Courses & Schedules - Fall 2013
Below you will find a complete listing of SFTS courses for Fall 2013. As one of the founding members of the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, SFTS is proud to be able to offer our students the opportunity to take GTU classes as well.

>> Click here to see theological educational opportunities through the GTU

>> For information about registration see the Academic Handbook

Dates to remember:
  • General Registration for Fall Semester Aug. 19-Aug. 30
  • UC Berkeley Fall Semester begins Aug. 22
  • Fall tuition payment due
  • PC(USA) Bible content exam Aug. 30
  • Instruction begins for Fall Semester Sept. 3
  • Late registration period $100 fee for initial registration in this period Aug. 31-Sept. 13
  • UC Berkeley Cross-registration forms due to GTU registrar Sept. 6
  • End of late registration period Sept. 13
  • Deadline for making changes in enrollment without fee and for paying fall tuition without incurring late fee Sept. 13
  • Deadline for GTU thesis or dissertation defense without paying tuition Sept. 13
  • GTU MA applications for Spring due Sept. 30
  • Reading Week Oct. 21 – Oct 25
  • Last day to change enrollment $50 fee for changes Nov. 8
  • Deadline to file GTU theses/dissertations, etc.
  • Early Registration for Spring Nov. 11- Nov. 22
  • Limited enrollment requests due for Fall
  • Thanksgiving Holiday Nov. 28-Nov.29
  • UCB Fall Semester ends Dec. 6
  • GTU Fall Semester ends Dec. 13
  • Christmas Break Dec. 21-Jan. 5
  • Last Day to make up Incompletes from Fall Semester Jan. 3
Courses taught in San Anselmo unless otherwise noted.
Area I: Biblical Studies
   
BS-1002 Basic Greek I (3.0 Units) - Introduction to basic grammar and vocabulary
needed to begin reading biblical Greek. This course or the equivalent is a prerequisite for Basic Greek II, the intensive course given during January Intersession.
Professor: Polly Coote
Class Schedule: Tues/Friday 8:30-10:00 a.m.
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
BS-1120 Basic Hebrew I(3 Units) - An introduction to the basic phonology and morphology of biblical Hebrew. This course or the equivalent is a prerequisite for Basic Hebrew II, the intensive course given in January
Intersession
Professor: Bob Kramish
Class Schedule: Tuesdays, Fridays 10:20-11:50
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
OT-1200 Pentateuch and Former Prophets (3.0 Units) - This course introduces the text, history, and theology of the first nine (eleven)books of the Hebrew Bible (i.e. Genesis through Kings) in the context of ancient Near Eastern culture; the history of the biblical period from early Israel to the Persian period; and the nature of critical study of the Bible. It assumes no prior study of the Bible. Method of evaluation: classroom participation; short exams; papers; final exam.
Professor: J. Brown
Class Schedule: Tuesdays, Fridays 8:10-9:30
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
NT-1005 New Testament Introduction (3.0 Units) - PAULINE EPISTLES. This course is an introduction to the life, work, and theology of Paul as they are reflected in his undisputed epistles in the New Testament and in other related documents within and outside the NT. The course will try to reconstruct Paul's life and ministry and survey his letters in their reconstructed chronological order. Special attention will be paid to the particular historical circumstances and theological concerns of each letter. The primary mode of inquiry in this course is historical-critical in nature, but hermeneutical questions will also be raised with regard to the application of Pauline theology to current issues in the church and beyond.
Professor: Eugene Park
Class Schedule: Fridays 2-5
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
BS-2608 The Bible & Mythology (3 Units) - This class focuses on the overt biblical material which is mythological in nature, as well as the use of the genre of mythology generally as a methodology to explore the biblical text. The class will be more focused on the Hebrew Bible, but it will also cover aspects of the New Testament. The first half of the semester this class will concentrate on the connection of the biblical material with mythological texts from ancient Near Eastern literature; the second half of the semester the approach will be topical (The heroic, magic etc.), incorporating mythological material from a wider milieu. While the primary approach of the class is literary, the idea of history (historicity, historiography) will also be considered, as well as theories regarding the practice and development of religion. The course is a seminar that will meet once a week for three hours; evaluation is based on a short paper, a long paper, an oral presentation, and active involvement in discussion. The course is intended for either MA or MDiv students who wish to pursue critical engagement with the biblical text from literary, historical, and religious perspectives. There are no prerequisites for enrolling in the course. This course fulfills the second OT requirement for SFTS students.
Professor: J. Brown
Class Schedule: Thursdays 2:10 – 5 at MUDD
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
BS-2608 The Bible & Mythology (3 Units) - This class focuses on the overt biblical material which is mythological in nature, as well as the use of the genre of mythology generally as a methodology to explore the biblical text. The class will be more focused on the Hebrew Bible, but it will also cover aspects of the New Testament. The first half of the semester this class will concentrate on the connection of the biblical material with mythological texts from ancient Near Eastern literature; the second half of the semester the approach will be topical (The heroic, magic etc.), incorporating mythological material from a wider milieu. While the primary approach of the class is literary, the idea of history (historicity, historiography) will also be considered, as well as theories regarding the practice and development of religion. The course is a seminar that will meet once a week for three hours; evaluation is based on a short paper, a long paper, an oral presentation, and active involvement in discussion. The course is intended for either MA or MDiv students who wish to pursue critical engagement with the biblical text from literary, historical, and religious perspectives. There are no prerequisites for enrolling in the course. This course fulfills the second OT requirement for SFTS students.
Professor: J. Brown
Class Schedule: Thursdays 2:10 – 5 at MUDD
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
BS-4000 Advanced Greek I (3.0 Units) - Classical Greek, which is usually identified with Attic Greek from the 5th to 4th century BCE, is the language of the Greek civilization at its peak. It is said to have a most elaborate syntactic system and rich vocabulary that provided Greek philosophers, sophists, historians, poets, and dramatists with an excellent means of expressing their ideas with precision and beauty. Since philologists and grammarians during the Hellenistic period used Classical Greek as their primary data of inquiry, the grammar of Classical Greek became the foundation for the grammar of most Indo-European languages. For these reasons, knowledge of Classical Greek is essential for many disciplines in Humanities including New Testament studies. This course will read selected portions of Plato's Phaedo, which is one of the best prose texts in Attic Greek. The class will translate the text and discuss its grammatical features focusing on the syntax of each sentence and morphology of the vocabulary. Pertinent philosophical ideas of Plato will also be discussed as they shed light on the linguistic features of the given text.
Professor: Eugene Park
Class Schedule: Tuesdays 9:40-12:30 at CDSP
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
NT-6005 Area Foundation Seminar (3 Units) - The Area Foundation Seminar provide an introduction to the state of biblical studies and the primary methodologies for New Testament. It provides hermeneutical theories from standard historical critical methods to new approaches like postcolonial theory currently practiced in New Testament interpretation. Theoretical discussion will be followed by interpretation of selected passages from various parts of the New Testament. We will focus on 1 Corinthians. Format: Seminar. Evaluation: Final exegesis paper. Intended Audience: Doctoral Students, advanced MABL.
Professor: Annette Weissenrieder
Class Schedule: Tuesdays 2:10-5 at CDSP
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info


Area II: Church History, Theology & Ethics
   
HS-1080 History I (3 Units) - An introduction to Christianity in the context of world history and religions, from the second century to 1700. Particular emphasis on the Mediterranean world, Central Asia, North Africa, and Europe as pluralistic social and cultural environments. Lectures, work with and discussion of primary sources, including materials drawn from the visual arts and music. Midterm examination, final examination. Term papers may be substituted for each. Extra-credit book reviews also possible.
Professor: Christopher Ocker
Class Schedule: Thursdays 10:20-11:50
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
HS-8010 History I ONLINE (3 units) - CHRISTIANITIES: FROM JEWISH SECT TO COLONIAL RELIGION -  An introduction to Christianity in the context of world history and religions, from the second century to 1700. Particular emphasis on the Mediterranean world, Central Asia, North Africa, and Europe as pluralistic social and cultural environments. Lectures, work with and discussion of primary sources, including materials drawn from the visual arts and music. Midterm examination, final examination. Term papers may be substituted for each. Extra-credit book reviews also possible. This course is the online section of HS 1080 for students who do not live on the SFTS campus. Mostly asynchronous format. Weekly reading in primary sources, lectures by audio file, and written posts to a discussion forum on Moodle. Three live-streaming conferences. Mid-term and final examinations. [20 max enrollment; PIN code required]
Professor: Christopher Ocker
Class Schedule: TBA
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
HS-6025 History Methodology Seminar (3 Units) - Seminar required of GTU doctoral students in history and expected of doctoral students in other areas declaring history as an allied field.
Professor: Christopher Ocker
Class Schedule: Mondays 2:10-5 at DSPT
Textbooks:  
   
ST-1085 Systematic Theology II (3 Units) - This course is the second semester of a two-semester introduction to Christian theology. The purpose is to help the student gain a basic knowledge of the principal topics of the theology of the universal church, especially as these topics are understood in the Reformed tradition and in conversation with feminist and other contemporary theologies. Beginning with the doctrine of humanity, we look at our original goodness and our fall into relational forms of sin as pride, despair and denial. Next, we look at the person and work of Jesus Christ, from a variety of perspectives. We look deeply at the meaning of our being "saved by grace through faith alone," and the roles of the divine Spirit and human spirit in bringing about our healing. We conclude with the nature of the Christian spiritual life, including sanctification and vocation, the church and its mission in the world and sacraments.
Professor: Greg Love
Class Schedule: Tuesdays, Fridays 10:20-11:50 a.m.
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
STSP-3045 God and Human Suffering (3 Units) - If God is good and loves us as a mother and father deeply loves her or his child, then why do we--or those we love--sometimes go through experiences of utter hell? Where is God? We will investigate several Christian responses--two classic and three contemporary--to the relation between God and human suffering. Class discussion of the texts, various arguments, and our own positions. Three optional movies. Two drafts of a 5-7 page midterm paper, and a 10-12 page final paper. Students may develop their own response to God and suffering in the final paper.
Professor: Greg Love
Class Schedule: Thursdays 2:10-5 at CDSP
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
CE-2011 Contemporary Theory in Ethics (3 Units) - A foundational course in Christian social ethics from the perspective of several twentieth century moral theologians. The focus of the reading is ethical method, so this course fulfills the SFTS requirement for ethics. We will pay attention to recurrent themes and issues: love, forgiveness and justice; non-violence, coercion, and violence; universal validity of principles and cultural relativism. The second half of the semester will investigate the value of human rights theory (an instance of universal moral norms) through the lens of Native American history, theology and ethics.
Professor: Carol Robb
Class Schedule: Tuesdays, Fridays 10:20-11:50
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
CE-5005 Theories of Justice (3 units) - This course is a Doctoral and advanced Masters level seminar exploring some major theorists of distributive justice, focused in the socio- political realm with clear application to economic policy. Theorists are rooted in liberal, libertarian, communitarian, and feminist philosophical and political theory. Format is seminar style. One short paper and one longer paper required, plus presentation(s) in class.
Professor: Carol Robb
Class Schedule: Thursdays, 2:10-5 at CDSP
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
RSBS-3010 African-American Biblical Hermeneutics - Course designed to teach students how to interpret the Bible (primarily the New Testament) through the lenses of African American historical/religious realities while critically employing historical critical methods of interpretation. This course is offered under the auspices of the Black Church/Africana Religious Studies program.
Professor: James Noel
Class Schedule: Thursdays, 11:10-2 at CDSP
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info


Area III: Pastoral Care, Homiletics, Spirituality, Worship
   
PS-2058 C/PC Critical Theological Reflection (1.5 Units) - Critical Theological Reflection will use the "teaching case" method. The purpose of the "teaching case" is to establish a framework for discussion among students. This method is used to increase student's knowledge and assist student's integration of individual, group, organizational, social, political, spiritual, physical, psychological, and theological dynamics in pastoral care-giving contexts. The "teaching case" method allows students to reflect upon data collected from pastoral care encounters. The learning process includes a recollected reconstruction of the interchange between the student as care-provider and a care-seeker, as well as a structured reflection upon that interchange. This approach is used for clarification of pastoral care encounters, greater self-understanding as religious leader and person, shared learning among class participants; as well as increased pastoral competence and care-giving skills, contextualization of caring encounters, and theological reflection upon human situations. It is also an opportunity for students to develop consultation skills for providing critical theological feedback, and bridge the gap between theological reflection and pastoral care practice. Learning strategies include writing case studies, written and oral reflection in response to a series of questions (done outside class time), small group sharing, reading, and reflection papers. Participants must commit themselves to the weekly class and to the critical reflective process in order to receive credit. Priority to SFTS M.Div. C/PC Concentration students; SFTS M.Div. and GTU students admitted on a space available basis.
Professor: Laurie Garrett-Cobbina
Class Schedule: Wednesdays, 10-11:30
Textbooks: NA
   
PS-4155 Addictions (3.0 Units) - This course addresses current understandings of the description, etiology and treatment of addictive disorders including, but not limited to, addictions to legal and illegal substances such as alcohol and drugs, as well as addictions to various activities, commonly called "behavioral addictions." Is there such a thing as an addictive personality? What are the cultural forces that give rise to such addictions? What is the spiritual dimension of addiction diseases and how can pastoral care givers use the resources of various spiritual practices, along with counseling methods, to help people overcome their addiction difficulties?
Professor: Scott Sullender
Class Schedule: Mondays, 8:30-12
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
PS-4157 Family Therapy (3.0 Units) - This class is a comprehensive review of the basic concepts, methods and opportunities for ministry with and for couples and families. We will look at the underlying assumptions-theological and psychological-for relationship counseling. We will review some of the assessment and ways of diagnosing dysfunctional relationships. We will review the methods and approaches to couples work, using clinical illustrations and examples wherever possible. We will also use the family systems perspective as a lens through which we can understand congregational dynamics and tensions. This doctoral seminar requires regular student attendance and full participation. While a DMin class, this course is open to MA and MDiv. students with special permission/interview with instructor.
Professor: Scott Sullender
Class Schedule: Mondays 1:30-4:30 p.m.
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
LSFT-2525 Reformed Worship (3.0 Units) - Fulfills most PCUSA presbyteries' requirement for a course on worship and sacraments and prepares candidates to take the PCUSA standard ordination exam in worship and sacraments
Professor: Jana Childers
Class Schedule: Thursdays 2:10-5
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
RA-4565 Postcoloniality and Modern Art (3.0 Units) - This seminar will bring formerly enslaved and colonized peoples' perspectives into conversation with aesthetic theories regarding the aspect of modernity referred to as the "sublime" in aesthetic theory while also gazing upon the West through the social history of its art.
Professor: James Noel
Class Schedule: Tuesdays, 9:40-12:30 at PSR
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
SP-2527 Spiritual Life and Leadership (1.0 Units) - The primary act of ministry is listening: to God, to oneself, to others. This class will introduce basic listening skills from a grounding in the contemplative tradition (rather than from psychology or communication theory). The semester will open with an investigation of contemplation and process of contemplative listening We will then break into small groups where participants will take turns relating meaningful experiences, e.g. from, childhood, from a ministry situation and from the past week. Midway through the semester we will introduce further conversation skills (questions, summaries) and reflect more on contemplative listening as a form of ministry. This course complements but does not replace the basic Pastoral Care and Counseling course. Learning strategies include, reading, lecture, small group skills practice, reflection paper. Preference to SFTS ministry students (MDiv., DMin. and MATS), including those electing the Spirituality Concentration.
Professor: Vanessa Hawkins
Class Schedule: Wednesdays, 8:30-10:10
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
SP-2056 C/PC Pastoral Care Service Project (1 unit) - The Pastoral Care Service Project provides a way to live out the Christian conviction that pastoral care is ultimately a theology of service. Out of involvement with persons in need, and feedback from peers and instructor, students develops new awareness of themselves as persons and of the needs of those they serve. From theological reflection on specific human situations, students gain a new understanding of pastoral care ministry. Participating student will choose one of the following (as available and with permission of service site administrator): (a) Assist the SFTS Chaplain or SFTS Professor of Pastoral Counseling by serving as the student chaplain on-call, reporting to both the Shaw Chair for CPE (for support and performance feedback) and the SFTS Chaplain or Professor of Pastoral Counseling (for administrative direction and performance feedback); or (b) A service mission directed by the Shaw Chair for CPE that may be on or off campus, public or hidden, and that stresses leadership and service. This service mission will directly engage care-giving with the disadvantaged and address structural issues which underlie unjust systems. Participants must commit themselves to the provision of pastoral care through the service project in order to receive credit. SFTS M.Div. C/PC Concentration students only. [PIN code required; 8 max enrollment; Auditors excluded]
Professor: Laurie Garrett-Cobbina
Class Schedule: N/A
Textbooks: N/A
   
FT-2070 Presbyterian Polity (3.0 Units) - This course will familiarize students with the Book of Order of the Presbyterian Church (USA), with particular emphasis on the Form of Government and the Book of Discipline. Lecture/seminar format. Evaluation by participation, presentations and ordination-type exams. The course will be approached from a mission perspective. Intended for PC USA M. Div. students.
Professor: Robert Conover
Class Schedule: Wednesdays, 7-9 PM
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
FT-1060 Introduction to Ministry (3 Units) - This is a required course for first year students at SFTS. It is an introduction to ministry and the life and work of the church, based upon a contextualized understanding of theology, mission, pastoral care and spiritual formation situated in the realities of race, gender and class. We will look at particular congregations and contexts for ministry in the Bay Area in dialogue with the texts and readings introduced in the course. The course will make use of a variety of learning activities and styles of interaction, including lectures, small groups, site visits and audio-visual presentations. The focus of the course papers and group project is the student's own sense of vocation in conversation with the pastoral and prophetic challenges of Christian ministry today.
Professor: Faculty
Class Schedule: Mondays, 1:30-4:30 p.m.
Textbooks: TBA
   
FT-4661 Interdisciplinary Theological Reflection (3.0 Units) - In Interdisciplinary Theological Reflection senior MDiv students will learn methods of theological reflection useful for processing critical incidents in ministry. They will reflect on several incidents from their own ministries, choose one for in-depth reflection, select an appropriate method of theological reflection and lead this theological reflection with their peers, as well as participate in reflecting on their peers' critical incidents. They will then write a paper summarizing the entire process. This paper should also reflect learnings from throughout their theological studies as brought to bear on their critical incident as well as students comment and critique. In the second part of the course, students will reflect systematically on their experience and learnings throughout their theological studies and prepare their personal theology of ministry in the form of a paper. It will be shared with their peers and further revised in light of this feedback. This completed paper may be submitted to the student's ordaining body. Learning strategies include brief lectures (presenting theological reflection models), some reading and discussion, small group presentations, discussion and critique of peers' work, two papers. Advanced MDiv. Fulfills SFTS capstone requirement.
Professor: Scott Sullender
Class Schedule: Tuesdays, 1:30-4:30 p.m.
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
FT-1071 Advanced Academic English II (1.5 Units) - This course will feature practical strategies for becoming a better editor of your own and other people's writing. Coherence and clarity will be our focus. Topics will include organizing essays and structuring arguments effectively, as well as improving grammar and sentence-level mechanics. All levels welcome.
Professor: Heather Weidemann
Class Schedule: Tuesdays 7:10-8:30 p.m.
Textbooks: N/A


Integrative Studies
   
FE-4011 Internship (0-9.0 Units) - The internship provides a supervised ministry context in which the student develops and hones gifts and skills for ministerial leadership. The internship experience is designed to integrate studies and form M.Div. students in the art of ministry--an interactive learning process reflecting the Spirit's work of weaving together the person that God has created and called in Christ through the practice of ministry, theological reflection, spiritual formation, constructive feedback, critique and evaluation.
Professor: SFTS Faculty
Class Schedule: NA
Textbooks:  


Doctor of Ministry
   
DM-6017 Pastor as Person (3.0 Units) - Foundational seminar required for SFTS Doctor of Ministry students.
Professor: Lily Stearns
Class Schedule: Mondays, 8:10-12:30
Textbooks: Click here for textbook info
   
DM-6018 Theology of Ministry (3 Units) - This foundational seminar explores the challenges of and opportunities for ministry in the 21st century, and encourages students to develop the critical skill of theological reflection. Students critique their ministerial role through their own theological experience of content, context and motifs in Christian ministry. This course honors diversity and the reality of our shared community with its plethora of experiences, beliefs, and values.
Professor: SFTS Faculty
Class Schedule: Mondays, 2:10-5
Textbooks:  
   
DMPS -6055 Family Therapy (3.0) - This class is a comprehensive review of the basic concepts, methods and opportunities for ministry with and for couples and families. We will look at the underlying assumptions-theological and psychological-for relationship counseling. We will review some of the assessment and ways of diagnosing dysfunctional relationships. We will review the methods and approaches to couples work, using clinical illustrations and examples wherever possible. We will also use the family systems perspective as a lens through which we can understand congregational dynamics and tensions. This doctoral seminar requires regular student attendance and full participation. While a D Min class, this course is open to M.A. and MDiv. students with special permission/interview with instructor.
Professor: Scott Sullender & Lily Stearns
Class Schedule: Mondays 1:30-4:30 p.m.
Textbooks:  
   
DMPS-6060 Addictions (3.0 Units) - This course addresses current understandings of the description, etiology and treatment of addictive disorders including, but not limited to, addictions to legal and illegal substances such as alcohol and drugs, as well as addictions to various activities, commonly called "behavioral addictions." Is there such a thing as an addictive personality? What are the cultural forces that give rise to such addictions? What is the spiritual dimension of addiction diseases and how can pastoral care givers use the resources of various spiritual practices, along with counseling methods, to help people overcome their addiction difficulties?
Professor: Scott Sullender
Class Schedule: Mondays 8:30 a.m.-noon

Textbooks:

 
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