A Field Report from the Digital Frontier: Online CWC

For the first time in its nearly thirty years of being taught at Bethel, GES130 Christianity and Western Culture was offered online this past summer, by History professors and CWC coordinators Sam Mulberry and Chris Gehrz. Scrapping the course’s venerable mix of lectures and small group discussions, Mulberry and Gehrz instead produced ten documentary films, seven review webisodes, and seven “virtual museums” covering Western history from Classical Greece through World War I. The museums and films made extensive use of the nearly twenty hours of interviews that Gehrz and Mulberry filmed in 2012-2013 with Bethel professors representing ten different departments.

Map of the Kevin Cragg Museum of Ancient Greece and Rome
Map of the first virtual museum students visited in online CWC, named in honor of longtime History professor and CWC “founding father” Kevin Cragg

To hear Mulberry and Gehrz’s reflections on their experience teaching the course online — and how it might enrich face-to-face CWC in the future — make plans to attend their presentation, “A Field Report from the Digital Frontier: Online CWC.” It’s scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 19th, 10:15-11:00am in the Bethel University Library.

UPDATE (10/7/2013): Here’s the video of our talk, hosted at our department’s YouTube page.


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