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CURRICULUM

The core curriculum moves chronologically from the most ancient in the freshman year toward more contemporary times in the senior year. Built into every course are an appreciation of art and architecture throughout the ages, and a survey and critique of the major philosophies of the era. During the four years of study at Imago Dei, the student can expect to engage in the following:

Readings in the Christian Theology: four years (24 units minimum)

Readings in Philosophy: four years (24 units minimum)

Readings in the Great Literary Works of Western Civilization: four years (24 units minimum)

Readings and Labs in Natural Philosophy: two years (8 units minimum) 

Readings in the Seven Liberal Arts: two years (12 units minimum)

Including: Grammar, Logic, Rhetoric (trivium),

Mathematics, Geometry, Music, Astronomy (quadrivium)

Gender studies (discipleship program): two years (4 units)

Leadership studies (discipleship program): two years (4 units)

Formal lectures: four years (8 units)

Cultural Studies and Criticism, including Film Studies: one year (6 units)

Physical Education and Fitness: four years (8 units)

Senior Thesis: one year (6 units) 

 

Course Descriptions:

 

            Theology:

The study of theology is crucial for the curricular design of Imago Dei College in properly founding the student in the Word of God as well as in the readings of a rich heritage of theological thinkers. From this foundation the student begins to develop a more mature and sophisticated Christian worldview by which all else must be elucidated.

Year One: This course is designed to be both intensive and comprehensive. In the first semester students will read and discuss the Old Testament, as well as study interpretive principles. The second semester is dedicated to the reading and discussing of the New Testament. Students will write two exegetical papers, one from each Testament.

Year Two: The Early Church Fathers will be read and discussed during the second year. Among the authors and texts that will be read are: Didache, Ambrose, Athanasius, Jerome, Origen, and early Christian creeds. The Patristic and Medieval theologians will be read and discussed ending with the pre-Reformers Wycliffe and Huss.

Year Three: The Reformers and beyond will be read and discussed this year. Included are Luther, Erasmus, Calvin, Zwingli, Knox, a Kempis, and later theologians Bunyan, Edwards, Wesley, the Puritans, et cetera.

Year Four: More contemporary and well established works will be read and discussed during this year. Among the authors are: Lewis, Barth, Bonhoeffer, Machen, Warfield, et al. This course will also serve as a capstone course in apologetics in which the students are challenged in giving a reasonable defense of the Christian faith. 

                       

Philosophy:

So much of what we study as ‘Great Books’ is philosophical by nature. Philosophy is the underpinnings of other disciplines such as politics, economics, science, literature, art, history, and even religion. Often the lines are blurred when studying philosophy with respect to categories, so we will only attempt to identify the authors whom we will be reading.

Year One: The philosophers to be read, discussed and critiqued in the first year include: the pre-socratics, Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.

Year Two: The philosophers to be read, discussed and critiqued in the second year include: Aurelius, Augustine, Boethius, Lucretius, Epictetus, Plotinus, Anselm, Aquinas, et al.

Year Three: The philosophers to be read, discussed and critiqued in the third year include: Descartes, Bacon, Kant, Hegel, Heidegger, Spinoza, Schleiermacher, Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Berkeley, et al.

Year Four: The philosophers to be read, discussed and critiqued in the fourth year include: Gadamer, Ricoeur, Derrida, Kristeva, Barthes, Wittgenstein, Russell, et al.

 

Literature:

‘Great Books’ are profound in a multitude of areas, but they may likewise carry an inherent entertaining aspect that reveals progression of thought, cultural values, and displayed creative skill. The great novels will be read, discussed and evaluated as to their intrinsic worth from a Christian worldview.

Year One: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the first year: Epic of Gilgamesh, Homers’ Iliad and Odyssey, Sophocles I, Cicero, Virgil, et al.

Year Two: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the second year: Chaucer, Dante, Beowulf, et al.

Year Three: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the third year: Milton, Bunyan, Shakespeare, Dickens, Austen, Hugo, De Cervantes, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley, Tennyson, Poe, Emerson, Bronte, Melville, et al.

Year Four: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the fourth year: Orwell, Thoreau, Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Twain, Miller, G. Eliot, T.S. Eliot, Steinbeck, Frost, Kafka, et al.

 

History, Political and Social Sciences:

We can understand so much of history by the other texts we read composed during particular periods. There are, of course, specific texts which are self-consciously historical recounts and others that have serious historical significance.

Year One: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the first year: Code of Hammurabi, Sennacherib, Thucydides, Herodotus, Plutarch, Tacitus, Josephus, Eusebius, Suetonius, Julius Caesar, et al.

Year Two: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the second year: Procopius, Bede, Machiavelli, More, et al.

Year Three: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the third year: U.S. Constitution, Jefferson, Locke, Bradford, Anti/Federalist Papers, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Edmund Burke, Franklin, Paine, Mill, Douglass, Freud, Smith, et al.

Year Four: The following works will be read in toto or in part in the fourth year: Tocqueville, Lincoln, Stowe, Marx/Engels, Hilter’s Mein Kampf, Tin Boom, et al.  

 

Natural Philosophy:

Natural philosophy explores the theories and practices of the sciences and mathematics. Many of these courses are necessarily accompanied by laboratory requirements, putting to test the theories under investigation.

Year One: Euclid, Pythagoras, Archimedes, Ptolemy, Nichomachus, Aristotle, Apollonius, et al.

                                    Year Two: Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, et al.

                                    Year Three: Darwin, Newton, Pascal, Pasteur, et al.

                                    Year Four: Einstein, et al.

 

Language Arts:

The learning and mastery of a language is foundational to the bare essentials of communication. The languages that will be learned at IDC are both considered to be ‘dead’: Latin and ancient Greek. Both languages are integral in the mastery of many Western languages, including English, as well as historically significant in the life of the church. The art of mastering the language is to a certain extent greater than the very mastery of the language itself.

Year One: Latin is learned from the classic text of Wheelock’s Latin Primer. A language lab will also reinforce the learning process.

Year Two: Latin continues while learning depends more heavily upon translations of classical Latin prose, poetry and liturgy, including the Vulgate.

Year Three: Koine Greek is selected for reasons of biblical relevance in that it is the language of the New Testament. Machen’s Greek is selected as the text. A language lab will also reinforce the learning process.

Year Four: Koine Greek continues as the student begins to translate selected New Testament passages.

 

Physical Education:

It is unfortunate that we have lost touch not only with Classical and Medieval models of learning and curriculum, but the Classical and Medieval emphasis on physical health as well. This is a situation that we intend to rectify with the requirement of all four years of physical education.  

Year One: Physical fitness and weight training is no mere maintenance program; it is the course that will help define muscle mass and bolster the cardio-vascular system. It is prescribed as a natural combatant to what is commonly known as the ‘freshman fifteen.’

Year Two: In the first semester Self-Defense is taught through a variety of simulations. The second semester refines these skills in kickboxing and martial arts. 

Year Three: Again we display our preferences for the medieval as we engage in fencing and archery.

Year Four: Seniors get a feel for the activities that are not only physically demanding but ones that are recreational as well. Seniors enjoy rock climbing, mountain hiking and horseback riding.

 

Seven Classical Liberal Arts:

The study of the Seven Classical Liberal Arts is foundational for any classical education. These seven liberal arts are divided into two sections: the Trivium and the Quadrivium.

 Year One: Trivium includes Grammar, Logic, and Classical Rhetoric.

Grammar: Covered by the study of Latin; see its course description.

            Logic: Covered in a variety of philosophy readings.

Classical Rhetoric: Covered in a variety of philosophy readings.

Year Two: Quadrivium includes Arithmetic, Geometry, Astronomy, and Music.

Arithmetic: Covered in a variety of natural philosophy readings and labs.

Geometry: Covered in a variety of natural philosophy readings and labs.

Astronomy: Covered in a variety of natural philosophy readings.

Music: The great composers of history will be studied. Students will be introduced to music theory and will participate in a choral and/or instrumental ensemble. 

 


 

 
 
 
 
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