DSP3400EN - Refugees and Displaced Persons

Course description

Focus on issues such as the nexus between forced and voluntary migration, the Mediterranean refugee crisis, transition from relief to development, internally displaced populations, refugees/displaced persons, immigration patterns, refugee protection, and national security issues. Particular attention to creating contextually-appropriate missional responses for various refugee and voluntary migration scenarios.

How this course benefits students

The bachelor's level course is intended to be both an introduction and an intensification of topics covered in other diaspora courses but with an emphasis on refugees and displaced persons as specific diaspora populations. The master’s course assumes basic knowledge of the issues for these populations. It is designed to further equip the student to effectively engage refugees and displaced persons using the analytical framework described to evaluate causes and consequences of their situations. This assessment tool will be developed for the purpose of sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ and for assisting students to evaluate and engage these specific communities with goals of generating a life-giving witness and effectual outcomes that benefit the population as a whole.

Why this course is important

The study of refugees and displaced persons is a burgeoning field in academic studies because the diasporic flow of these peoples globally has such a powerful impact. Media coverage has raised awareness, funding and involvement. Agencies and ministries require personnel equipped to handle the ever-changing dynamics with flexible thinking, methods and practice, prepared for rapid responses to crises when they arise

Credit hours
3 hours
Subject area
Diaspora Studies
Educational level
Learning type
Upcoming terms
* Schedule subject to change. Please contact the Registrar's office with schedule questions.
Dr. Gary Fujino, Professor of Diaspora Studies

How this course relates to missional core values

Biblically based

Both the bachelor's and master's course have the Bible and a biblical understanding of diaspora at their core. So, this course will elaborate on biblical and theological models and examples of such populations.

Missionally driven

The missio dei informs and is the background of diaspora mission. This particular course will examine how to go where God is already working among refugees and displaced persons. The focus will be on incarnational missional approaches to engage for the purpose of individual and community transformation in Christ.

Contextually informed

Issues involving refugees and displaced persons require a multi-faceted approach utilizing demographics, social science research methodology, biblical and theological truths as well as case studies and practiced strategies which are all applied to a given context. Particularly for practice, proper exegesis of culture and people is essential.

Interculturally focused

By definition and essence, interactions with refugees and displaced persons will be both interculturally diverse and cross-cultural in nature. The student and the teacher must actively and knowingly engage with diaspora recognizing that they will probably be taken out of their own cultural comfort zone. Additionally, because of security and anxiety concerns with these specific populations, both caution and compassion will need to be meted out liberally.

Practically minded

Content-based instruction alone is not enough. The assignments and even the purpose of the course itself must have some sort of practical outcome or learning will end with “head knowledge” alone.

Experientially transformed

For diaspora mission, learning will be most powerful on the experiential level. Exercises and assignments will be reflective in part, collaborative as much as possible, and sometimes interactive with diaspora persons themselves. “Hands on” experience where the learner is engaged is invaluable for dealing with refugees and displaced persons.