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CD-ROM teaches ‘how’ of scripture study

SHARE CD-ROM teaches ‘how’ of scripture study

A lot of scripture study programs take passages of text and teach their meanings. But one, "Interactive Scripture Study Book of Mormon Edition," actually teaches "how" to study scripture.

That means everything from how to mark scripture to increase understanding to how to ask questions that make the text stories and lessons come alive.

The CD-ROM is produced by Logan-based LetterPress Software, the same folks who brought you Infobases Scripture Mastery. Vice president Mike Petersen likes to tell how it was created working with Jerry Wilson, author of "Teaching with Spiritual Power." Wilson has for many years taught at the Logan LDS Institute of Religion.

We had several Deseret News staffers try the Book of Mormon edition provided for review, and this is a composite of their reactions.

It might better be called Interactive Study Skills, because it is neither reference work or scripture captured on disk. Folks who are looking for the actual text of the Book of Mormon, along with study aids, won't find it here.

Lessons include "scripture marking for learning," "asking questions: the key to scripture study," "use of language in scripture" and "overviewing" or "seeing the big picture." It also includes six narrated chapters on which to practice the skills that are being acquired.

All the reviewers seemed to like particularly the "Idea Pyramid," which asks a question and provides a number of possible answers, which the individual doing the study can prioritize and drag into the pyramid. It was "thought-provoking," wrote one reviewer.

As for overviewing, the process of creating a basic timeline and then filling in details that are important to an individual, all but one tester found it helpful. It's a fine line, he said, between studying scripture and feeling like you've got a major class project due in school.

One of the program's strongest points is its simplicity in everything from the graphics to the language and concept.

The program, which is available online from LDSLearning.com for $29.95, would likely most appeal to people who would like to get serious about scripture study but have not quite figured out how to approach it to make it a powerful learning experience. Those who have been studying scripture seriously for some time are likely to have their own methods and be somewhat less intrigued. But even skilled scriptorians may learn new skills.

To run the program, you need Windows 95 or better, at least a 486/66 CPU and 16 MB of RAM memory.

E-mail: lois@desnews.com