Research Methods Textbook Published by AG Theological Seminary Professors
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A new textbook designed to teach the many methods of academic research has been developed by a team of professors affiliated with the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary of Evangel University, in Springfield, Mo.
According to Dr. Paul Lewis, associate dean at AGTS, “Research in general is conducted for the academy; it expands the body of knowledge by either generating new theory or evaluating existing theory.”
The new textbook — Missiological Research: Interdisciplinary Foundations, Methods, and Integration — adds an additional layer that focuses on biblical, theological and missions-specific research.
“Missiological research is conducted both for the academy and the Church,” Lewis added. “The purpose of this volume is to be a tool in the hands of missionaries and missions researchers, but the volume can also be of benefit for students researching in other social science areas, such as business or social work.”
It is this inclusive nature that has caught the attention of other scholars, such as Dr. Robert Gallagher, chair of Intercultural Studies at Wheaton College Graduate School near Chicago.
“Missiological Research will undoubtedly become an essential reference tool in a range of academic disciplines that embrace research with excellence,” said Gallagher.
“It will prove especially helpful for those who are in the process of starting their research; they can investigate and decide which method(s) works best for their study,” he said.
According to Lewis, they have received inquiries from other universities and seminaries into using the textbook for missions program courses in their schools.
Proceeds from the sale of the book will go toward scholarships for Intercultural Studies students at AGTS.
“The desire was that both the content and the resulting funds would help missions and missions’ students in the future. It has truly been a labor of love,” said Lewis, who also serves as a professor of historical theology and intercultural studies at AGTS.
The five units of the volume focus on:
• foundations of missiological research,
• key aspects of biblical and theological methods,
• qualitative methods,
• quantitative and mixed methods for research, and
• integration of missiological research and the missionary life.
Each chapter’s purpose is to summarize a method, while suggesting resources for advanced interaction.
Evangel University, which includes AGTS, is a comprehensive Christian university committed to excellence in educating and equipping students to serve the church and society globally. Evangel serves more than 2,100 students from all 50 states and numerous foreign countries, offering 65 undergraduate majors and 19 master’s and doctoral degrees.