GENESIS Makes Global Classrooms Reality

( [email protected] ) Apr 14, 2004 02:22 PM EDT

The GENESIS video conferencing system is bringing the vision of world mission closer to reality. It used by the University of the Nations, school of Youth With A Mission, in an effort to link people from all the continents in a global classroom where the Biblical teaching can be made accessible to people of all nations, especially to today’s youth.

“Our passion is to see the knowledge of the glory of God filling the earth as the water covers the sea,” said Markus Steffen, International GENESIS Center director.

GENESIS (Global Electronic Network Educating Serving Inspiring Students) has been set-up in many locations including Kona, Hawaii, where Dr. Derek A. Chignell discussed during the week of April 12th, the issue of Drugs and Society with students at another GENESIS base in Jeffreys Bay, South Africa. His lecture is part of the U of N’s School of Humanities and Science Core Course.

Through using the GENESIS system, although thousands of miles away, Dr. Chignell and his students were still able to interact with each other almost as if they were in the same classroom.

“In this week, we keep the learning environment by having plenty of interaction during the teaching sessions. It was possible to keep the interaction and engagement of the students. We had good discussions on issues, and the students were very involved,” said Chignell.

The system also allowed students in Jeffreys Bay flexibility in their approach to discussion time.

They would discuss things offline and then come back and continue the discussion on line later, said the professor.

“We also showed a Video by GENESIS and it worked very well, it gave us an opportunity to discuss it afterwards. We had some good prayer times, and great affirmation at the end.”

In order for the inter-national classroom to be possible, the base participating in the online learning experience must be equipped with a video conferencing system, second camera, conferencing mic, video projector, projection screen, television, and sound system.

Around thirty nations are already conducting online classrooms using GENESIS. Around 20 locations are expected to join operation in the near future as GENESIS strives toward its goal of connecting 1000 Training Centres, serving 100,000 students every year.

Steffen explained how GENESIS has developed the world’s interconnectivity. Soon, everyone will be able to learn about the Gospel message. “The remote places are no longer isolated and have access to the best teachers. GENESIS gives a voice to the ones whose voice was not heard giving them opportunity without boundaries.”

There is nothing that can compare to GENESIS, according to Chignell who said, “Although I think that being there in person is very best, GENESIS is certainly a very strong alternative.

On September 20, 2004, the GENESIS school, a 12-credit U of N course, will begin in Worcester, South Africa and will be offered to students who have completed the Discipleship Training School. The course is expected to end on December 10.

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