Columbia has been established to reach adult learners who cannot afford to leave their job and home to live on a college campus for several years. Therefore, the curriculum has been designed for self-paced learning by Mentorship Study. All course work may be accomplished entirely by Mentorship Study and through the extension mode. Thus, there are no residency requirements whatsoever.
Mentorship Study allows students to determine what area and aspect of Christian studies they desire to engage in. Students may be as specific or as broad in their majors as they desire. They may choose to do studies in one solitary major, such as apologetics, or biblical studies, or missions, or the postmodern or emergent church, or philosophy, or theology. Or, they may choose to do interdisciplinary studies in which they combine several disciplines together. Also, students may create an entirely new curriculum that best fits their own specific interests and ministry goals. Thus, the curriculum may be as varied or as specific as the student desires because the student virtually designs his or her own curriculum. However, for those who prefer to have a more structured curriculum designed by the school, that will be provided. Whatever choices students make concerning the curriculum best suited for them, the school will provide mentors who will help students with the original design of the curriculum.
Courses are listed and briefly described. (See the links to the various study disciplines on the left side of this page.)
Please understand that it is impossible to list all of the various texts that might be used in these courses
Therefore, we have not attempted to list the required texts per each course. These are simply some suggested texts for the courses in question. In nearly all cases, there will be other texts also required. These other texts will be determined between the professor and the student.
Click here for Reading and Writing Requirements.
Also, sometimes a text is listed for more than one course—this, however, does not mean that one can simply read a single text for several courses. If a student has read a particular text for a class, he/she cannot use that same text again for another course.
Next, some of the suggested texts may no longer be in print. If this is the case, the students and their mentors will simply select other, newer texts dealing with the same topic.
It is important to make clear that though we offer studies in a variety of theological and philosophical perspectives, CES does not necessarily endorse all of the positions listed in the course descriptions. However, rather than simply telling students what to think, it is our belief that an institution of education should allow an open atmosphere of learning, and that includes reading, studying, and critiquing various perspectives within Christianity. We believe that students deserve the right to read, critique, and decide for themselves which perspectives they believe to be correct. To this end, some courses are set up to see both sides of a debate: for example see courses TH-603/803 Eschatology, TH-206/406 Sanctification, and TH-615/815 Perpetuity of Spiritual Gifts.
Degree level numbering for classes
Freshman classes are listed as 100-Level classes
Sophomore classes are listed as 200-Level classes
Junior classes are listed as 300-Level classes
Senior classes are listed as 400-Level classes
Master's classes are listed as 500 and 600-Level classes
Doctoral classes are listed as 700 and 800-Level classes
Note: Students may select courses from any of those listed in the catalog, as long as their mentors redesign and adjust the courses to correspond to the students' degree level for which they are enrolled.
The Only Required Class
CES Writing Protocols: This class covers the basics of writing and academic style. Over the years, we have determined that a course in academic writing should be required for all students, regardless of their degree level. Thus, every student is required to take the CES-Writing-Protocols class. This class should be taken early in the program.
Every school has its particular "style" for academic writing, and to be successful in their classes, students must know what those requirements are. The CES Writing Protocols class will be adapted to whatever major the student has chosen. All students are strongly encouraged to take this class for credit, but only those writing a thesis or a dissertation must take it for credit; others may take it as an audit.
Two options concerning this class from which students can choose:
Option #1: Take the class for credit and work it into your degree program. (This option is highly recommended for all students.)
Option #2: Audit the class. There is a flat fee of $100 to audit this class, and the student still must pass the final exam. No credit is given for an audit.
Exam Retake Fee: Students must pass this exam with a "C" or higher. Should the student receive a grade lower than a "C," he/she must retake the exam within 45 days, and there is a fee for all Exam Retakes.
CES Writing Protocols
WP-300 - 4 SH (for undergraduates)
WP-500 - 4 SH (for master's level students)
WP-700 - 4 SH (for doctoral students)
1) Audio Lectures by Rick Walston (listen free online)
2) CES Writing Protocols Study Guide by Rick Walston (view free online)
3) CES Student Handbook (Contained in WP Introduction.)
4) A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations (5th edition, or later) by Kate Turabian.
5) Working With Words: A Concise Handbook for Media and Editors by Brian Brooks (any edition)
Other suggested readings include:
Student's Guide for Writing College Papers by Kate Turabian
Working With Words: Exercise Book by Brian Brooks
Elements of Style by Strunk & White (3rd ed) Read this book online
The Elements of Grammar by Margaret Shertzer
On Writing Well by William Zinsser (6th ed)
Writing to Learn by William Zinsser.
Go to the For Students section for more information or to listen to the CES Writing Protocols lectures.
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