Principles of Ethno-doxology – WRSP 811

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 06/02/2022

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.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


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 the Course Overview.

Discussions (8)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will post one initial thread of at least 250 words. The student must then post 2 replies of at least 150 words. For each thread, students must support their assertions with at least 2 scholarly citations in Turabian format. Any sources cited must have been published within the last five years. Acceptable sources include textbooks, video presentations, scholarly articles and journals, the Bible, etc. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E)

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. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E)

Pedagogy Project Assignment

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. (MLO: A, C, E).

Testimony Project Assignment

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, singing, 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. (MLO: B)

Final Project Assignment

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. (MLO: B, C, D, E).