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Course Faculty

John Oglesby, MA
Associate Professor of Biblical Education and Leadership

Christopher Cone, ThD, PhD, PhD
Research Professor of Biblical Education and Leadership

Daniel Starcevich, ThM, PhD
Associate Professor of Biblical Education and Leadership

Stephen Lewis, PhD
Distinguished Professor of Biblical Education and Leadership


PHIL1103 briefly surveys the history of Biblical interpretation before focusing on the procedures, tools, and skills necessary for responsible Bible interpretation.

CBU Bachelor of Ed (120 Hours) Program Info

Course Description

Undergraduate Lounge

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Course Syllabus

Course Syllabus / PHIL1103 Reading Comprehension and Understanding


Christopher Cone, Th.D, Ph.D, Ph.D

John Oglesby, MA

Daniel Starcevich, Th.M, Ph.D

Stephen Lewis, Ph.D



Dr. Christopher Cone is the professor of record for the course. He serves as President and CEO of AgathonEDU Educational Group. Cone has served as President of Calvary University and as Research Professor of Bible and Theology, in executive and faculty roles at Southern California Seminary as Chief Academic Officer and Research Professor of Bible and Theology, and at Tyndale Theological Seminary as President and Professor of Bible and Theology. He has served in several pastoral roles and has also held teaching positions at the University of North Texas, North Central Texas College, and Southern Bible Institute. His articles are published at, and he is the author and general editor of fifteen books.


John Oglesby presently serves as Executive Vice President and professor at Vyrsity with previous experience in administration and academics at Calvary University. John received his BS in Advanced Biblical Studies as well as his MA in Bible and Theology from Calvary University. John has taught classes in Philosophy and Worldview, Theology, and Biblical Studies. His writing can be found at


Dan Starcevich serves as associate professor of transformative leaning and leadership at Vyrsity and Colorado Biblical University.  Dan has served as pastor, and professor of bible and theology at Tyndale Theological Seminary and Biblical Institute. He is president of TheoFaith, a Bible teaching ministry.  He received his BS in Business from Hawaii Pacific University, a MS in Management from the University of Southern California, a Thm. from Dallas Theological Seminary, and Ph.D from Tyndale Theological Seminary.  Dan is the author of Lord and Land: The Sovereignty of God and the Land of Israel, has contributed several articles to academic publications, and has taught at the graduate level.  His website is at, and TheoFaith can also be found on YouTube.




This course briefly surveys the history of Biblical interpretation before focusing on the procedures, tools, and skills necessary for responsible Bible interpretation.



Module 1 – Intro to Reading Comprehension and Understanding – John Oglesby

A brief introduction to the discipline of reading comprehension and understanding exploring definitions and origins of understanding, language, and interpretation. This module concludes with a brief overview of the history of reading comprehension from Greek interpretation to modern day post-modernism.


Module 2 – Three Levels of Reading – John Oglesby

An in-depth study of the three levels of reading presented in Adler’s book, How to Read a Book.


Module 3 – Meaning and Communication – Christopher Cone

A brief exploration of the relationship between meaning and communication.


Module 4 – Comparative Models for Understanding – Stephen Lewis

A comparative module working through various models for understanding including the normative, allegorical, trajectory, etc.


Module 5 – Hermeneutic Principles for Understanding – Daniel Starcevich

An in-depth study of a proposed model for understanding working specifically through hermeneutical principles one should utilize whenever approaching written communication.


Module 6 – Case Studies in Meaning and Understanding – John Oglesby

An overview of various Biblical and extrabiblical examples of meaning and understanding.


Module 7 – Observation – Daniel Starcevich

An examination of various principles for observation, the first step of reading comprehension. Examples will be provided and basic principles explored.


Module 8 – Interpretation and Verification – Stephen Lewis

An examination of various principles of interpretation and verification, the second and third steps of reading comprehension.


Module 9 – Application – Christopher Cone

An exploration of the relationship between “is” and “ought” within worldview. This module will view this topic in light of how one should apply principles found within written communication.


Module 10 – Writing for Understanding – John Oglesby

As reading comprehension implies someone has written, the task of writing for understanding is necessary. This module will explore various steps for insuring one is writing with the intention of another gaining understanding.



Required Texts:

  • All CBU courses use the Bible as a primary textbook. Translations used for coursework include any of the following: NASB, ESV, KJV, and NKJV. Other translations/versions may be used for complementary study and research.
  • Adler, Mortimer, Charles Van Doren, How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading (New York: Touchstone), 2011. ISBN: B004Z0TU0W $10.99. [Electronic copy of older edition provided]
  • Zuck, Roy, Basic Bible Interpretation: A Practical Guide to Discovering Biblical Truth (Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook), 1991. ISBN: 978-0781438773. $20.04.




Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs)

  1. To establish a foundational knowledge of language, understanding, and interpretation for all written communication.
  2. To provide principles for effective writing with the goal of the transference of knowledge and understanding.
  3. To explore the history of reading comprehension from ancient times to contemporary settings.
  4. To provide basic principles for understanding written communication.


Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs)


  1. To prepare Learners for roles in transformative education teaching and service.
  2. To provide Learners a foundation for effective individual and organizational leadership in diverse environments.
  3. To ensure Learners demonstrate worldview foundation for empowering people and building communities.
  4. To help Learners formulate a Biblical approach to transformative learning and leadership.


CBU Learning Outcomes (CBULOs)

  1. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Research – Learners will demonstrate ability to think critically, solve problems, and conduct interdisciplinary research at a level appropriate to their program.
  2. Personal Growth – Learners will understand how learning is related to personal growth, and will be challenged to grow in their thinking, communication, conduct, and engagement with others.
  3. Skills Development – Learners will advance in skills related to their area of learning, demonstrating a level of competency appropriate to their program.
  4. Social Responsibility – Learners will appreciate the diversity in and value of others as designed by our Creator, and will grow in willingness and capability to serve others.
  5. Worldview Applications – Learners will become capable at thinking from a worldview perspective and will understand the relationship of description and prescription, so that they can ground their actions in sound principles.


  2. Module Assessments (25 points each x 10) 250 Points (Written Summary)
  3. Course Content Assessment             250 Points (Multiple Choice)
  4. Reading Content Assessment             250 Points (Written Summary)
  5. Competency Assessment – [2-3 Competency assessment ideas. See below for an example. Delete the examples below before publishing your final syllabus. They are for example purposes only]
    1. Writing: Write a 2000 word paper explaining your understanding of a literary passage of your choosing.
    2. Interview: Read a book of your choosing, followed by a 1000 word paper which contains (1) a summary of the contents of the book and, (2) an explanation of the impact those contents have on your life.
    3. Recorded Presentation: Give a 45-60 minute presentation on a topic related to reading comprehension and understanding.

250 Points


91-100%          A

81-90%            B

71-80%            C

61-70%            D

0-60%              F



Total Hours of Module Content:                    20 hours

Total Hours of Reading Content:                    40 hours

Total Hours of Minor Assessments:               30 hours

Total Hours of Major Assessment:                 30 hours

Total Hours of Competency Assessment:       15 hours

Equivalent of 3 Credit Hour (135 hours of total course time)