Rodney Phillips

Liberty University - Rodney Phillips

Liberty University
Expected to graduate with a Doctor of Education in Leadership after 2017

As an instructor at a Bible college, Rodney Phillips knew he would only want to attend a Christian university himself. After his daughter had such a positive experience with Liberty University, he turned to the school’s distance learning program when he embarked on his Ph.D. in leadership. The online option was the only way he could continue his education, and he’s found it just as rewarding as being on campus.

Question: Why did you decide to attend Liberty University? And in what ways has the school met your expectations?

Phillips: “Our daughter graduated from LU as a resident student in elementary education with a minor in Spanish. She transferred to LU and completed her degree program in two-and-a-half years. Therefore, prior to my enrollment, we had personal experiences with the university and were well-pleased.

“The school has met my expectations in many ways:

“The aggressive admissions process put me at the registration gate in a very short amount of time. I was accepted, enrolled, and taking a class much quicker than previous experiences with other institutions.

“Competent advisors are readily available at just a phone call away. They provide real advice that is accurate and truly helpful. The person who answers my call rarely says, ‘I’ll get back to you’ or ‘I’ll need to transfer you.’

“There is an accurate, precise syllabus provided for each class. In addition, previously used syllabi are available any time I desire so that I might preview an upcoming class giving me helpful information. Furthermore, most assignments include rubrics so I know how they are going to be graded.

“Communications with course instructors receives a quick response normally within a couple of hours and many times within just a few minutes.

“LU offers a complete online writing center. I am able to submit papers to qualified reviewers who provide suggested improvements in the areas of style, grammar, and content. Upon their return of my papers, I make numerous corrections and submit them with greater confidence my grade will be improved had I not availed myself of this tremendous service. This also enables me to write better papers in the future.

“LU’s extended experience has ‘perfected the online world.'”

Question: Was it also important to you to attend a Christian university? If so, why? And how has Liberty met those expectations?

Phillips: “I would only attend a Christian university because my current position is teaching in a Bible college. I have known of [Liberty University founder] Jerry Falwell for more than 20 years and that familiarity gave me the assurance of our similar beliefs and philosophies of ministries.

“His philosophy, now being carried out as his legacy, enables a person like me, at age 53, to be accepted into a doctorate program that is different than my graduate and undergraduate work. His philosophy of including willing individuals (with certain qualifications, of course) enables me to pursue a doctoral degree in education even though my previous education was entirely in the field of Theology and Bible.”

Question: What are some of the best learning experiences you’ve had as an online student at Liberty?

Phillips: “If it were not for the online option, I would not have an opportunity to continue my education. However, I do not believe my education has been compromised whatsoever by taking classes online as opposed to being in the classroom. Each of my teachers was strong in their field of expertise and successfully overcame the obstacles presented in the non-face-to-face settings. A recent online teacher was so personable that I felt as though we were sitting across the table having coffee discussing the subjects at hand even though in reality we were both on opposite coasts of our country.”