Academic Life

The Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary is a post-secondary program of education offering the Bachelor of Arts in Theology and the Bachelor of Arts in Religious Education. Most students can complete a program of study in four years. However, students who enter through the Provisional Entrance Program, change their program of study, or withdraw for a period of time should take more than four years to complete their program.

The academic year of the Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary is divided into two semesters of approximately fifteen weeks each. The academic year spans parts of two calendar years. The First Semester begins in the wet season (September) and the Second Semester begins in the dry season (March).

A calendar of events is published annually.  The academic calendar is prepared by the Academic Dean in consultation with the Seminary’s President and the faculty.

Student organizations are to schedule their activities in conjunction with the Dean of Students.

All students are expected to maintain a satisfactory academic record. Neglect of work or other evidence of lack of serious purpose on the part of a student may cause the Academic Committee to withdraw its approval for the student’s continued enrollment.

A normal course load is from twelve to eighteen hours. A student with a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 (B+) may be permitted to take up to twenty-one semester hours. Any student making a grade point average of less than 2.0 in any semester will be placed on academic probation and will not be permitted to take more than 9 semester hours.

A student carrying a course load of 12 semester hours or more is a full-time student; carrying fewer than 12 semester hours is a part-time student. LBTS caters to full-time students. Full-time students pay full-time fees, ($18.00 USD/credit hour); part time students pay $US25.00/credit hour, plus all required fees.

Students are classified as follows:

Freshman: A regularly enrolled student, who has completed fewer than thirty semester hours.

Sophomore: A regularly enrolled student who has completed a minimum of thirty semester hours with a 2.0 average.

Junior: A regularly enrolled student who has completed sixty semester hours with a 2.0 average.

Senior: A regularly enrolled student who has completed ninety semester hours with a 2.0 average.

Regular attendance at all classes is expected.  Each instructor is required to keep an accurate record of class attendance and to report at the end of the semester the number of absences of each student. Classes missed due to late enrollment will be counted as absences.

A student who is not counted present for 75% of scheduled classes automatically will receive a grade of “F” for the course.

Students are expected to take tests and examinations as scheduled by the instructor.  If a student is prevented from taking a test or examination at the scheduled time, the student must contact the instructor as soon as possible to explain the circumstances which caused him or her to miss the test.  Any make-up test or make-up work is at the discretion of the instructor.  If the student missed the test due to illness, it is advisable for him/her to bring a statement from a doctor or other medical practitioner.

Instructors report final grades to the Registrar’s Office at the end of each semester.  The grade represents the instructor’s evaluation of the quality of the student’s work as determined by such factors as examinations, assignments, attendance, and appropriate participation. Scholastic achievement at LBTS is indicated by these symbols:

Percentage                                    Letter Grade                               Grading Points                           Level of Achievement

93 – 100                                                     A                                                            4.0                                            Excellent

90 – 92                                                       A-                                                           3.7

87 – 89                                                       B+                                                          3.3

83 – 86                                                       B                                                             3.0                                           Good

80 – 82                                                       B-                                                           2.7

77 – 79                                                        C+                                                          2.3                                            Fair

73 – 76                                                        C                                                             2.0

70 – 72                                                        C-                                                            1.7

67 – 69                                                        D+                                                           1.3                                           Poor

63 – 66                                                        D                                                              1.0

60 – 62                                                        D-                                                             0.7

0 –   59                                                         F                                                               0.0                                        Failure

I                                                                                                                                                                                     Incomplete

W                                                                                                                                                                                   Withdrawal

WP                                                                                                                                                                                 Withdrawal Passing

 WF                                                                                                                                                                                 Withdrawal Failure                               

WP Indicates that the student officially withdrew from the course and that at the time of withdrawal he/she was making a passing grade.

WF Indicates that the student officially withdrew from the course and that at the time of withdrawal he/she was failing that course.

AD Indicates that a student was registered as an auditor and does not receive a grade nor hours credit for the course.

Final semester grades, after being filed in the Registrar’s Office, are no longer the property of the instructor and are not subject to change. without proper documentation completed by the faculty member, the Academic Dean and the Registrar.

Grade change forms are available in the Registrar’s Office.

Grade points are assigned to course work according to the following formula: the number of semester hours credit times four for an “A,” three for a “B,” two for a “C,” one for a “D” and zero for an “F” or “I.”

A student earning a grade of D or F a major course of his/her degree concentration will be required to repeat the course to remove the deficiency by a grade of C or better. No class may be attempted more than two times.

The Grade Point Average is calculated by dividing the sum of the grade points earned by the sum of the hours attempted. Non-graded courses are not included in the calculation of the Grade Point Average and are not used to determine the awarding of academic honors or probationary status.

Students are expected to maintain a grade point average of at least 2.00, which is the minimum requirement for graduation.

A student may wish to repeat a course in order to raise his/her grade point average if the original posted grade was D or F. When courses are repeated, the original grade remains a part of the student’s permanent record, but only the most recent grade will be used to calculate grade points and semester hours attempted.

All students will register on the dates and at the time stated in the Academic Calendar. New students are required to be present for orientation. Students who do not register during the regularly scheduled registration period prior to the first day of classes are required to pay a late fee of US $10.00.  Students must register before attending classes.

The final responsibility for taking the proper courses at the proper time in order to meet graduation requirements rests with the student. The academic advisor will counsel and guide the student; each student will be assigned an advisor by the Academic Dean each semester at registration.

Courses may not be added after the first week of a class. Students may add/drop courses in keeping with the official date in the Academic Calendar.

All currently enrolled students expecting to register for the following semester are required to preregister for the courses in which they expect to enroll.  Pre-registration is a confirmation of the student’s status.  Failure to preregister may result in the loss of the privilege of attending school the next semester.

The only way in which to effect an official course withdrawal is by properly completing the withdrawal form received from the Registrar’s Office.

Completion of the withdrawal form requires the signatures of the instructor, Academic Dean, and the stamp of the Registrar’s Office.

If a student should discontinue a course without completing the procedure explained above, the official grade for the course becomes F.

There can be no official withdrawal from a course after the cut-off date specified in the academic calendar. The last withdrawal time from a course is one week following the reporting of the mid-term grades.

If a student is making a passing grade at the time of course withdrawal he/she will be given a notation of WP (Withdrew Passing).  If the student is making a failing grade at the time of withdrawal, he/she will be given a notation of WF (Withdrew Failing).

A student in good academic standing who officially withdraws no later than the withdrawal time indicated above will receive no credit for the course taken nor be charged with failure.

To remain in good academic standing a student must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 (C).  Any student with a cumulative or semester grade point average of less than 2.0 at the end of any semester will be placed on academic probation.  A student on academic probation will be permitted to take a maximum of 12 semester hours of course work.

If the student’s cumulative grade point average does not reach a level of 2.0 during the semester of limited course work, (12 credits or fewer, due to academic probation), the student will be required to withdraw from school for at least one semester in order to: (1) evaluate his/her ability to continue seminary training and/or (2) seek remedies for any personal or family problems that might be hindering the student’s work. 

Such a student returning will be limited to a maximum of 12 hours of course work during the following semester.  This student must raise his/her cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or above within two semesters under the guidance of the Academic Dean. If after these two semesters the student fails to remove this deficiency, the Academic Dean may recommend to the faculty committee that the student be required to withdraw from the Seminary. If the faculty accepts the Dean’s recommendation, the student will not be eligible for readmission to the Seminary.

Requests for transfer of credit from other seminaries and universities will be evaluated by the Academic Affairs Committee of the LBTS.  Each request will be considered in accordance with accreditation standards and the merits of the individual case. However, those from member institutions of the Association of Liberian Universities (ALU) will be accepted upon the merit of the standardized NCHE Freshman and Sophomore curriculum.

No consideration for the transfer of credit can begin until an official transcript from the student’s previous school is on file in the Registrar’s Office.  It may be necessary, also, for the Seminary to have a copy of the course description of the previous school of the student in order to determine course compatibility. It is the student’s responsibility to secure these.

At least 40 semester hours of credit toward any degree must be earned while in residence at this Seminary.

No transfer of credit will be granted for any course in which the student has not earned the minimum grade of (C). Each transferred course must have an equal credit value to the one offered at the LBTS.  For example, no 2 hours course will be accepted for transfer when LBTS offers it for 3 hours.

Some students may wish to enroll in a course for the primary purpose of improving their knowledge or skills in the subject matter without having to complete examinations, papers, etc. Such a person is identified as an “auditing student.” The following procedures apply:

  1. The student must register through the Registrar’s Office and pay for the course.
  2. Teachers must keep a record of attendance and report this on the grade sheet, indicating “audit.” Class attendance requirements are the same as for regular students.  No grade or academic credit will be given for the course.
  3. An audit student who withdraws from a course must complete a withdrawal form obtained from the Registrar’s Office.
  4. Persons not already enrolled at LBTS must submit ALL documents specified by the Registrar’s Office and be approved by the Academic Affairs Committee in order to register as auditing students. It is expected that audit students will be familiar with the contents of the Student Handbook.
  5. An audit student may enroll for no more than three (3) courses per semester.
  6. Other Audits may be allowed by Presidential approval.

Any student found guilty of cheating on a test, plagiarizing, or other academic misconduct is subject to disciplinary action:

  1. For the first offence, the instructor should inform the student and immediately report the matter to the Academic Dean.
  2. The second office will lead the immediate withdraw of the student from the course and with a failure, (“F”).
  3. The third instance will lead to the suspension of the student for one academic semester.
  4. The fourth and final offence will be to the expulsion of the student. Th student should be informed of the allegations.

Academic Honors and Special Awards

Students who earn a grade point average of 3.76 or above for the semester will be on the President’s List and will receive a certificate from the President.  The President’s List will be read in Chapel service, posted on the bulletin boards, and sent to the office of the Liberia Baptist Missionary and Educational Convention, Inc.

Students who earn a grade point average between 3.50 and 3.75 for the semester will be on the Dean’s List and will receive a certificate from the Academic Dean. The Dean’s List will be read in Chapel service, posted on the bulletin boards, and sent to the office of the Liberia Baptist Missionary and Educational Convention, Inc.

Distinctions for excellence in achievement will be awarded at commencement to students who have accumulated the following grade point averages:

Summa cum laude:  A cumulative grade point average of 3.76 or above.

Magna cum laude: A cumulative grade point average of 3.50 to 3.75. 

Cum laude: A cumulative grade point average of 3.25 to 3.49.

Awards at Graduation

A citation is bestowed on a graduate nominated by a faculty member and approved by the entire faculty.  In addition to scholastic attainment, the citation recognizes the following specific attainment involvement in Seminary affairs, leadership ability, and outstanding character. This honor is not necessarily conferred every year; when it is bestowed; a citation is publicly read at Commencement.

Each year the Board of Trustees of the Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary in consultation with the President of the Seminary chooses a student who exhibits exceptional Christian behavior and is active in a local Baptist church and the Convention or Conference. The student must be registered for a full course load, have earned at least sixty hours at LBTS, and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 or above. This award is announced and presented by the Chairman of the Board of Trustees at each graduation exercises.

The President’s Academic & Leadership Award:

A special award given by the President of the Seminary every year at graduation to any deserving student from the Sophomore, Junior, and Senior classes who has met the minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.75 and demonstrated  maturity in leadership either at the Seminary or within the local church.

  1. A student who is anticipating graduation must complete an application for graduation, and pay the graduation fees of US $150.00 at least one month prior to the graduation exercises.
  2. To be eligible for graduation a student must have satisfactorily completed passing grades in all of the academic requirements of the program of studies he/she has chosen. No student with a grade point average of less than 2.0 shall be granted a degree.
  3. In addition to the academic requirements, the student must have settled all financial obligations with the seminary and must have the recommendation of the faculty and approval of the Board of Trustees.
  4. Graduation exercises are normally held at the end of the second semester of each academic year. Candidates for graduation must attend practice sessions of Baccalaureate and Commencement exercises.
  5. A student may not graduate in absentia unless he or she has requested and received permission from the Faculty at least 30 days prior to graduation.