Liberty University is Changing it’s Curriculum and Condensing Biblical Worldview
Sara Huneycutt was thrilled to transfer and continue her academic career at Liberty. She had spoken with an academic adviser and was ready for her classes
But, on the first day of class she was shocked to learn that she would have to add an additional class to her already tight schedule. Due to her degree completion plan she would be required to take Biblical Worldview 102 even though she was already taking Biblical Worldview 101.
“I wish they would have given me a heads up,” said Huneycutt “It was definitely an inconvenience that they didn’t let us incoming students know ahead of time.”
Biblical Worldview is being condensed into a single semester course and many students like Huneycutt and Joshua Christopher are feeling the effects of that change.
“It would have been better if I could have waited and taken them both in one semester so I wouldn’t have had to spend two hours in class and take twice as many quizzes,” said Christopher.
This began during the 2016 spring semester when Liberty went through their 10-year accreditation process.
“We had a team come and look at everything we’re doing and ask questions about the school,” said Chad Thornhill, Chairman of Theological Studies. “One of the things that came up was the discrepancy in hours between our online and residential requirements.”
Residential degree plans required 15 credit hours and the online plan required only nine. Condensing Biblical Worldview was a part of the solution to this issue.
“They didn’t specify what we had to do, but we had to bring them into balance,” Thornhill said. “We ended up meeting somewhere in the middle.”
According to Thornhill making the curriculum has been a schoolwide project that has involved most of the School of Religion including professors, chairmen, the dean and the provost.
“Our main goal is not to cut any meat out of the curriculum but rather to take a more condensed approach,” said Thornhill.
Though students may assume that the reduction of class time will mean a reduction in required learning, Thornhill says the opposite.
“We actually are raising our expectations for our Biblical Worldview requirements even though we are reducing the hours,” said Thornhill. “If the goal that we’ve set for student assessment is not met then that means that we have to go back to the drawing board and start over.”
According to Thornhill, the new curriculum is designed to be more intensive than the pervious one to compensate for the lack of class time.
“Curriculum is always temporarily permanent,” Thornhill said.
This new curriculum, which will be titled Religion 105, goes into effect beginning this fall for all incoming students.
Huneycutt eventually recovered from the setback at the start of the semester but chose to withdraw from her Math 105 class. She could not handle the extra work load.
“It did affect me in the long run,” Hunneycutt said. “Being a theatre performance major I also had a show on top of it and it just got too busy.”