Our Courses Give You The Freedom To Learn
Our online courses help you to develop personally and professionally. The courses are presented in engaging multi-media formats.
In addition, our online courses provide you with great freedom in your learning. You can choose to do or not do the various activities in the course. If you wish to have the experience of a college course, then you should do all the activities. But that may not fit your interests. So you may want to just focus on the content sessions which are similar to what happens in-class during a college course. You may choose to rarely or never participate in the online discussions. That is fine. Others will find that the discussions are very engaging and where you really make sense of things. Some may want to complete the assignments; others may not. Some may be interested in a specific subject and not the whole course. That too is fine. You are also free to go at whatever pace you want. The bottom line is that you are free to make of the courses what you want them to be.
However you choose to engage the courses, they will help you grow as a person.
Nevertheless, to make the courses workable there are two requirements on your part.
Second, in each course you must complete all of the activities in module 1. In fact, the rest of a course will not "appear" on your course page until you have completed module 1 which will always be named Introduction to Course. The reason for this requirement is to make sure that you understand what the course is about and how it operates. Once you have completed the activities in module 1, the rest of a course will appear and then you are free to do (or not do) whatever you please in the rest of the course.
Below is a list of and a description of each of our courses, both current and those planned for the future. The future courses are in the likely order of their completion. Click on the button of current courses for more complete information about the course and to register for that course.
Journey Through Religion
In this course you learn to study religion using academic methods. You will discover what makes a phenomenon a “religion.” You will find out that religions all share common characteristics such as ritual, belief, and morality and then you will learn to recognize and analyze those characteristics in various world religions. In addition, you will be introduced to the world’s religious traditions which will make you better prepared to interact with the diverse peoples of our global world. You will practice that skill in the course by encountering the life stories of followers of various religious traditions. In sum, you will learn how to understand religious traditions both from the perspective of adherents and of constructive and conscientious outsiders.
The Examined Life
An introduction to philosophy. It explores the major fields of western philosophy including logic, epistemology, metaphysics, philosophy of religion and ethics. This course helps one make intellectually responsible decisions and develop personal identity by recognizing and understanding some of the ways that philosophical issues influence humans as individuals, the social institutions we create, our understanding of right and wrong, and even our religious beliefs and practices.
An introductory exploration of various systems for determining and justifying ethical decisions. Both theories of conduct (what should I do?) and theories of character (who should I be?) are covered. Classical ethical theorists such as Aristotle, Kant and Mill are covered in ways to help one see how they can be used in making better ethical decisions.
Women In Religion
An introductory and interdisciplinary investigation of the religious and theological understandings, both negative and positive, which have sought to define women's place and function in the world. The course makes use of a rich body of material, including sacred texts by and about women, historical and anthropological case studies, and contemporary feminist theological reflection.
Just and Unjust Wars
This course undertakes an ethical analysis of war and its alternatives. Throughout history, people have failed to resolve their differences through peaceful means and have, from time to time, resorted to war. In this course, we will undertake ethical explorations of war and the hope for peace including perspectives such as realism/crusade, pacifism, the just war tradition and just peacemaking. We also will explore a number of issues concerning war, such as the protection of civilians during war, the possibility of alternatives to war, and the use of nuclear weapons.
An examination of the private, corporate and social dimensions of business life in the context of a total ethical life. Economic theories and actual business practices and cases are considered and evaluated from the perspective of established normative ethical principles.
Using our spectrum method, this course is a study of contemporary ethical issues in light of both ethical theory and the range of Christian responses to these issues. Ethical issues will be explored in both their corporate and individual dimensions from the viewpoint of Christian faith and values. Issues to be explored include the use of violence by the state, decision making at the beginning and end of life, and sexual ethics.
Religions of the East
An introductory study of the literature and ideas of the religions of the East: Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism and the religions of Japan. The course seeks to gain an appreciation of their diversity and insight through an exploration of their historical development and systems of belief.
Religions of The West
An introductory study of the literature and ideas of the religions of the West. The course begins with a look at indigenous religions with a focus on African Religions. The rest of the course is an introduction to the monotheistic religions of the West: Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The course seeks to gain an appreciation of their commonalities, differences and insight through an exploration of their historical development and systems of belief.
Social & Political Philosophy
An investigation of political activity at all levels of society. This course studies the workings of government, the politics that occurs outside of the governmental sphere, and the foundational arguments that justify or challenge all of the structuring of power involved therein. Our focus will be on the importance of politics for human society, the hopes one can reasonably entertain for such politics, and the possibility and desirability of various conceptions of utopia. The course is designed to help students explore the role of political activity in creating a just society.
Philosophy Of Religion
A philosophical study of both eastern and western religious traditions. This seminar style course will focus on the careful reading and discussion of philosophical texts from a variety of traditions. Topics covered will include some of the following: the nature of religion, the nature of ultimate reality, proofs for the existence of ultimate reality, religious experience, the problems of suffering and evil, the relationship between religion and morality, immortality, religious language, the relationship between faith and reason, miracles, and religious pluralism.
A study of global and multi-cultural thought using the categories of the traditional fields of western philosophy. This seminar style course will focus on the careful reading and discussion of philosophical texts from a variety of traditions. Topics covered will include some of the following: the nature of philosophy, theories of knowledge (epistemology), the nature of reality (metaphysics), morality, political philosophy, the nature of art or beauty (aesthetics).
Philosophy of Love
A philosophical examination exploring the nature and meaning of love. Considerable attention is given to current and historical perspectives and a variety of gender and social issues. More specific areas include deception, trust, honesty, self-knowledge, commitment, intimacy, genuine compassion and sexuality. Many insights from a variety of perspectives-psychological, historical, religious, literary-are integrated, and particular consideration is given to several significant feminist views.
An introduction to Christian religious traditions through a study of the historical development of doctrine and practice as reflected in selected scriptures, creeds, and theological works from the early church to modern times. Close attention is paid to the historical, political, social and religious factors influencing the development of these traditions in order to better understand contemporary theological controversies.
Sociology of Religion
Religion exists in a social context, and always is shaped by and shapes its social context. Furthermore, religion itself is always (at least in part) a socially constituted reality that is, its content and structure are always formed, at least partially, out of the "stuff" of the socio-cultural world (language, symbols, groups, norms, interactions, resources, organizations, etc.). This course is study of the nature of religion, including the societal and cultural dimensions of religion, the role of religion in social change, and the status of religion in contemporary society.