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Ridley runs an integrated program of education and formation. Whether you are studying on campus, online, or a combination of both, we are concerned not just to develop your mind, but also your heart and hands. We recognize that godliness is indispensable to ministry, and so we seek to help you grow as a Christian person.
On campus students have great opportunities to engage in the Ridley campus community. Since character is ‘caught not taught’ it is through the values and culture of the community that people see and experience what it means to be a mature follower of Jesus. Our chapel services, community meals and Life and Ministry Groups are some of the key ways in which you are taught and mentored, both formally and informally.
In later years you can choose to belong to a Learning Community where you join a cohort of people with similar ministry aspiration under the leadership of a Ridley faculty member. As well learning specialist skills, you will have the benefit of the guidance and support of a faculty member who helps you prepare for ministry in your area of specialty.
Of course, formation also takes place in our classes, whether on campus or online, in which we don’t just learn what the bible teaches, but apply it to our own lives, allowing it to change and shape us into mature Christian leaders. The Ministry & Practice subjects are specifically focused on helping you to grow and develop your skills in ministry and reflective practice.
Online students often have the benefit of remaining in their current life and ministry context while they study. We recognise that online students have different needs and study patterns and so we aim to embed formational learning opportunities throughout our online courses in the way we structure our subjects. This includes dynamic learning environments; extended opportunities to interact with other students, lecturers and tutors; authentic assessment which integrates with students’ life and ministry contexts; and plenty of opportunities for reflection.
Online students who are completing a full degree online are also expected to complete the Guided Spiritual Formation subject, which helps you integrate what you are learning in your other subjects by guiding you to reflect (individually and with others) on your own spiritual development and identity, and grow in your ministry and relationship with God.
We also strongly encourage online students to complete a Field Work unit such as PC449/649 Practical Field Education, and where possible, to take a unit in intensive mode on campus.