Chapel Policies & Frequently Asked Questions
For questions regarding chapel during the Spring 2021 semester, please refer to the Spring 2021 Chapel FAQs section below. For additional questions, please contact email@example.com.
University chapels and conferences are intended to bring the Biola community together regularly for worship, spiritual nurture and education regarding relevant issues facing us in our lives. This remains true even though the delivery has changed. The overall program brings a unique distinction to the ethos of Biola as a Christian university. Due to the central and significant nature of that ethos, participation in chapel is required of all students.
Our heart going into this semester was to relieve students of additional burden by reducing the chapel requirements from 20 to 14, which averages one participation per week, and remove the five required conference credits. All chapels are available on-demand for six days so students can choose a time that is best for them. There are almost 50 chapel opportunities total, so students have the opportunity to choose the chapel topic, style or speaker that interests them.
On this page, we cover topics such as:
- Spring 2021 Chapel FAQs
- General Chapel Policies
- Chapel Schedules
- Chapel & Spiritual Direction Credit
- Possible Penalties
Spring 2021 Chapel FAQs
What are ways that Biola has made accommodations for students?
We know some students were confused that they did not see a credit applied immediately after viewing a chapel. This is because their chapel engagement credit appears on their accounts on the Tuesday after the week of chapels, as outlined in these FAQs. However, to reduce anxiety we will now do two updates in addition to Tuesday. Chapel credit will be updated on Wednesday and Friday for the current week, and as usual on the following Tuesday for any chapel participation that happens over the weekend. Every Tuesday afternoon we will post to the Biola App that we have updated all chapel credits for the previous week. We will encourage students to check their MyAccount, and to notify Chapel Accountability if they are missing chapel credit.
How do students view chapels? How can they ensure they get full credit?
Students watch chapels via Canvas while using VidGrid, which records their viewership and participation. VidGrid records if they viewed the entire chapel, just as if they were physically present, but allowing for brief interruptions. If students watch the entire chapel and answer the VidGrid questions thoughtfully, there should be no credit issues. We’ve found that using Google Chrome works best for capturing participation. Again, students who have issues should contact chapel accountability so we can work with them.
We have updated our Chapel course on Canvas and our Chapel website with more precise ways to engage (and not engage) with chapel. For example, we want to clear that it is not the case that students need to start a chapel over if they have a brief interruption in their internet service. Students can start viewing the chapel approximately where they left off in a chapel video answering any questions necessary to move forward from that point. Students do not need to view that previous portion again. However, longer interruptions of more than one hour will cause the video to time out resulting in an incomplete chapel report. Additionally, students who fast-forward or skip through chapel viewing can prevent their full participation from being recorded, which prevents them from receiving credit.
What is the review process for chapel questions?
When it comes to answering the chapel questions, we do not “grade” answers and we do not withhold chapel credits for wrong answers. We are looking for student participation. (In some cases, students have typed in gibberish or given us a one-word answer – like “Jesus” – when asked simply for their ID. In that case, we know they are not attending). We do have a lot of space for otherwise incomplete answers, for example when students are asked to respond “yes” or “no” followed by a short answer. We still give such responses credit even when they do not complete the second part.
What are examples of accommodations Chapel Accountability has made for students?
We want to help students successfully complete their chapel requirements, and we have accommodated many students along the way so far. Here are two examples:
- A student attempted to participate in chapel on three separate occasions and all three attempts were incomplete. When we asked what was happening during her participation, she explained her specific technical difficulties. After working with her, we were able to give her full credit.
- A student reached out letting Chapel Accountability know that she completed three chapels and was having anxiety because it was not showing in her account. We reviewed her participation and made an exception to add her chapel credit to her account that day. She did not have to wait until the following week to receive her credit.
Students are encouraged to reach out to chapel accountability if they have questions or issues with getting chapel credit. When the student emails, chapel accountability will review their account and send them a screenshot of their recorded viewing/participation.
If you have further questions or concerns, please contact the Chapel Accountability Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How do I attend Chapels this semester?
I haven’t attended any Chapels. Why do I already have 6 credits?
To help with all the adjustments students have to make this semester, Chapel Accountability is crediting each student with 6 chapel credits to start the semester and waiving the 5 Conference credits for this Fall. This leaves an additional 14 Chapel credits needed for full time students and 9 Chapel credits for part time students to complete during the semester.
Have the requirements changed since we are remote?
Technically, the requirement is still the same. Full time students (those taking more than 12 units) have 20 Chapel and 5 Conference credits required. But, to help you with all the adjustments you have to make this semester, Chapel Accountability is crediting each student with 6 chapel credits to start the semester and waiving the 5 Conference credits for this Fall. This leaves full-time students with 14 Chapel credits and part-time students with 9 Chapel credits to complete during the semester.
What if I have tech issues?
There are several recommendations to reduce tech difficulties:
- It will be important to choose to participate in Chapel when you have access to reliable WiFi. Since students have 6 days to access Chapel, spotty WiFi will not be an acceptable reason for not completing a Chapel.
- Canvas and VidGrid work best through Google Chrome Browser. Do not use other browsers.
Do not use the Canvas mobile app. Your credits may not register through this system and will not be recoverable.
Our Chapel Accountability manager is assessing chapel credit discrepancies that might be affected by campus wifi. The Chapel Accountability manager will be going to the specific areas where on campus students might participate in chapel. This will help us better understand where the technical issues on campus are and redirect students to areas where there is a strong wifi connection. Our manager is also talking with students to find solutions to participation issues that have kept them from earning chapel credit.
Contact Chapel Accountability immediately if you have continued problems accessing Chapels.
How will you know if I completed a Chapel?
Canvas and Vidgrid will report the successful completion of a Chapel which includes watching the entire Chapel and responding to any questions embedded in the video.
When will my chapel credit reflect in my account?
Chapel credits are updated at the end of each week. Credits will reflect every Tuesday the following week, after chapels close each Saturday at 11:59 p.m.
What about Missions Conference? How do I get my 5 conference credits?
For this Spring only, Missions Conference will be part of the regular Chapel schedule. Any sessions attended that week, will count toward regular Chapel credits. No additional conference credits will be required this Spring.
Will there still be fines if I don’t complete my chapel requirements?
Yes. The Chapel requirements have been adjusted for this unique semester. Chapels will be available for 6 days each week. This should make successful completion of the Chapel requirement attainable for all students.
If I can not complete the chapel in one sitting, can I come back to it and finish watching it later? Will I still get credit?
Choose a time in your schedule when you have good WiFi and will be able to complete the entire Chapel in one sitting (approximately 45 minutes). The technology may not apply the credit if you try to complete the Chapel in multiple sittings. These credits will not be recoverable.
Can I get multiple credits for watching the same Chapel more than once?
No, you are welcome to watch the Chapel more than once but you can only receive one credit per Chapel opportunity.
Is Spiritual Direction still available for credit?
Yes, each Spiritual Direction meeting is equivalent to one Spiritual Development (chapel) credit. Credits are not offered if Spiritual Direction fulfills a class requirement. To get credit for your Spiritual Direction sessions, download the Credit for Spiritual Direction Form [PDF], complete it with your Spiritual Director's signature, and email it to email@example.com before the last day of classes, December 4.
General Chapel Policies
What is my chapel/conference requirement each semester?
Below are the standard chapel requirements. See the Fall 2020 FAQ section for adjustments being made the Fall 2020 semester.
Full Time Undergraduate Student (12+ credits)
- 20 Spiritual Development Chapels + 5 Conference sessions
Part Time (7–11 credits)
- 15 Spiritual Development Chapels + 3 Conference sessions
6 credits or less
- Encouraged, but not required to attend
- No requirement for graduate students
Remember, “Chapels” are not the only way to fulfill the 20 required Spiritual Development credits. Spiritual Direction, is another option for students to receive up to 6 credits towards their Spiritual Development requirement.
Do grad students have chapel/conference requirements?
No, you do not. There is no requirement for graduate students. However, given both the caliber of speakers in our teaching chapels, and the space provided for prayer in our short services of guided prayer, we encourage you to take advantage of these opportunities to integrate your faith and learning in worship.
Do seniors have chapel/conference requirements?
Graduating seniors do not have any chapel or conference requirements your graduating semester. However, if you are not graduating that semester, you will have a chapel and conference requirement even if you are a senior by credits.
Do commuters have a chapel/conference requirement?
Yes, all Biola students have a chapel and conference requirement.
I work full time. Do I still have to participate in chapels?
Yes, with the online/on demand schedule to access chapels, successful completion of the chapel requirements should be attainable for all students.
Why do I have to attend chapel?
Learn more about our chapel programs on our "About Chapel" page.
What if I have an extreme medical or mental health situation?
How do I plan a Department Chapel?
Learn more about planning for a Department Chapel on our Department Chapel information page.
Where can I find the chapel schedule?
Students will attend Chapel on their own schedule. Canvas will be the most accurate source of Chapel offerings and release dates.
Chapel & Spiritual Direction Credit
Can I check the number of chapels I have attended?
The most up-to-date number of chapels/conferences you have attended can be found on your My Account page: myaccount.biola.edu. Please note that credits may not be uploaded until the Monday after Chapel closes on Saturday night.
What if I don’t get credit for a chapel I attended?
All chapels are uploaded by the Office of Chapel Accountability by the end of each week following the close of Chapel. Students are responsible for checking their chapel attendance report (found in your My Account profile) on a regular basis.
If a chapel is missing from a student’s chapel report, that student must contact the Office Chapel Accountability (firstname.lastname@example.org) within 1 week of the missing chapel they attended.
Any missing chapels that are not reported within 1 week of the missing chapel will not receive credit. In that case, the student would need to attend another chapel for credit.
Does Spiritual Direction count for credit?
If you are not receiving Spiritual Direction credit for a class, then Spiritual Direction can count for chapel credit. You can receive 1 credit for each time you meet with your Director, up to a maximum of 6 credits.
How do I get credit for Spiritual Direction?
Please email Chapel Accountability to receive the form needed to receive credit for Spiritual Direction. You will need to have the form signed by your Spiritual Director and emailed back to Chapel Accountability before the last day of classes, December 4, 2020. No late forms will be accepted.
What happens if I don't go to all my chapels and conferences?
Your student account will be automatically fined $375 if you do not complete your requirement for the semester.
Note: Student loans or grants usually do not cover the chapel requirement fine.
Can I be charged the $375 fine twice in a semester if I fail both my chapels and my conferences?
No, just one $375 fine per semester.
Is it really right to fine people for not going to chapel?
All university educational requirements have some form of accountability. If you don’t meet the minimum requirement of courses, for instance, you are get a non-passing grade. This in some ways, means you have to pay more (like a fine) to make up those classes, and in some cases costs students another semester.