Sample Assignments across the Seminary Curriculum, Part 4

Seminary Curriculum / Produced by TOW Project

Here are more sample assignments to help inspire fresh thinking about how to incorporate a concern for vocation, flourishing and economic justice across the curriculum.

Biblical Studies

Have students do an exegetical word study on one of the following words in New Testament Greek related to work, economics, and vocation:

  • ἔργον / ἐργάτης
  • ἐνεργέω
  • τέχνη / τεχνίτης
  • κλῆσις / καλέω
  • οἰκονομία / οἰκονόμος
  • πωλέω
  • προσκαλέω
  • λατρεύω
  • διάκονος


Ask students to critique a sermon related to the topic of work. (This link leads to over 40 sermons from the Theology of Work Project and The High Calling that discuss work.) How does the preacher approach the text? What aspects of their exegesis do you agree with? What would you have done differently? What other illustrations can you think of which illumine the biblical text the preacher chose?


Have students respond to this article by Benjamin Norquist: “Proposal for a Theology of Management.”

  • Is Norquist correct in thinking we need a theology of management as well as a theology of work? If so, what additional evidence do you see for this point? If not, why not?
  • Where would you start in building such a theology? What doctrines could serve as starting points? (the imago Dei, original sin, and the Incarnation are three possible ones, but should not be construed as the only possibilities). What do you have to say to the managers in your own congregation?

Pastoral Counseling

Ask students to write a case study according to the normal case study method, but paying special attention to issues of work (perhaps focused around a client or congregant’s work problem, or around the way work plays into relationship issues within a family or marriage.) Discuss with them afterwards how it affected the case study process to foreground work in their analysis.

Christian Education

Ask students to prepare a lesson plan for children or youth explaining one of the following (or another work-related topic) in audience-appropriate language:

  • Being made in the image of God
  • The concept of Sabbath and a rhythm of work and rest
  • Serving others through work
  • Especially for teenagers: How to treat others justly and ethically at work
  • Especially for teenagers: How to discern what work God is calling you to do

One example of a curriculum for elementary-age children is here and another for older students is here if students need help with ideas on how to approach their chosen audience.