Preparing for the First Semester

Once you have completed the application process and have been accepted into the Semiotics and Future Studies DMin program, you may begin to prepare for your first semester of study.

Gaining "Student" Status at George Fox Evangelical Seminary

Once you have completed the following application tasks, you are officially a student at George Fox Evangelical Seminary:

  • Applied for one of the DMin tracks
  • Have been officially accepted into the DMin program
  • Paid your $200 enrollment deposit

If you have not completed the above tasks, go to the Application Process page to do so.

Your status as a student allows you to access the registration, academics, and directory tabs in MyGFU. Additionally, Heather Rainey becomes your primary contact person:

Heather Rainey

Heather Rainey

Administrative Assistant for the Doctor of Ministry Program

Office: 1-503-554-6162

Steps to prepare for the first semester

In order to prepare for the first semester of the program, you need to register for the first semester courses in MyGFU, attend the first advance, complete all ramp up work, and access the FoxTALE course site to begin course work. As soon as you are accepted into the program, follow the steps listed below to complete these tasks:

  1. Join the SFS DMin Cohort group on Facebook and begin to connect with other students in the program.
    • SFS13 DMin Cohort Facebook Group. This facebook group will become an integral part of your learning community. In it will be posted announcements, reading lists, travel suggestions, and prayer requests. Regardless of your proficiency with facebook, please make it a point to join and participate in this group.
    • Your Facebook settings can be adjusted so that you receive updates from your cohort group directly to your email inbox. To enable this feature:
      • Navigate to your Facebook cohort group by clicking on the appropriate link above
      • Underneath the banner photo at the top of the page, click on the word, "Notifications," at right. 
      • Ensure that "All Posts" is selected.
    • You can post directly to the SFS13 Facebook group via email:
      Replying to an email from your Facebook group will generate a comment on that piece of content within the Facebook group.
  2. Follow Len Sweet on Twitter.
    • Len will use Twitter as a part of the program and expects his students to become conversant with Twitter as well.
    • Create a Twitter account (if you do not already have one) here:
    • Follow @LenSweet
  3. Once the university has received the enrollment deposit, register for the courses listed below not later than Aug. 15.
    • Students register for all courses using MyGFU
    • If you do not know your username or password, contact the IT Service Desk:
    • Once you have paid your enrollment deposit and have received confirmation from the admissions office that you have been matriculated, register for the following fall semester courses after July 1:
      1. Go to and log in with your GFU username and password.
      2. Select "Self Service" > "Student Center" > "Enroll"
      3. Enter the course ID in the "Enter Class Number" field for each of the courses listed below and select "Enter" to add the course to your "Shopping Cart":
        • DMIN 713 E13: Introduction to Research Resources (Class number: 1313)
        • DMIN 716 E13: Customized Course I (Class number: 1447)
        • DMIN 717 E13: Engaging Leadership Concepts (Class number: 1449)
      4. Note:You are not registered until the class has been added to your schedule. To add the class to your schedule, click the "Proceed to Step 2 of 3" button.
      5. Click the "Finish Enrolling" button. You will see a confirmation message that the class has been added to your schedule.
      6. To check to make sure that you have properly registered, check your "My Class Schedule". You will see all of your classes and their status.
    • Fill out the Enrollment Confirmation Form after August 15. Log in using your GFU username and password.
  4. Log into FoxTALE, GFU Google E-mail, and FoxFiles before the fall semester begins. You use the same username and password as you use for MyGFU.
  5. Purchase or borrow the books to read and software to use during first semester listed below. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials are listed in alphabetical order:
    • DMIN713:
      • Kate L. Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and doctoral thesis and projects, 8th edition (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013). ISBN: 0226816389 (pbk)
    • DMIN716:
      • Determined by the student in consultation with his/her Faculty Advisor.
    • DMIN717:
      • Chandler, Daniel. Semiotics: The Basics. 2nd ed. Basics. New York: Routledge, 2007.
      • Choose one:

        • Sweet, Leonard. Viral. Colorado Springs, CO: Waterbrook, 2012.
          OR, if you’ve read Viral already (or are more inclined toward philosophy),

        • Floridi, Luciano. The Fourth Revolution. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014.

      • Downing, Crystal L. Changing Signs of Truth: A Christian Introduction to Semiotics. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2012.

      • Sweet, Leonard. Nudge. Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook, 2010.

      • Geary, James. I Is an Other: The Secret Life of Metaphor and How It Shapes the Way We See the World. 1st ed. New York: HarperCollins, 2011.

      • Couchman, Judith. The Art of Faith: A Guide to Understanding Christian Images. Brewster, MA: Paraclete, 2012.

      • Sweet, Leonard. Tablet to Table (forthcoming March 2015, will be provided by Len in manuscript form)

  6. Be sure to to be available for weekly synchronous chats on the following dates, generally Mondays, at 10am EST/EDT(Eastern Standard Time/Eastern Daylight Time, USA) unless otherwise noted:
    • Sept. 08
    • Sept. 15
    • Sept. 22
    • Sept. 29
    • Oct. 13
    • Oct. 20
    • Oct. 27
    • Nov. 10
    • Nov. 17
    • Nov. 24
    • Dec. 01
    • Dec. 08

Complete the following "ramp up" assignments in preparation for the first advance:

  1. Read Turabian, chapters 1-12, 16.1 (due: Tuesday, Sep. 2, 2014)
  2. DMIN713 Topic Overview (due: Tuesday, Sep. 2, 2014)
  3. DMIN716 Program Learning Plan (1st draft)
  4. DMIN716 Module Learning Plan (1st draft)
  5. Complete the Dietary and Rooming Survey
  6. Complete the Research Topic Survey

Attend the Orientation Advance:

  1. The advances constitute a central learning experience in the SFS DMin program. Students participate in the research courses while on campus, connect with cohort members in person, and spend time with Len Sweet. The first advance for the cohort is Sep. 1-6, 2014. For more information, see the Orientation Advance Schedule page.
  2. Transportation
    • We recommend that you obtain a Metro SmarTrip Card (refillable transit card) upon arriving in Washington, D.C. and plan on using public transit during the Advance, as driving a car in the city can be inconvenient and parking is quite expensive. For more, see:

Access FoxTALE first semester website and begin coursework on Monday, Sep. 8, 2014.

  1. Log into FoxTALE and access the first semester site from your FoxTALE homepage. All course work will be available within FoxTALE.
  2. If you do not know your username or password, contact the IT Service Desk:

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