Click on the course names below to access the full course descriptions.
Viejo Testamento (Old Testament)
Este curso es un estudio de los libros, la cultura, el contexto histórico y la teología del Antiguo Testamento. Se prestará atención a los orígenes y el desarrollo del Antiguo Testamento, incluyendo los autores, las principales personalidades y los principales temas de los libros. Los temas principales que se discutirán incluirán una introducción al antiguo Cercano Oriente y al Creciente Fértil, antecedentes históricos y culturales del Antiguo Testamento en el contexto del antiguo Cercano Oriente, las diversas épocas de la historia de Israel antigua y los diversos métodos utilizados para interpretar muchos de los textos del Antiguo Testamento, principalmente las perspectivas de América Latina.
Intro to Old Testament
This course provides a survey of the Old Testament, focusing on the texts in their historical and literary contexts. Students will learn to read the texts from various perspectives and evaluate the notion of the literature as sacred texts both for ancient readers as well as contemporary faith communities. Evaluation will be based on participation in interactive discussions, content quizzes, written assignments and examinations. This course meets in a blended format.
New Testament for Bachelor’s Equivalency Program (English)
The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the collection of writings that we come to call the New Testament. Students will learn about the New Testament through reading, writing, discussions, along with other artistic mediums. As an introductory course students will become familiar with the historical context, culture, and the politics that lead to the production of this text. In addition to the traditional historical critical approach to the text, students will be introduced to other methods such as feminist, postmodern, and post-colonial readings that will help us deconstruct these texts and reconstruct interpretations that are socially, ethically, and politically relevant to the world we live. This course has no pre-requisites.
Ensayos Teologicos (Theological Essays)
En este curso se estudian los elementos basicos para elaborar un ensayo teologico como un ejercicio academico. Este curso tiene como objetivo principal proporcionar al estudiante las herramientas y fundamentos basicos que le permitira redactar un ensayo academico, en particular en el ambito teologico.
Intro to Theology
This course will begin with a brief introduction to philosophy and how its different traditions have been foundational to the development of Christian doctrine. Secondly, it will provide a thorough understanding of the importance of methodology in theological development throughout history and, finally, it will focus on the doctrines of Revelation, the Trinity, God, and human being.
Preaching Sermons that Matter
This course will be taught by one of the premier preachers in the Bay Area.
Intro to Pastoral Care
In Pastoral Care, students acquire the skills to exercise active listening, empathy, and compassion with special attention to the needs of the Latino culture. This class offers a holistic understanding of our relationship with others. It includes a review of theological positions regarding pastoral care.
Introduccion a la Sicologia (Introduction to Psychology)
Este curso de Psicología comprende el estudio de las diferentes etapas del desarrollo de la persona (áreas física, sicológica, spiritual, intelectual moral, entre otras), a la luz de diversas teorías psicológicas. Se le dará preferente atención a las implicaciones que esas etapas tienen para la implementación de un ministerio eficiente en la iglesia local.
En la clase, los estudiantes tendrán la oportunidad de entender los diversos acercamientos que han existido históricamente para tratar con la realidad psicológica de las personas.
Para aprobar este curso, los participantes tendrán que cumplir con la presentación de un proyecto práctico.
New Testament Voices
In this introductory course, students will examine the origins and development of the texts, language, authors, dates, personalities, and significant themes that make up the New Testament through various interpretive approaches. Indeed, by reading and analyzing these texts from the perspective of multiple voices, students will appreciate not only the complexity of NT authorship but also the subsequent paradigms and theologies generated out of these texts, including their own. In this course, special attention will be given to the Hebrew Bible (LXX) and its role in the formation of the NT. This course is appropriate for masters-level students and satisfies part of the core requirements at Berkeley School of Theology. Students from across the GTU are welcome and encouraged to attend the course.
Earliest Christian Doctrine
The course will survey the history of christianity from its earliest beginnings up to the eve of the Reformation. Special attention will be given to prominent leaders who help shape Christian doctrine. In addition, key theological, political and social issues will be addressed and primary text wil be used to enhance group discussion.
Fomat: Lecutre, oral reports and group discussion
Assignments: Student/s will be requried to write one reseach paper or several theolgical reflection papers.
Old Testament Speaks Today
This course will provide a basic introduction to the study and message of the OT. The successful student will have 1) acquired a socio-cultural and theological overview of the Old Testament with foci on basic content, critical issues and exegetical and hermeneutical methodologies; as well as 2) developed a self-awareness concerning his/her own social location and its relationship to the reading, thinking, and doing of biblical, historical, and theological work; as well as 3) applied methods, theologies, and interpretations to contemporary social justice concerns.
Theological Writing 1
First semester of a required course for entering BST seminarians – open to other GTU students. Students will learn skills of academic writing, critical analysis, and articulation of objectives. Writing samples and instructor feedback integrate theory and praxis.
Using Biblical Languages
Students will be introduced to the basic elements of biblical Hebrew and Greek. The course is designed for those seeking to understand the components of the biblical languages for ministerial purposes, however, any who are interested in Hebrew and Greek are encouraged to attend. The course content and curriculum will include preparation in the use of Hebrew and Greek lexical aids, an introduction to the fundamentals of linguistic theory, and exposure to exegetical and hermeneutical methods. This course is a requirement for all BST students; however, students from across the Graduate Theological Union are welcome and encouraged to take the course.
This introductory preaching course is designed to enable the students to learn the theoretical and practical elements of contemporary preaching from diverse traditions. There will be lectures, presentations, and weekly writings and discussions around topics related to today’s diverse understanding of preaching and students will preach three sermons for the class. Open to all degree students.
Ministry in a Digital World
This course will help students maximize the use of technology in their ministry. Students will critically assess where their ministry is in the digital world, strengthen the technological tools they are using already, and then discover new tools for ministry. This course examines the place of technology in ministry. Students will have hands-on learning experience on various methods to use technology and how it can contribute to the effectiveness for ministry.
The goals of this course are: to review the grammar (morphology and syntax) learned in first year; to increase vocabulary knowledge; to introduce students to prose readings from the Hebrew Bible (especially from the Books of Genesis, Ruth, Jonah & Tall Tales). Weekly Oral Reading & Quizzes, Mid-term and Final Exam.
Internship I & II
Supervised ministry in approved placements for MDiv and MCL students. Format: Lecture, discussion, small groups, onsite internship. Assignments: a learning covenant, reflection papers, timely completion of evaluation forms. BST students in first semester of field education. Pass/Fail only. Students must have made arrangements for an approved placement. [Auditors excluded].
Morality in Society and Religious Spheres
This course examines issues of morality in society with ethical questions as well as biblical/theological frames that provide a moral basis for public policy. Interactive dialogue and use of audio-visual tools to look at past and present moral challenges will facilitate students’ leadership skill development to assess the ramifications upon those least able to protect and defend their own interests. Project theme: How do issues of faith and beliefs in God’s sovereignty get used or abused in public/religious spheres? Students will explore public advocacy groups and “watch dog” agencies, secular and faith-based practitioners. Class dialogue / assigned sharing, readings, and final critical analysis presentations. master and doctoral students welcome.
White Supremacy & the Bible
The Bible has been used throughout the centuries to create, support, and sustain the institutions of white supremacy, racism, and slavery as well as the colonization of the world by euro-centric powers. This course will survey the history of biblical interpretation that under-girds the movements mentioned above as a means of stimulating new ways of thinking about and interpreting the Bible for a contemporary inter-cultural and inclusive society.
Understanding Religious Pluralism
This course focus on religious pluralism and inter-faith dialogue in communities. It will provide a historic overview of American religious pluralism and where it stands today. Beyond religious diversity, religious pluralism requires understanding religious communities in context and considers the avenues for the open engagement of believers from different faiths and perspectives. The course offers an opportunity to consider ministry in communities other than one’s own.
Protestant Reformation & Contemporary Church
This course will survey The Age of Reformation (1517-1648), The Age of Reason and Revival (1648-1789), and The Age of Progress (1789-1914). Special attention will be given to prominent leaders who help shape Christainity during these periods. In addition, key theological, political and social issues will be addressed and primary sources will be used to infrom group discussion. Lastly, we will spend a few extra weeks on the Reformation and Couter Reformation, since it sets the tone for what is to follow in Western Christianity.
Fomat: Lecture, oral reports and group discussion
Assignments: Student/s will be requried to write one reseach paper or several theolgical reflection papers
Preach Environmental Issues
1st & 2nd Generation Latinx Youth
This course has been specially created for BST’s Latinx DMin cohort on how to work to meet the needs of 1st & 2nd generation immigrant youth. The following competencies will be addressed: . First generation youth: i. How to meet linguistic challenges early on; ii. How to maneuver in a new context and culture; iii. Jobs and job training; iv. Educational needs; b. Second generation youth: i. Managing the gap – living with one foot in each culture (country of origin & US); ii. Maintaining or becoming bi-lingual (Spanish and English; iii. Creating life giving and supportive social groups (English & Spanish); iv. Moving through the educational system (K-12—college—and beyond). The course will be taught remotely and in Spanish.
Theological Reflections on 1619
In 2019 the New York Times Magazine published a special edition entitled The 1619 Project. Since then, this project has been turned into a book edited by Nikole Hannah-Jones (originator of the 1619 Project), et. al., that has become accessible to the general public. In this 6 session summer course, Judge Wendell Griffen of the Sixth Judicial Circuit and Pastor of New Millennium Church in Little Rock, Arkansas will team with Dean LeAnn Snow Flesher to provide a theological walk through The 1619 Project. The course may be taken for credit for 3 units or 1.5 units. Auditors are welcome. Class will meet once a week for two hours. Summer 2022 dates and times 6/21, 6/28, 7/5, 7/12, 7/19, 7/26; 5pm to 7pm PDT.
Policing in Black & Brown Communities
This course will survey the history of Policing in America during the 20th and 21th century. Specifically we will examine police brutally in black and brown communities with the aim of underwstanding its cause and how it can be changed. We will discuss specific cases, to see what went wrong (bad laws, bad practices, blatant rsicsim, etc), again with the hope of finding answers to this problem. Lastly, it is hoped that information covered in our “Racsim and White Supremacy” course will be useful in helping us think more deeply about causes and possible solutions to the epidemic. Fomat: Lecture, oral reports and group discussion Assignments: Student/s will be requried to write one reseach paper [Auditors excluded]
Reparations for Blacks
This course will examine the notion that African Americans, who were the descendants of slaves, should receive reparations from the U.S. government. By examining centuries of mistreatment and abuse of African Americans in this country, we shall make a case for some form of reparation/s. To bolster this position, we will examine cases where reparations were awarded to other groups to see if this can also be applied to African Americans. [Auditors excluded]
DMin in Thesis
This is the course number used for BST Doctor of Ministry students working on the completion of their doctoral project. Students should work with their DMin committees for counsel on implementation and completion of their projects.
Religion & Practice Seminar
People’s belief systems and faith commitments affect the way they live their lives –individually and communally; through extraordinary actions or internalized habits; during feasts, fasts, or on an everyday basis. This course will introduce doctoral students to a wide variety of academic methods for studying faith/belief in practice, and/or lived religion. Students will explore the questions asked by scholars in the various fields of the department (homiletics, liturgical studies, missiology, practical theology, and yoga studies) and how scholars address them. Faculty and guest presenters will assist students in applying different ways of observing people’s practices, describing them, and thinking/talking/writing about the layers of meaning they embody and express. Committed to an interdisciplinary approach to scholarship, this course will emphasize integrating theological studies and other fields (such as art, anthropology, history, ritual studies and textual studies). This seminar will be taught online, using synchronous and asynchronous formats. In addition to required readings, research exercises, in-class presentations, and periodic reflections, students will engage with off-site communities (virtually as needed), and will complete a final research paper of 20-25 pages.
This core Doctor of Ministry course has been created specifically to train DMin students in creating viable research methods for their DMin projects that will result in reliable qualitative and quantitative data. Course will meet August 15-19, 2022; 9am to 5pm (hybrid intensive).
Becoming Culturally Responsive
To be(come) Culturally Responsive requires mentors and partners. Each student in the newly revised Competency Based Doctor of Ministry program will journey alongside a thematic cohort with several DMin students and mentors. A student’s mentor team can be geographically centered or spread across the globe. The remote realities that have become the new normal in our world create possibilities for communication and gatherings from anyplace at any time. Each year of Berkeley School of Theology’s Culturally Responsive Competency Based DMin will address several themes. Each student will select one of the themes to emphasize (or create one of their own with their advisors help) and build his/her mentor team accordingly: Typical themes include: 1) Racism/Prison Renewal/Reparations; 2) Creation Care/Greening the Church; 3) Pastoral Care for Immigrant Churches; 4) Preaching Social Justice; 5) Pastoral Care/Spiritual Formation (Korean); 6) Pastoral Care/Spiritual Formation (English) 7) Ministerial Training Latinx Churches (Spanish); 8) Womanist/Feminist Gospel
Sacred Texts Seminar
This course is co-taught by Mahjabeen Dhala and LeAnn Flesher. This doctoral seminar will explore the diverse ways in which sacred texts are formed,
interpreted, and experienced over time. Among the textual traditions that we will study include
selections from Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, and Muslim classical canons.
Our methods will include historical-critical and literary studies of these texts and their histories
as well as a study of the hermeneutical principles that have guided their interpretation through
the ages. We will also consider the function of these texts within the communities that regard and
transmit them. This will include an exploration of their theological, contemplative, liturgical,
ritual, pastoral, spiritual, ethical, artistic, and performative modes.
In particular, the seminar will examine several sacred text traditions through the following set of
critical lenses (1) textual production, (2) authorship and composition, (3) canonization and
recension, (4) liturgy and law, (5) translation and commentary, (6) embodiment of texts.
Our course aims to enable you to identify primary aspects of the textual traditions studied, their
material and ritual histories, the mechanisms for the production and interpretation of these
textual traditions, as well as the historical junctures that led to the consolidation of textual forms.
This course is required for doctoral students in the Sacred Texts department.
Continuing fee for BST DMin students that have completed their course units but have not yet completed their doctoral project required for graduation.
This course number is used for students that have mastered a competency from their thematic cohort set of learning outcomes outside of taking a regular course or completing an Special Reading Course (SRC). The student mentoring team will determine mastery of the competency and assign the number of units for the advanced standing.
Preparing seminarians for work in religious communities hungry for leadership and action on their values requires rethinking what theology is and what significance it has in today’s context of most pressing issues. Rather than a theology primarily focused on internal reflection and personal redemption, clergy in American communities need to expand their training to include a “public theology” that includes a more meaningful engagement of institutional and societal redemption. An integration of this broader, more inclusive theological orientation with skills of contemporary public engagement and community organizing can not only reexamine many traditional religious assumptions but also empower this new perspective for action. This course will use remote formats for meeting–a combination of Zoom and Moodle.
Fall 2022 Courses
|BAEQ-101||Intro to Old Testament||Reginald Lyles (BST/LIAT)||Thursday 6:30-8:00pm Zoom|
|BAEQ-102||New Testament||Torgerson||Monday 4:10-6:40pm Hybrid|
|BAEQ-203||Intro to Theology||Diana Becton (BST/LIAT)||Thursday 8:15-9:45pm Zoom|
|BAEQ-408||Preaching Sermons that Matter||Claybon Lea (BST/LIAT)||Tuesday 6:30-9:45pm Zoom|
|BAEQ-601||Intro to Pastoral Care||Adumasa Adeyemi (BST/LIAT)||Monday 8:15-9:45pm Zoom|
|BS-2002||Intermediate Hebrew||Melgar||Mon/Thur 8:10-9:30am Remote|
|BSRS-2400||White Supremacy & the Bible||Flesher||Thursday 2:10-4:40pm – BST Hybrid|
|BSRS-4400||White Supremacy & the Bible (Doctoral Students)||Flesher||Thursday 2:10-4:40pm – BST Hybrid|
|DM-6015||DMin in Thesis||BST Faculty||NA|
|DM-6078||Becoming Culturally Responsive||Flesher/BST Faculty||5 day Intensive September 19-23 Hybrid|
|DM-6666||Continuing Fee||BST Faculty||NA|
|DM-6667||Advanced Standing||BST Faculty||TBD|
|FT-1109||Theological Writing 1||Kunkel||Wednesday 5:30-6:50pm Hybrid|
|FT-1750||Ministry in a Digital World||M. Valui and W. Valui||Tuesday 4:10-6:40pm BST|
|HM-1500||Transformative Word||Park||Tuesday 7:10-9:40pm BST|
|HM-4032||Preach Environmental Issues||Park||Thursday 7:10-9:40pm BST|
|HS-1094||Earliest Christian Doctrine||Burris||Thursday 7:10-9:40pm Hybrid|
|HSCE-5100||Policing in Black & Brown Communities||Burris||Every Other Friday 2-4pm Remote|
|LIEQ-101||Viejo Testamento (Old Testament)||Sias||los martes (Tuesday) 5:10-7:30pm Zoom|
|LIEQ-201||Ensayos Teologicos (Theological Essays)||Kang||los jueves (Thursday) 7:10-9:40pm|
|LIEQ-604||Introduccion a la Sicologia (Introduction to Psychology)||L. Da Valle||miércoles (Wednesday) 7-8:30pm Online|
|OT-1107||Old Testament Speaks Today||Sias||Monday 7:10-9:40pm Hybrid|
|RSCE-2261||Morality in Society and Religious Spheres||Miles-Tribble||Wednesday 7:10-9:40pm – BST|
|RSCE-2800||Understanding Religious Pluralism||Grandison||Monday 2:10-4:40pm|
|RSCE-4200||1st & 2nd Generation Latinx Youth||Pedro Morataya||TBD Remote|
|STCE-8310||Public Theology||Flesher/BST Faculty||Friday 4-6pm (Monthly) Zoom|
Spring 2023 Courses
|BAEQ-407||History of Jazz in America||Burris||Tuesday – 7:10-9:40pm|
|BS-1250||Using Biblical Languages||TBD||Monday 7:10-9:40pm Hybrid|
|BSHR-6100||Sacred Texts Seminar||Flesher/Dhala||Monday – 2:10-3:30pm & 3:40-5pm|
|DM-6015||DMin in Thesis||BST Faculty||NA|
|DM-6666||Continuing Fee||BST Faculty||NA|
|HS-3221||Protestant Reformation||Burris||Wednesday 7:10-9:40pm Hybrid|
|HSCE-5101||Reparations for Blacks||Burris||Friday – 6:10-9pm Remote|
|IDS-4300||Capstone Innovation Project||Park||Thursday – 7:10-9:40pm BST|
|IDS-6030||Religion & Practice Seminar||Park||Tuesday – 2:20-3:30pm & 3:40-5pm GTU|
|NT-1080||New Testament Voices||Sias||Tuesday – 7:10-9:40pm Hybrid|