Online colleges and universities are perfect for people who cannot attend traditional schools because of commitments such as their careers and families. If you plan to earn an online degree, chances are that Liberty University is on your list of online schools to apply to. But you are wondering if it’s worth your time and money.
In general, most employers accept degrees from Liberty University. This is especially true for those who are aware of the fact that it’s a regionally accredited institution. Many Liberty University graduates are currently employed at well-known companies, such as Amazon and Wells Fargo.
Don’t stop reading now if you want nothing but a legitimate online degree that potential employers will like.
Below, you will come across answers to some of the most pressing questions about going to and graduating from Liberty University.
Is Liberty University an Accredited School?
Liberty University is an accredited school. The accrediting agency responsible for its accreditation is the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The last time Liberty University’s accreditation was reapproved was in 2016, which is valid for 10 more years.
Especially when applying to an online school, there is one thing that each and every student should check. It’s none other than if the institution is accredited or not.
The good news is that Liberty University is accredited. SACSOC, which is the one that accredited the school, is no ordinary accrediting agency — it’s one of the very few accrediting agencies recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). SACSOC, by the way, accredits colleges and universities in the south.
It’s important to note that Liberty University is regionally accredited, too. This means that the credits you earn from it will be accepted at more schools.
Similarly, credits you earn from other regionally accredited schools will be accepted at Liberty University. Having regional accreditation also facilitates financial aid awarding and job seeking.
Is Liberty University a Diploma Mill?
Liberty University is not a diploma mill. It is regionally accredited by a CHEA-recognized accrediting agency, which only means that the school is a legitimate higher education institution. Degrees earned from it, including online ones, are worth something, unlike bogus diploma mill degrees.
Many diploma mills are in existence, and they give online degrees a bad name. It’s because of them why some employers are wary of hiring applicants whose degrees were earned via the internet.
Fret not if you plan to apply to Liberty University to complete one of its more than 400 online programs. That’s because Liberty University is not a diploma mill.
Proof to this is the fact that it is regionally accredited by an actual accrediting agency — many diploma mills are accredited by bogus accrediting agencies to make them seem legit.
The school is included in various trusted college ranking sites, too, which never happens to diploma mills.
As a matter of fact, in the 2021 Best National Universities by US News, Liberty University is number 298.
The same college ranking site placed the online school at number 157 in its 2021 Best Undergraduate Engineering Program ranking. Niche, which is another well-known college ranking site, gave Liberty University an A- grade.
Besides, Liberty University does not have the typical characteristics of a shady online school — here’s an article on how to tell if the institution you are about to apply to is a diploma mill.
How Much Does It Cost to Attend Liberty University?
The cost of tuition for an online bachelor’s degree at Liberty University amounts to $9,360. On the other hand, the cost of tuition for an online master’s degree at the school costs $10,170. Liberty University has traditional degrees, too, and the average tuition for them is equivalent to $23,800.
Various reasons exist why a lot of students, including especially non-traditional ones, choose to earn a degree via the internet. One of those on top of the list is the lower cost of attendance (COA).
As of 2020, the tuition at online colleges and universities typically ranges anywhere from $9,600 to $15,150.
Based on the national average, it’s apparent that Liberty University has a slightly cheaper tuition. This is especially true for its online graduate degree programs. However, some online schools have lower tuition costs.
Earning a degree from Liberty University traditionally is a different story.
Because of all the added expenses associated with attending a brick-and-mortar college, the cost can quickly reach sky-high. And since Liberty University is a private institution, all students pay the same tuition, whether they are Virginia residents or not.
What Kind of Students Attend Liberty University?
Liberty University is a diverse school. Also, the majority of its students are non-traditional ones. It doesn’t come as a surprise as it’s an online school, and it tends to attract non-traditional students. For instance, almost half of its population consists of students 35 years old and above.
Self-paced learning and lower sticker prices — most of the time, these are the two primary reasons why the majority of students who are not considered the traditional kinds opt for online degrees.
At Liberty University, you can enjoy asynchronous learning. This means that you can complete your coursework based on your ability to attend to your school-related tasks.
However, if you are a full-time student at the school, it’s a must that you complete the 180-day academic year in a span of 10 months.
Because online students can sit before their laptops only if they can, it’s no wonder why a lot of those who attend Liberty University have full-time or part-time jobs.
Many of them are busy with their own businesses or families. What’s more, over 30,000 students are active-duty personnel, military spouses and veterans.
The following is a table of the age diversity of Liberty students:
|AGE GROUP||PERCENT OF STUDENTS|
|35 and over||40%|
|30 to 34||13%|
|25 to 29||16%|
|22 to 24||12%|
|20 to 21||11%|
|18 to 19||8%|
Which Employers Accept Degrees From Liberty University?
Various employers in different industries accept degrees earned from Liberty University. To make it easier for its graduates to find jobs, Liberty University has partnered with Handshake, an online platform where students and graduates can store their transcripts, resumes, portfolios and others.
Because of diploma mills, some students feel that it’s a terrible idea to earn an online degree. That’s because they may have a hard time finding jobs after graduation.
Worry not if you plan to apply to Liberty University but fear that you might end up unemployed after completing your chosen program. Since the school is regionally accredited by a CHEA-recognized accrediting agency, employers respect degrees earned from it. Needless to say, they hire applicants with a degree from Liberty University.
Liberty University graduates are employed at an assortment of well-known companies. Some of them include Amazon, Bank of America, Google, Apple and Wells Fargo.
To help you get employed after earning your online degree, you can create a Handshake profile.
Liberty University has partnered with the online platform, whose network consists of 500 schools and more than nine million students. More importantly, Fortune 500 companies and over 250,000 employers use Handshake to recruit.
How Much Do Liberty University Graduates Make?
Early in their career, up to six years after graduation, Liberty University graduates make an average of $36,000 per year. Depending on their degrees, work experience and job performance, their earnings can range anywhere from as low as $18,000 per year to as high as $135,000 per year.
It’s not just the types of jobs they could end up with that students consider when applying to online schools. Many of them also think about the amount of money they could make after graduation.
The national average salary for college graduates in the US is equivalent to $53,889. Unfortunately, Liberty University graduates with very little to no prior work experience tend to make lower than what’s considered median per year. However, the figure, which is about $36,000 per year, can grow as they climb up the career ladder.
Here are the average annual salaries of Liberty University graduates by job:
|JOB POSITION||AVERAGE ANNUAL SALARY|
|Consulting, accounting and other professional services||$76,000|
The following are the average annual salaries of Liberty University graduates by degree:
|DEGREE TYPE||AVERAGE ANNUAL SALARY|
|Bachelor of Science||$90,000|
Do Your Own Research
If you search anything on the Internet, you will find a plethora of opinions ranging from positive to highly negative. Instead of relying on people who posted their opinions on the Internet, reach out to real people who had relevant experience and successfully leveraged their degrees.
Here’s how you can do it:
- Go to LinkedIn
- Find Liberty University
- Click on the Alumni tab
- Select start year, e.g., 2018
- Now, you can choose from one of the two options: “Where they live” or “Where they work.”
For example, if I want to know if software companies hire Liberty University graduates, I would click on Microsoft or Amazon.
For instance, I found a guy who had his BS in Mathematics from Liberty. Now, it’s not time to be shy. Try to reach out and ask whether the diploma helped him to get the job.
Just Before You Apply to Liberty University
Liberty University is an online school. Many colleges and universities offering online degrees have bad reputations, and it’s mainly because of the existence of diploma mills that provide worthless degrees.
If you are a non-traditional student and your full-time job, money-making venture or kids are keeping you from regularly stepping foot in a brick-and-mortar higher education institution, consider attending Liberty University — it’s a regionally accredited school whose online degrees are respected by employers.
Otherwise, it’s a much better idea to go to a traditional college or university, especially if you are fresh from high school and have no prior work experience.
That’s because in-person classes can help hone various attributes, such as communication, problem-solving and leadership skills, that can help you find the best possible job after graduation.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the College Reality Check.