Principles of Ethno-doxology – WRSP 811

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

An examination of how different cultures practice worship. Students investigate how worship both influences and is influenced by life as lived within a cultural community or specific ethnic group. Application is made to the role of various art forms (i.e. music, dance, drama, video, visuals, storytelling) have in proclamation of the gospel and celebration of the Eucharist event.




In increasingly complex cultures, there is a need to understand how people experience worship differently depending on social context.  This course moves the student to a global focus exploring multi-cultural issues that students will encounter when engaging with cross-cultural populations globally, equipping them with tools that they will need to engage with music and worship in global contexts. It would also be appropriate for anyone who plans to work in a cross-cultural environment where he/she will encounter local arts.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Choose appropriate ways to elicit an understanding of music and its cultural functions.
  2. Utilize the theoretical base of fieldwork in a practical way that directly applies to the student’s individual interests and ministries.
  3. Analyze dilemmas and possibilities involved with using indigenous music forms in church settings.
  4. Evaluate a specific people group’s needs for ethnomusicological assistance.
  5. Equip local churches with tools for meaningful contextualized worship.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (8)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide 3 initial threads in response to the topics for each forum. Each thread must be at least 250 words in length and demonstrate course-related knowledge and ask questions that spur conversation. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 3 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be at least 250 words in length in order to count as 1 of the 6 required posts for the forum. All threads and replies must contain at least 1 citation each, and current Turabian format must be used.

Writing Assignments (3)

For each assignment, the student will write a 1,800–2,300 word paper in current Turabian format that focuses on the provided topics. Each paper must include at least 8 citations in addition to the course textbooks and the Bible.

Pedagogy Project

The student will develop 4 modules of curriculum for teaching worship cross-culturally. There is no specific word count requirement for this assignment. However, the assignment must contain substantial content to effectively teach a 4-week program. This assignment will be posted to a discussion board forum, and the student will reply to 4 other projects with replies of 150–200 words. No citations are required, but current Turabian format must be used.

Testimony Project

The student will have a choice of how he/she wishes to complete this assignment. The student can choose to write a 1,800–2,300-word paper, or complete a 15-minute video showing him/her drawing, speaking in a poem or play, or dancing. This paper or video will focus on an oral presentation of the student’s testimony of coming to Christ.

Final Project

The student will complete both a paper and a PowerPoint presentation for this project. The paper must be 18–25 pages, and the PowerPoint must have at least 15 slides of content. This project must contain 18–25 citations.