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coops
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Joined: 2004/6/28
Posts: 141


 Online Bible College Development - Need your input!

In recent months I have been surprised at the cost of Christian training. Unfortunately the overheads and requirements of running an accredited seminary makes some potential students unable to study. This has concerned me, for the obvious reason that some people are missing out on learning more about God.

Also, I noticed a lack of training for those who do not wish to be in traditional ministry. As you well know, there are many Christians who are called into the workplace to be a light in a dark world. However, many are missing out on teaching they may really benifit from, because of the need to work full time, or the commitment to bible college is just not finacially possible.

The culmination of these concerns (students unable to expand their knowledge of God, and being less equipped) has led me to explore a medium that has quie a few blank canvasses at the moment: Free Online Bible College.

There are only a couple of free bible colleges on the internet at the moment. However, they all lack some critical features, such as:

* A community feel (with integrated ways to interact between students)
* A mentorship system for each subject (for teacher-student help)
* A secure login for each student, with course modelling and tracking
* An integrous assesments system
* The ability to be translated into other languages
* A wide range of subjects & courses to meet the individual's calling
* Different mediums of delivery: eg. printed course material, online courses, automated email courses
* Aditionally, it would be ideal if the standard of material and assesment was such that accredited bible colleges may consider RPL (recognition of prior learning) in some cases where students have previously studied through this free online bible college.
* In the end, something that could act as a complete online campus.

I understand that there would be numerous logistical issues to overcome, but would deeply appreciate any input or help from people who are currently involved in training bible students. This has the potential to benifit thousands who would not be able to receive training otherwise. The idea is still in conceptual stage, and I'm are simply exploring all the issues arrounding it. However, if anyone you know would like to be a part of this in some way, or have any suggestions or concerns, please email me at mail.coops@gmail.com
:-)


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Coops

 2006/6/20 5:53Profile
sermonindex
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Joined: 2002/12/11
Posts: 37105
"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11

Online!
 Re: Online Bible College Development - Need your input!

Quote:
There are only a couple of free bible colleges on the internet at the moment. However, they all lack some critical features


Hi Brother,
I have been going to Calvary Chapel Bible College, its a fairly reasonable school that teaches the word of God and is very cheap in its tuiton and living expenses compared to most bible instutions that require $8000-10,000 a semester!!

Right now I am paying $2800 for a semester which includes living expenses, food, board, books, etc. Their heart is to simply equip people to read the word of God and interpret it properly! the main college site is: www.calvarychapelbiblecollege.com they have extension campus's in over 30 countries I believe and there are a few in australia, churches that have extension bible colleges in them, I would call the main school for details if you are interested in finding out more!

I am currently raising support for this next semester:

[b]SUPPORT: Raising Bible College Support[/b]
http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=10943&forum=16


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2006/6/20 10:49Profile
InTheLight
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Joined: 2003/7/31
Posts: 2734
Phoenix, Arizona USA

 Re: Online Bible College Development - Need your input!

You may want to contact Ron Bailey (Philologos) because I believe he is working on something similar to this, he may be able to give you some helpful input.

Your list of features is excellent and will require a lot of effort from many people. If I can help in some way let me know. I was led to start a very simple little web site last year that contains some free Bible correspondence courses and the response has been very good considering that I have only registered the site with a few search engines.

In Christ,

Ron


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Ron Halverson

 2006/6/20 11:20Profile
sermonindex
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Joined: 2002/12/11
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"Pilgrim and Sojourner." - 1 Peter 2:11

Online!
 Re:

Quote:
You may want to contact Ron Bailey (Philologos) because I believe he is working on something similar to this, he may be able to give you some helpful input.


I actually have been for awhile praying and thinking of a way to setup a online bible school circulum on sermonindex with sermonindex materials.


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2006/6/20 11:57Profile
InTheLight
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Joined: 2003/7/31
Posts: 2734
Phoenix, Arizona USA

 Re:

Quote:
I actually have been for awhile praying and thinking of a way to setup a online bible school circulum on sermonindex with sermonindex materials.



Awesome idea Greg! You could set up some lecture/lab type courses with the sermons or articles from the likes of Ray Stedman, Zac Poonen, and Chuck Smith et al as the lecture portion and then an online lesson as the lab portion.

In Christ,

Ron


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Ron Halverson

 2006/6/20 12:37Profile
KingJimmy
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Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC

 Re:

I guess how good an internet school would be is going to depend a lot on what you are looking to get out of it.

Are you looking to be submerged into the world of the Old and New Testaments? Do you want to know information about the surrounding cultures? Do you want to know the more technical issues when it comes to interpreting scripture? Are you looking to become a scholar?

Or are you looking simply for a somewhat advanced Sunday school lesson? Do you want something that is more devotional in nature, that shy's away from issues of history, grammar, and structure?

Most of the internet bible colleges I have seen seem more of the second variety. If you are looking for something more scholarly, and can't afford to attend a bible college, I'd recommend you simply read broadly in the "better commentaries" (i.e New International Commentary on the Old/New Testament), and various survey books that will introduce you to such issues, and give you further recommended readings.

No matter what way you go, a biblical education is mostly about reading source documents and secondary works, and will require a great investment and diligent study. One does not need to go to Bible college to do such. In fact, going to a Bible college might actually get in the way of such, as you are required to read what you are assigned.

Sometimes I joke around "School has interfered with my education!" However, guided reading (which is most of what Bible college is!) is important to introducing you to important scholarly concepts which will help you make better use of the "better commentaries", as you are not likely to pickup a book such as "The Hermeneutical Spiral" on your own!


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Jimmy H

 2006/6/20 13:26Profile
philologos
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Joined: 2003/7/18
Posts: 6566
Reading, UK

 Re:

Quote:
You may want to contact Ron Bailey (Philologos) because I believe he is working on something similar to this, he may be able to give you some helpful input.


Still "working on it". My webmaster has just arrived from Romania and we have some strategy planning to do. I agree that the list of features is excellent. The most difficult might be 'accreditation'.


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Ron Bailey

 2006/6/20 13:34Profile
philologos
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Reading, UK

 Re:

Quote:
However, guided reading (which is most of what Bible college is!) is important to introducing you to important scholarly concepts which will help you make better use of the "better commentaries", as you are not likely to pickup a book such as "The Hermeneutical Spiral" on your own!


Good comment.


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Ron Bailey

 2006/6/20 13:35Profile
coops
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Joined: 2004/6/28
Posts: 141


 Re: acrediation and free bible college

Quote:
The most difficult might be 'accreditation'.


Yeah, I'm glad it's only in conceptual stage, as we can decide if this sort of thing is needed or not. I don't want to hinder the mode of delivery, spend all my time making it so that people can get some piece of paper if they visit another college about it. Maybe it would be better to simply have a little section for each course with details on the hours, mode of assessment, and topics covered etc.

KingJimmy, I know what you are saying, and to be honest I think that's a task too big to do. You are right, people who want deep scholarly knowledge are better off seeking it out and using the source, rather than a simplified version someone wrote for online.

The level (or depth) I was thinking of would have been equivalent to most Advanced Diplomas, or possibly even bachelors (not sure about this). The two types of people I had in mind were:

1. Those in other countries (or in my own) that had zeal and wanted to go into full time ministry, but couldn’t afford the costs.
2. Those who are called into the workplace to be lights in a dark world. This is more the lay ministry style, “everyday chaplain”, sort of thing. Basically anyone who is called into something other than “being a pastor” but still wants to be in ministry in whatever that do.

Anyway thanks for all your replies. I’ll keep you updated in this thread, or by email if you let me know.


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Coops

 2006/6/20 18:10Profile
coops
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Joined: 2004/6/28
Posts: 141


 Re:

Quote:
I was led to start a very simple little web site last year that contains some free Bible correspondence courses



[b]InTheLight[/b] how would you feel about offering some of those lessons/courses within this new system?


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Coops

 2006/6/20 18:12Profile





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