Faith Integration

Andrews University is a Christian school; and therefore faith integration in online learning is an important value and task. Among other statements, the Andrews University Mission Statement includes this: Andrews University students will seek knowledge as they understand life, learning, and civic responsibility from a Christian point of view. How this is done makes for interesting discussion and research. There are certainly many viewpoints on the best way to integrate faith and learning; as well as different views on what it really means.

Some core issues for online course development and teaching online at Andrews are:

  • How does your own faith experience intersect with your teaching and learning?
  • In what ways do you encourage students to consider the course content & discipline’s philosophy from a Christian point of view?
  • What can students learn or experience regarding civic responsibility from a Christian point of view?
  • What are the Biblical foundations that intersect with your course content (as applicable and appropriate)?

What could this look like in an online course? The evidence may come in instructor-student interaction, in discussion on how the Christian worldview intersects with the content knowledge, in how students are viewed and treated as whole persons made in the image of God, in the instructor’s teaching presence. Here are some examples:

Instructor Presence

  • Hosting and encouraging student participation in an online chapel
  • Tone of your interactions with students
  • Ways that you show students you care – praying for them, helping struggling students, etc.

Writing Assignments

Another common way to explore the intersection of a Christian worldview and course content is through discussion forums, essays, and/or writing assignments.

Teaching Civic Responsibility

Biblical Foundations

Are there any natural connections between Biblical perspectives and your course content? Here are a few examples to challenge your thinking:

Note that it is important that these connections be appropriate, thoughful, integrated, and respectful of other faiths represented in your classroom.

Hopefully these ideas provide some background to help you consider how a Christian worldview intersects with your course content – and how best to assist students in their own growth and understanding throughout the process.

Talk to your Instructional Facilitator for more ideas or assistance with applying these ideas to your course.  Find these tips and more online in the Online Course Development Support Site.


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