Discover the Bible

Frequently Asked Questions

Basic Questions

Financial Questions

Technical Questions

Course Related Questions

Getting Started Questions

Basic Answers

  • 1. What is Distance Education?

    As its name suggests, it is when the student and the instructor are separated by distance outside the traditional classroom setting. This is usually accomplished by using a computer and the internet. The benefits are that you can do the coursework at your own convenient time and pace from any location.

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  • 2. Why do you offer these Bible courses?

    In order to meet today's critical need for biblical literacy, our goal is to help you develop a closer relationship with God, equip you for Christian service, and prepare you for the perilous days ahead.

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  • 3. For whom did you design these courses?

    For anyone who has a hunger to know more about God and the Bible and to whom college accreditation is not essential. We have especially designed them for today's busy Christian who has limited time, and who does not want to expend a lot of intensive, time consuming studying associated with taking an accredited course. The average length of our lessons is 30-45 minutes. No term papers, essays, research papers, or book reports will be required.

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  • 4. Are your courses accredited?

    Our courses are not accredited. Therefore, there are no credits given for completing a course.

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  • 5. Why should I take a non-accredited course over an accredited course?

    Good question. If your goal is to get a degree, then our courses will not qualify for college accreditation. However, if accreditation is not important and your objective is simply to learn more about the Bible so you can grow closer to the Lord, know His Word better, or help further equip yourself as a teacher, etc. in your church, then these courses will greatly aid you in accomplishing those goals. Taking our courses can also act as a steppingstone to prepare you to take a harder accredited course in the future.

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  • 6. Why should I pay to take a non-accredited course when I can get the information on the internet?

    Here are three reasons:

         First, much of this Bible study material cannot be found on the internet as it is presented here.

         Second, researching this information is very, very time consuming and most people don't have the motivation or that kind of time to expend. So we do it for you. We spend a great amount of time researching the material in order to give you the condensed meat of the subject matter - thereby saving you many hours of precious time doing it yourself. We also provide or link to Scripture references in order to save you valuable time and effort looking them up. We include features like maps, word studies; definitions; Bible customs; historical, philosophical, prophetic, and archaeological insights; and links to other websites for further study.

         Third, we develop exams for you to take to reinforce the information you learned - something you probably would not take the time to do, which is a critical part of effective learning.

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  • 7. Will I make a good on-line student?

    You can get a sense by answering the questions below and by taking this assessment quiz: Is Online Learning for Me? (Compliments of Independence Community College):

    • Are you comfortable working on a computer?
    • Can you study alone or do you need to be in a group setting?
    • Are you self-motivated and self-disciplined or do you need someone to prod you?
    • Can you study without seeing the instructor in person?
    • Will you be comfortable asking questions via e-mail?
    • Do you have good retention and memorization skills?

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  • 8. What type of computer skills will I need?

    Your computer experience should include the ability to start and shut down a computer, using a mouse, scrolling, clicking hyperlinks, locating and saving files, using e-mail, and familiarity with navigating the Internet to access information and possibly downloading files. You do not need a lot of experience with computers to be successful in an online learning environment - just the basics. If you have doubts about taking a course, at least try a free sample lesson.

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  • 9. What type of writing skills will I need?

    Since there are no term papers, essays, research papers, or book reports that will be required, all that will be asked of you is to select answers to multiple choice, true and false, matching letters with numbers, and provide short answers to questions.

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  • 10. How long will it take me to complete a course?

    Distance learning allows you the flexibility of working at your own time, location, and pace; therefore, the amount of time it takes you to complete a course will largely depend on your schedule and determination. The course(s) you purchase will always be available online so there is no pressure of a time limit. The approximate course length is given in each course's summary.

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  • 11. How much time will I need to complete a lesson?

    It depends on your speed and the level you choose: Level 1 Basic courses (100 numbered series) will take 30-45 min. to complete a lesson; Level 2: Intermediate (200 series) takes 45-60 min.; and Level 3: Advanced (300 series) takes 60 min. and more.

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  • 12. Do I have to be online at any specific time to take a course?

    No. You can do the course online at your convenience at any time and at your own pace instead of with other students. The only time you would need to be online at a specific time is if you want to participate in real time features such as a chat room, if available.

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  • 13. Can I ever talk to my instructor?

    Yes. You will be able to "talk" with the instructor via e-mail. Depending on the nature of your question, the instructor may also provide his telephone number and office hours on a case by case basis.

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  • 14. How do I get started?

    Go to the section below: Getting Started Questions

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Financial Answers

  • 1. How much does a course cost?

    Our courses are not being offered at the kind of prices you would pay for a typical accredited or non-accredited course. Rather our non-accredited courses are being offered to you for what you would pay for a comparable Christian paperback book. But you get a lot more for your value such as: audio and video clips to aid in your learning experience, assignments and exams to lock in the information, and links to other websites for further study. We're doing this to make these courses available to the most possible number of people worldwide at affordable prices in these lean economic times. And just like owning a book, you always have access to your course - unlike most other online courses.

    The only place the tuition cost for each course is listed is in our bookstore. The price usually includes the course's textbook, if applicable, to save you from having to make multiple purchases (it will automatically be sent to you). Sales tax and shipping and handling costs for the textbook will be added in the checkout process.

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  • 2. What are my payment options?

    You can either pay by credit card through PayPal or by check or money order through the mail. Both methods are available through our online bookstore. We accept Visa, Master Card, Discover Card, and American Express. All payments must be in U.S. Funds.

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  • 3. What are the procedures for dropping a course and your refund policy?

    Should it become necessary for you to drop a course, follow the Returns Procedure below. Courses that are dropped are subject to the following refund schedule for the amount paid for the course including any textbook(s) ordered through our online bookstore:

    • Within 7 days of purchase = 100 % refund
    • From 8th day to the 14th day of purchase = 50% refund
    • Beyond 14 days = you are no longer eligible for a refund

    Returns Procedure:

    • Email us at and tell us the reason for dropping the course. Include your name, address, and phone number.
    • Package the textbook(s) or DVD properly (damage in shipping may partially nullify your refund)
    • Ship the textbook, DVD, etc. via a carrier that has tracking capabilities. Make sure the product is insured for the amount you paid for it. Ship to: Discover Ministries, 2911 McClure St., White Oak, PA 15131, Attn: Returns
    • We will reimburse you for the cost of the course and any textbook(s) by mailing you our company check after we receive the textbook or DVD in resalable condition.

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Technical Answers

  • 1. Will I have to upgrade my computer equipment and software in order to take this course?

    Perhaps. In order to fully enjoy your online learning experience, you must be willing to upgrade your computer equipment if need be - such as switching from dial-up to broadband internet access, or to upgrade or download new software like Adobe Reader so you can view the course, or Adobe Flash Player so you can watch video. This may take additional time depending on how much you need to upgrade. You can test your computer software compatibility by taking the Free Sample Lesson (then open the file, Getting Started — Features and Setup).

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  • 2. What are the computer hardware requirements needed to take your online course?

    To simplify it, if you can see and hear this video on YouTube, your computer should meet the hardware requirements for taking our courses. If not, you will need to get a computer that can.

    Note: Your internet connection, through an Internet Service Provider (ISP), should preferably be broadband (cable or DSL). As you know, "dial up" will slow things down unbearably.

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  • 3. What computer software will I need to take your online course?

         1. You must have an email account. (Google will give you one free Gmail.)

         2. A recent version of your internet browser such as Firefox, Internet Explorer, or Safari

         3. Free browser plug in software

         Adobe Acrobat Reader (version 9 or higher)
         Adobe Flash Player
         Adobe Shockwave Player

    Note: We will lead you through a test of your computer software compatibility in our Getting Started — Features and Setup file after you purchase a course. Or you can test your compatibility without purchasing by opening this file when taking the Free Sample Lesson.

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  • 4. How do I get technical help?

    • For your computer: Contact your hardware provider
    • For software: Contact the software maker
    • For email and internet related problems: Contact your Internet service provider (ISP)
    • For viruses, spyware, etc.: Contact your anti-virus software maker
    • For problems related to the Discover the Bible website, its online bookstore, or our online courses: Contact us at

    Note: Discover Ministries can not provide any technical assistance, but is willing to help and guide you.

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Course Related Answers

  • 1. What courses do you offer?

    Click here for a list of course series topics. Then click on a series to reveal each course's length and price.

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  • 2. Will you please explain your course numbering system?

    There are three course levels to choose from. These non-accredited Bible courses are targeted for Christians at the Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced levels. Note that the terms Intermediate and Advanced convey levels of more complexity than Basic, but are far less difficult than an accredited college course. The course number is composed of three letters which represent the series name, followed by a three digit number - of which the first digit indicates the level:

    Level 1: Basic Courses (100 numbered courses like SOP 101)
    Characterized by shorter lessons (4 to 8)
    and shorter time to complete a lesson (30-45 min.).
    (Perfect for the person who hasn't taken a course in a while)

    Level 2: Intermediate Courses (200 numbered courses like BIB 201)
    Characterized by a medium number of lessons (8 to 17)
    and a little longer time to complete a lesson (45-60 min.)
    The content is also a factor in determining this.

    Level 3: Advanced Courses (300 numbered courses like PCL 301)
    Characterized by a greater number of lessons (17 +)
    and/or a longer time to complete a lesson (60 min. +).
    The content is also a factor in determining this.

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  • 3. Are there courses that have to be taken in sequential order?

    Yes. Some courses are designed to be taken in sequence due to material in the one course that lays a foundation for the next course. These courses are designated by the term "Prerequisite," and will be given one number greater than the course required to precede it. For example, BIB 202 is designed to be taken after BIB 201.

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  • 4. I have not taken a course for a while, so what courses would you recommend for people like me?

    Our Level 1 Basic courses are especially designed for the Christian who has not taken a course in many years and may feel a bit apprehensive in taking one.

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  • 5. Can I take a course other than on my computer, or can a course be taken by a group of students assembled in one place?

    All courses have to be taken online. However, you may be required to order a physical textbook or DVD to be used for some courses. The pages of the lessons cannot be handed out to class members because you cannot print out the pages - nor do we mail them. Students would have to take the course online together in one place on individual computers, or one big screen may work.

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  • 6. What are my time limits for completing a course?

    There is no time limit. However, we encourage you to set a time limit of your own. We all normally work better when we have a deadline. Keep in mind that your course will always be available to you online so you can resume it at any time or return to retrieve information.

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  • 7. How do I order a textbook when a course requires one?

    Most textbooks will be included in the cost of the course and be automatically shipped to you. Others may have to be ordered separately through our online bookstore when you purchase the course.

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  • 8. How do I access my online course(s)?

    You can login at any of two places to access your course. Simply enter the email address and password you used when you created your account in our online bookstore at these webpages. (Please do not give your login info to anyone else as it violates our user agreement.)

    On the home page, or on our Course Categories web page.

    (Note: You can always find a link to your course(s) on your My Account page in our online bookstore. When at your "My Account" page, click on (or View) the order containing the course you purchased. This will take you to the "Order Information" page. The link to your course is at the bottom of this page.)

    Use your same log in information each time you return to our bookstore to purchase another course or book.

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  • 9. Will I be able to contact other fellow students taking your courses?

    Yes. There are two modules that enable you to do so using our internal messaging system:

    Online Users - Shows a list of students who have logged into the current course. You will be able to send a private message to them if they permit it.

    Messages - You can also send and receive a message to a fellow student via this module.

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  • 10. How do I submit assignments to be graded?

    You don't. When assignments are given, you complete them on your own and then save them to your computer. Compare your answers with the answers we provide online.

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  • 11. What if I need assistance while taking a course?

    Email your instructor at We will try to answer you as soon as possible or no later than 24 hours.

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  • 12. How do I take an exam?

    All testing takes place online. We believe examinations should be a learning tool rather than an evaluation tool. So it will be up to you to decide whether to take an open book or a closed book exam. When you have completed the exam, you will self-grade it by comparing your answers with the answers we provide. This method reinforces what you have learned. We prefer this approach over just sending you a final score without giving you the opportunity to review your answers. You could even retake the exam in the future if you wanted to.

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  • 13. What is your grading scale?

    We use this standard college grading scale (and also provide a Grade Point Average).

    A+ = 100-97
    A  = 96-93
    A- = 92-90
    B+ = 89-87
    B  = 86-83
    B- = 82-80
    C+ = 79-77
    C  = 76-73
    C- = 72-70
    D+ = 69-67
    D  = 66-63
    F  = 62-0

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  • 14. How will I receive my grade?

    Once you finish self-grading the last question on an exam, the total number correct will automatically be calculated. Simply look up your score on the grading scale for your exam grade. The final exam will calculate the average of all exams given in the course to determine your grade for the course.

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  • 15. Do I receive anything to show that I completed a course?

    You will get a Certificate of Completion whenever you finish all the courses (and their exams) in that series. For example, if you complete the three courses in The School of Prayer series: Learning to Pray Effectively, Seeking God, and Divine Guidance, you will receive a certificate for The School of Prayer series. However, you must email us and tell us that you have completed the three courses and have passed the exams. We will then take you at your word and send you the certificate which you can frame. You can then show it to your pastor or spiritual leader if need be.

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Getting Started Answers

  • 1. How do I enroll in a course?

    The steps are simple:

    1. Select a Course

    2. Create an Account (enter your email address and select a password - make a note of these for future access and please do not give this login info to anyone else as it would violate our user agreement)

    3. Purchase Course (through our online bookstore), and

    4. Access Course

    Upon completing the purchase process online, you will be given a link to your course on the "Your Order Has Been Processed!" page. The link can also be found on your My Account page in our bookstore (at the bottom of the "Order Information" subpage). Thereafter, you can access the course from the home page or from our Course Categories web page.

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  • 2. When can I begin a course?

    As soon as your credit card order is processed online through PayPal upon checking out. If you paid by mail order, as soon as your money order is received, or your check clears, we will notify you when you can begin the course and how to access it.

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  • 3. How do I access my new course after I purchase it?

    Credit Card: If you purchase your course by credit card, you will find the link to your course on the "Your Order Has Been Processed!" page in our online bookstore upon completion of the purchase. This link can also be found on your My Account page in our online bookstore. When at your "My Account" page, click on (or View) the order containing the course you purchased. This will take you to the "Order Information" page. The link to your course is at the bottom of this page.

    Mail Order: If you purchase your course by check (or money order), we will notify you when you can access your course after we receive and process your payment. When notified, you can access your course by logging in at our home page. You can always find a link to your course on your My Account page in our online bookstore. When at your "My Account" page, click on (or View) the order containing the course you purchased. This will take you to the "Order Information" page. The link to your course is at the bottom of this page.

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  • 4. How many online courses may I take at one time?

    There is no limit to the number of courses you can be working on at one time. However, be careful to not overextend yourself. For maximum benefit, we suggest that you do one course at a time.

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  • 5. What are my time limits for completing a course?

    There is no time limit. However, we encourage you to set a time limit of your own. We all normally work better when we have a deadline. Keep in mind that your course will always be available to you online so you can resume it at any time or return to retrieve information.

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