Christian MOOC

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Floyd Johnson | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, Jan 4 2014 12:44 PM

"Coursea.org" is a collection of major universities offering free educational programs to the general public - some use textbooks, some do not.  Though the courses do not offer credit, the site suggests that many schools may grant credit for "life experience" for courses completed through CourseA.  As a faculty member, I have been part of evaluating this credit for three different Christian colleges.  Some public institutions offer a similar program for gaining credit based on non-traditional educational experiences.

A Google search indicates that there are a Christian few schools exploring MOOC educational programs - and some taking strong stands against it.  I can see that Regents College and Crown College are both experimenting with the platform; but I can find no specifics, even from these school.  

Does anybody know of any other Christian schools that are exploring this new educational medium?  This type of program might be a natural avenue for introducing another audience to LOGOS Bible software and providing a continuing education program for lay members of the church - who may or may not already have finished their education.

Blessings,
Floyd

Pastor-Patrick.blogspot.com

Posts 1048
William Gabriel | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 3:04 PM

I highly recommend https://www.biblicaltraining.org/

Also check out iTunesU -- there are several Bible & Theology courses available.

It's not schools, per se, who are opening up platforms for MOOC, but certainly some schools are allowing their class resources to be gathered for just such a purpose under the leadership of others with that type of interest.

What's available isn't quite as organized as the secular world, but it's getting there. I think you'll see this type of movement pick up steam with a little bit more time. For now, I think those two resources can keep you plenty busy.

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Mark Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:33 PM

Southwestern Theological Seminary (SBC) is offering a course this spring:

Hebrews with David Allen.

Last fall it offered a course on Daniel with Paige Patterson.

The Hebrews class requires an application and a $99 fee. It looks like it will be taught on Thursday evenings (Central Time) starting in late January.

Pastor, North Park Baptist Church

Bridgeport, CT USA

Posts 18651
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:52 PM

Floyd Johnson:
"Coursea.org"

It's Coursera.org

Another one like it, but with not as many course offerings yet, is edx.org (MIT, Harvard, and Berkeley).

Christian colleges and theological schools are behind the curve in offering online education. Most of them have an inherent skepticism of, or at least caution about, online learning, because of all the negative things they've heard about digital technology (how dehumanizing and addictive it can be, etc.). They highly value the in-person mentoring relationship of teacher to student, and it seems to them oxymoronic to teach subjects like the incarnational theology of Christianity and pastoral care in an online setting. Also many of these schools simply don't have the financial means to invest in new ways of creating their courses. However, even Paul recognized the value of disembodied instruction using the technology of his day -- letters (2 Cor 13:10, Col 2:5, 1 Tim 3:14-15).

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Floyd Johnson | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 5:17 PM

Rosie Perera:
Christian colleges and theological schools are behind the curve in offering online education. Most of them have an inherent skepticism of, or at least caution about, online learning, because of all the negative things they've heard about digital technology (how dehumanizing and addictive it can be, etc.).

I know that this may be somewhat heretical, but I expect that another reason for the slow adoption of MOOC courses within the Christian community is that some schools see the on-line educational sector as a profit point.  I know that the last institution on whose faculty I served before going on disability thought very highly of their on-line educational offerings - including both undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing, business, education, and theology.  I am sure that they would see MOOC as reducing their revenue stream, which they would be hesitant to do.  

Blessings,
Floyd

Pastor-Patrick.blogspot.com

Posts 18651
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 6:12 PM

Floyd Johnson:
I know that this may be somewhat heretical, but I expect that another reason for the slow adoption of MOOC courses within the Christian community is that some schools see the on-line educational sector as a profit point.  I know that the last institution on whose faculty I served before going on disability thought very highly of their on-line educational offerings - including both undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing, business, education, and theology.  I am sure that they would see MOOC as reducing their revenue stream, which they would be hesitant to do.

Revenue stream is a serious consideration for Christian schools, even if they'd like to consider themselves above being motivated by "filthy lucre." If you don't have enough money to continue serving the educational needs of your community, you cease to exist.

With that understanding, online courses could be seen as either reducing or increasing revenue stream. (I've highlighted two apparently contradictory statements in the quote above, but they are not necessarily mutually exclusive.) If students come to expect all online courses to be free, then of course MOOCs would reduce a school's revenue. But if the school can come up with a way to offer value in their online courses that people would be willing to pay for, it could become another alternative revenue stream. It would take time, creativity, hard work, and financial investment. But it could pay off down the road if it's done right. And they'd have to think of it as not just to make money for its own sake, but to help them continue to do their ministry well.

Posts 42
JOSHUA DAVIS | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 7:32 PM

I took this MOOC Class a few months back on Hermeneutics from Dr. Danny Akin at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and really enjoyed it: http://www.sebts.edu/distance/mooc_at_sebts.aspx .  I am pretty sure that you can still sign up for it and take it right now if you want to.

Posts 382
Sacrifice | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 8:10 PM

There are a lot of free ones here http://thirdmill.org/seminary/ 

Yours In Christ

Posts 2824
Michael Childs | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jan 6 2014 5:31 PM

Accredited Seminary Degrees can now be earned from most seminaries online, with a minimum amount of on campus work required.  Nearly all seminaries are moving in this direction.  My Youth Director is earning his degree online from Asbury Theological Seminary, and he is about half way through.

"In all cases, the Church is to be judged by the Scripture, not the Scripture by the Church," John Wesley

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Corey M.K. Hughes | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jul 26 2014 1:11 PM

New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary is offering some MOOC courses. 

http://www.nobts.edu/OnlineSeminary/free-online-course.html

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jul 26 2014 1:15 PM

Floyd Johnson:
Does anybody know of any other Christian schools that are exploring this new educational medium?

I took a class from a small Pennsylvanian seminary - Mennonite I think but don't really remember - 7 or 8 years ago.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 286
Dr. Charles A. Wootten | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Jul 27 2014 5:28 AM

Mark Hoffman announced a MOOC on 24 July: http://bibleandtech.blogspot.com/2014/07/survey-of-lands-of-bible-free-mooc.html

running Logos Bible Software 6.0a: Collector's Edition on HP e9220y (AMD Phenom II X4 2.60GHz 8.00GB 64-bit Win 7 Pro SP1) & iPad (mini) apps.

Posts 3661
Floyd Johnson | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 19 2014 1:04 PM

This is an old thread that I started by asking a serious question.  I stumbled across a new opportunity from Regents University this afternoon:

http://luxvera.regent.edu/

Perhaps other opportunities have popped up since this discussion originally ended last July.  Links to other resources would be appreciated.

Blessings,
Floyd

Pastor-Patrick.blogspot.com

Posts 787
James Hiddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 19 2014 2:34 PM

Some nice suggestions here. God Bless you all always!

James

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