August 27, 2006 was the first day of school for instructors and students of AiG’s first online class offering: APO 101—Foundations in Creation Apologetics. Three instructors at AiG headquarters in Kentucky and approximately 75 students from the USA and around the world started logging on as the 12-week adventure began. Early registration for the class didn’t last long as “seats” quickly filled up. Students ranging in age from 14 to 70 introduced themselves in an online forum the first week. It was a great mixture of homeschool students and parents, grandparents, working adults, teachers, pastors, and even people who work with reptiles and carnivorous plants for a living!
As the members of this first class were the guinea pigs, the first couple weeks were rather crazy working through technical difficulties and getting everyone accustomed to the online delivery system for the class. Even those not accustomed to working with computers or taking classes online learned quickly. Soon students were busy chatting away in discussion forums, participating in weekly “live” chats with instructors, taking quizzes, watching videos, and submitting assignments. Instructors were also busy participating and grading. Iron sharpened iron as students and instructors played devil’s advocate in the forums and chats challenging each other to defend what they believed using biblical and scientific evidence. Friendships were formed that will last a lifetime. Then Thanksgiving came, the class ended, and it seemed as if it were over all too soon. But no time to stop and ponder that for too long as another 100 students were waiting in the wings to start the next Foundations course.
In addition, APO 201—Creation Apologetics and the Bible began with 25 students who had already taken the Foundations course. Courses in biology, geology, and astronomy will be offered in the spring as well. To date, students from 34 US states as well as Australia, UK, Germany, Italy, Peru, India, Finland, and Taiwan have taken, or are currently taking, our online classes.
Here are some comments from students who took the first Foundations course:
“Please continue to uphold the authority of the Word of God and equip believers in this and other ways to defend their faith in this way. I think the idea of an online creation apologetics course and the reality that I experienced is innovative, well constructed, instructive and constructive, stimulating, and much needed.”
“I am very grateful for the knowledge and skill that this course has given me.”
“A lot of work and preparation has gone into this material. It was well presented and well done.”
“Very good coverage of the most relevant topics using a nice variety of learning modes.”
“I thought that the content of the various assignments, especially discussion and special projects, were very rewarding and challenging. They both strengthened my faith and reinforced my ability to give Biblical answers.”
“Offering something like this online was like a gift from heaven - I love to learn, but can't afford to go to school in the traditional fashion. This way I could study and still work, pastor, and raise my family as usual. It was great!”
“Thank You AIG! This has been a great learning experience for me and I hope and pray that I can use this class in a way that would please the Lord. Thanks to AIG for making this class available online for those that have tight schedules and families to support. I will certainly be taking more of these classes in the near future.”
“I really enjoyed the course; it was fun, challenging, interactive, informative and educational.”
“FANTASTIC class!!! What a great learning experience and neat medium for learning. You folks did a great job constructing a course that had enough meat to keep us old dogs gnawing and enough milk to keep the young pups interested. What a great eye-opener.”
“I have thoroughly enjoyed this first class! I have profited greatly from the teaching, assignments, and interaction involved. I think it has been the best spent 12 weeks in the 20 years of life the LORD has given me! It has been a significant stepping stone in my walking away from apathy towards the creationism movement to a deeper, firmer stand for the Creator God and His Word from the first verse.”
“It has been a delightful learning experience which I will put to use the rest of my life. God bless you and all of the AiG ministry!”
To learn more about our online classes and how you can enroll, see Answers Education Online. Be sure to register early as classes fill up quickly.
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– Ken Ham, president and founder of AiG–U.S.
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