ThM)
Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
* Degree program is no longer offered for new and re-applying students
Students Academically Suspended or Academically Dismissed from Liberty University may appeal for readmission under Academic Amnesty per the following protocols:
The Registrar’s Office, upon reviewing the written appeal, must receive approval from Community Life and the academic department indicating the student is eligible for readmission.
If the student is approved by Community Life and the academic department, the Registrar’s Office will submit the appeal for academic amnesty for review by the Office of the Provost.
If the student’s appeal is approved, the grades will be revised as follows, and as determined by the Office of the Provost:
If any prior certificate or degree has been awarded through Liberty University, grades earned during that time cannot be excluded when Academic Amnesty is applied. All grades earned toward a previously awarded certificate or conferred degree will remain on the student’s transcript.
Once the approved student’s grades have been revised, he/she is eligible to apply for readmission. If the student meets all other applicable admission requirements, he/she will be readmitted on Academic Caution.
If the student desires to pursue a degree program that is different than the one for which he/she was approved for academic amnesty, he/she must submit a new appeal to the Associate Registrar for Academic Success, who in turn will submit the appeal to the Associate Dean over the student’s desired program.
All previously assigned academic standings will not change and will remain part of the student’s academic records for the respective terms for which they were earned.
If, after the first term of enrollment following readmission, the student’s cumulative GPA falls below the minimum cumulative GPA required for good academic standing in the student’s degree program, the student will be Academically Dismissed, and will not be permitted to submit any further appeals for permission to continue his/her studies through Liberty University.
If the Office of the Provost denies the student’s appeal, that decision will be final. The student will not be permitted to resume the pursuit of any Graduate or Doctoral degree through Liberty University.
Students desiring to use another course in place of a required course must complete a Request for a Course Substitution form. Course substitution forms must include a detailed rationale, explaining why the substitution is requested. Requests should be made with discretion. They should not be used merely to enable a student to graduate on time. If the course was taken at another college, provide a course description or course syllabus with the request. Requests must be submitted prior to the students last sub-term. Forms should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org. Forms will be reviewed by a Dean or Associate Dean within 2 weeks of submission. Course substitutions are not permitted for the certificate programs.
All requests to change degree programs, majors, cognates, and concentrations must be submitted in writing to the Registrar’s Office for resident students and Liberty University Online Academic Advising for online students. The student will be placed on the Degree Completion Plan (DCP) or Certificate Completion Plan (CCP) in effect for the term for which the request is processed. All requests for a change of major will be processed by the Registrar’s Office upon receipt, and will be effective the following full term of enrollment.
A student must be admitted to a degree program before he/she may matriculate in that program.
Changes are discouraged after a student and advisor have arranged the student’s schedule for the semester.
Residential students desiring to take a Liberty University Online course must enroll in the course during the registration period. The course must be completed by the last day of the sub-term unless an extension is granted.
REMEMBER: Any change in status (e.g., 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.
Exceptions to these add/drop deadlines may be granted by the Registrar in unusual circumstances, such as extreme illness or other circumstances beyond the student’s control.
No course is considered officially added or dropped until the add/drop form is submitted to the Registrar’s Office and processed. This form requires the written approval of the instructor of the course.
Online students may drop a course for a full refund, any time prior to the sub-term start date.
The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/158.
COURSE REPEAT POLICY
Students who want to repeat a course taken at Liberty and have the first grade removed from the cumulative GPA must satisfy each of the following guidelines:
INDEPENDENT STUDY / DIRECTED RESEARCH
Students may request to complete an Independent Study or Directed Research project in a major field or related discipline. Permission for the Independent Study or Directed Research will be granted only upon approval by the Department Chair/Program Director, the Dean of the School, the Administrative Dean, and the Associate Registrar for Degree Conferral. Forms are available online at https://www.liberty.edu/ index.cfm?PID=4849 or in the Registrar’s Office.
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.
The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/153.
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” can be changed to a withdrawal as long as the withdrawal is requested by the student within official course dates.
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.
Military service members are eligible for a military incomplete, for coursework that they are unable to complete on time, due to deployments, extended cruises, unit operational tempo, or other duty-related extenuating circumstances. To obtain an incomplete, a military student must send either a current copy of official military orders (as proof of professional conflict during enrollment in the course) or a signed letter on official letterhead from the student’s commander or supervisor. Incomplete requests and supporting documents should be emailed to the professor. Please Note: Incompletes must be secured no later than 2 weeks prior to the course end date.
Extensions may be requested from the professor and students may be granted up to 4 weeks in extreme circumstances but should typically remain in a 2-3 week timeframe to stay within compliance for grade reporting policies with the Department of Defense. Students can request a military withdrawal only up to the original end date of the course. Once the original end date of the course has passed, students will not be able to request a withdrawal for any reason. Professors should use discernment when reviewing military documentation to avoid awarding an incomplete to a student who will not feasibly be able to complete the course. Military students should notify their military education office of a course incomplete if they are using Tuition Assistance.
The Office of Military Affairs is available to help professors review military orders, as needed, phone: (434) 592-5990, fax: (434) 455-1287, email: email@example.com.
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 listed grounds for appeal. Documentation may be in the form of e-mail correspondence, graded assignments, proof of timely submission, etc.
A student wishing to appeal a final grade must submit the appeal to his/her professor and seek to resolve the situation with them. If the student wishes to appeal further he/she must follow the process outlined below:
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.
Only final posted grades may be appealed beyond the professor. Please click here to access the grade appeal form. To access the form, you will need to login using your Liberty username and password.
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. After submitting the appeal, if additional information is needed, the student will be notified via their Liberty Webmail.
A student wishing to appeal a final grade should first 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:
REMEMBER: Any change in status (e.g., 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.
Students withdrawing from the University during the semester must meet with a representative from the Student Advocate Office for exit counseling. As a part of this process, the student must also meet with a representative from the Financial Aid Office and the Student Accounts Office (if there is an outstanding balance on the student’s account), and will be required to submit a signed statement of withdrawal. The student’s official withdrawal date is the date they begin the withdrawal process by notifying a representative from the Student Advocate Office of his/her intent to withdraw.
Students withdrawing before the semester begins must only contact the Student Advocate Office in order to initiate the withdrawal process.
(See Expenses and Financial Policy Information: Withdrawals section). This is in effect even if the student drops classes in such a way as to go below full-time status during add/drop week.
If a student withdraws from all classes in a term, the student has officially withdrawn from the University. Financial Aid Recipients are subject to the Title IV withdrawal calculation.
Students receiving all grades of FN will be considered to have unofficially withdrawn from Liberty. The withdrawal date will be determined by the Registrar’s Office and will be based upon the student’s last date of attendance in class. Students with Federal grants and/or Federal loans 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. Consideration will be given to students withdrawing due to circumstances beyond their control.
An expulsion resulting from violation of the disciplinary system will result in an administrative withdrawal. A grade of W will be recorded in all courses for which the individual is officially registered.
A $50 fee will be charged for the processing of an official, unofficial, or administrative withdrawal. This fee will be deducted from any refund due on the student’s account or he/she will be responsible for payment of this fee.
Anyone who withdraws from the University is considered to be breaking enrollment. 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 his or her readmission.
Online students withdrawing from the University must contact the Liberty University Online Academic Advising Department via the student’s Liberty University email account or via the phone to start the process.
The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/172.
ONLINE PROGRAM UNOFFICIAL WITHDRAWALS
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 online courses. This procedure is used to determine if students are progressing toward the completion of their courses.
The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/184
Unofficial Withdrawal for Non-Attendance Appeal Process:
Students who receive a grade of "FN" may appeal to their professor to have the grade removed to resume work in the course. All professors have the right to approve or deny FN appeals at their own discretion.
The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory online at https://www.liberty.edu/administration/institutionaleffectiveness/index.cfm?PID=30130#/policy/173.
INSTITUTIONAL CHALLENGE EXAMINATIONS (ICE)
Institutional Challenge Examinations (ICE) are available to students in the Rawlings School of Divinity who possess a satisfactory justification of previous knowledge in a subject area based upon a non-college training program, job, or self-learning. Through ICE, students have the opportunity to earn credit toward their chosen degree program. For more information about ICE, including courses that may be challenged, and to complete the ICE Request Form, visit http://www.liberty.edu/academics/registrar/index.cfm?PID=37838.
ACADEMIC AND PERSONAL CODE OF HONOR
Liberty University comprises a network of students, Alumni, faculty, staff and supporters that together form a Christian community based upon the truth of the Bible. This truth defines our foundational principles, from our Doctrinal Statement to the Code of Honor. These principles irrevocably align Liberty University’s operational procedures with the long tradition of university culture, which remains distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth. Our desire is to create a safe, comfortable environment within our community of learning, and we extend our academic and spiritual resources to all of our students with the goal of fostering academic maturity, spiritual growth and character development.
Communities are predicated on shared values and goals. The Code of Honor, an expression of the values from which our Doctrinal Statement was born, defines the fundamental principles by which our community exists. At the core of this code lie two essential concepts: a belief in the significance of all individuals, and a reliance on the existence of objective truth.
While we acknowledge that some may disagree with various elements of the Code of Honor, we maintain the expectation that our students will commit to respect and uphold the Code while enrolled at Liberty University. Adherence to the principles and concepts established within facilitates the success of our students and strengthens the Liberty community.
The Code of Honor can be viewed in its entirety at http://www.liberty.edu/index.cfm?PID=19155.
THESES AND DISSERTATIONS
Some graduate degrees require a thesis, thesis project, or dissertation for graduation. Graduate thesis and dissertation requirements will not be considered complete until receipt of an acceptable copy of the approved thesis or dissertation is confirmed by the Jerry Falwell Library in accordance with current library deposit policies.
CERTIFICATE COMPLETION PLANS
Certificate completion plans outlining the program of study and other requirements for each graduate certificate program are available online at http://www.liberty.edu/dcps.
DEGREE COMPLETION PLANS
Degree completion plans outlining the program of study and other requirements for each graduate program are available online at http://www.liberty.edu/dcps.
TIME LIMITS FOR CERTIFICATE COMPLETION
Students pursuing a certificate must complete the certificate requirements within three (3) 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 Certificate Completion Plan (CCP) 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 certificate requirements in effect at the time of their readmission.
TIME LIMITS FOR DEGREE COMPLETION
All 30-47 semester hour master’s programs have a maximum time limit of five years from the date of matriculation. All 48-60 semester hour master’s programs, doctoral programs, or degrees offered outside the regular semester have a maximum time limit of seven years from the date of matriculation. All over-60 semester hour master’s programs and doctoral programs have a maximum time limit of ten years from the date of matriculation.
Any approved exceptions to the policies noted above, pertaining to a specific degree program, will be stated in this Catalog in the Graduation Requirements information for that degree program.
Any student who does not complete coursework within the permissible time limit for any reason – including discontinued enrollment – must reapply for admission. The respective program director will determine if any previous courses are sufficiently time sensitive and must be repeated. Beginning with the date of readmission, the time limit for degree completion is determined by the number of hours remaining: less than 48 hours – five years; 48-60 hours –seven years; more than 60 hours – ten years.
For resident students, a break in enrollment occurs when the student fails to enroll in either the Fall or Spring semesters. For online students, 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.
WORK IN RESIDENCE
Online student candidates for the Master of Arts in Counseling and Master of Education degrees must complete nine hours on campus. Candidates for the Doctor of Education degree must complete 12 hours on campus. Students may satisfy this requirement by attending modular courses or attending other regularly scheduled classes at Liberty University. Modular courses are one-or-more-week intensive sessions scheduled during summer and other selected times during the year. Students requesting exemptions must do so by presenting their reasons (with documentation) to the appropriate Liberty University Online Faculty Coordinator.
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.
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 instructors.
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 an assignment for extra credit after the semester has ended and a final exam has been given.
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. Official transcripts are not released directly to the student. 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.
The following general guidelines for graduation apply to each candidate for a graduate degree. Any additional requirements are specified in the section which describes a particular program.
CERTIFICATE COMPLETION REQUIREMENTS
All candidates for graduation must be approved by the faculty and the Board of Trustees. Conditions such as transfer credit and incomplete grades should be removed by the beginning of the candidate’s last semester.
Honors graduation is available for all graduate, post-graduate, and doctoral programs. Certificate students do not receive graduation honors.
Honors for graduation will be determined by the cumulative GPA earned at Liberty. Note: The cumulative GPA comprises all Liberty University coursework completed at the academic level of the degree being awarded (Graduate or Doctoral) regardless of prior degree conferral, broken enrollment or a program/major change. Cumulative GPA is calculated to the hundredths place and is not rounded. Students must meet the following GPA standards to earn the corresponding academic distinction:
GPA Distinction 3.90—3.94 Graduate with distinction 3.95—4.00 Graduate with high distinction
The specific honor calculated on April 1 of the student’s graduation year will be printed in the commencement program and the student will wear that particular honor regalia; however, the final cumulative grade point average will be recorded and that final cumulative GPA will determine the specific honor that will be printed on the diploma and transcript.
Degrees are conferred within four weeks of successful completion of all degree requirements. All candidates for degrees may participate in the annual graduation exercises which take place in May.
Highlighted text indicates a change from the official version of the catalog.