Christian Education and Youth Ministry

The major in Christian education and youth ministry is designed to give you optimal learning in Christian ministry. You will take required courses in both Christian education and youth ministry and then elective courses that best suit your interests. The purpose of the major is to equip you for entry-level positions in a local church or para-church organization in either Christian education or youth ministry. The major also prepares you for graduate studies in one or both of these areas. At the end of the program, you will be equipped to examine different areas of ministry, articulate a basic philosophy of educational or youth ministry, and develop your abilities in Christian leadership.

To help fulfill this goal, three primary areas of study are required. First, you will be exposed to the theory and practice of Christian education and youth ministry. Second, you will be academically and spiritually grounded through a foundation of courses in biblical and theological studies. And, third, you will be exposed to broader areas that influence ministry through courses in the social sciences.

The Christian education and youth ministry major affords opportunities for immediate employment, although graduate studies are encouraged if you are seeking a career in either Christian education or youth ministry.

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Major requirements

CEY 210 - Foundational Issues in Christian Education
CEY 212 - Foundational Issues in Youth Ministry
CEY 401 - Integrated Field Experience I
CEY 402 - Integrated Field Experience II
Electives: (10-12 credits)
CEY 310 - Leadership Development
CEY 315 - Philosophy of Adolescent Ministry
CEY 320 - Teaching and Learning Strategies
CEY 330 - Special Topics in CE/YM
CEY 380 - Narrative and Spiritual Formation

Cognate Requirements

REL 310 - Christian Spirituality
REL 328WI - Biblical Interpretation and Theology
REL 382 - Religion in America
Focusing on the Christian tradition, this course will examine the individual, institutions, movements and faith traditions which have shaped and contributed to the American religious experience. To understand both the variety of and unity within the pluralist religious landscape, the course will seek to evaluate the interrelationship between religion and the broader social, cultural and political aspects of the American experience.(4 credits)
Choose one course:
PSY 221SS - Developmental Psychology: Childhood
(4 credits)(IGE option under Self and Society) This course explores the development of the child from the prenatal period into adolescence. Children's physical, cognitive, emotional, personality, social, moral and faith development is examined. Psychological research methods for studying children are covered.
PSY 224 - Developmental Psychology: Adolescence
Adolescents experience many changes in a few short years as they transition from childhood to adulthood. This course explores the major psychological issues and theories in adolescent development with emphasis on cognitive development, self-concept, peer relationships and sexuality, among others.(4 credits)
PSY 225 - Developmental Psychology: Adulthood
This course explores psychological issues and theories in normal adult development, with emphasis on cognitive, social and personality functioning from young adulthood to old age.(4 credits)
Electives: (8-10 credits)
REL 260 - Christian Ethics
A biblically based, theologically and historically informed study of both personal and social moral issues from a Christian perspective. (2 credits, offered at the discretion of the department, consult department)
REL 290 - Christian Witness
An examination of Christian witness as verbal proclamation (evangelism), as reasoned response (apologetics), as a distinctive lifestyle and as the practice of social justice. Prerequisite: REL250 (4 credits)
REL 294 - Introduction to Christian Missions
A general overview of the biblical foundations and historical evolution of Christian mission, with special emphasis upon the modern development of mission theory and practice. Prerequisite: REL250(2 credits)
REL 317 - Topics in Old Testament Studies
A study of a single book or larger section of the Old Testament or a current area of critical inquiry concerning the Old Testament. Possible topics include, but are not limited to, the Pentateuch, the Historical Writings, the Prophets, and the Poetic and Wisdom books.Prerequisites: REL110 and sophomore class standing.(2 credits)
REL 322 - Topics in New Testament Studies
A study of a single book or larger section of the New Testament or a current area of critical inquiry concerning the New Testament. Possible topics include the Synoptic Gospels, the Book of Acts, the Johannine Literature, the Epistolary Literature, the Apocalypse.Prerequisite: REL110 and sophomore class standing.(2 credits)
REL 340 - Heart of Worship
(2 credits, alternate years, consult department) A study of an interdisciplinary area of religion, not sufficiently covered by other courses, in response to student or faculty interests. This course will explore Christian worship: its history and branches, its underlying liturgical and sacramental theology, and principles and practices of worship leadership. Students are encouraged to connect their own worshipping experiences with course content in order to understand why their congregations came to worship as they do.
REL 370 - Calvin and Calvinism
A study of John Calvin's INSTITUTES OF THE CHRISTIAN RELIGION, as well as a survey of other varieties of Reformed theology, including later Calvinism. Prerequisite: REL262 (4 credits, alternate years, consult department)
REL 375 - Topics in Theology
A study of one or more standard areas of theology, (such as the doctrines of Revelation, God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, Humanity, Salvation, the Church, and Last Things) from a classical as well as a contemporary perspective.Prerequisites: REL110 and 262.(4 credits, alternate years, consult department)
REL 385 - Topics in Religion
A study of an interdisciplinary area of religion, not sufficiently covered by other courses, in response to student or faculty interests.Prerequisite: REL250 or permission of instructor.(2-4 credits, alternate years, consult department)
REL 390 - World Religions
The major religions of India, East Asia and the Middle East are examined in the light of the Christian faith. This course emphasizes the interaction of religion and culture with a view to cross-cultural understanding. In-depth research into a specific culture and religion is required.(4 credits)

Total credits required: 44-48

Recommended courses

Students with Youth Ministry interest should take:
CEY 315 - Philosophy of Adolescent Ministry
PSY 224 - Developmental Psychology: Adolescence
Adolescents experience many changes in a few short years as they transition from childhood to adulthood. This course explores the major psychological issues and theories in adolescent development with emphasis on cognitive development, self-concept, peer relationships and sexuality, among others.(4 credits)
Students with Christian Education interest should take:
CEY 320 - Teaching and Learning Strategies
CEY 380 - Narrative and Spiritual Formation
Recommended cognates:
KIN 345 - Outdoor Recreation
Knowledge and skill in outdoor recreation activities including backpacking, camping, climbing, hiking and orienteering. Safety rules, survival and compass/ map reading are emphasized. Prerequisite: sophomore class standing. (2 credits; non-yearly, consult department)
MUS 115AE - Music of the Church
THE 305 - Story and Worship
The study of the story of worship as well as story within worship. An application of the principles and practices of dramatic art to worship planning and leadership, and also a study of plays within the context of Christian corporate worship. (4 credits, alternate years, consult department)
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