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Course Peek: Worship

Theology & Practice of Worship (W5401)

Course Description

This course is a study of the biblical purpose of worship and the practice of worship in the church today. Learners will focus on the biblical foundations, theology, and history of worship.

The course is taught during an eight-week term that includes a course introduction week, six Learning Units, and a learning evaluation week. All units are designed to help the learner fulfill the learning objectives of the course. Learning units may include lecture and research materials, outside reading, learning community discussion, and church-based assignments. The professor serves as a ministry learning mentor, providing almost daily interaction and facilitation among the learners.

Program Objective

This course will help you meet the following academic program objective:

  • Graduates will demonstrate an understanding of Christian ministry founded on biblical mandates, informed by the church’s heritage and relevant to its present circumstances. (MDiv)


This course will help you develop the following ministry competency:

  • Educates the congregation in worship. (W-4)

Course Learning Outcomes

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the practice of early Christian worship
  2. Analyze the relationship between worship and evangelism
  3. Articulate the biblical and theological basis for worship
  4. Recognize the diversity among churches in the body language of worship
  5. Observe and evaluate a worship experience different from your tradition
  6. Evaluate the worship wars in light of Scripture and church history

Required Textbooks/Assessments

Course Overview

  • Unit 1: What You Will Learn
  • Unit 2: Biblical Foundations of Worship
  • Unit 3: A Biblical Theology of Worship
  • Unit 4: A Brief History of Worship
  • Unit 5: The Practice of Worship, Part I
  • Unit 6: The Practice of Worship, Part II
  • Unit 7: Beyond the Worship Wars
  • Unit 8: Learning Assessment

What was the most enjoyable aspect of the course?

  • Attending someone else’s worship service and writing an evaluation/assessment of it
  • Videos were a great addition.
  • Reading my professor’s comments
  • The professor was one of the most enjoyable aspects of this course.  She is a wonderful educator.
  • Reading the online articles and discussing topics in the forums
  • The conversations with students, professor and with my mentor
  • The assignment to attend a church that has a worship style that is very different from ours was very helpful.  I attended three different services in three different churches and learned tremendously from each.
  • The Forum discussions
  • I really enjoyed Bob Kauflin’s book. I plan on asking one of my interns to read it before the beginning of next semester.
  • The professor, she was so knowledgeable and helpful
  • Being able to observe a Worship Service at a church different from my church
  • I enjoyed the quizzes. I loved applying what I learned.
  • Reading Kauflin’s book and interacting with the course lectures and materials

(Recent learners on course evaluations)

Course Schedule

  • 2014 Term 2 (Mar 4-Apr 28) – MDiv, MML
Courses are taught fully online in 8-week terms. Each course allows students to build learning from the context of their own ministry roles while enjoying the stimulation of a global learning community. Learners are guided by academically qualified professors with current and relevant ministry experience.