The Master of Worldview Studies is an academic program with an action focus. Designed for those who want to enhance their understanding of how to serve Christ in their professional lives and other areas of socio-cultural engagement, it fosters a personal and communal "philosophy of life" rather than academic philosophical understanding. The wisdom it seeks is revealed in Jesus Christ, Scripture and our daily experience of God's voice in the created world. While this is a way of seeing, it is more fundamentally a way of being, permeating the whole of life.
The MWS is offered on campus for full-time or part-time study; selected courses are also available in distance mode. Participants will begin by identifying an action-oriented project which they will pursue throughout the duration of the program and which will determine the focus and direction of their courses. A core curriculum of four courses will provide coherence and breadth and will also help significantly to build community among Junior Members. Four additional elective courses are required to complete the degree. Two of these electives may be taken through either ICS or an approved educational institution outside of ICS. Additionally, a major research paper/project may fill the requirements of two elective courses.
The Education specialisation is available primarily in distance mode. It adapts the general program to enable enrolment in up to six courses in Education, together with Biblical Foundations and another core course. This one year degree is an economical and efficient way to attain a professional qualification at graduate level. A number of ICS Worldview Studies courses have been approved for credit towards the Christian School Teacher Certificate (CSTC, Edifide, formally OCSTA) and the Christian School Principals Certificate sponsored by the Ontario Christian Schools Administrators Association. Some courses have also been approved for credit towards the Administrator Certificate offered by Christian Schools International in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Courses may also be granted credit toward the MEd programs at Calvin College, Dordt College and elsewhere (on application).
The MWS and the Mission of ICS
ICS intends to be a self-consciously Christian environment where hard and honest questions are welcome. It supports inquiry that takes underlying religious convictions into account, working from within the reformational tradition, and presuming that academic work should be an integral expression of the deepest intellectual and religious impulses. Within this perspective, the MWS also embodies other priorities: a commitment to cultural engagement and social justice; the development of an arena for the formation of international students (notably from Africa and Asia); and a direct engagement by on-campus Junior Members with the Institute's urban setting, drawing not only on the city's scholarly resources, but on its many cultural, professional, charitable, financial and other institutions (for the city, and all it contains, is part of God's creation).