The course is divided into 9 Modules, and each module contains a
chapter from the textbook. Modules may last from one to three weeks.
The following learning activities apply to each module:
1. Read the assigned textbook material.
2. Respond to discussion questions submitted by the instructor. At
least to 4 questions in each module.
3. Create and submit a discussion question about the material. At
least one in each module.
4. Respond publicly to some or all of the questions submitted by
5. Reply to students who respond to your question and responses.
every module you will find a "Virtual Seminar." A virtual
seminar is like a class discussion. Here, for each module and topic,
you are expected to reply to questions from the instructor, you will
ask a "critical thinking" question about some topic in the
chapter, get responses from other students, and reply to those
responses. Here too, you will answer the questions posed by other
students, and they will reply to your answers. You are welcome to keep
up this "virtual discussion" as long as you wish. The idea
here is for each student to join in and to lead a discussion with the
other students about some important issue introduced in the chapter.
is the heart
of this course as far as your instructor is concerned. It is here that
the process of philosophy will be in evidence. It is here that you get
an opportunity to DO PHILOSOPHY. This is the component of this online course that fosters the
dialectical process of inquiry that is the heart of Philosophy.
Upon completion of each module there is an essay question. These
questions are my way of testing your understanding of the texts and
Discussions for that module. You will know what the questions or
topics are at the start of each module. You should post your essays
during the 2-day "window" that is established for submissions, not
before. Unlike your responses to the discussion questions posed by me
and the other students, you will submit your essays just to me, not to
the whole class. You need to consider these essays as "take-home,
open-book essay exams", which require well-organized, thorough
In the discussion board area there is a "Talk with the
Professor" area. Here I will ask questions which each student should
respond to. Also, you may ask me questions, which I will respond to.
Most often, I expect these questions (mine and yours) will be related
to the discussions or the textbook - but nothing is "off-limits."
Ask a Question
Most discussion forums you will be entering will allow you to start
a new discussion thread. The button is in the upper left. When you use
this button, it creates a discussion thread that the professor and
other students can participate in. It is the equivalent of "raising
your hand" in the classroom.
These take place in the PRIVATE FOLDER area of
the class. You may ask me a
private question at any time using this area. Treat this area as a private
office visit. I welcome your comments and feedback, too.
There are a variety of readings. In this online course you are
basically reading and writing with lots of
There is a required
for this course: it is FREE and available in two sites on the
There are two copies of the online textbook for this course
and another copy at
In the event that you have any need to access the reading and
cannot use the SLN website
you might try reading the materials at the sites above. It is for
TEXT ONLY not for discussions
or for sending or receiving communications.
Most of the material in the textbook will be made available to you
in links to other sites.
These sites will have the message READ in front of it, e.g.,
b. There are other
related to this course for those who may feel more comfortable having
such a book rather than reading everything online. There are many such
Schmidt, Roger, et al;
Patterns of Religion, Belmont,
CA.:Wadsworth, 1999. ISBN 0534 506 496
Patterns of Religion by Roger Schmidt, Gene C. Sager, Gerald
Carney, Julius J. Jackson, Kenneth Zanca, Albert Muller, Julius
Jackson Our Price: $67.95 Used Price: $43.75
Pojman, Louis P. Philosophy
of Religion: An Anthology. 3rd ed.
Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 1998. ISBN 0-534-52956-9
Click here to order from:
c.The Instructor’s Lessons, Lectures, Notes, Advice, etc...
d.The Discussion Topics
e.Student Submissions-Discussion Posts and Threads
f.Internet Resources- required are marked as in the online textbook
links offered in the online textbook are suggested readings and are
simply offered as links to materials you might want to look at or read
with varying degrees of interest. Some may find these more interesting
than the required linked materials!
1. Class Participation & Discussion: 18%
2. Critical Analysis Essays (Written Assignments) : 45%
3. The Quality of Your Discussion Threads: 36%
a fifteen-week semester (Spring and Fall) the workload for this course
would be 12 to 15 hours per week. This includes all the reading, writing, and dialogue with
your instructor and fellow students.
In the SUMMER SESSION with only 8 weeks from May
29th to July 23rd the workload in effect is
double that of the regular 15-week semester.
It requires 24 to 30 hours per week to successfully complete
this online course.
This requires a serious commitment on the part of
the learner. You can
access the course at any time from any computer with an Internet
connection. However, you
must put in the effort, the labor, the work needed to meet the course
requirements and obtain a passing grade.
The course can prove to be a lot of fun for those
who take it seriously and keep up with the workload.
For those who are unable to put in the time and fall behind the
course could prove to be quite horrible.
You are encouraged to read the student comments
on the course before the course begins.
They indicate that the course is rewarding, some fun, but a
great deal of work.
consider carefully what time you have available for this course.
If you decide to continue on in the course, I look forward to
“seeing” you online.