The greatly expanded options for multiple learning experiences in contemporary education is uniquely suited for individuals who have a desire or “calling” to minister in and through local churches or social organizations – including religious and governmental agencies. To utilize the various options available Guido Bible College has incorporated different educational delivery systems to challenge students to expand their learning styles and potential. Our primary purpose is to employ techniques in the student’s learning experiences that are directly transferable to ministerial settings.
The roles of church leaders today are very diverse and vary from serving in “soup kitchens” and distributing clothing to individuals who are in need to delivering a Sunday morning sermon. Ministers, church and lay-leaders often find themselves facilitating small groups, teaching in a traditional classroom, utilizing social media opportunities, providing crises management, pastoral care and referral services to agencies that meet the needs of individuals that are consistent with needs of individuals who attend churches. Because of the different demands placed on religious leaders those preparing to serve in this area need exposure to and experience in these areas. To meet the challenges to fill many of the different roles of those in ministry Guido Bible College, by design, incorporates different learning modalities to prepare students to meet the individual needs of individuals.
For this reason Guido Bible College has implemented a Cohort Educational Program that integrates six different methods of learning in its presentation of course materials. These methods include traditional classroom instruction; guided class interaction; Christian ministry service projects; online research and sharing related to classroom topics; applied theology and student Christian ministry service; oral presentation of online research papers and spiritual formation and ministry groups.
A Cohort Team will be limited to fifteen (15) students and may be formed at the beginning of a unit of instruction at any time during the year. The team will remain together until that particular unit of instruction or program of study is completed. The curriculum for a unit of instruction will grant ten (10) hours of credit during a four (4) month term of instruction. Units of instruction will begin in January, May and September.
Students with prior college level studies may be admitted to the Cohort Program in Biblical Studies and/or Christian Ministry programs of instruction if he/she has completed studies or has earned an associate degree from an accredited institution and provide evidence of Biblical and theological knowledge that is compatible with those of this institution. Other students will be required to undergo testing to ascertain their level of Biblical and theological knowledge prior to admittance into the program(s).
Students may audit a unit of instruction with the permission of the teacher. However, they must meet the general requirements of the course or make special arrangements with the teacher prior to the first day of the unit of instruction.
Classroom Instruction follows the traditional process of the teacher presenting and following an outline of instruction prepared to meet specific learning objectives of the course. It includes the discussion and application of ministerial responsibilities to reading assignments, lectures on course syllabi topics and related materials, periods of time allocated for questions and answers posed by the teacher to student and student to teacher, student-teacher and student-student interaction related to the course objectives. Term papers, quizzes, oral and written tests of reading assignments, lectures, student, and media presentations are also part of the process.
Guided Class Interaction is a process utilized by the teacher in the role of a facilitator when an assigned topic is to be discussed by the class. The teacher/facilitator is responsible to develop a series of questions that focus on the topic to be discussed and then guides the interactive process of the class. The teacher/facilitator is responsible to lead the discussion of the assigned topic in a pre-determined, yet not coercive process that will reveal the students’ understanding of the topic as well as its educational and personal value for daily living and its application in ministerial/leadership situations. Students are encouraged by the questions to explore their understanding and feelings about their values, opinions and positions of the topic being discussed and various contexts where the topic may be addressed in ministry. They will also address opportunities on how the information under discussion may be utilized in real-time, real life situations without being defensive or offensive in their behavior.
Christian Service Ministry is required of all students enrolled in the College throughout their program. Each student will identify an area of Christian ministry that is in alignment with their perceived calling as well as their skill or talent level and personal interests and invest four (4) hours per week in that area of ministry. Christian service ministry is also to be recognized as the practical utilization of theology, i.e., “applied theology” when students actually “apply” classroom teaching(s) with faculty. There will be monthly meetings with a faculty member to review the student’s ministry activities, integration of classroom instruction and its practical application. These sessions will include discussions on the plans, progress and problems of the student’s ministry and identify multiple insights for various approaches to utilize classroom instruction. An integral part of this component is to evaluate the student’s understanding and application of the learning objectives of the college to Christian ministry and validate individual ministerial effectiveness and personal growth.
Spiritual Formation is incorporated in the Christian Service Ministry group meetings and addresses major elements of ministerial life. Topics include Worship; Prayer; Meditation; Obedience; Praise; Fasting; Stewardship; Humility; Discipleship; Surrender; Wellness and Family. The topics incorporated in the sessions are areas of Christian living that those in ministry will recognize as important elements in the lives of those whom they will serve. Also, all of these topics are incorporated in the units of instruction that will be addressed by teachers throughout the term.
Online Research Assignments are a teacher directed project which require students to research specific course-related topics and write a paper on the assigned topic, present their findings in class and online to the teacher and other students. Copies of the paper will be distributed to class members prior to the presentation and discussion of the topic.