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Online · School of Divinity · Christian Leadership & Church Ministries

Developing a Philosophy of Youth Ministry

  • CG
  • Section 8WK
  • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020
  • Modified 01/13/2020

Course Description

An introductory course designed to develop a basic philosophy of the youth ministry through an analysis of contemporary and historical youth ministry models.





The purpose of this course is to assist the student in building a basic ministry philosophy as related to the essential aspects of leading an effective student ministry.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Explain biblical principles to lead out in youth ministry.
  2. Discuss the importance of spiritual/servant leadership in reference to youth ministry.
  3. Discern the importance of personal godliness in reference to youth ministry.
  4. Analyze the contemporary culture in which youth ministry takes place.
  5. Evaluate one’s personal and corporate vision for youth ministry.
  6. Assess the basic principles of youth ministry as it relates to the local church.
  7. Illustrate how to share one’s faith effectively in both words and deeds through youth ministry.
  8. Explain how to develop volunteers and disciple youth to become future leaders.

Program Learning Outcomes for YOUT 510

YOUT 510 supports the academic programs of the Rawlings School of Divinity as a Theology elective.

The program learning outcomes for these programs are listed with the program in the 2019/20 Rawlings School of

Divinity Graduate Catalog. This course is related to at least one of the program learning outcomes listed for each of these programs and contributes to your success in acquiring the knowledge and skills that are described. Here is the link to the catalog page where this information can be found:

2019/20 Rawlings School of Divinity Graduate Catalog

Course Resources

Required Resource Purchases

Geiger, Eric, and Jeff Borton. Simple Student Ministry: A Clear Process for Strategic Youth Discipleship. Nashville: B&H Publishing Group, 2009. ISBN: 9780805447941.

Jones, Timothy P. Family Ministry Field Guide: How Your Church Can Equip Parents to Make Disciples. Indianapolis: Wesleyan Publishing House, 2011. ISBN: 9780898274578.

Stier, Greg. Gospelize YourYouth Ministry. Arvada: Dare 2 Share Ministries, 2015. ISBN: 9780996017831.

Disclaimer: The above resources provide information consistent with that required by state licensing boards in the class subject area. Liberty University does not necessarily endorse specific religious, philosophical, or political positions found in these resources.

Additional Materials for Learning

  1. Computer with basic audio/video output equipment
  2. Internet access (broadband recommended)
  3. Blackboard recommended browsers
  4. Microsoft Office

Course Assignments

Textbook readings, videos, websites, and online articles

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (8)

The student will complete 8 Discussion Board Forums based on the textbook readings and presentations. The student must post a thread of at least 400 words and submit 2 replies of at least 200 words to classmates’ threads. Each thread and reply must include a reference to both the presentation and the reading for that module/week. (MLO: A, C, D, E, G, H)

Book Critiques (2)

The student will complete 2 Book Critiques within this course. Each critique must be 4–5 pages (not including cover page and bibliography) and must be submitted through SafeAssign. (MLO: B, D, E, F, G, H)

Youth Ministry Interview Project

The student will complete 3 sets of interviews with 9 people/couples and a 4–5-page paper summarizing and drawing conclusions from those conversations. This must be submitted through SafeAssign. (MLO: B, D, E, F, G)

Philosophy of Youth Ministry Paper

The student will complete a 5–6-page Philosophy of Youth Ministry Paper based upon the course material and student ministry interviews. The student will state his/her philosophy of youth ministry as impacted by this course. It must be submitted through the SafeAssign link. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H)

Course Grading

Course Requirements Checklist


Discussion Board Forums (8 at 50 pts ea)


Book Critiques (2 at 100 pts ea)


Youth Ministry Interview Project


Philosophy of Youth Ministry Paper





Late Assignment Policy

Course Assignments, including discussion boards, exams, and other graded assignments, should be submitted on time.

If the student is unable to complete an assignment on time, then he or she must contact the instructor immediately by email.

Assignments that are submitted after the due date without prior approval from the instructor will receive the following deductions:

  1. Late assignments submitted within one week after the due date will receive up to a 10% deduction.
  2. Assignments submitted more than one week and less than 2 weeks late will receive up to a 20% deduction.
  3. Assignments submitted two weeks late or after the final date of the course will not be accepted outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.
  4. Group projects, including group discussion board threads and/or replies, and assignments will not be accepted after the due date outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.

Disability Assistance

Students with a disability and those with medical conditions associated with pregnancy may contact Liberty University’s Online Office of Disability Accommodation Support (ODAS) at [email protected] for accommodations.  Such accommodations require appropriate documentation of your condition.   For more information about ODAS and the accommodations process, including how to request an accommodation, please visit Requests for accommodations not related to disabilities or pregnancy must be directed to the Registrar’s Office, which generally handles medical needs support.

If you have a complaint related to disability discrimination or an accommodation that was not provided, you may contact ODAS or the Office of Equity and Compliance by phone at (434) 592-4999 or by email at [email protected].  Click to see a full copy of Liberty’s Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy or the Student Disability Grievance Policy and Procedures.

Course Attendance

In an effort to comply with U.S. Department of Education policies, attendance is measured by physical class attendance or any submission of a required assignment within the enrollment dates of the course (such as examinations, written papers or projects, any discussion board posts, etc.) or initiating any communication with one’s professor regarding an academic subject. More information regarding the attendance policy can be found in the Academic Course Catalogs. Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. Students who do not attend within the first week of a sub-term by submitting a required academic assignment (such as the Course Requirements Checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic activity) will be dropped from the course. Students who wish to re-engage in the course are encouraged to contact Academic Advising to discuss their enrollment options. Students who begin an online course, but at some point in the semester cease attending, and do not provide official notification to withdraw, will be assigned a grade of “FN” (Failure for Non-Attendance). Students wishing to withdraw from courses after the official start date should familiarize themselves with the withdrawal policy.

Grading Scale

A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- F
940-1010 920-939 900-919 860-899 840-859 820-839 780-819 760-779 740-759 700-739 680-699 679 and below

For courses with a Pass/NP final grade, please refer to the Course Grading section of this syllabus for the assignment requirements and/or point value required to earn a Passing final grade.

Add/Drop Policy

The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory.

Honor Code

Liberty University comprises a network of students, Alumni, faculty, staff and supporters that together form a Christian community based upon the truth of the Bible. This truth defines our foundational principles, from our Doctrinal Statement to the Code of Honor. These principles irrevocably align Liberty University’s operational procedures with the long tradition of university culture, which remains distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth. Our desire is to create a safe, comfortable environment within our community of learning, and we extend our academic and spiritual resources to all of our students with the goal of fostering academic maturity, spiritual growth and character development.

Communities are predicated on shared values and goals. The Code of Honor, an expression of the values from which our Doctrinal Statement was born, defines the fundamental principles by which our community exists. At the core of this code lie two essential concepts: a belief in the significance of all individuals, and a reliance on the existence of objective truth.

While we acknowledge that some may disagree with various elements of the Code of Honor, we maintain the expectation that our students will commit to respect and uphold the Code while enrolled at Liberty University.

Adherence to the principles and concepts established within facilitates the success of our students and strengthens the Liberty community.

The Code of Honor can be viewed in its entirety at


YOUT 510

Textbooks:   Geiger & Borton, Simple Student Ministry (2009).

Jones, Family Ministry Field Guide (2011).

Stier, Gospelize Your Youth Ministry (2006).


Reading & Study




Jones: chs. 1–2

Stier: chs. 1–6

1 presentation

Course Requirements Checklist

Class Introductions

DB Forum 1





Jones: chs. 3–4

Stier: chs. 7–12

1 presentation

DB Forum 2

Stier Book Critique




Geiger & Borton: chs. 1–5

Jones: chs. 5–6

1 presentation

DB Forum 3



Geiger & Borton: chs. 6–10

Jones: chs. 7–8

1 presentation

DB Forum 4

Geiger & Borton Book Critique




Jones: chs. 9–10

2 presentations

DB Forum 5



Jones: chs. 11–12

1 presentation

DB Forum 6



Jones: chs. 13–14

1 presentation

DB Forum 7

Youth Ministry Interview Project




Jones: ch. 15

1 presentation

DB Forum 8

Philosophy of Youth Ministry Paper





DB = Discussion Board

NOTE: Each course module/week begins on Monday morning at 12:00 a.m. (ET) and ends on Sunday night at 11:59 p.m. (ET). The final module/week ends at 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Friday.