As a private, coeducational Christian school affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, Wayland Baptist University’s stated objective is “to educate students in an academically challenging, learning-focused, and distinctively Christian environment.” Founded in 1908, the school has grown to offer a wide array of academic programs at the undergraduate, graduate and doctoral levels. According to U.S. News and World Report, the school enrolls nearly 4,000 undergraduate students each year and is less selective with an acceptance rate of about 97 percent.
Students here can take courses at more than a dozen physical campus locations. In the early 2000s, Wayland began offering online courses, and in 2001, the school opened its Virtual College. The school has been offering graduate-level programs entirely online since 2006. According to the school’s website, Wayland is one of the top Christian colleges in the country as well as home to one of the fastest-growing online Christian programs. Victory Media named Wayland a Military Friendly school for 2015, and the university has also been designated as one of Online U’s most affordable colleges.
Those who attend school on campus at Wayland can explore the community of Plainview, which offers a wide selection of churches and civic organizations. Students can also participate in any of the university’s clubs, organizations, athletic programs and ministry opportunities. For new students, the school offers an orientation program called Koinonia, which is the Greek word for fellowship. Parents and relatives are encouraged to accompany new students during orientation because the school believes that family involvement is crucial to a student’s success in college.
Wayland Baptist University Accreditation Details
Wayland Baptist holds institutional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. None of its online programs have received individual accreditation; however, certain undergraduate programs, including those in nursing and education, have been accredited by their respective accrediting bodies.
Wayland Baptist University Application Requirements
Students can apply to Wayland Baptist throughout the year since the school maintains rolling admission, but it’s important to note that those who need to submit official scores from the SAT or ACT must do so by August 1 of each year. Students can submit an application up until the first day of classes. Applicants must submit:
- A completed application
- A nonrefundable $35 fee
- All official transcripts from previous schools
- Official ACT or SAT scores if applicable
For the online college, students will still need to submit official documentation and the $35 fee. The application fee may be waived if students show proof of financial need from a high school counselor or if they attend an on-campus tour before applying.
Wayland Baptist uses the Blackboard platform for online course delivery and instruction. Students must register with the system in order to participate in classes once they’re accepted into their online program of choice. In order to gain admission into the school, students also must get the bacterial meningitis vaccination as required by Texas state law. The school offers this vaccination for $85.
Tuition and Financial Aid
Unlike many schools, Wayland Baptist charges undergraduates and graduate students the same amount for tuition on a per-credit-hour basis, but since graduates typically take fewer courses per semester and fewer credits overall, graduate candidates may actually spend less money to earn a master’s degree than undergraduates will to earn a bachelor’s. For example, a typical full-time undergraduate student at Wayland will pay $5,940 per semester for tuition alone. A full-time graduate student will pay $4,455.
These rates apply to the main campus. Students at the external campus pay a different tuition rate, and those enrolled via the virtual campus also pay a different rate. Online graduate students pay $440 per credit hour while online undergraduate students pay $348 per hour. Those who are interested in an online program at Wayland should note that the virtual campus offers courses in 11-week terms rather than the traditional semester schedule. There are also various fees and other program costs depending on individual programs, so students should review the complete breakdown on the school’s website for more information.
To help students pay for college, Wayland offers several options for financial aid, including federal loans, grants, veterans’ benefits and military tuition assistance. According to the school’s website, about 95 percent of students at Wayland receive some type of aid. Financial assistance is usually reserved for students who are enrolled in a degree-seeking program. Those who need aid should fill out the Free Application for Federal Financial Aid or FAFSA to determine eligibility.
Master of Arts in History
To enroll as a master’s candidate, students have to have completed at least six hours of undergraduate history courses. Applicants without a background in history will need to complete this prerequisite step before taking any graduate-level courses. In addition, applicants must submit a completed graduate application, official transcripts and a non-refundable $50 fee, which is waived for current and former Wayland students. According to the department’s website, graduates of the master’s degree program should be able to:
- Communicate effectively
- Understand advanced concepts in historiography
- Interpret documents relevant to the field
- Conduct research and understand writing processes used by history scholars
Since this degree is offered entirely online, students have a lot of flexibility when it comes to completing the requirements. Of the 37 hours required to earn the degree, 27 of those hours are open to student choice depending on their desired area of interest. The university mandates two additional courses: one on historical methods and one that centers on a final exam at the end of the program. Students can also choose whether they want to complete a thesis. If they don’t, then they’ll take two extra courses to meet the 37-hour requirement.
Courses cover a broad range of topics, including science and technology, minority history, gender, and European and American subjects. In addition, students can choose a religious route for their historical studies. Biblical and church history courses can be taken through Wayland’s School of Religion and Philosophy. Students who complete the degree will be able to teach history, go on to pursue a doctorate or pursue a variety of careers related to the historical education and preservation. Wayland Baptist University makes the process of seeking a graduate-level history degree convenient and customizable.