Fall Courses

This fall, we're continuing to make ICS courses available to students from anywhere in the world. Unless otherwise noted, this semester's courses will be delivered synchronously (meeting at designated times over Zoom video conferencing), following an in-depth once-weekly seminar format.

Below, you will find an alphabetical list of all the courses on offer remotely this fall and links to full course descriptions and syllabi (as they become available throughout the summer). If you are interested in taking an ICS course for credit and applying it to a program at another institution, you may contact our Registrar with questions on how best to do so.

AUDITING DISCOUNT: If you are a continuing learner or want to get a taste for what ICS courses are like, first-time ICS auditors and ICS alums can take these courses for only $425 (registration included). You can find more information on our fees page.

Courses on Offer

Biblical Foundations: Narrative, Wisdom, and the Art of Interpretation

(ICS 1108/2108AC F21; ICB2010HF L0101)

Tuesdays @ 6:00 - 9:00pm Eastern

with Nik Ansell

How can we read and experience the Scriptures as the Word of Life in the midst of an Academy that believes the biblical witness will restrict human freedom and thwart our maturity? How may we pursue biblical wisdom as we “re-think the world” when our Christian traditions seem convinced that biblical truth may be disconnected from—or simply applied to—the most pressing and perplexing issues of our time?

This course will explore the Bible—from Genesis to Revelation—as the ongoing story of and for God and all God’s creatures, paying special attention to the way in which humanity’s attempt to find its way is interwoven with the story of the Divine presence and with the wisdom and promise of creation-new creation. In asking whether and how the biblical story may find its future in our ongoing narratives, we will attempt to identify which hermeneutical methods and sensitivities might help us discern its significance for present day life, including the academic enterprise.

If Jesus is the Living Word at the heart of Scripture, does that change our understanding of where biblical truth is coming from and where it is going? Does the Bible have an implicit, sapiential pedagogy that we have misconstrued? Can the familiar Reformed themes of creation and covenant, election and eschaton speak to us in new, reformational ways? These are some of the questions we shall explore together as we reintroduce ourselves to the biblical writings.... [syllabus and more]

Cultivating Learning Communities of Grace

(ICS 260008 F21)

Blended Online Synchronous/ Asynchronous Format*

with Edith van der Boom

This is a course for instructional leaders and school administrators in the consideration of both school and classroom cultures. Course content will include attention to diversity, cultural complexity and increasingly blurred markers of origin and ethnicity, racial justice, and restorative practices. This course seeks to help students find clarity in answers to the following questions:

  • How do we awaken our students’ knowledge, creativity, and critical reflective capacities in our schools and classrooms?

  • How do racism and other forms of oppression underlie achievement gaps and alienation within our schools?

  • How can classroom learning be linked to larger movements seeking to effect change in community? How can school culture be a vehicle for social change?

  • How do we cultivate learning communities of grace in our schools?

  • What is the relationship between the daily behaviour of educational leaders and the cultures of schools? [more info here]

*Please note that this course will have both synchronous (meeting periodically at designated times through Zoom) and asynchronous (Google Classroom forum engagement or assignments) aspects to its format. Consult the course catalogue and syllabus for details about meetings and assignment expectations.

The Divine (at) Risk: Open Theism, Classical Theism and Beyond

(ICS 120803/220803 F21; ICT3730HF/ICT6730HF L0101)

Thursdays @ 2:00 - 5:00pm Eastern

with Nik Ansell

Did God take a risk in creating the world? How are divine and human freedom related? Can we confess God’s sovereignty in the face of evil? This course will explore the different ways in which the God of history is viewed by advocates and critics of “Open Theism”. Our examination will stimulate our own reflections on how we might best understand and, indeed, image God’s love, knowledge and power.... [more info here]

The Observant Participant: Applying Research Craft to Professional Practice

(ICSDH 132501/232501 F21)

Blended Online Synchronous/ Asynchronous Format*

with Gideon Strauss

This is a key course in the MA-EL program, where we will be led by questions such as: How do I make sense of my own experience as a practitioner? How do I learn from my experience? And how do I give attention to what matters most?

In this course we will draw on the critical reflective practices of other practitioners, equip participants with the methodological tools of qualitative researchers, and cultivate an attitude of attentiveness informed by the approach to practice taken by phenomenologists—becoming philosophically skillful students of our own lived human experience In doing this course together, we will become more observant participants in our lifeworlds and strengthen our capacity as reflective practitioners in our professions and in our scholarship.

While the focus of this course is on applying research craft to professional practice, the course is also an introduction to graduate level qualitative research and to key perspectives from phenomenological philosophy... [syllabus and more]

*Please note that this course will have both synchronous (meeting periodically at designated times through Zoom) and asynchronous (Google Classroom forum engagement or assignments) aspects to its format. Consult the course catalogue and syllabus for details about meetings and assignment expectations.

Pragmatism, Race, and Religion: Du Bois, West, and Glaude

(ICS 120501/220501 F21; ICT3771HF/ICT6771HF L9101)

Thursdays @ 10:00am - 1:00pm Eastern

with Ronald A. Kuipers

This course will explore the work of key Black thinkers in the philosophical tradition of American Pragmatism, paying particular attention to the unique way their reflection upon racialized experience shapes and augments key themes within this thought tradition. How might the strain of tragedy and absurdity sounded by Black pragmatists inflect the sense of meliorism and hope for which American Pragmatism is well known? In pursuing this question, the course will pay particular attention to the differing religious pasts of white and black America and ponder these thinkers' understanding of the relevance and complicatedness of Black religious experience in our racially divided era... [more info here]

The Radical Theopoetics of John D. Caputo

(ICS 150907/250907 F21)

Wednesdays @ 2:00 - 5:00pm Eastern

with James Olthuis

This seminar will explore John D. Caputo’s Theopoetics, a "weak theology" of narratives, prayers and praise in response to the call of God in contrast to a "strong" theology of predicative claims about the existence and nature of God. Situated at the interface between deconstruction and the religion, Theopoetics is a radical alternative to both classical theism and classical atheism... [see more]

With/Out Reason: Art and Imagination in the Western Tradition

(ICS 120106/220106 F21; ICH5752HF L0101)

Wednesdays @ 10:00am - 1:00pm Eastern

with Rebekah Smick

Today the imagination occupies an august, if ill-defined, place in the popular mindset. While we might at some level link the imagination to the arts, its capacities for innovation are thought to span all human creative endeavours across the arts and sciences. In Western society today, thinking imaginatively, or outside the box, is a deeply revered feature of our strongly individualistic culture. Yet, until the eighteenth century, the products of human imagination were understood to be unavoidably communal insofar as they were thought to generate certain palpable effects. For good or ill, works of the imagination were expected to aesthetically impact all those who encountered them. They were never simply the result of abstract thought processes that functioned at a level beyond expected norms. Rather, imaginative inventions were governed by an understanding of the imagination in its most ordinary sense as that which creates mental images.

This course will examine the consequences of this understanding of the imagination for the Western tradition and how it has led to where we are today. Through an investigation of key philosophical and theological texts (e.g. Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Kant, Schelling, Coleridge, Derrida) as well as works of art (e.g. Shakespeare, Blake, Wordsworth), it will look at the place of image and imagination in a variety of forms of cognition from the ‘objective’ world of phenomenon to the ‘inobjective’ world of the highest truths. It will consider the traditional place of imagination in ethical theory. And it will clarify the inextricability of the arts and artistry from this history as well as offer points of departure for a theory of imagination today... [more here]

Want to join a course?

Please email our Registrar, Elizabet Aras, at academic-registrar@icscanada.edu to register today!