Brigham Young University Idaho FDREL 122: Book of Mormon (Alma 30 Moroni 10) Spring 2015

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1 Brigham Young University Idaho FDREL 122: Book of Mormon (Alma 30 Moroni 10) Instructor: Fernando Castro Office: Taylor 220; Hours: MW 2:00 4:00 PM *Section 23 / Mondays & Wednesdays / 11:30 AM 12:30 PM / Taylor 249 *Section 30 / Mondays & Wednesdays / 12:45 1:45 PM / Taylor 249 * This syllabus applies to both sections. Any changes will be addressed in class. Course Objective: The Prophet Joseph Smith taught that the Book of Mormon was the most correct book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book (Book of Mormon, Introduction; History of the Church, 4:461). The chief objective of this course is to come closer to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ by making the Book of Mormon the keystone of our lives. More specifically, this means reading and studying the Book of Mormon daily, identifying and understanding doctrines and principles, and applying them in our lives in ways that lead to or strengthen personal conversion. Teaching Philosophy: BYU-Idaho s vision is to foster faith-building and life-changing learning. Our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the gifts of the Holy Ghost, our commitment to the restored gospel, and our effort to build a Zion learning community motivate us to learn and teach by study and by faith (Learning Model, BYU-Idaho, June 2007, p.1). Two underlying assumptions in the BYU-Idaho Learning Model are: (1) that everyone at BYU-I is a learner and a teacher, and (2) that learners and teachers are at different levels in their individual progress toward learning by study and also by faith. With this in mind and the desire to enhance learning and teaching experiences at all levels, both learners and teachers are invited to: Exercise faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as a principle of power; Understand that true teaching is done by and with the Holy Ghost; Lay hold upon the word of God as found in the holy scriptures and in the words of the prophets; Act for themselves and accept responsibility for learning and teaching; Love, serve, and teach one another. Ultimately, the Learning Model becomes applicable for both learners and teachers, in and out of class, through a process that includes three steps: (1) Preparation, (2) Teaching one another, and (3) Pondering and seeking further learning. What does this all mean? In sum, it means that you must prepare yourself spiritually to be taught and guided by the Holy Ghost, observe the Honor Code and Class Rules of Conduct, complete all assigned readings and assignments, come to class prepared to contribute with questions, comments, quotes, thoughts and ideas ready to be shared, keep a learning journal and write down impressions and insights, pursue unanswered questions, help invite the Spirit and a feeling of charity, that all may be edified of all. Required Text: The Standard Works (LDS edition). Bring to class printed set of scriptures. No digital scriptures permitted. Book of Mormon Student Manual, Religion (Recommended) (Also available free online)

2 Page 2 Grading Criteria: Grades will be determined by a point system. Points may be earned or lost during the semester in five different areas: 1) ATTENDANCE: All students are expected to arrive before class begins. One point will be awarded each class for attendance on time. Students who arrive late or leave early or miss class DO NOT earn points for attendance that day. You must report your attendance on I-Learn to receive credit (see instructions on I-Learn). Also, it is your responsibility to mark yourself present on the roll by putting your initials in the box. If the roll is not signed, it will be considered an absence even if you were in class on that day. Students who miss more than five classes without excuse will receive an (F) failing grade for the course. The only absences considered excused are: (1) university authorized absences, and (2) serious illness. Depending on the case, please turn in a signed copy of the Authorized Absence form before you leave or doctor s note when you return to class. If you have an excused absence and complete make-up work for the missed day you may keep the point for attendance that day. Please realize that daily class attendance is extremely important. I would suggest that you use your allowed absences in case of extenuating circumstances only. 2) READING: Students are expected to complete the assigned reading for the day prior to class. Two points will be awarded each class for reading the assigned block. Contained in this syllabus is a reading schedule for the semester. You must report your reading on I-Learn to receive credit (see instructions on I-Learn). For purposes of this course, reading is considered to include studying, marking key words and verses, praying for understanding, pondering, reflecting on the content of the scriptures. 3) JOURNAL: Students are expected to write in a journal reflections, discoveries, questions, insights, feelings, ideas for application gained from reading the assigned scripture block for the day. Journal entries are to be completed prior to each class session. Two points will be awarded each class for attaching or posting your journal entry on I-Learn prior to class. Journal entries should be typed and be no longer than one page in length. A sample Reading and Journal Report is included in this syllabus. Follow that format for your journal entries. Short or poor quality journals will receive a lower grade. Do not journals to the instructor. 4) RESEARCH PAPER: Students are expected to write one research or reflective paper. The paper is worth 25 points. Select any topic relating to the Book of Mormon and write a paper 5-6 pages in length, one-inch margins, double-spaced (12 font, Times New Roman), MLA style. Include a minimum of five in-text citations from non-scriptural sources, in addition to scripture references (do not use footnotes or endnotes). Also include a separate Works Cited page at the end. You must submit a hard-copy of the paper. Do not your paper to the instructor. The paper is due on May 18th. Late submissions will not be accepted. 5) QUIZZES / FINAL EXAM: Throughout the course there will be five unannounced quizzes and a final exam. Each pop quiz will be based on the reading for that day. There are no make-up quizzes if you miss any. The final exam will be a take-home comprehensive test. It will be content-focused, covering narrative and factual information. You may use the scriptures and other authoritative sources to answer every question. It must be completed on your own and not in collaboration with others. The final is due on July 20th. Late submissions will not be accepted. Each quiz is worth 10 points (for a maximum of 50 points) and the final exam is worth 100 points. The five quizzes and final exam together are worth 150 points. POINTS AND GRADE BREAKDOWN 1) Attendance: 25 1 point = 25 points A = C = ) Reading: 25 2 points = 50 points A- = C- = ) Journal: 25 2 points = 50 points B+ = D+ = ) Research Paper = 25 points B = D = ) Assessments / Final Exam = 150 points B- = D- = Total = 300 points C+ = F = below 180

3 Page 3 Honor Code: As a BYU-Idaho student you are expected to comply with the Church Educational System Honor Code. Two specific policies embodied in the Honor Code include: DRESS AND GROOMING STANDARDS: Your dress and grooming should always be modest, neat, clean, and consistent with the values and principles of BYU-Idaho and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are expected to be familiar with and observe classroom attire and appearance standards. Refer to the CES Honor Code at BYU-Idaho for details on what constitutes appropriate attire and appearance. ACADEMIC HONESTY: You are expected to be totally honest in all your work. This includes honesty in completing your own reading assignments, journal entries, written work, and taking tests. You should avoid academic dishonesty and misconduct in all of its forms. Refer to the CES Honor Code at BYU-Idaho for details on what constitutes academic dishonesty and misconduct. Incidents of academic dishonesty and/or misconduct will be reported to the Dean of Students and result in a failing (F) grade. I trust your commitment to abide by the highest standards of honor, integrity, and morality. (I have read this statement and agree to its terms) Signature: Class Procedure: Each class will begin with an opening hymn and prayer. The lesson will cover content from the reading assignment for that day. Be current with your reading for the day and expect to be asked to share information from your journal. During class discussion, be reminded that not all should be spokesman at once, but let one speak at a time, and let all listen unto his sayings (D&C 88:122). It is my goal to finish each lesson on time or a few minutes early, as a result please refrain from gathering your belongings or leaving before the final Amen. Class Rules of Conduct: Please be respectful of others around you. Disturbing in class will affect your standing in class and result in a lower final grade. Violation of any of the following class rules will result in a loss of 25 points from your final grade: NO CELL PHONES, LAPTOPS OR OTHER ELECTRONIC DEVICES ARE ALLOWED IN THIS CLASS (turn them off before walking in), No food or drink (water only), No disrupting or causing distractions (such as visiting or doing homework for another class, being chronically late to class, reading the newspaper, sleeping, etc), No Honor Code infractions (such as male students failing to attend class clean shaven). Repeat violations of any one or a combination of any of these rules will result in you no longer being welcome in class. (I have read this statement and agree to its terms) Signature: Disabilities and Special Needs: Students with a diagnosed disability or special needs that may require reasonable accommodation on the part of BYU-Idaho should contact Richard Taylor, Director of Services for Students with Disabilities at It is your responsibility to also inform me of any special needs you have the first week of class. Accommodations will be considered on an individual basis based on the recommendation from the Disability Services Office and interactive dialogue with the student. If you are not LDS, please inform me during the first week of class. You will be at no disadvantage in this class if you attend class, read the assigned material, and complete your journal. Should you require clarification of LDS terminology or other particulars unfamiliar to you, contact me to arrange assistance for you. This course is not designed to contest your faith or debate doctrine. Please feel welcome.

4 Page 4 Syllabus Adjustments: The instructor reserves the right to make necessary adjustments to the syllabus, assignments, lesson presentations, or grading criteria throughout the semester. Any changes will be communicated as soon as possible. BYU-Idaho Policy on Use of Electronic Devices in the Classroom (BYU-Idaho Academic Catalog , p. 41) The BYU-Idaho Learning Model envisions students who have come to class prepared to share ideas rather than merely receive them. Learning occurs through discussion in which each student listens carefully to the comments of others and seeks the opportunity to add, as inspired, to what is being said. Participating in such a discussion requires careful attention as though one were with a friend, one-on-one. In order to promote such a learning environment, the University requires, as general policy, that electronic devices be turned off during class time. These devices include laptop computers, cell phones and all other electronic devices. Instructors may, for the sake of achieving special learning objectives or to meet individual student needs, authorize the use of specific electronic devices in their classrooms. However, it is recommended that the use of laptops for note-taking not be allowed except for occasional lectures. In the Learning Model environment, thinking about what is being said in the classroom and seeking the opportunity to add a comment is more important than transcribing the discussion. Impressions that come in class can be noted by hand. When class is over, students will find that their handwritten notes, along with ideas brought to remembrance by the Spirit, will allow them to write detailed reflections. Those reflections will be richer because of the student s active participation in the class discussion.

5 FDREL 122: Book of Mormon Instructor: Fernando Castro Class Schedule and Reading Assignment Date Assigned Reading Block Assignments Due (Reading/Journal reports due daily, except where indicated* April 20 Syllabus, Introduction Personal Introduction sheet (to be discussed in class) * No Reading or Journal due April 22 Alma 30 April 27 Alma April 29 Alma May 4 Alma May 6 Alma May 11 Alma May 13 Alma May 18 Helaman 1-4 RESEARCH PAPER DUE May 20 Helaman 5-9 May 27 Helaman June 1 Helaman June 3 3 Nephi 1-10 GROUP # 1 CLASS REPORT June 8 3 Nephi GROUP # 2 CLASS REPORT June 10 3 Nephi GROUP # 3 CLASS REPORT June 15 3 Nephi GROUP # 4 CLASS REPORT June 17 3 Nephi 27-4 Nephi GROUP # 5 CLASS REPORT June 22 Mormon 1-9 GROUP # 6 CLASS REPORT June 24 Ether 1-6 GROUP # 7 CLASS REPORT June 29 Ether 7-15 GROUP # 8 CLASS REPORT July 1 Moroni 1-6 July 6 Moroni 7 July 8 Moroni 8-9 July 13 Moroni 10 July 15 President Clark s Talk July 20 FINAL EXAM * No Reading or Journal due

6 SAMPLE REPORT FDREL 122: Book of Mormon Instructor: Fernando Castro READING AND JOURNAL REPORT Name: John Doe Today s Date: 04/22/2015 Course: Book of Mormon Class Hour: TT 2:00-3:00 PM Reading Block: Alma 30 Read the entire block? YES_ _ NO Doctrines and Principles: Heavenly Father has blessed us with scriptures and modern prophets to help us discern the false teachings of our day. Many of these false teachings reflect the same arguments that Korihor used back in 74 B.C. Contention and debates over points of doctrine are not of God. These are satanic tactics that tend to result in frustration and loss of the Spirit. The testimony of prophets, confirmation of the Spirit, and the existence of the earth and planets are evidence that God exists. Thoughts, Impressions, Ideas for Application: Alma s experience with Korihor provides an example of how the prophets and scriptures reveal truth and expose false doctrines. When Alma was confronted with opposition, he responded without contention, correcting false accusations, and defending truth with his testimony. This gives me a model to follow in times when my own belief in the Restored Gospel may be challenged. I firmly believe there is always safety in following God s prophets even when we do not understand the meaning of all things. It is always better to avoid anyone who tends to tear down our faith. The seeds they plant in people s minds and hearts bring doubts and eat away the Spirit. I once heard someone say that true messengers of God are always builders and not destroyers of faith. Question for Class Discussion: Q. What is an anti-christ? A. It is a person or organization who counterfeits the true gospel plan and opposes Christ.

7 FDREL 122: Book of Mormon Instructor: Fernando Castro Name: Class Hour: Attendance Points Tracking Log This log is included for your convenience to help you keep track of your attendance points You must report your attendance on I-Learn after each class to receive credit (See instructions on I-Learn) Date Assigned Reading Block April 20 Syllabus, Introduction April 22 Alma 30 April 27 Alma April 29 Alma May 4 Alma May 6 Alma May 11 Alma May 13 Alma May 18 Helaman 1-4 May 20 Helaman 5-9 May 27 Helaman June 1 Helaman June 3 3 Nephi 1-10 June 8 3 Nephi June 10 3 Nephi June 15 3 Nephi June 17 3 Nephi 27-4 Nephi June 22 Mormon 1-9 June 24 Ether 1-6 June 29 Ether 7-15 July 1 Moroni 1-6 July 6 Moroni 7 July 8 Moroni 8-9 July 13 Moroni 10 July 15 President Clark s Talk July 20 FINAL EXAM On Time (1 Point) 25 maximum Late (0 Points) Absent (0 Points) Total Points:

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