Is Liberty University legit? Yes, Liberty University (LU) a 100% legit and regionally accredited. In this review, I also talk about Liberty University Online (LUO), so this is like a 2-in-1 to help those aspiring for their campus or off-campus admission. This university is a private, nonprofit evangelical Christian university in Lynchburg, Virginia. LU is well-known for its online programs, though it also offers on-campus degrees. No, it isn’t a degree mill. They also have a physical campus, despite offering online programs, which is a plus to their integrity. Most people who talk bad about the school dislike Jerry Falwell.
Degrees from Liberty University are indeed respected in the job market and by graduate schools. This university has a 51% acceptance rate and is known for its conservative Christian values. It holds regional accreditation, considered more prestigious than national accreditation.
If you’re considering applying to Liberty University to earn a degree from home, keep reading. We’ll address common questions and provide insights about this online university.
Is Liberty University Legit?
Liberty University and Liberty University Online are legit like 100%. LU has regional accreditation like other legit schools and is a nonprofit school. Their Christian perspective might be the reason some find this school a bit of a problem but if you are looking for a religious school, you won’t have any problem with it.
No, LU is not a diploma mill. You get an actual college degree. It is up to the employer whether your degree is worth it or not if it is from LU. Generally, employers don’t judge you by your college but some will consider it, especially if you obtained it online.
Is Liberty University a Diploma Mill?
Liberty University isn’t a diploma mill. It offers both online and on-campus degrees, unlike diploma mills. Its graduation rate is 47.40%, while diploma mills often give degrees to everyone who applies, with no real value, and typically have really low graduation rates.
People worry about online degrees because of diploma mills, which give out useless degrees. But Liberty University is different. It has a big campus with 15 colleges, including medical, law, and divinity schools. Diploma mills don’t have campuses and often hide their locations to avoid angry customers. So, Liberty University is a legitimate school, not a diploma mill.
What Makes Up the Pros of Liberty University
So, I am going to cover the pros based on the on-campus and online Liberty University. Within these pros, I have also discussed the cons that will make you rethink whether this school is even worth it for you in the first place.
LUO is Credit Transfer Friendly
LUO is super welcoming to transfer students, probably one of the best I’ve seen. They accept credits from well-known sources such as study.com, Sophia, CLEP, DSST, and StraighterLine, and they even have their own version of CLEP. They’re cool with work experience credits, certifications, and sometimes credits from nationally accredited schools.
Liberty University might not take everything, but they’re really flexible with transfers. They do require that you complete at least 25% of your degree at LUO, but for many degrees, you can find ways to cover up to 90% elsewhere.
Liberty University is Regionally Accredited
Yes, Liberty University is recognized by accrediting bodies and is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI). They are also internationally accredited by the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI).
Credits from regionally accredited institutions are more widely accepted by other schools, and employers tend to recognize and value degrees from regionally accredited colleges.
In 2016, SACSCOC reaffirmed Liberty University’s accreditation, which is valid for a decade.
Liberty University’s various programs, including both on-campus and online offerings, also hold accreditations from specific, relevant bodies in the U.S. For example, its business programs such as the BS in Business Administration and MS in Accounting are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).
It Is Not Hard to Get Into Liberty University
Liberty University accepts about 51% of those who apply, making it moderately selective. The campus hosts around 15,000 students, with over half living on-site. Also, it has a significant online presence, with more than 100,000 enrolled in its online courses.
With this acceptance rate, your chances of getting in are about even. You also need a strong application, whether you’re applying for on-campus or online studies. However, Liberty University doesn’t use the Common App, which is popular among nearly 900 U.S. colleges and universities. Nor does it use the Coalition App. Applicants need to apply directly through Liberty University’s online portal.
Liberty University operates on a rolling admissions basis. This means they review applications as they come in, rather than waiting until a specific deadline to look at all applications.
Liberty University is Not Expensive
At Liberty University, full-time students pay $390 per credit hour. It costs a bit more for part-time students taking just a few classes. However, military members get a great deal at $250 per credit, which is one of the best military discounts I’ve seen in higher education. For civilians, the cost is about $50,000 if you attend Liberty without any shortcuts, compared to the average online bachelor’s degree cost of $51,000. But, if you find ways to reduce costs, you might only spend around $13,000. Overall, Liberty University is reasonably priced, not the cheapest option for cost-saving strategies, but still a good value. I’d rate it a B for affordability.
Liberty University doesn’t differentiate between in-state and out-of-state tuition. All students pay the same fees.
LU is for Everyone
They are a Christian institution, and some of their students like that while some just grin and bear it. But plenty of people go through who are not Christians, and plenty of people go there specifically because they want a Christian education.
You just have to decide what’s right for you in that situation. Usually, per course, there’s going to be one lecture or one assignment that talks about taking the principles of whatever the course is on and applying Christian principles to them.
Multiple Degree Options
When discussing degree options, we’re essentially focusing on two aspects. Firstly, the different types of degrees available, and secondly, the flexibility within these degrees. In terms of both these aspects, Liberty University stands out, possibly as one of the best options. Liberty offers an impressive 172 online bachelor’s degrees. Sure, many of these are variations of business or psychology degrees with different specializations. You might add a few credits and focus on a specific area. But the range of degrees is still remarkable, including some unique ones that are hard to find elsewhere online. For instance, they offer a degree in gaming design. Being a Christian institution, they also provides numerous theology and ministry-based courses. A standout degree they offer, which I haven’t seen available online elsewhere, is a bachelor’s in social work.
Regarding flexibility, the degrees at Liberty are quite adaptable. The more specialized or focused the degree, like a specific business or psychology specialization, the less room there is for customization. However, with more general degrees, you might only need to complete about 30 to 45 credits, which is quite manageable. This flexibility is partly due to their general education requirements, which are typically between the high 30s and low 40s in credit numbers. Plus, if you transfer enough credits, you could waive up to 11 credits of general education, turning them into free electives that you can tailor to your interests.
Liberty also offers a unique interdisciplinary studies degree, which I have a personal connection with. I used to work closely with this program, and technically, I might still be listed as the director, although it’s more of a nominal title since I’m not actively involved or compensated. This degree stands out because it allows for almost complete customization of the major and electives, making it one of the most flexible and interesting options available.
LUO Is a Good School to Graduate from
Let’s acknowledge that LUO is very similar to a lot of the other sort of big-box colleges I have talked about, such as SNHU, and maybe Grand Canyon, which I haven’t talked about yet, and even similar to some of the asynchronous for-profits.
Liberty University is a bit like Walmart, which can be both good and bad. They have decent customer service, and the prices are pretty good. But this is not like going to a little mom-and-pop boutique where you’re going to find something unique and cool and interesting that specializes to you. No, everything is standardized. I will explain what I mean in the sections below.
High Admission Rate
Firstly, the admission rate at this school is 99%, meaning it’s highly likely you’ll be accepted. Many people have noticed that the customer service during the admissions process is excellent. The staff are friendly, helpful, and always available to answer questions. The advisors are also quite good, often better than those at many other schools.
The way things work in the Liberty system involves many residential students. These students, who are part of the on-campus program and looking to start their careers, often end up working in admissions or advising for Liberty University Online while they search for jobs. This means that many advisors are relatively new, with maybe three to six months, or less than a year of experience. Consequently, they might not have a lot of accumulated knowledge about the institution. So, when you call for advice, you might have to wait a bit longer to speak to someone who has more experience and can provide more informed guidance.
LU Online Has Good Customer Service
Regarding customer service, Liberty University Online (LUO) faculty seem to be held to higher standards compared to many online schools. Specifically, LUO faculty are expected to follow certain metrics. For instance, they should reply to emails within 36 hours, although this doesn’t always happen. Also, they are required to grade assignments within 5 days of the final submission date. This means that, unlike some experiences where students wait weeks for grades, at Liberty, this delay is less likely.
Meanwhile, I have noticed a variation in the quality of feedback from faculty. Some professors provide minimal comments, focusing mainly on APA formatting, and might award high grades without much detailed feedback. This can be frustrating for students seeking to improve. On the other hand, there are faculty members who offer thorough, insightful feedback for a more satisfying grading experience.
Overall Positive Student Review
If you look at student reviews from U.S. News, Niche, Grad Reports, and Online Degrees, LUO’s score averages out to 3.7 out of 5 stars. Most student complaints are centered on four things.
First, some people said there was too much biblical integration, and other people were saying that there was not enough. So we’ll just say that those guys kind of cancel each other out.
Secondly, some students complained that when life circumstances hit them hard, the faculty and administration weren’t really understanding. This is a caveat I’d give for these kinds of reviews for any school, there are always two sides to the story. Liberty tries really hard to work with students, especially those who give notice in advance if they know that something bad is about to happen.
The third complaint was about the advising team not always being the most helpful, even though I think probably for online education, they’re okay.
Fourth, a complaint that we hear for almost every online institution again, is just a low quality of education. Some students felt like they didn’t get that interaction they were looking for, they didn’t like the grading feedback they got, and they just felt like the course maybe they didn’t feel the course had the right content they were looking for, or they thought it was too simplistic or too easy or too hard. Just a lot of people who weren’t quite appreciative of the quality.
What’s the Online Learning Like?
LUO adopts a standardized asynchronous approach to education. This means there are no live lectures or discussions. Students typically engage in self-paced learning, involving reading, watching videos, and completing assignments independently. Feedback is provided at the end of these activities. Interaction with classmates may occur through discussion boards, but overall, the learning experience is quite solitary. This is common in online higher education, especially in more affordable programs. Live interactions usually require more effort and resources, which can increase the cost of the program.
Is Liberty University Online Real?
Yes, Liberty University Online is Real. While it’s not going to be a perfect fit for everyone, LUO is a perfect fit for some people who are looking for a very specific degree, looking for a Christian perspective. LUO probably has something for you.
Is a Liberty Degree Respected?
Not only is Liberty University legit and regionally accredited, but they are also respected by employers and other institutions.
Final Thoughts—Is Liberty University Legit?
Liberty University is legit. It is a regionally accredited, non-profit private Christian liberal arts school, not a diploma mill. Degrees earned from Liberty, whether online or traditionally, are respected and legitimate in the eyes of employers. Its regional accreditation also means credits from Liberty are likely transferable to other similar institutions.
Read also: Is Walden University Legit?