Preparatory Academy

Thoughts on Restoration Education

From General Authorities and other significant sources

Establish schools taught by those of our own faith, where being free from the trammels of State aid, they can unhesitatingly teach the doctrines of true religion combined with the various branches of general education. – John Taylor (Direction to the Idaho Saints, Messages of the First Presidency Vol. 3, 5)

We should have schools wherein the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants can be used as textbooks, and where the principles of our religion may form a part of the teachings of the schools. – David O. McKay (BYU Address, 1937)


Although infidelity is not directly taught in the public schools, its spirit is fostered by the exclusion of religious education. – George Q. Cannon (General Board of Education Minutes, April 1889)


In many places it is literally not safe physically for youngsters to go to school.  And in many schools - and its becoming almost generally true - it is spiritually unsafe to attend public schools. – Boyd K. Packer (BYU Symposium Oct., 1996)


I am opposed to free education as much as I am opposed to taking property from one man and giving it to another . . . Would I encourage free schools by taxation?  No! – Brigham Young (JD 18:357)


I am making an unabashed appeal for a distinctly LDS approach to education... – Jeffrey R. Holland                                                                 (BYU Annual University Conference Address, August 22,1988)

It will be a great temptation to many people to send their children to the free school that will now be supported by our taxes, but of what value is learning if it is acquired at the expense of faith. – George Q. Cannon (Juv. Inst., Vol. 25, 243)


No system of education can be perfect which does not teach the principles of righteousness and faith in God. Learning has not saved the world.  It is of utmost importance that our children should, in the first place, be taught faith in God.  This cannot be left out of our system of education.  – George Q. Cannon (Juv. Inst, Vol. 25, 243, 1890)


We must be willing to break with the educational establishment (not foolishly or cavalierly, but thoughtfully and for good reason) in order to find gospel ways to help mankind.                 –Spencer W. Kimball (BYU Student Body Address, May 13, 1969)


We should not assume that public schools always reinforce teachings given in the home concerning ethical and moral conduct.  We have seen introduced into many school systems false ideas about the theory of man’s development from lower forms of life, teachings that there are no absolute values, attempts to repudiate beliefs regarded as supernatural, permissive attitudes toward sexual freedom that give sanction to immoral behavior and “alternative lifestyles” such as lesbianism, homosexuality, and other perverse practices.              – Ezra Taft Benson (Come Unto Christ, 59)


It is evident, then, that true religious training must include instruction in relation to God and to his laws and government and also in relation to man's duty to man.  Such teaching is given effectively not necessarily in a formal theology class, but in literature, art, geology, biology, and other classes...Thus all facts may be viewed by the students not through the green glass of prejudice or doubt, but in the clear sunlight of truth.  – David O. McKay (BYU Address, 1937)


Brother Maeser, I want you to remember that you ought not               to teach even the alphabet or the multiplication tables without        the spirit of God. – Brigham Young                                                                          (Educating Zion, 10)

As we grow in intelligence, we learn that secular education must be coupled with religious education if we are to become partakers of life eternal. – Howard W. Hunter (The Teachings of Howard W. Hunter, Clyde J. Williams, Bookcraft, 1997, 181)


Mothers...we will appoint you a mission to teach your children their duty; and instead of ruffles and fine dresses to adorn the body, teach them that which will adorn their minds. – Brigham Young (JD 14:220 - 21)


"Will education feed and clothe you, keep you warm on a cold day, or enable you to build a house?  Not at all.  Should we cry down education on this account?  No.  What is it for?  The improvement of the mind; to instruct us in all arts and sciences, in the history of the world, in laws of nations; to enable us to understand the laws and principles of life, and how to be useful while we live" (Discourses of Brigham Young, 250-251)



Well, shall we, after going to the ends of the earth to gather people to Zion, in order that they may learn more perfectly of His ways and walk in His paths, shall we then allow our children to be at the mercy of those who would lead them down to death again?  God forbid!  Let our teachers be men of God, men of honor and integrity, and let us afford our children such learning as will place our community in the front ranks of educational as well as religious matters. – John Taylor (JD 19:249)


Whatever you do, be choice in your selection of teachers.  We do not want infidels to mold the minds of our children.  They are a precious charge bestowed upon us by the Lord, and we cannot be too careful in rearing and training them.  I would rather have my children taught the simple rudiments of a common education by men of God, and have them under their influence, than have them taught in the most abstruse sciences by men who have not the fear of God in their hearts. – John Taylor (JD 24:168)

True education to the Latter-day Saint is education that builds faith and promotes righteousness.  Education that fails to do this cannot be considered as aught but inferior education. – Belle S. Spafford  (Woman’s Reach, p. 40)


The principle aim of schools and colleges seems to be to give the students purely intellectual attainments and to give but passing regard to the nobler and more necessary development along moral lines ... True education does not assist merely in the acquiring of a few facts of science, history, literature, or art, but in the development of character. – David O. McKay (Gospel Ideals p. 441, April Conference, 1932)


The time will come when only those who believe deeply and actively in the family will be able to preserve their families in the midst of the gathering evil around us...We genuinely welcome help, real help, from churches, schools, colleges, and universities, from thoughtful men and women of every race, creed, and culture who care about the family.  But, as indicated earlier, if the supporting network of institutions does not function adequately, then we will do our part anyway. – Spencer W. Kimball (Oct Conference 1980) 


But if I had been living in Adam’s time and had had children, I do not think I should have sent them to be educated by Cain.  Would you? – John Taylor (JD 24:352)


Any education is undoubtedly better than none, but a free people, to remain free, must ever strive for the highest and best. – David O. McKay (April Conference 1968)


I think that by the end of the millennium, for those who will occupy the celestial kingdom, the home will be the only media for teaching children.  Teaching will be through the family...But I think there will be central places where instruction will go forth, directed to the family level. – Alvin R. Dyer (Education: Moving Toward and Under The Law of Consecration 1969)



We must train statesmen, not demagogues; men of integrity, not weaklings who for a mess of pottage will sell their birthright.  We must develop these precious youth to know the art of statesmanship, to know people and conditions, to know situations and problems, but men who will be trained so thoroughly in the arts of their future work and in the basic honesties and integrities and spiritual concepts that there will be no compromise of principle.  – Spencer W. Kimball (BYU Convocation Oct. 1975)

In gearing the curricula to the middle of the class, our system too often has not provided sufficient challenge for the better student.  Champions seldom become champions by competing only against mediocrity.  – Ezra Taft Benson (ETB, 298-299)


With the abundance of books available today, it is a mark of a truly educated person to know what not to read. – Ezra Taft Benson (May Conference, 1986)


As a watchman on the tower, I feel to warn you that one of the chief means of misleading our youth and destroying the family unit is our educational institutions.  President Joseph F. Smith referred to false educational ideas as one of the three threatening dangers among our church members. – Ezra Taft Benson  (God, Family, Country; Our Three Great Loyalties, Deseret Book, 224)


Great ideals and principles do not live from generation to generation just because they are right, nor even because they have been carefully legislated.  Ideals and principles continue from generation to generation only when they are built into the hearts of the children as they grow up.  – George S. Benson (Thoughts on Virtue)


If prayer is to leave the public schools, let the ridicule of prayer leave also.  – Boyd K. Packer  (Ensign, Sept. 1973)


We can integrate a secular map into the broader sacred map, but our sacred system cannot be made to fit within the smaller secular map. – Bruce C. Hafen


Moral values are being neglected and prayer expelled from public schools on the pretext that moral teaching belongs to religion.  At the same time, atheism, the secular religion, is admitted to class, and our youngsters are proselyted to a conduct without morality... we are caught in a current so strong that unless we correct our course, civilization as we know it will surely be wrecked to pieces...The distance between the church and a world set on a course which we cannot follow will steadily increase. – Boyd K. Packer, (General Conference, April 1994)


My young brother and sisters, you live in a world, which, as prophesied, is often confusing and perplexing.  By combining true education and true religion, you will be able to distinguish between what is merely today's trends and the eternal truths, and between celestial sense and secular nonsense . . . . Those individuals who are illuminated, spiritually and educationally, will help to show the way in a world darkened by despair . . .. God bless you in these days, which are your days in the history of the kingdom of God.  – Neal A. Maxwell (Seek Learning by Study and Also by Faith videocassette)


No matter where we begin, if we pursue knowledge diligently and honestly, our quest will inevitably lead us from the things of the earth to the things of heaven.  – Hugh Nibley  (OAT, 130)


Parental responsibility cannot go unheeded, nor can it be shifted to day-care centers, nor to the schoolroom, nor even to the Church.  Family responsibility comes by divine decree.  Parents may violate this decree only at the peril of their eternal salvation.  – A. Theodore Tuttle (Ensign, Jan. 1973)


Our garden has gone untended and the weeds have almost choked out any concern for values from our system of public education. Beginning in the teachers colleges in the universities, prospective teachers, bombarded with humanism and secularism and pragmatism and atheism, have been graduated with a noticeable breach in their preparation. – Boyd K. Packer                                                                      (Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled, Bookcraft, 1991, 171)


That, it seems to me, is the key to true education. No man can receive a fullness of truth unless he keeps the commandments of our Father in heaven. Learning is not wisdom. We have been misled into thinking that learning is the ultimate in education. True education must result in wisdom. – Elder Joseph F. Smith (Conference Report, April 1946, Second Day—Morning Meeting, 62.)


The mere stuffing of the mind with a knowledge of facts is not education.  The mind must not only possess a knowledge of the truth, but the soul must revere it, cherish it, love it as a priceless gem; and this human life must be guided and shaped by it in order to fulfill its destiny.  – Joseph F. Smith  (GD, 269)


This rising generation is the first generation to be reared in a time when society's other institutions, previously supportive of certain moral standards, have largely been neutralized, or worse, secularized.  This rising generation, basically shorn of such external support systems, therefore must believe because of the word, and behave because they believe.  As we all know, current film, music, art, and theater too often promote drugs, alcohol, pornography and promiscuity...this is not simply a temporary tidal wave, which ere long will pass.  It is the wave-tossed secular sea itself, and it will not subside until He comes and all the winds and the waves once again obey his will.  Hence this is not the time for busy or preoccupied parents to leave our youth unloved, unattended, or untaught. – Neal A. Maxwell, (General Conference, April 1984)


Secular education may not be so important (in fact, may prove to be a detriment), but when accompanied with humble faith and knowledge of the principles of the Gospel and all that pertains to our salvation, then it is of great worth. – Joseph Fielding Smith                               (Church History and Modern Revelation, Vol.2, 135 - 136)


True education does not assist merely in the acquiring of a few facts of science, history, literature, or art, but in the development of character.  – David O. McKay (Gospel Ideals, 441, April Conf. 1932)


True education seeks to make men and women not only good mathematicians, proficient linguists, profound scientists, or brilliant literary lights, but also, honest men, with virtue, temperance, and brotherly love. It seeks to make men and women who prize truth, justice, wisdom, benevolence, and self-control as the choicest acquisitions of a successful life.                 – David O. McKay (Teachings of Presidents of the Church, xix–xx, Ensign, Jan. 05)


We must gain learning, but we must apply it wisely. Otherwise, we have politics without principle, industry without morality, knowledge without wisdom, science without humanity!     – Russell M. Nelson (Ensign, Nov. 1984)


We must say plainly what we mean, because the future of our youth, both here on earth and in the hereafter, as well as the welfare of the whole church is at stake.  The youth of the church, your students, are in great majority sound in thought and spirit.  The problem primarily is to keep them sound, not to convert them. – J. Reuben Clark, Jr. (CES Address, August 8, 1938)


What has happened to our schools?  There are still many that are excellent, but there are very many that are failing.  What has become of the teaching of values?  We are told that educators must be neutral in these matters.  Neutrality in the teaching of values can only lead to an absence of values.  – Gordon B. Hinckley (U.S. Mayors Conference, September 25, 1998)

I must ask one more question concerning our educational system. Do you think it justifiable, even if our schools do not assume any responsibility, for the inculcation of faith and the development of spiritual values, that they should permit any of their facilities, - teachers, text books, and what not to be utilized to tear down or in any wise militate against the faith of students acquired in their homes and churches? – Stephen L. Richards                                                         (The Church in War and Peace, Zion Printing, 1943, 102)


You are not to teach the philosophies of the world, ancient or modern, pagan or Christian, for this is the field of the public schools. – J. Reuben Clark, Jr. (CES Address, August 8, 1938)


Let our teachers ask the Father, in the name of Jesus, to bestow upon them and upon their scholars the Spirit of wisdom and intelligence from heaven; ask for skill to control and ability to teach on the part of the teacher, and willingness to be controlled and adaptability to be taught on the part of the scholars.  –Brigham Young, (JD, 9:369, Aug. 31, 1862)


All things are spiritual . . . DON'T SEPARATE CHURCH, SEMINARY, OR INSTITUTE FROM SECULAR LEARNING . . . The more connections you can make, the more satisfying your learning will be in all areas of your life. Does the Lord know about geology and physics? He certainly does. Does He value good art, music, and literature? Of course, and so do His living prophets. Latter-day Saint doctrine encompasses all truth. There is no truth you can learn that will not ultimately help you in your quest to become more like Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father. Education is not just about making a living. It's about making a life—now and eternally. – Brad Wilcox (New Era, April 2009, 30)

Now under the guise of academic freedom—which some apparently feel is freedom to destroy freedom—some teachers reserve to themselves the privilege of teaching error, destroying faith in God, debunking morality, and depreciating our free economic system. If questions reflecting the teacher's false teachings appear on the exam, how will the student answer who believes in God and morality and our Constitution? – Ezra Taft Benson                                                        (BYU Speeches of the Year, 1966, 3-17)

The necessity for the establishment of a new kind of educational institution for Zion had been revealed by the Lord to the Prophet Brigham Young. The lack of what element created that necessity? It has been said the Saints will be saviors upon Mount Zion, that they are destined to redeem the world. Redeem the world from what? From the thralldom of sin, ignorance, and degradation! In order to do this, Zion will take the lead in everything and consequently also in education. – Karl G. Maeser (BYU Founder's Day Speech, October 16, 1891)


A teacher can explain, demonstrate, persuade, and testify, and do so with great spiritual power and effectiveness. Ultimately, however, the content of a message and the witness of the Holy Ghost penetrate into the heart only if a receiver allows them to enter. Learning by faith opens the pathway into the heart. – David A. Bednar (Ensign, Sept. 2007, 61)


Above all, we must remember that quality, not quantity, is the true yardstick of education. American schools, on all levels, must continue to stress training for citizenship and character because these qualities are the qualities essential to freedom. – Ernest L. Wilkinson (BYU Faculty Address, September 18, 1962)


American education is but a mirror for our culture. We cannot expect our educational system to be perfect when we ourselves tolerate a growing contempt for work, barbarous music and art, a sensual and sensational press, tawdry drama, and corrupted media of communication. We must fight constantly against the rising obscenity and growing vulgarity of our society. – Ernest L. Wilkinson (BYU Faculty Workshop, September 18, 1962)

Courses given in public schools encourage and approve immoral practices. – Bruce R. McConkie                                                                    (The Millennial Messiah: The Second Coming of the Son of Man, Deseret Book, 1982, 360)

And, verily I say unto you, that it is my will that you should...obtain a knowledge of history, and of countries, and of kingdoms, of laws of God and man, all this for the salvation of Zion. – D&C 93:53

As the world becomes more wicked, a possible way to attain worldly success may be to join the wicked. The time is fast approaching when it will require great courage for Latter-day Saints to stand up for their peculiar standards and doctrine - all of their doctrine, including the weighty principles such as the principle of freedom. – Ezra Taft Benson (BYU Speeches of The Year, 1966, 3-17)


Continuous education is our labor, our business and our calling. – Brigham Young (Journal of Discourses, 6:268.)


Don't let the philosophies and falsehoods of men throw you. Hold on to the iron rod. Learn to sift. Learn to discern error through the promptings of the Spirit and your study of the truth. – Ezra Taft Benson (BYU Speeches of the Year, 1966, 3-17)


During the past several years many of our institutions of learning have been turning out an increasing number of students schooled in amorality, relativity, and atheism - students divested of a belief in God, without fixed moral principles or an understanding of our constitutional republic and our capitalistic, free enterprise economic system.  This follows a pattern which was established years ago at some of our key colleges that produced many of the teachers and leaders in the educational field across the country today.  The fruits of this kind of teaching have been tragic, not only to the souls of the individuals involved but also to the parents and even to our country. – Ezra Taft Benson (BYU Speeches of the Year, 1966, 3-17)


Educate men without religion and you make them clever devils. – Duke of Wellington


Eighty years ago Americans were still being reared in public schools that included religious instruction. ...But from that time on, the book of books ceased to be an important factor in public instruction. ...The sad, sickening consequence of this Godless education can be studied today in the juvenile delinquents who throng our courts and fill our prisons. – David O. McKay (Steppingstones to an Abundant Life, Deseret Book, 1971, 34)


Every accomplishment, every polished grace, every useful attainment in mathematics, music, and in all science and art belongs to the Saints, and they should avail themselves as expeditiously as possible of the wealth of knowledge the sciences offer to every diligent and persevering scholar. –  Brigham Young (Discourses of Brigham Young, 252)


Finally, and most important, we charge you to build faith in God the Eternal Father, in his Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, and in the great principles which lead to eternal life, which comes to us from prophets of God, both anciently and in our own time. We charge you to do that as a central part of your educational purpose, not as an addendum to it. – Howard W. Hunter's charge to BYU-Hawaii's new president (Profile Mag. Dec. 1994, 15)


Geography and arithmetic have been raised to the warmth and dignity of required disciplines of the mind, but ethics, not to speak of religion, which determine human behavior, and which always acts as restraints upon evil, stand, unwelcomed, shivering before the closed schoolroom door. Such a dangerous taboo was not intended when it was agreed that, in our land, sectarian religion should not be taught in public schools. By the present method, our schools are sending out generations of men of little faith, who are unmindful of their eternal obligations. – John A. Widtsoe (Conference Report, April 1946, 130)


Great ideals and principles do not live from generation to generation just because they are right, nor even because they have been carefully legislated. Ideals and principles continue from generation to generation only when they are built into the hearts of the children as they grow up. – George S. Benson (Thoughts on Virtue)


I regret exceedingly that courses in study in the public schools, in the colleges and places of learning throughout the land, are in conflict with fundamental truths of the Christian faith; and, for one, I desire to express my feelings, and to declare that I consider it an outrage against the liberties of the people, when we are denied the privilege of teaching principles of eternal truths, in the realm of religion; when we are denied the privilege of praying to our Heavenly Father in the schools, or referring to a Supreme Being, for fear that, we will offend someone; and at the same time instructors are permitted to advocate that in the schools which the teachers themselves profess and declare to be in conflict with the fundamentals of the faith which I believe, and which thousands of others accept throughout this nation and other nations of the world as divine truth. – Joseph Fielding Smith                                                                           (Conference Report, October 1921, 185)


I fear some of us are getting too much like the world. Rather than continue a peculiar people, some are priding themselves on how much they are like everybody else, when the world is getting more wicked. – Ezra Taft Benson, (BYU Speeches of the Year, 1966, 3-17)


I submit to you that the tolerant society is open to and encouraging of all religions - if we look back through history to great civilizations that rose to world dominance and then deteriorated and fell, we find that the significant forerunners of their fall was their turning away from their God... – Ronald Reagan (LDS Living July/August Issue, 2004)


I think our own people are producing some of the purest and best literature. It may not be polished with the smoothness and elegance of rhetorical mastery, but it contains nothing that will injure, and very much that which will elevate and refine. – Susa Young Gates (A Believing People, Cracroft and Lambert, Bookcraft, 1979)


If we would make the world better, let us foster a keener appreciation of the freedom and liberty guaranteed by the government of the United States as framed by the founders of the nation. – David O. McKay (Conference Report, Oct. 1940)

It is the light from heaven, which will make students better learners. It is the light from heaven, which will make them better people - more loving, more tolerant, more productive, more honest, and thus better citizens of a community. – Henry B. Eyring                                           (Profile Magazine, December, 1994, 15)


In our church we teach that "the glory of God is intelligence." We believe also that the glory of man is likewise intelligence. With this in mind, we are strong advocates of education. – Mark E. Peterson (Ensign, Nov. 1975)


In the separation of church and state we ought to demand more protection from the agnostic, from the atheist, from the Communist, from the skeptic, from the humanist, from the amoral and the immoral, than we have yet been given. The atheist has no more right to teach the fundamentals of his sect in public schools than does the theist. Any system of schools in our society that protects the destruction of faith and in turn forbids the defense of it must ultimately destroy the moral fiber of a people. – Boyd K. Packer (Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled, Bookcraft, 171)


Most people stop learning out of fear. They are afraid they cannot learn. You need never have that fear if you are faithful. Your formal schooling may be interrupted for some reason, but I want you to know with absolute certainty that you can learn whatever God would have you learn. Great learners believe that. They have the attitude that they can learn. – Henry B. Eyring (New Era, Oct. 1989, 4)


It is far more important to know that Jesus Christ is our Redeemer, that he has given unto us the principles of eternal life, than it is to know all that can be obtained in secular education. – Joseph Fielding Smith (Conference Report, April 1955, 51)



Let us never lose sight of the fact that education is a preparation for life-and that preparing for life is far more than knowing how to make a living or how to land on the moon. Preparing for life means building personal integrity, developing a sound sense of values, increasing the capacity and willingness to serve. Education must have its roots in moral principles. If we lose sight of that fact in our attempt to match our educational system against that of the materialists, we shall have lost far more than we could possibly gain.                    – Pres. Ezra Taft Benson                                                                                                 (The Red Carpet, 177)


 It should be your care, therefore, and mine, to elevate the minds of our children and exalt their courage; to accelerate and animate their industry and activity; to excite in them an habitual contempt of meanness, abhorrence of injustice and inhumanity, and an ambition to excel in every capacity, faculty, and virtue. If we suffer their minds to grovel and creep in infancy, they will grovel all their lives. – John Adams (Dissertation on the Canon and Feudal Law, 1756)


Learn the wisdom of the world and the wisdom of God, and put them together and you will be able to benefit yourselves. –  (Journal of Discourses, 12:313:68)


Teach ye diligently and my grace shall attend you, that you may be instructed more perfectly in theory, in principle, in doctrine, in the law of the gospel, in all things that pertain unto the kingdom of God, that are expedient for you to understand: Of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass; things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms. (D&C 88:78-79)

O that cunning plan of the evil one! O the vainness, and the frailties, and the foolishness of men! When they are learned they think they are wise, and they hearken not unto the counsel of God, for they set it aside, supposing they know of themselves, wherefore, their wisdom is foolishness and it profiteth them not. And they shall perish.                                                                                                          – 2 Nephi 9:28

...if we stopped reading section 88 of the Doctrine and Covenants at this point, we might misinterpret the reason for such a curriculum.  We are not to study these vast frontiers in order to be smarter than the rest of the world or to compete better in the marketplace or to win some national ranking or monetary reward.  We aren’t even to learn it for its own sake.  The next verse reads: “that ye may be prepared in all things when I shall send you again to magnify the calling whereunto I have called you, and the mission with which I have commissioned you.” (v.80) ...The purpose of education, then, is to assist us as we discover, prepare for, and freely fulfill our divinely ordained missions. – A. LeGrand Richards (BYU Speeches, 1996-97)


Let me say again that the family is the main target of evil's attack and must therefore be the main point of our protection and defense. As I said once before, when you stop and think about it from a diabolically tactical point of view, fighting the family makes sense to Satan. When he wants to disrupt the work of the Lord, he doesn't poison the world's peanut butter supply, thus bringing the Church's missionary system to its collective knees. He doesn't send a plague of laryngitis to afflict the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He doesn't legislate against green Jell-O and casseroles. When evil wants to strike out and disrupt the essence of God's work, it attacks the family. It does so by attempting to disregard the law of chastity, to confuse gender, to desensitize violence, to make crude and blasphemous language the norm, and to make immoral and deviant behavior seem like the rule rather than the exception. – Russell M. Ballard (Oct. Conference Report, 2003)


Moral values are being neglected and prayer expelled from public schools on the pretext that moral teaching belongs to religion. At the same time, atheism, the secular religion, is admitted to class, and our youngsters are proselyted to a conduct without morality... we are caught in a current so strong that unless we correct our course, civilization as we know it will surely be wrecked to pieces...The distance between the church and a world set on a course which we cannot follow will steadily increase. – Boyd K. Packer, (General Conference, April 1994)

I’m not completely comfortable with describing our effort at BYU as trying to combine the sacred with the secular.  I would feel better describing it as an effort to learn the temporal in the context of the eternal.  Spiritual experiences cannot be secular, but I know of no “secular” subject that cannot and should not be spiritual.  Tell Abraham, for example, that astronomy is a secular subject.  The Lord has told us that he never gives temporal commandments because all things are spiritual unto him - and I believe that they ought to be for us as well. – A. LeGrand Richards                                                                                                    (BYU Speeches, 1996-97)


No matter where we begin, if we pursue knowledge diligently and honestly, our quest will inevitably lead us from the things of the earth to the things of heaven. – Hugh Nibley (OAT, 130)


Not to know what has been transacted in former times is to be always a child. If no use is made of the labors of past ages, the world must remain always in the infancy of knowledge. –Cicero


When I was a student I wish I had believed that the standards of the world were not sufficient for a consecrated people.  I believed this phrase as it pertained to religion, but I suppose that it didn’t have much to do with my education: “Zion cannot be built up unless it is by the principles of the law of the celestial kingdom” (D&C 105:5). It isn’t enough to go beyond the standards of the world.  We must build upon a different foundation “According to the pattern” the Lord has given (D&C 94:2). – A. LeGrand Richards (BYU Speeches, 1996-97)


The minute education assumes an attitude that religion is for a special class of thinkers, then our schools miss that quality in human life that make for the happiness of mankind. – Elder Levi Edgar Young (Conference Report, April 1940, 129)


The public schools, maintained as they are by public taxation, are by law forbidden teaching religion in those schools. The result is an exclusively secular education, an education godless in its character; and such an education is most imperfect. – George F. Richards (Conference Report, April 1910, 80-81)


The religion of the Latter-day Saints is not hostile to any truth, not to scientific search for truth...A good motto for young people to adopt, who are determined to delve into philosophic theories, is to search all things, but be careful to hold onto only that which is true. – Joseph F. Smith (IE, 14:548.)


The responsibility to seek learning by faith rests upon each of us individually, and this obligation will become increasingly important as the world in which we live grows more confused and troubled. – David A. Bednar (Ensign, Sept. 2007, 68)


The shield of faith is not produced in a factory ...(it) is made at home...Our Father's plan requires that, like the generation of life itself, the shield of faith is to be made and fitted in the family. No two can be exactly alike. Each must be handcrafted to individual specifications. The plan designed by the Father contemplates that man and woman, husband and wife, working together, fit each child individually with a shield of faith made to buckle on so firmly that it can neither be pulled off nor penetrated by those fiery darts. It takes the steady strength of a father to hammer out the metal of it and the tender hands of a mother to polish and fit it on. Sometimes one parent is left to do it alone. It is difficult, but it can be done. In the church we teach about the materials from which the shield of faith is made: reverence, courage, chastity, repentance, forgiveness, compassion. In church we can learn how to assemble and fit them together. But the actual making of and fitting on of the shield of faith belongs in the family circle. – Boyd K. Packer (April Conference, 1995, 8)


There should be no reticence in relating secular truths to revealed truths. – Boyd K. Packer                                                                                (The Edge of Light, BYU 18-stake address, March 4, 1990)

There is one thing I wish particularly to impress upon your minds, and that is, the importance of improving your time while young in treasuring up knowledge and learning those things which will be useful to you in after life . . . Do not be discouraged because you cannot learn all at once; learn one thing at a time, learn it well, and treasure it up, then learn another truth and treasure that up, and in a few years you will have a great store of useful knowledge which will not only be a great blessing to yourselves and your children, but to your fellow men. – Wilford Woodruff (G. Homer Durham, Discourses of Wilford Woodruff, 269)


Your double heritage and dual concerns with the secular and the spiritual require you to be bilingual. –Spencer W. Kimball (Educating Zion, BYU Studies)


Therefore neither you nor your parents can be too careful to see that your young and fruitful minds are fed and stored with good principles. You want to learn that which is true– -when you learn anything about God, Jesus Christ, the angels, the Holy Ghost, the gospel, the way to be saved, your duty to your parents, brethren, sisters, or to any of your fellow men, or any history, art or science, I say when you learn any of those things you want to learn that which is true, so that when you get those things riveted in your mind and planted in your heart, and you trust to it in future life and lean upon it for support, that it may not fail you like a broken reed. – Wilford Woodruff (The Discourses of Wilford Woodruff, 266)


Train your children to be intelligent and industrious. First teach them the value of healthful bodies, and how to preserve them in soundness and vigor; teach them to entertain the highest regard for virtue and chastity and likewise encourage them to develop the intellectual faculties with which they are endowed. They should also be taught regarding the earth on which they live, its properties, and the laws that govern it; and they ought to be instructed concerning God who made the earth, and His designs and purposes in its creation and the placing of man upon it. . . It is highly necessary that we should learn to read and write and speak in our own language correctly . . . We ought to take more pains than we do in the training and education of our youth" – John Taylor (Teachings of Presidents of the Church, 90)

We ought to more fully find a way, to combine the best of traditional scholarship with the religious perspectives intrinsic to that scholarship and to the restored gospel. – Jeffrey R. Holland                              (Educating Zion, BYU Studies)


We are very particular to forbid anyone from preaching Catholicism, or Protestantism, or Mormonism, or Judaism in a public school classroom, but for some reason we are very patient with those who teach the negative expression of religion. I claim that the atheist has no more right to teach the fundamentals of his sect in the public school than does the theist. Any system in the schools or in society that protects the destruction of faith, and forbids, in turn, the defense of it, must ultimately destroy the moral fiber of society. – Boyd K. Packer (Teach Ye Diligently, Deseret Book, 1975, 224)


We are very particular to forbid anyone from preaching sectarian religion in a public school in the classroom, and to define any decent standard of morality as sectarian; but for some reasons we are very patient with those who teach negative religion and the degrading standards that accompany it. – Boyd K. Packer (Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled, Bookcraft, 171)


We shall yet have Miltons and Shakespeares of our own. God's ammunition is not exhausted. His highest spirits are held in reserve for the latter times. In God's name and by his help we shall build up a literature whose top shall touch heaven, though its foundation may now be low on earth. – Orson F. Whitney (A Believing People, Cracroft and Lambert, Bookcraft, 1979)


We want our youth to be educated. We want them to understand the history of the world and the laws of nature. We want them to be able to enjoy all of the best that the Lord in his providence has permitted man to develop. We want them, with a background of education, to be able to make intelligent appraisals and wise choices, so that they may lead lives of usefulness and happiness. If their ideals are right, they can achieve these lofty goals. The Lord help them. God help us to help them. – Stephen L. Richards (Where is Wisdom?, 160 - 161)


While I am thoroughly sympathetic with the separation of church and state, I cannot feel that we shall ever have a Godly nation with Godless education. – Stephen L. Richards                                                 (The Church in War and Peace, Zion Printing 1943, 102)


..the fact that we have the gospel should not be used as an excuse to fail to do the very thing that the gospel commands, to expand our knowledge of all truth.  It does not enjoin us to seek learning “either by study or by faith.”  Neither does it state that if ye have achieved learning by faith, ye are thereby permanently exempted from study. Rather, the commandment is to obtain learning and to obtain it both “by study and also by faith.’ – Rex E. Lee


It is proper that every professor and teacher at this institution would keep his subject bathed in the light and color of the restored gospel. And his subject matter perfumed lightly with the spirit of the gospel. Spencer W. Kimball (Educating Zion, BYU Studies)


What, then, is true education? It is awakening a love for truth, a just sense of duty, opening the eyes of the soul to the great purpose and end of life. – David O. McKay (Instructor, August 1961)


When under the pressure of a heavy course of study and the necessity of parroting back what certain professors have said, the student does not have the time or take the time to learn the truth. If he does not learn the truth, someday he will suffer the consequences. – Ezra Taft Benson (BYU Speeches of the Year, 1966, 3-17)

Why should my money be used to employ a man to teach my children infidelity and a lack of faith in God? ...I consider it an outrage that the money of people who believe in the Lord God Almighty can be spent to teach our children that kind of "rot". – Heber J. Grant          (Conference Report, April 1922, 167)


You young men and women who are in school, believe in yourselves. Seek the Lord if you are stumbling. Believe in your capacity to learn and make something of your lives. Stand tall and go forward. I was interested in these words that I read the other evening and copied down. Moses, leading the children of Israel through the wilderness, heard them complain. They were always complaining, it seems to me. Forty years of complaining. Moses cried to the Lord because the people cried to him. "And the Lord said unto Moses, Wherefore criest thou unto me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward" (Ex. 14:15). Don't stand around complaining. "Speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward." That is a message for us in our day and time. This is the great day of opportunity for you young people, this marvelous time to be upon the earth. You stand at the summit of all of the past ages. You are exposed to all of the learning of all who have walked the earth, that learning being distilled down into courses where you can acquire knowledge in a relatively short time, that knowledge which men stumbled over in learning through all of the centuries past. Don't sell yourselves short. Don't miss your great opportunity. Get at it, work at it, study hard. The Lord has laid upon you a mandate, you young men and women of this Church, to acquire secular knowledge as well as spiritual knowledge,

and that is defined very clearly and openly in the 88th Section of the Doctrine and Covenants. Take advantage of the opportunities that are yours; even if it entails sacrifice, take advantage. Be not faithless, but believing, in your capacity as a son or daughter of God to learn so that you may go forth to serve and make a contribution to the society of which you will become a part. Look up and go forward. – Gordon B. Hinckley (Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley, 715-716)


I suggest that the expectation of modern secular education generally goes no further than enlightened behavior.  The goal of that kind of education does not extend to what I have called becoming.–  Henry B. Eyring


There are at least three dangers that threaten the church within, and the authorities need to awaken to the fact that the people should be warned unceasingly about them...They are the flattery of prominent men in the world, false educational ideas, and sexual impurity.            – Joseph F. Smith                                                                              (Improvement Era, March 1914)


Young people, you live in tumultuous times. You have choices to make—choices with eternal consequences. But you are not left unaided in your decisions, however small or however large they may be. . . . Precious young people, make every decision you contemplate pass this test: What does it do to me? What does it do for me? And let your code of conduct emphasize not "What will others think?" but rather "What will I think of myself?" Be influenced by that still, small voice. Remember that one with authority placed his hands on your head at the time of your confirmation and said, "Receive the Holy Ghost." Open your hearts, even your very souls, to the sound of that special voice that testifies of truth. As the prophet Isaiah promised, "Thine ears shall hear a word … saying, This is the way, walk ye in it" (Isaiah 30:21). – Thomas S. Monson ("Standards of Strength," New Era, October 2008)


The thirst for education can be a blessing or a curse, depending on our motives. If we continue to seek learning to serve God and His children better, it is a blessing of great worth. If we seek learning to exalt ourselves alone, it leads to selfishness and pride. That is one of the reasons we should always put spiritual learning first. – Henry B. Eyring ("Real-Life Education," New Era, Apr 2009, 2-8)


As with companions so with books. We may choose those which will make us better, more intelligent, more appreciative of the good and the beautiful in the world, or we may choose the trashy, the vulgar, the obscene, which will make us feel we've been 'wallowing in the mire'.       – David O. McKay (Pathways to Happiness, 1957, 15)


Abigail Adams wrote her husband, John, about their children...."You will not teach them what to think, but how to think and they will then know how to act." –Abigail Adams (Witness to a Revolution, Natalie S. Bober, Aladdin 1998)

The men and women who made epic sacrifices to combat evil regimes in the past were shaped by values that are disappearing from our public teaching. – Dallin H. Oaks                                                                (May Ensign, 2004)


A hierarchy of importance exists among the things you and I can learn. Indeed, all learning is not equally important. The Apostle Paul taught this truth in his second epistle to Timothy as he warned that in the latter days many people would be “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Timothy 3:7).  Some facts are helpful or interesting to know. Some knowledge is useful to learn and apply. But gospel truths are essential for us to understand and live if we are to become what our Heavenly Father yearns for us to become. The type of learning I am attempting to describe is not merely the accumulation of data and facts and frameworks; rather, it is acquiring and applying knowledge for righteousness . . . .You and I are here on the earth to prepare for eternity, to learn how to learn, to learn things that are temporally important and eternally essential, and to assist others in learning wisdom and truth (see D&C 97:1). Understanding who we are, where we came from, and why we are on the earth places upon each of us a great responsibility both to learn how to learn and to learn to love learning. – David A. Bednar (“Learning to Love Learning,” Ensign, Feb 2010, 26–29)


It is so obvious that the great good and the terrible evil in the world today are the sweet and the bitter fruits of the rearing of yesterday's children. As we train a new generation, so will the world be in a few years. If you are worried about the future, then look to the upbringing of your children. – Gordon B. Hinckley (Ensign, Dec. 07, 5)


Behold your little ones. Pray with them. Pray for them and bless them. The world into which they are moving is a complex and difficult world. They will run into heavy seas of adversity. They will need all the strength and all the faith you can give them while they are yet near you. And they will also need a greater strength, which comes of a higher power. They must do more than go along with what they find. They must lift the world, and the only levers they will have are the example of their own lives and the powers of persuasion that will come of their testimonies and their knowledge of the things of God. -Gordon B. Hinckley (Ensign, Dec. 07, 9)


Oh, I am fearful that in our schools little consideration is given to the Constitution! I am fearful that our young men and our young women are not learning very much about this great republic . . .                          – Joseph L. Wirthlin                                                                                       (Oct. Conference 1946, 34)


I have commanded you to bring up your children in light and truth. -D&C 93:40


Parents are entrusted with the education of their children and, ultimately, parents must ensure that their children are being taught what their Heavenly Father would have them learn.              – L. Tom Perry (Nov. Ensign, 2010)


Satan knows exactly what he is doing. But do we? Are we sleeping, or are we creating places of security where we may insulate ourselves from his advances? If there ever were a time when the Lord needed righteous, determined women who can distinguish between the adversary's deceptions and the voice of the Lord, it is now...If there were ever a time when the Lord needed His daughters to be alert to what is happening in society and to defend the sanctity of the home and family, it is now...If there were ever a time when the Lord needed us to have a clear vision of who we are, where we are, and what is important, it is now. – Pres. Gordon B. Hinckley, (No Doubt About It, Deseret Book Co., 2002, Ch. 14)


What could be more basic to a learning effort than this knowledge that God is the power by which all things were made and governed and that he is in all things, comprehends all things, and is the source of all enlightenment? – Dallin H. Oaks


Every child in America should be acquainted with his own country. He should read books that furnish him with ideas that will be useful to him in life and practice. As soon as he opens his lips, he should rehearse the history of his own country. – Noah Webster, (On the Education of Youth in America)


We had to pay our own schoolteachers, raise our own bread and earn our own clothing, or go without; there was no other choice. We did it then, and we are able to do the same to-day. I want to enlist the sympathies of the ladies among the Latter-day Saints, to see what we can do for ourselves with regard to schooling our children. Do not say you cannot school them, for you can... I understand that the other night there was a school meeting in one of the wards of this city, and a part there– a poor miserable apostate– said, "We want a free school, and we want to have the name of establishing the first free school in Utah." To call a person a poor miserable apostate may seem like a harsh word; but what shall we call a man who talks about free schools and who would have all the people taxed to support them . . .  – Brigham Young                                                                                        (Journal of Discourses 16:19-20)


The Lord clearly values what you will find in that history book and in a text on political theory. Remember His words. He wants you to know "things which have been, things which are, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations" (D&C 88:79). And He favors not only Spanish verbs but the study of geography and demography. You remember that His educational charter requires we have "A knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms" (D&C 88:79). There is also an endorsement for questions we study in the sciences. It is clear that putting spiritual learning first does not relieve us from learning secular things. On the contrary, it gives our secular learning purpose and motivates us to work harder at it. –  Henry B. Eyring (Education for Real Life, Ensign, Oct 2002)


After the tragic Supreme Court prayer decision, President Davis O. McKay said, “ The Supreme Court of the United States severs the connecting cord between the public schools of the United States and the source of divine intelligence,    the Creator himself.”                                                                            (Relief Society Mag. Dec. 1962)


Let every student be plainly instructed, and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies is, to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life, John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottom, as the only foundation of all sound knowledge and learning. –Samuel Eliot Morison (The Founding of Harvard College, 434)


It’s interesting to read in Mosiah, that Laman appointed teachers to the people, who taught them their language,  to keep a record and how to write one to another, but they ‘knew not of God, neither did the brethren of Amulon teach them anything concerning the Lord their God, neither the law of Moses; nor did they teach them the words of Abinadi.”  And what was the result of this teaching? They were a friendly people, who began to increase in riches and to trade with one another, they began to be cunning and wise in the wisdom of the world, delighting in wickedness and plunder. So if we liken this story to our day, what can we learn from the people of Amulon about a strictly secular education? (Mosiah 24: 1-7)

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: (Hosea 4:6)


An education built upon the world’s foundation will not adequately serve the purposes of Zion. – A. LeGrand Richards (BYU Speeches 1996 - 97)

The Church’s Model for Distance Education


A Vision of Online Learning

Henry J. Eyring

Advancement Vice President

Perspective, Spring 2007

So Little for So Many

President Clark's reference to Primary children around the world rekindled those old questions. It reminded me, too, of a story that President Henry B. Eyring told after visiting Rexburg a few years ago. He happened to see the newly completed John Taylor Chapel for the first time after a long trip of his own through South America. Like all who see it, he admired the chapel's beauty. Yet the contrast between where he had been and the magnificence of the new chapel caused him to remark, "We do so much for so few and so little for so many."


It's a sentiment that even the busiest members of the BYU-Idaho community feel; we hope to somehow do more for those who cannot come to Rexburg. Long before my mission in Japan ended, I was looking forward to a new mission in Rexburg, with a long-term dream of sharing the blessings of BYU-Idaho more broadly. Of course, upon arriving, I learned just how full our hands already are, serving a growing number of students. That discovery led me back to President Clark's inaugural address. The first time I read it, in Tokyo, I saw only his vision of what we might do—blessing all faithful youth worldwide with higher education. I've since studied how we'll do this, even as we scramble to serve more students than ever in Rexburg. Just as you'd expect from a production design specialist, President Clark embedded in his statement of vision the method by which the vision will be fulfilled.


His comments about Primary children include the recognition that they won't participate directly in our classroom activities: "Now, I realize," he said, "that most of these young people will never come to BYU-Idaho. But they will be blessed by what we learn here about learning by faith and delivering a high-quality education at relatively low cost."

President Clark's inaugural remarks also contain a theory of how the work we do here will translate into blessings for those far away. This theory is captured in the phrase, "a proving ground of great fidelity," cited already. Here is that citation again: "I believe that at BYU-Idaho we must learn to use new technologies and develop methods, materials, programs, and concepts that not only can be applied to our students on and off our campus, but also can be effectively and efficiently applied by others across the Church and, indeed, across the world. I am convinced that this university is in this valley where our pioneer heritage is deeply ingrained, where the people are humble and faithful, so that we can be a proving ground of great fidelity for education that will bless the young people of the Church worldwide."4 (Emphasis added.)

That is why President Clark's prediction is so remarkable. He has suggested that, even as we build an ever-better university, we can be a proving ground for education of great fidelity relative to the needs of all Church members, including the poorest. Somehow, our deeply ingrained pioneer heritage—manifest in humility and faith—will allow us to discover means of learning here that will work everywhere. The cost of this education will be low enough and the quality high enough. And we will prove it here first. The path to Rio and other places around the world somehow runs through Rexburg.


Fidelity in Distance Learning


It's hard to imagine how that will all work out. However, even now I see the great wisdom in starting here first. Specifically, doing our innovation in Rexburg, primarily to meet the needs of traditional students, makes it more likely that what ultimately gets to Rio will be of high quality. Too commonly, distance education is developed as just that—a technology-delivered approximation of what happens in the classroom. The assumption is that the student learning at a distance will get some fraction of what he or she might on a real campus. Unfortunately, these low expectations are inevitably fulfilled.


Unlike most distance education providers though, we start with the goal of using technology to enhance learning on our own campus. Our goal is not primarily to reduce the cost of learning but to raise its quality. Others have shown how to use technology to beat the cost of a traditional university education. Our aim, by contrast, is to increase its value. Having done that, we are much more likely to be able to someday export learning programs that are both high quality and low cost.


Accordingly, the focus of BYU-Idaho's current online learning initiatives is close to home. Many faculty members already use online technology to enhance learning in the classroom. They are discovering how the foundation for great classroom experiences can be laid before class starts. Individually and through online conversations, students can acquire basic knowledge and comprehension of the subject matter. Then, when they come to class, they are ready to move quickly to application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation—the higher levels of learning. They are also better prepared to be taught by the Spirit.


Pure classroom-based case discussion pales in comparison to what happens online. Each student has equal opportunity to weigh in. Comments, being written, are more thoughtful. Data is added to the original case materials, as students not among the original authors surf the Web and find more nuggets.


The technology required for this kind of higher-quality learning is not especially "high-tech" from a user's standpoint. Faculty and students can, through simple online tools, create and use discussion boards, blogs, and wikis without the aid of technicians. The focus of our Academic Technology group is on training faculty in this kind of do-it-yourself online innovation.


The new online courses will be of enhanced quality in several ways. One is that BUS students will interact with one another, studying and completing assignments together, albeit asynchronously, online. Another innovation is the inclusion of current BYU-Idaho students in these classes. Beginning this fall, all of our online courses will simultaneously serve full-time students in Rexburg and part-time BUS students living at a distance. The creation of this kind of Rexburg-and-beyond learning community will foster unique learning experiences for both "traditional" and "non-traditional" students. It is a step on the road to serving students even farther away.


A second major online learning project is the creation of preparatory content for future BYU-Idaho students. To achieve the imperatives of giving more students better education at lower cost, we need students who are better prepared to learn before they ever enroll. In particular, new BYU-Idaho students must be ready to make the most of the university's academic and spiritual resources.


My old friend, Dean Sorenson, taught me that lesson a few months ago. We were addressing a large, fine group of prospective missionaries. On a break, we talked about the good old days, when he was a young Ricks College administrator, and I still had some hair.


As we discussed the university's new mission and our mutual desire to spread the blessings of BYU-Idaho more broadly, he recalled a 1970s visit to Ricks College by then Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Elder Monson was teaching a group of college leaders how to think about progress and change in the Kingdom. He said, "You'll never see the Church advance like this." He then made a leaping broad jump. "When the Church moves," Elder Monson continued, "it happens like this." He then took several long, confident strides forward.


The Doctrine and Covenants makes the same vital point in these words:

    “Ye cannot behold with your natural eyes, for the present time, the design of your God concerning those things which shall come hereafter, and the glory which shall follow after much tribulation. Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.”

Online Learning: Extending the BYU–Idaho experience

Clark Gilbert, Matt Sanders, Peter Williams, Alan Young—Academic Development

In his inaugural response, President Kim B. Clark said:


“I see ahead a great season of creativity and innovation, a season of powerful new ideas and new curricula. in a day not far from now, we will be able to break down the barriers of time and space...and create outstanding, interactive educational experiences [where] students will teach one another in new and powerful ways. . . . The capacity to educate effectively across time and across space will allow us to leverage the capacity of the university and reach many more young people.”


Since the launch of the online initiative in 2008, teams of BYU–Idaho faculty working together with curriculum development and media development teams have created more than 30 new online courses. New BYU–Idaho instructors, living all across the country, are teaching these new online courses in a way that actively engages students in learning and in teaching and serving each other.


Key elements of this online learning effort include remote instructors that extend the BYU–Idaho experience and an integrated curriculum based in the BYU–Idaho learning Model.


Online instructors


Teaching has long been of paramount importance in building up and establishing Zion. The Lord has also employed many different settings and technologies to teach his people throughout the ages. Enoch taught “standing upon the hills and high places” (Moses 6:37). King Benjamin spoke from a tower, “and they could not all hear his words because of the greatness of the multitude; therefore he caused that the words which he spake should be written and sent forth among those that were not under the sound of his voice, that they might also receive his words” (Mosiah 2:8). Faithful Paul also used artful communication to teach at a distance, saying, “The salutation of Paul with mine own hand, which is the token in every epistle: so I write” (2 Thessalonians 3:17).


And so it is in this era that we employ online forums, discussion boards, podcasts, and wikis—with each in their turn sounding perhaps as foreign to many as our day must have seemed to Paul in his vision of us. Yet, we are charged to extend the BYU–Idaho experience to more students than ever before using tools of “curious workmanship” (1 Nephi 16:10).


There are some things that happen in the classroom that simply cannot be replicated online. The power of looking into students’ eyes, hearing their tone of voice, or reading their body language can lead to teaching experiences that become magical. There are, however, things that cannot be done in the classroom, for which the online medium is uniquely attuned. For example, an entire class can participate in an online discussion or blog, whereas time constraints in-class may otherwise limit a student’s opportunity for engagement. real-time assessment, monitoring students’ progress, individualized feedback, adaptive learning activities, and other interactive learning tools can provide instructors new ways to engage and manage student learning . . . several large sample studies demonstrate that when online courses are well-designed, both student satisfaction and measured learning can perform at levels comparable to even the most successful campus courses. While some of the specific teaching strategies may differ to accommodate the different environments, the core curriculum will be the same. And, as resources (such as readings, audio/visual objects, assignments, rubrics, etc.) are developed for the online environment, they will be available for use by those teaching in the face-to-face classroom.

Online learning is providing a way to extend the BYU–Idaho experience to many more students.