Protestant Educators

Picture of DeWitte Campbell Wyckoff

DeWitte Campbell Wyckoff (January 4, 1918 - April 5, 2005): Among the voices in Christian education worth paying attention to at mid-century was that of De Witte Campbell Wyckoff (January 4, 1918 - April 5, 2005). This Presbyterian layman was, over the course of his career, a youth worker, missionary, and professor of education. But no matter what capacity he was serving in at the time, "Cam" Wyckoff's self-identification remained constant: he was a Christian educator (Wyckoff, 1983b, 87). As one of the notable Christian educators of the twentieth-century, Wyckoff is perhaps best known for his contribution to Christian education curriculum theory and to the practical work of curriculum development. He worked denominationally and ecumenically, his generous spirit allowing him to affiliate with colleagues in both the National Association of Professors of Christian Education (NAPCE) and the Association of Professors and Researchers in Religious Education (APRRE).

Biography

DeWitte Campbell Wyckoff was born on January 4th 1918 in Geneseo, New York (Reed and Prevost, 1993, 351). Geneseo - derived from a Native American word meaning "pleasant banks" or "beautiful valley" - is located in the Genesee Valley, on the western edge of New York's Finger Lakes region (http://www.geneseony.org/). It is an area many came to know in the late 1970's through Father Henri J.M. Nouwen's account of his time at a Trappist monastery in that part of upstate New York (Nouwen, 1976, p. xiii).

Of Dutch and Scotch descent, Wyckoff was known publicly or formally as D. Campbell Wyckoff and more personally as "Cam" by friends and colleagues. He was named for his parents, DeWitte Wyckoff and Christabel Campbell. The Campbells were, of course, Scottish, while the Wyckoffs were Dutch.

The Wyckoff family name has deep roots in American history. Today's Wyckoff families trace their roots to Pieter Claesen. A bronze plaque placed in the vestibule of the Flatlands Reformed Church in 1940 indicates that twelve-year-old Claeson arrived in New York from Holland in March of 1637 and later assumed the surname of Wyckoff (http://www.wyckoffassociation.org/association/history_earlyyears.html).

Wyckoff spoke with pride of his Dutch ancestry. Wyckoff was very active in the Wyckoff Association, serving variously as editor (1943-1944); vice-president of the Cornelious line (1952); Dominie (1958-1972); Dominie (1973-1985); as director, first vice-president, and editor (1986-1991); director (1992); and honorary director (1993-2005). He wrote a history of the Association that was published in 1996 (Kluger-Wyckoff, 2005).

Wyckoff's parents grew up in western upstate New York. DeWitte studied law at Cornell University Law School and after practicing law with a Brooklyn law firm went to work for the American Law Book Company and later worked in the legal department of the American Bankers Association. Christabel spent two years at the Geneseo Normal School before becoming a teacher, first on Long Island and then in Brooklyn (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 90-91).

DeWitte Wyckoff and Christabel Campbell met at Gregg Chapel, a mission of Brooklyn's Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church. When the pastor of that church went to Chicago to teach at McCormick Theological Seminary, the young couple followed. After spending two years in Chicago, the Wyckoff's returned to New York, where DeWitte and Christabel enrolled at Union Theological Seminary. Wyckoff writes of the influence of the Union Seminary: "The outcomes of the Union years were, for both my parents, dedication to involvement in parish life, concern for religious education, and a liberal theology" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 91).

Looking over Wyckoff's teaching ministry it is not hard to discern the influence of his parents. He wrote, "My father and mother lived what they believed, and they shared that belief and life with me fully" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 91). Wyckoff's commitments to education and mission can be traced back to his parents' involvement in Christian education in the local church and their engagement with social justice issues. Wyckoff remembered the groups that met in their home around study books on domestic and foreign mission themes published by the forerunner of the Friendship Press. His parents took young Wyckoff with them when they taught evening courses for striking workers in Passaic, New Jersey, and when they visited black Sunday schools in Bergen County, New Jersey, as part of an effort to bring these Sunday schools into the Bergen County of Religious Education. When his parents were involved in leadership education through the New Jersey School of Methods at Blairstown, young Wyckoff was introduced to leaders in Christian education, like Harold Donnelly who later taught Christian education at Princeton Seminary (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 91-92).

While in junior high, Wyckoff attended a summer youth conference in Blairstown, New Jersey. There he had an experience of the presence of God that became foundational for him. In high school, Wyckoff became actively involved in ecumenical youth work through the county youth council, serving as its president for a year (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 92-93).

Congregational life also played a pivotal role in Wyckoff's childhood and adolescence. In childhood, two churches figured prominently in Wyckoff's formation: First Presbyterian Church of Rutherford, NJ, and the Reformed Church of Hasbrouck Heights, NJ. Wyckoff wrote: "In Rutherford, the experience was one of gracious and authoritative pastoral leadership, and nurture in a loving Christian community. In Hasbrouck Heights the experience was of a congregational alive, growing, experimenting, innovating" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 93). First Presbyterian Church of Englewood, NJ, was the church Wyckoff attended during high school and college. He wrote of that congregation:

If there is such a thing as religious quality, the Englewood Church had it. Its worship was an experience of the beauty of holiness. In education, mission, and Christian social responsibility it exerted local, national, and international leadership" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 93).

In a 1983 autobiographical essay, Wyckoff identified himself as a Presbyterian layman, missionary, professor, pacifist, and Democrat (Wyckoff, 1983, p. 87). That essay - "From Practice to Theory - and Back Again" - was one of a collection of autobiographical essays by recognized and well established religious educators and is a primary source of information about Wyckoff's life (Cf. Mayr, 1983).

In the essay, Wyckoff divided his life into three major periods - a formative period covering childhood and early adolescence, ending with a particularly formational internship experience at the Presbyterian Board of National Missions boarding school in Swannanoa, North Carolina (1937-1938), and two professional periods (1938-1947 and 1947-1983).

1935-1939: College Student

Writing in 1983 that when looking at colleges, he was "in no mood for the ordinary," Wyckoff chose to enroll as a student at New College. New College was an experimental school at Columbia University's Teachers College. The rhythm between theory and life experience, the integration of learning and experience, and overseas travel/study were out of the ordinary and well-suited to the needs of Wyckoff (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 94).

Two New College teachers left their mark on Wyckoff during his time as a student there: Paul Limbert and Florence Stratemeyer. Wyckoff wrote that

Paul Limbert did more than anyone else to expand my experience while at New College. In addition to everything else, he was particularly influential in stirring both personal and scholarly interests in philosophy and religious experience. (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 95)

Under Limbert's guidance, Wyckoff was introduced to the writings of Henry Nelson Wieman and Karl Barth. Having grown up under the formative influence of the social gospel with its theologically liberal underpinnings, Wyckoff's theology started to become more conservative and more biblical (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 96).

Wyckoff's later interest in curriculum was stimulated by another New College teacher, Florence Stratemeyer. He wrote:

She helped us to see the crucial importance of education's being conducted according to a systematic plan, and showed how the curriculum might be designed so as to achieve selective comprehensiveness, balance, and integration, organized according to a principle that did no violence to either the logical or psychological nature of the educational process. (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 96)

The faint rumblings of approaching war in the late 1930's prevented students from participating in the overseas travel/study component of the New College curriculum. Wyckoff spent the summer of 1936 at the Asheville Farm School, which was operated by the Presbyterian Board of National Missions in Swannonoa, North Carolina. (Asheville Farm School later became the Warren Wilson College, a four-year educational institution.) Geology, biology, botany, physics, psychology, and sociology were integrated into experiences of farm life in that southern rural setting (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 94-95).

Wyckoff remained at the Asheville Farm School to do an internship during the 1937-38 academic year. He was the Presbyterian Board of National Mission's first intern. The internship was supervised by A. L. Roberts, who taught religion and Bible. Wyckoff described the internship at the Asheville Farm School as a "watershed" between his formative years and his first professional period (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 97).

Paul Limbert was on sabbatical during the 1937-38 academic year. During this period something of an impasse developed around the direction of Wyckoff's continuing studies at New College. Consequently, Wyckoff transferred from New College to New York University in the summer of 1938. He completed his undergraduate studies there, receiving the B.S. degree in 1939 (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 97-98).

1939-1947: Youth Worker and Missionary

In the summer of 1939, following his graduation from NYU, Wyckoff was a summer worker, serving under the auspices of the Presbyterian Board of National Ministries. From 1939 to 1941, Wyckoff was a teacher and community worker in Alpine, Tennessee.

From 1942 to 1943, Wyckoff was director of youth work for the Greater New York Federation of Churches.

From 1943 to 1947, Wyckoff served as assistant secretary for the Presbyterian Board of National missions.

According to Wyckoff, two factors lured him to accept the invitation to join the staff of the Presbyterian Board of National Missions. The first "lure" was H.S. Randolph. Randolph, Wyckoff's supervisor at the Asheville Farm School in Swannonoa, who had become the Secretary of the Unit of Rural Church and Indian Work of the Board. Wyckoff learned lessons in administration and leadership from Randolph (Wyckoff, 1983b, 100). The second "lure" was Al Roberts. Roberts had supervised Wyckoff's internship at the Asheville Farm School and was the Board's personnel secretary. Wyckoff learned about personnel management from Roberts. Their paths crossed again later when Roberts was with the National Council of Churches' Department of Educational Development (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 101, 110).

1940-1948: Graduate Student

While engaged in ministry with youth and mission work in the 1940's, Wyckoff was also a graduate student. Wyckoff began his graduate studies at New York University in the summer of 1940. Professors Samuel L. Hamilton, Herman Harrell Horne, and Hughes Mearns were among those whom Wyckoff named as having a significant influence on his development at NYU (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 102-104).

Two NYU professors, Hamilton and Horne, guided Wyckoff's work on his master's thesis. His research focused on John Dewey. In his M.A. thesis, Wyckoff wrestled with Dewey's understanding of the roles of values and commitment as he worked out his own understanding of the human and divine aspects of the formation of religious values and commitment and educational processes (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 104).

Wyckoff's doctoral dissertation at NYU was a theological and educational exploration of Jonathan Edward's theories of knowledge and responsibility that allowed him to bring together his theological, educational, and missional interests. Wyckoff analyzed the theological, philosophical, and educational conflicts in the writings of Coe, Bower, Elliot, Smith, and Homrighausen. His committee consisted of Louise Antz, Samuel Hamilton, and John Payne (Wyckoff, 1983b, pp. 104-105).

1942 was a significant year for the twenty-four year-old Wyckoff. He had completed his M.A. at New York University and been accepted into NYU's Ph.D. program. Wyckoff also joined the headquarters staff of the Presbyterian Church Board of National Missions' Unit of Rural Church and Indian Work as an assistant secretary (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 100; Wyckoff's personal information for publication in Marquis 47th Edition of Who's Who in America, 1992-1993 ). From 1942 until 1947, Wyckoff worked for the Presbyterian Church Board of National Missions, first in youth ministry as an area director and later in an administrative position (Reed and Prevost, 1993, p. 351). "Missionary" is an apt description of Wyckoff's role with the Board over the next five years.

The interplay between work and study reflected in Wyckoff's engagement with youth work and mission on the one hand and his graduate studies at NYU on the other provides an insight into his appreciation for theory and practice. Wyckoff's understanding of the rhythm between theory and practice would shape his work in the field of Christian education.

Wyckoff married Mildred Mullins on May 24th, 1944. The Wyckoff's had two children, Judith and Peter, and a granddaughter, Sallie. Wyckoff's comments about Christian marriage and childrearing reflect something of the downside of practice in the theory-practice dialectic:

I was once quite an authority on Christian marriage - then I got married. My expertise on the Christian family ceased when I started trying to raise two children. It is painful and embarrassing to remember conversations and lectures in which I shared my views on these (and, unfortunately, many other like) matters, those views to be shattered later by the realism of experience. (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 88)

1947-1983: Professor

1947 marked the beginning of what Wyckoff referred to as his "second professional period" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 106). The period spanned his service as a professor at New York University between 1947 and 1954. Wyckoff's service as a professor Princeton Theological Seminary between 1954 and his retirement in 1983 constituted a third professional period that he called the "Princeton Years" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 108).

Wyckoff's vocation as a professor began with an invitation to return to his alma mater as a teacher in the department of religious education in 1947. He served as an assistant professor in the Department of Religious Education at NYU from 1947 to 1950 and associate professor from 1950 to1953. Wyckoff chaired the Department of Religious Education for from 1950 until 1954. He was appointed professor of religious education in 1953.

In 1954, Wyckoff left NYU to teach at Princeton Theological Seminary. According to Barbara Chaapel, Director of Seminary Relations at Princeton Seminary when Wyckoff retired almost thirty years later, his move from NYU to Princeton was "gradual and quite unexpected" (Chaapel, 1984, p. 11). Wyckoff himself remembered it as a "fluke," explaining that

Princeton needed someone to teach on Friday afternoons. Dr. Roberts (then the seminary's dean) called NYU and I happened to be the only professor with Friday afternoons free. I began by teaching one course, then it became two, then three. (Chaapel, 1984, p. 11)

Princeton Seminary first offered Wyckoff the Thomas W. Synnott Chair in Christian Education in 1953, but he was unable to leave NYU at the time. A year later the offer was renewed and this time Wyckoff accepted in the invitation (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 108).

Wyckoff delivered his inaugural address (Wyckoff, 1955a) as Princeton Seminary's Thomas W. Synnott Professor of Christian Education in Miller Chapel on February 1, 1955. In his inaugural address Wyckoff identified theory as the bridge between the sources and operational aspects of Christian education, and pointed to the "conscious improvement" of theory as the "next step toward an informed and valid" practice in Christian education (Wyckoff, 1955a, p. 24).

At Princeton Seminary, Wyckoff taught courses such as "The Arts and Christian Education," "Christian Education Curriculum," "Community and Congregation in Christian Education Planning," "Foundations of Christian Education," and "History of Christian Education" (Chaapel, 1984, p. 32). Wyckoff's students at Princeton included Jerome Berryman, who later wrote Godly Play . Berryman recalled receiving a note from the dean after "apparently being disruptive" in a required course taught by Wyckoff. According to Berryman, Wyckoff saw that "I really cared about religious education and was outraged a the reduction of it to goals and objectives, which was the 'latest thing' in those days." The dean told Berryman that he was now "required" to take a tutorial with Wyckoff. Berryman's assignment was to write a paper about his own theory of religious education. Wyckoff wrote on Berryman's paper something like, "I am almost persuaded. You need to continue working on this" (Berryman, June 7, p. 2005).

Berryman wrote that the paper was the foundation of the theory of Godly Play in 1960. It was another ten years or so before I found the method that was appropriate to what I wanted to do. That is why our family packed up and moved to Italy for a year in 1972 (Berryman, 2005, June 7).

In addition to teaching, Wyckoff was given administrative responsibilities at Princeton Seminary. Wyckoff directed the doctoral studies program for seven years. In 1969, he was asked to direct Princeton's new Summer School, which eventually grew to be the largest such program in any North American seminary (Chaapel, 1984, p. 11).

It was with his move to Princeton during this second professional period that Wyckoff began making an impact on the field through his writing. He directed attention to the aim of Christian education with The task of Christian education (1955b) and outlined a theory of Christian education in The Gospel and Christian education (1959b).

While at Princeton Seminary, it was in the field of curriculum that Wyckoff made what is perhaps his most significant contribution to Christian education. Beginning with the publication of the Theory and design of Christian education curriculum (1961b), Wyckoff offered a structure for thinking about curricular matters. As he later told Kendig Brubaker Cully in an interview, "After Theory and Design I did a lot of articles and curriculum writing. That was sort of my laboratory" (Cully, 1977, p. 4).

That "laboratory" included a comprehensive evaluation resource for the Cooperative Publication Association (1962), and a teacher's manual for the Christian Life Curriculum entitled To know God (1972d). Wyckoff wrote the article on curriculum for the Westminster dictionary of Christian education (1963) and the chapter on curriculum theory and practice for Marvin Taylor's third collection of essays surveying the field of religious education (1976). He also authored articles on curriculum for journals and periodicals such as Religious education (1966b, 1980c) and The Princeton seminary bulletin (1970a, 1980b). Even after his retirement from Princeton, Wyckoff continued to work in his curriculum laboratory, writing about curriculum in the small membership church (1985a) and articulating his understanding of curriculum in a collection of essays on education in the Reformed tradition (1990).

But Wyckoff's curriculum "laboratory" extended beyond writing. He served as a consultant to denominational curriculum projects. From 1967 to 1969, Wyckoff chaired the National Council of Churches' Committee of International Affairs Education. As he approached retirement, Wyckoff wrote that he had found curriculum to be "the most challenging and interesting aspect of Christian education" (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 109).

1983-2005: Retiree

Wyckoff retired from Princeton Theological Seminary at the end of the 1982-1983 academic year. In May of 1983, several former students gathered at Princeton for a colloquium in honor of Wyckoff's retirement. Over a two-day period (May 5-6), Wyckoff's colleague James Edwin Loder and eleven former graduate students presented papers exploring various aspects of Wyckoff's influence in their own work.

At Wyckoff's retirement banquet a number of people present shared their reflections on his life and impact (these are all from the audio tape of that evening): In her opening remarks at the banquet, his colleague, Freda Gardner, noted Wyckoff's "aversion to any public recognition." Norma Thompson, whom Wyckoff was responsible for bringing to NYU, spoke appreciatively, calling him a "human, warm, outgoing" person of "keen intelligence" who had a "sense of humor" and a "love of fun." In her view, Wyckoff was "Mr. NYU." Robert Koenig, editor-in-chief at the United Church of Christ Board for Homeland Ministries, noted Wyckoff's "scholarly persistence" and "attention to detail." As the seminary representative to Joint Educational Development (JED) in the 1970's, Wyckoff could represent all the seminaries, not just Princeton. He was a good listener, according to Koenig, offering an evaluation of the meeting at the end of each session. Bob Kempkes, representing the Presbyterian Church at the retirement dinner, observed that Wyckoff would start out saying, "Now, the last thing I would want anyone to think is that I was a theologian … " and then go on to offer a solid theological critique. President McCord called Wyckoff "a tremendous campus citizen … someone who you could depend on. He never hurried, despite carrying a heavy load."

However, retirement did not mark the end of Wyckoff's contribution to the field of Christian education. As many persons can testify, retirement no longer means a withdrawal from an active life of service and contribution to society or the church. Between 1984 and 1995, Wyckoff edited one book (1986c) and co-compiled another (1995), published two journal articles (1986a and 1995a), contributed chapters to four books (1984a, 1985a, 1986b, and 1990), and wrote eight books reviews - at the rate of about one per year (1984c, 1985c, 1985b, 1986d, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1991). The publication of Religious education, 1960-1993: An annotated bibliography (1995) made available in a more permanent form the annual bibliographies in Christian education that Wyckoff had compiled between 1960 and 1983.

Nor did Wyckoff's teaching end with his retirement from Princeton. In the Fall of 1983, he was a visiting professor at Brite Divinity School at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, where Cyril Rowell, a former student taught. In 1984 and again in 1986, Wyckoff was a visiting professor at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, where he taught a doctoral course in curriculum development. 1985 found Wyckoff teaching at Scarritt College in Nashville and at Bethel Seminary. In 1987, he taught a course on curriculum development at Talbot School of Theology as an adjunct professor.

In 1986 Wyckoff became General Editor of the Kerygma Program. His responsibilities included recruiting authors, overseeing the activities of the editorial board and the development of new market outlets. Trish Heidebrecht, Executive Director of the Kerygma program, recalled meeting Wyckoff for the first time at a Kerygma Board meeting:

I was trained as a Christian Educator in the Presbyterian Church in Canada, and the name Cam Wyckoff had rock star status in the education world back in the 70s. My flight arrived late for my first Kerygma Board Meeting and I hustled in, out of breath and found myself seated as a third of a group of three with instructions that we were to tell the Abram and Sarah story as if around a family dinner table. I was to be Abram to someone else's Sarah of our trio, and this kind man I was seated beside (Cam of course) was to be Yahweh. I thought to myself, "When I get back, I will have to call someone at the College and tell them that they were right, Cam Wyckoff IS God!" (Heidebrecht, June 12, 2005)

Wyckoff's professional memberships included the Association of Professors and Researchers in Religious Education (APRRE) and the National Association of Professors of Christian Education (NAPCE), and the Religious Education Association (REA). Wcykoff was a member of NAPCE from 1978 until at least 1988. He served on the NAPCE Board from 1984 to 1986 and was editor of the organization's newsletter during that same period. Wyckoff served as vice-president of the REA from 1973 to 1977 and served as International Editor of the Association's journal, Religious Education .

One of the unique qualities about Wyckoff was his ability to affiliate with organizations that others might consider as opposites. He was as much at home in the REA, which had its roots in the liberal wing of Protestantism in the early years of the 20th century as he was in NAPCE which was more closely identified with the evangelical wing of the Protestant family of churches.

Wyckoff was the recipient of several awards. In 1972, he was the recipient of NYU's School of Education Alumni Association's Ernest O. Melby Award for Distinguished Service and in 1978 he was named "Educator of the Year" by the Association of Presbyterian Church Educators (APCE). Wyckoff received the Warren Benson Distinguished Christian Educator Award from NAPCE in 1993 ("NAPCE Distinguished Education Award," 1993/94, p. 6).

After his retirement from Princeton Seminary, Cam and Mildred moved to Newtown, Pennsylvania. After living there for a few years, the Wyckoff's moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico. They settled into a townhouse on Jefferson Street on Albuquerque's Northeast side. Wyckoff remained active in retirement. In their 1990 Christmas letter, the Wyckoff's wrote that Mildred was finishing her three-year term as deacon in the First Presbyterian Church of Albuquerque and he was finishing his three-year term as elder.

Wyckoff suffered a stroke in 1994. The next year was one of recovery. Using a cane to get around, Wyckoff resumed teaching his Tuesday morning Bible class at First Presbyterian Church and was able to drive a car once again. While their activities were more limited, in their 1999 Christmas letter the Wyckoff's reported that the year had been a good one for them (Wyckoff Christmas Letter, 1994).

With declining health came a move to Manzano del Sol, a nursing home on Albuquerque's northeast side. On July 26, 2002, Wyckoff's beloved Mildred died unexpectedly following what had been a successful surgery. Wyckoff continued to settle into their small apartment on the first floor (Wyckoff Christmas Letter, 2003). He described Manzano del Sol as an "very attractive" facility with a "congenial and friendly" atmosphere (Wyckoff Christmas Letter, 2005). Wyckoff died of cancer on April 5, 2005.


Contributions to Christian Education

Kendig Brubaker Cully called D. Campbell Wyckoff the "architect of education" (Cully, 1977, p. 4), noting that following publication of Wyckoff's Theory and design of Christian education curriculum in 1961, Wyckoff "clearly emerged as the leading theorist of educational design" (Cully, 1977, p. 4).

In their surveys of the field, Marcy C. Boys (1989) and Harold W. Burgess (1996) both identify Wyckoff as a leading theorist and locate him within mainstream Protestant Christian education. Boys, whose "maps" include four classic expressions of religious education (evangelism, religious education, Christian education, and Catholic education), locates Wyckoff within "Christian education." She writes that while other theorists in the classical expression of Christian education were attentive to theology,

Relatively little attention was devoted to detailing educational processes, though among theorists whom one might associate with this classic expression in their early days, D. Campbell Wyckoff's work stands out as the most attentive to educational issues. Wyckoff's work on curriculum has been particularly significant. (Boys, 1989, p. 74)

Boys identifies Wyckoff with those who stress the importance of curriculum and instruction. She also sees Wyckoff, along with Sara Little, as a "major catalyst" in reshaping the classical expression of Christian education into its more contemporary expression. "One might say, she wrote, "that they are among the major catalysts in this reshaping: throughout their careers they have manifested a keen interest in process" (Boys, 1989, p. 130).

Like Boys, Burgess explores four twentieth century models of religious education: the classical liberal model, the mid-century mainline model, the evangelical/kerygmatic model, and the social science model. Burgess locates Wyckoff as one of the theorists within the "Mid-Century Mainline Model" (Burgess, 1996, pp. 115-116). According to Burgess, this model reached its zenith between the 1950's and 1970's (Burgess, 1996, p. 144).

Two other Christian educators, James E. Reed and Ronnie Prevost, offer this assessment of Wyckoff's contribution to the field:

Wyckoff's leadership has been important to Presbyterians and other denominations in Christian educational theory and curriculum development as well as youth ministry. His influence has been extended through his teaching, writing, and leadership in REA, various Presbyterian agencies and boards, and the Association of Theological Schools. (Reed and Prevost, 1993, p. 352)

Writing was a major way that Wyckoff provided leadership for the field of Christian education. Around the middle of the twentieth century, five books drew the attention of Christian educators and offered a sense of direction for the field of Christian education: Iris V. Cully's The Dynamics of Participation , Sara Little's Contemporary Uses of the Bible in Christian Education , Randolph Crump Miller's The Clue to Christian Education , Lewis J. Sherrill's The Gift of Power , and D. Campbell Wyckoff's The Gospel and Christian Education .

The Gospel and Christian Education (1959b) was Wyckoff's second book. In this book, Wyckoff sought to offer a theoretical framework for Christian educators working at all levels in the field. James D. Smart, who served as editor-in-chief for the Presbyterian Faith in Life curriculum, thought the book was too simplistic, a result of Wyckoff's effort to write for professional and general audiences (Smart, 1959, 395). Jerome De Jong called it "a very provocative and stimulating work" (De Jong, 1959, 57) and Iris V. Cully saw it as "an important book" on a "slowly growing shelf in the area of a philosophy of Christian education" (Cully, 1960, 64). In contrast to those who proposed education, Bible, theology, or human experience as the guiding principle for Christian education, in The Gospel and Christian Education Wyckoff argued that the Gospel provided the most appropriate guiding principle for thinking about Christian education.

At the 1983 Wyckoff Colloquium, two of Wyckoff's former students presented papers that explored the importance of the Gospel in Wyckoff's work. These papers were later published in The Princeton Seminary Bulletin . Craig Dykstra, who succeeded Wyckoff as Thomas W. Synnott Professor of Christian Education at Princeton, noted that in the church the Gospel can lose its vitality because it is so familiar. Dykstra argued that the context in which the Gospel is proclaimed is significant and proposed that it could best be heard at the margins of the dominant culture (1984). Donald B. Rogers explored Wyckoff's guiding principle in terms of empowerment (1984).

Wyckoff's choice of the Gospel as the guiding principle for Christian education seems to have anticipated later developments in and beyond the field of Christian education. Since the publication of The Gospel and Christian Education in 1959, the intersection of Gospel and culture has become a significant focus of interest to Christian educators. Michael Warren and John H. Westerhoff have addressed it in their work. Apart from religious educators, the relationship of Gospel and culture is the focus of the Gospel and Our Culture Network, a network comprised of theologians and missiologists.

Wyckoff's first book, The task of Christian education (1955b) was an effort to relate the theory and practice of Christian education, a relationship that Wyckoff saw as central to his vocation as a Christian educator (1983b). The book reflects Wyckoff's deep conviction that Christian education theory should be practical and relevant to those engaged in one way or another in Christian education. The book grew out of talks given in churches and addresses delivered at meetings of different organizations, as well as lectures in his class on the philosophy of religious education at New York University. These were recorded, transcribed, edited, and rewritten for publication.

Reed and Prevost distinguish between the focus of The task of Christian education (Wyckoff, 1955b) and The Gospel and Christian education (Wyckoff, 1959b) by noting that the transformation of the person was Wyckoff's emphasis in the first book, while the transformation of culture was his emphasis in the latter (Reed and Prevost, 1993, p. 352).

Wyckoff's leadership in the field of Christian education was not limited to writing. His influence has also been meditated through his students. Those who studied with Wyckoff include C. Daniel Batson of the University of Kansas; Robert R. Boehlke who taught at the Djakarta Theological Seminary in Indonesia; George Brown, G.W. and Eddie Haworth Professor of Christian Education at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan; William E. Chapman; Ronald Cram; Robert Conrad, who taught at the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago; Craig Dykstra, who taught at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary and at Princeton Theological Seminary, and who now serves as Vice-President for Religion at The Lilly Endowment, Inc.; Mary E. Hughes, who taught at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio; Donald B. Rogers who taught at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio; Don Richter ; William L. Roberts; J. Cy Rowell who taught at Brite Divinity School; and James E. Schaefer, who served as the Director of Adult Religious Education for the Archdiocese of Baltimore.

In 1960, Wyckoff prepared a basic Christian education bibliography for use by seminary and college libraries. Every year thereafter, until 1987, he compiled an annual "addenda" to the Bibliography in Christian Education for Seminary and College Libraries . These mimeographed bibliographies were of inestimable value to libraries and religious education professionals in providing them with an annotated survey of the literature in the field of Christian religious education. The 1960 Basic Bibliography and each of the subsequent addenda organized the literature into twelve basic categories: Religious Education Theory; Educational Theory; Theological Foundations of Education; Philosophy of Education; History of Education; Behavioral Studies of Education; Behavioral Foundations of Education; Administration; Program, Curriculum, and Method; Religion and Higher Education; Religion and the Public Schools; and Other Significant Source and Program Materials.

The bibliographies were compiled and circulated under the sponsorship of the Commission on Christian Education of the American Association of Theological Schools and the Board of Christian Education of the United Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A. and their successor organizations and agencies. In the 1990's, with support from the Lilly Endowment, Inc., Wyckoff and former student, George Brown, Jr., collaborated in compiling Religious Education, 1960-1993: An Annotated Bibliography (1995). This volume, part of a series of bibliographic reference works produced primarily for libraries by Greenwood Press, drew upon Wyckoff's earlier bibliographies in Christian education and similar bibliographic work in the field by Brown along with new material. The result was a collection of more eleven hundred annotations, organized using the same categories originally developed by Wyckoff.

Christian Education Theory

In her review of Wyckoff's Theory and design of Christian education curriculum , Sara Little noted his "special talent for detailed, systematic, analytic work - the kind of work that calls to mind the word 'science" (Little, 1962, p. 213). At the banquet honoring Wyckoff's retirement from Princeton Theological Seminary, Norma Thompson also noted Wyckoff's logical ability, recalling that his "logical, measured statements were always helpful" (Thompson, 1983).

Boys mentions the six categories Wyckoff developed for thinking about curriculum: context, scope, process, organizing principle, and organizing medium (Boys, 1989, p. 74). Wyckoff framed these categories in terms of foundational questions: " What is in the curriculum?", "Why is the curriculum?", "How is the curriculum?", "In what way shall the curriculum be organized?", "By what means shall the curriculum be organized ?" (Wyckoff, 1961b).

The influence of Wyckoff's scheme can be found in the organization of Thomas H. Groome's Christian religious education (1980) and in Karen B. Tye's Basics of Christian education (2000). Groome, who acknowledges a "resonance" between his own position and Wyckoff's, used Wyckoff's six foundational questions as an organizational framework for his own book (Groome, 1980, p. 151, n. 36).

The structure of Tye's book differs from Groome's in that she does not include the "When?" or time component as one of her six "building blocks" or "foundational areas," replacing it instead with a second "What?" - "concept" in addition to "content" or "knowledge." She also adds two more building blocks: "Assessment and Evaluation" and "Hindrances." The first of these two building blocks reflects Wyckoff's concern for program evaluation.

In explicating each of his four twentieth century models of religious education Harold Burgess follows Wyckoff's scheme to a degree. Burgess' categories touch on "Why?" (aim), "What? (content), "Who?" (persons - i.e., teachers and learners), and "Where? (environment). Like Karen Tye, Burgess included "evaluation" as one of his categories (Burgess, 1996). Others have also used variations of Wyckoff's foundational categories for analyzing and comparing various approaches to education (Seymour and Miller, 1982, pp. 32-33; Seymour, 1993, p. 21) and different models of teaching (Little, 1983, pp. 40-41).

The "six questions" or basic categories Wyckoff articulated underwent modification over the course of his career, and into his retirement years. More than a decade after Wyckoff retired from Princeton Seminary, the questions had become:

  • What purposes is it intended to achieve?
  • Who is necessarily involved in the educational transaction?
  • With what knowledge and experiences is it concerned?
  • By what essential processes is it to seek to achieve its ends?
  • What are its duration, it sequences, and its rhythms likely to be?
  • What is its characteristic timbre - its sound and feel?
  • In what setting or settings may it best take place?
  • What institutional forms are necessary?" (Wyckoff, 1995a, p. 23).

Curriculum

Mary C. Boys sees Wyckoff's work in the area of curriculum as "particularly significant" (Boys, 1989, p. 130). In an interview at the 1977 National Event for Church Educators in St. Louis, Kendig Brubaker Cully referred to Wyckoff as "the leading religious curriculum theoretician in the country … " (Cully, 1977, p. 4). Indeed, one of Wyckoff's major contributions to the field of Christian education was in the area of curriculum.

It should be noted that in curriculum, as in other areas where Wyckoff's influence can be seen, his involvement was both theoretical and practical. He contributed to the knowledge base of curriculum thought through his writings, especially Theory and design of Christian education curriculum (1961b), and through his participation in the work of various denominational and ecumenical committees and groups who worked in the area of curriculum research and theory, most notably the Curriculum Study Committee of the Christian Education Division of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. that developed the objective for senior highs Cully, 1965, p. 93). Adopted by the Cooperative Curriculum Project, this statement would become the objective for Christian education and serve as a basic orientation for curriculum developers.

In 1965, following its publication, Wyckoff's Theory and design of Christian education curriculum (1961b), was hailed by Kendig Brubaker Cully as "the principal book on the theory of Protestant curriculum." Cully called it "a long-overdue successor" to works by Betts and William Clayton Bower (Cully, 1965, p. 92). As one reviewer wrote, "At last there is a book that sets forth some of the best current thinking about Christian education curriculum!" (Uthe, 1962, p. 363). Sara Little called Theory and design of Christian education curriculum "a kind of textbook about curriculum construction (Little, 1962, p. 213). This was a book written for curriculum workers. In his review, Albert H. Van Dyke observed that Theory and design of Christian education would likely be of more benefit to denominational education staff, curriculum writers and editors, college and seminary professors than to "the average church worker" (Van Dyke, 1962, 59), an assessment echoed by Charles H. Johnson (1962). It would be twenty-four years before another book on curriculum - Maria Harris' Fashion Me a People (1989) would provide similar guidance.

Wyckoff's Theory and design of Christian education curriculum grew out of his work with the NCCC Curriculum Study Committee.

At the practical level, Wyckoff contributed to the development of curriculum materials. He served as a consultant to various curriculum development projects and wrote curriculum resources and manuals for use in the church. As a consultant to the Cooperative Curriculum Project, Wyckoff reviewed documents and prepared materials that helped shape The Church's Educational Ministry: A Curriculum Plan (1965). He was also a consultant to the Church of the Brethren, whose Board published the Educational Guide (1968). This innovative resource provided educators with a tool for identifying existing curricular resources that could be matched to a comprehensive list of educational topics and learning tasks. Its utility was limited by the technology available at the time. In order to be most effective, the Educational Guide required the kind of technological environment that came with the advent and widespread availability of the personal computer.

Wyckoff's curriculum writing covered a broad range audiences, and levels, and subject matter. Reflective of Wyckoff's broadly ecumenical spirit, he wrote curriculum resources for individual denominations like the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) (1972d) and denominational consortia such as the Coalition for Appalachian Ministry (1984b), as well as independent curriculum producers like Logos (1989a, 1989b). He wrote guides for teachers and leaders, as well as student books for learners.

Wyckoff's versatility in the field of Christian education curriculum is reflected in his ability to write Corinthians: a guideline for Christian living (1989a), the student book for a senior high elective course, as well as Corinthians: Power to be Christians (1989b), the teacher's guide for this Logos elective course. He also wrote To know God (1972d), a leadership resource for education leaders and teachers in congregations using the Christian Life Curriculum of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). This latter curriculum resource also reflects the depth of Wyckoff's capacity for engagement with theology without the benefit of a master of divinity degree or advanced theological training.

Wyckoff's early involvement in youth ministry and mission is evident in the youth resource, In one Spirit: Senior highs and missions (1958). Beautiful upon the mountains: A handbook for church education in Appalachia (1984b) reflects his continued interest in missions, which began with his experiences in North Carolina and Tennessee as young adult.

Evaluation

Wyckoff's contribution to the field of Christian education includes directing attention to the importance of evaluation. Robert E. Koenig, editor-in-chief at the United Church of Christ's Board for Homeland Ministries in the 1970's and 1980's called Wyckoff a "leader in developing evaluation criteria" (Koenig, 1983). His major contribution to this aspect of Christian education was a manual, How to Evaluate your Christian education program (1962), published in 1962 for the Cooperative Publication Association by Westminster Press. This manual offers guidance for a comprehensive approach to evaluation.

The groundwork for this manual was outlined in an article published in the International journal of religious education (1960). Wyckoff articulated the basic principles of evaluation in this brief article. Wyckoff identified program, process, and product as three aspects of Christian education that could serve as the focus of evaluation. Evaluation had four steps, three explicit steps and one implicit step: establishing the objectives, standards, and criteria for measuring results; describing the existing situation; comparing the existing situation with the established objectives, standards and criteria; and identifying what needs to be improved (Wyckoff, 1960, 19).

Commenting on these steps, Wyckoff noted the problematic nature of the first two steps. He wrote,

The first two steps give us trouble. On the one hand, we are often in the dark as to what the objectives, standards, and criteria should be. On the other hand, it is extremely difficult to describe the situation as it is. (Wyckoff, 1960, p. 19)

In a later article, Wyckoff acknowledged the difficulty of carrying out systematic evaluation. This was, he explained, was due to two "ambiguities." The first ambiguity involves describing the actual situation. Wyckoff asked,

How may really reliable data on the situation be obtained? How may we be sure that they are comprehensive and accurate, that they represent the situation as it is? (Wyckoff, 1962b, p. 300)

The second ambiguity involves the inherent tension between the particularities of the local church context and the need for universal standards that be applied across the board. This ambiguity raises the question of who sets standards (Wyckoff, 1962b, p. 300).

Wyckoff suggested questions to guide evaluation in each of the three focus areas. With regard to program, he wrote: "The ultimate test of any program of Christian education is this: Is it a true and appropriate way for the church of Jesus Christ to carry on its educational work?" Authenticity and appropriateness are two important criteria for evaluating Christian education programs in the church. "Are our methods and procedures adequate?" was the question Wyckoff asked about process. He proposed two "tests" to measure the adequacy of process. The first test had to do with the scope of the content and activities. The second test involved the engagement of leaders and learners and the appropriateness of their engagement in terms of participants' needs and abilities. With regard to the evaluation of the product of Christian education, Wyckoff was interested in what had happened in the lives of the learners or participants in the church's Christian education program(s). He noted, "This is the heart of the matter and presents the greatest challenges for evaluation." Wyckoff suggested that the product be tested against the objective of Christian education (Wyckoff, 1960, p. 19).

While calling attention to the importance of evaluation, Wyckoff also noted the dangers of evaluation: " … the danger of bitterness and division; the danger of personal threat and criticism; and the danger of impersonality" (Wyckoff, 1962b, p. 311).

In this article, published two years after the article that appeared in the International journal of religious education , Wyckoff concentrated on the evaluation of program and process (1962b). The teaching and learning process in formal education settings, the group dynamics process in informal settings, the curriculum and methods, and planning, organization, and administration, he pointed out, are four aspects of process to which those who evaluate Christian education in the local church must attend (Wyckoff, 1962b, pp. 307-308).

Wyckoff questioned the value of continuous evaluation. While this appears to contradict contemporary wisdom about the benefits of continuous quality improvement, Wyckoff felt continuous evaluation could be a "mistake." "A better strategy," he wrote, "may be the alternation of periods of growth and development with periods of evaluation" (Wyckoff, 1962b, p. 303). Wyckoff suggested that just as a comprehensive medical examination might be followed up by smaller, more focused examinations, more frequent, smaller scale evaluations focusing on specific aspects of program or process might follow a periodic comprehensive evaluation of Christian education in the local church (Wyckoff, 1962b, p. 303).

Already in the 1960's Wyckoff was interested in outcomes and not merely inputs. Data about the product was, in Wyckoff's view, to be gathered by sensitive listening and careful observation:

The alert teacher and administrator will listen to what the learner says, observe what he does, encourage self-evaluation, visit in his home, live with him in camp and conference experiences, know his schoolwork, and confer with him personally (Wyckoff, 1960, 22).

The results of evaluation were to be shared with the learners. The goal was mutual growth in Christ (Wyckoff, 1960, pp. 22). Here, too, one sees Wyckoff's forward-looking approach to evaluation.

Theory and Practice

Theory and practice are kept in dialogue in Wyckoff's thought. This dialogical relationship had its origins in his studies at NYU and was first articulated in Wyckoff's inaugural address at Princeton Theological Seminary (1955a) and then in his second book, The Gospel and Christian education (1959b), which was written in his early years there.

Wyckoff held that method, curriculum, and administration could be thought of as theoretical categories. Alongside this set of theoretical categories, Wyckoff placed another set of categories, ones he developed during his years of teaching at Princeton Seminary: objective, scope, context, process, participants, and timing. Method in the first set corresponds to process in the second set of categories. The six categories in the second set correspond to curriculum, and while administration takes its "cue" from context, the other five categories in the second set are used functionally in administration (Wyckoff, 1983b, p. 109).

In the Foreword to James R. Schaefer's Program Planning for Adult Christian Education (1972), Wyckoff wrote: "In Christian education, theory and practice are inseparably bound together, and the person worth listening to is the one who combines the thoughtfulness of the theoretician with the skill of the practitioner" (Schaefer, 1972, p. 1). DeWitte Campbell Wyckoff was just that kind of Christian educator … one worth listening to.

As Perry Downs said, when presenting Wyckoff for the 1993 NAPCE Distinguished Christian Education Award,

D. Campbell Wyckoff has been the consummate Christian educator, moving from practice to theory and back to practice. No dry academic, he has been deeply involved in both professional research and the parish life of the church ("NAPCE Distinguished Education Award," 1993/94, p. 6).

Works Cited

References cited in the above sections and in the one which follows are to the sources listed in the bibliography which appears at the conclusion of this entry.

  • Berryman, J. W. (2005, June 7). Email from Jerome Berryman to George Brown.
  • Boys, M. C. (1989). Educating in faith: Maps and visions. San Francisco, CA: Harper and Row, Publishers.
  • Burgess, H. W. (1996). Models of religious education: Theory and practice in historical and contemporary perspective. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books/SP Publications.
  • Chaapel, B. (1984). D. Campbell Wyckoff: PTS teacher, administrator, and scholar for nearly 30 years. Alumni News: Princeton Theological Seminary, XXIII (4), 11, 32.
  • The Church's educational ministry: A curriculum plan. (1965). St. Louis, MO: The Bethany Press.
  • Cully, I. V. (1960, July). The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 54 (1), 64-65.
  • Cully, K. B. (1977, January). Architect of education: D. Campbell Wyckoff interviewed by Kendig Brubaker Cully. The New Review of Books and Religion 1 (5), 4.
  • Cully, K. B. (1965). The search for a Christian education - since 1940. Philadelphia, PA:Westminster Press.
  • DeJong, J. (1959, December). Reformed Review, 13 (2), 57-58.
  • Dykstra, C. (1984). Education, the Gospel, and the marginal. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, V (1), 13-20.
  • Educational Guide. (1968). Elgin, IL: General Brotherhood Board.
  • Groome, T. H. (1980). Christian religious education: Sharing our story and vision. San Francisco, CA: Harper and Row, Publishers.
  • Heidebrecht, T. (2005, June 12). Email from Trish Heidebrecht to George Brown.
  • Johnson, C. H. (1962, Winter). The Perkins School of Theology Journal, 15 (2), 51.
  • Kluger-Wyckoff, I. (2005). September 18th email to George Brown, Jr.
  • Koenig, R. E. (1983). Wyckoff Colloquium (Cassette Recording Tape 1). Princeton, NJ: Princeton Theological Seminary. After dinner remarks recorded on audio-tape at the May 4, 1983 banquet in honor of Wyckoff's retirement from Princeton Seminary.
  • Little, S. (1962, Spring). Encounter, 23 (2), 213.
  • Little, S. (1983). To set one's heart: Belief and teaching in the church. Atlanta, GA: John Knox Press.
  • Mayr, M. (Ed.). (1983). Modern masters of religious education. Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • NAPCE Distinguished Education Award. (1993/94). NAPCE Newsletter, 6.
  • Nelson, C. E. (1962, May). Union Seminary Quarterly Review, 17 (4), 404.
  • Nouwen, H. J. M. (1976). The Genesee diary: Report from a Trappist monastery. Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Company, Inc.
  • Reed, J. E., & Prevoost, R. (1993). A history of Christian education (Foreword by F. B. Edge). Nashville, TN: Broadman and Holman Publishers.
  • Rogers, D. B. (1984). The Empowering Gospel: D. Campbell Wyckoff's concept of the guiding principle. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, V (1), 21-27.
  • Schaefer, J. R. (1972). Program planning for adult Christian education (Foreword by D. C. Wyckoff). New York, NY: Paulist Press.
  • Seymour, J. L., Miller, D. E., et al. (1982). Contemporary approaches to Christian education. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Seymour, J. L. (Ed.). (1997). Mapping Christian education: Approaches to congregational learning. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Smart, J. D. (1959, October). Theology Today, 16 (3), 395-396.
  • Tye, K. B. (2000). Basics of Christian education. St. Louis, MO: Chalice Press.
  • Thompson, N. (1983). Wyckoff Colloquium (Cassette Recording Tape 1). Princeton, NJ: Princeton Theological Seminary. After dinner remarks recorded on audio-tape at the May 4, 1983 banquet in honor of Wyckoff's retirement from Princeton Seminary.
  • Uthe, E. W. (1962, November). Lutheran Quarterly, 14 (4), 363-365.
  • Van Dyke, A. H. (1962, May). Reformed Review, 15 (4), 59-60.
  • http://www.wyckoffassociation.org/association/history_earlyyears.html. (An electronic version of "The Wyckoff Association in America: A Sketch of the Early Years, 1937-1972, written by D. Campbell Wyckoff and published in the 1996 Wyckoff house & association bulletin, pp. 4-13).
  • Wyckoff Christmas Letters. (1999, 2003, and 2004)
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1962a, July). Appraising program and process. Review and Expositor 59 (3), 300-311.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (With Wilkinson, H. T.). (1984b). Beautiful upon the mountains: A handbook for church education in Appalachia. Memphis, TN: Board of Education, Cumberland Presbyterian Church.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1989a). Corinthians: Guidelines for Christian living. Faith for Life. In D. Griggs & P. Griggs (Managing Eds.). Pittsburgh, PA: Logos Program Associates.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1989b). Corinthians: Power to be Christians. Faith for Life. In D. Griggs & P. Griggs (Managing Eds.). Pittsburgh, PA: Logos Program Associates.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1963). Curriculum. In K. B. Cully (Ed.), The Westminster dictionary of Christian education (pp. 170-173). Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1980b). The curriculum enterprise in perspective. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 3 (1), 26-30.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1980c, September-October). Curriculum in religious education. Religious Education, 75 (5), 506. Editorial essay introducing the theme of this issue.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1990). Curriculum in the small membership church. In Religious education in the small membership church (pp. 164-183). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1976). Curriculum theory and practice. In M. J. Taylor (Ed.), Foundations for Christian education in an era of change (pp. 127-137). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966b, May-June). Design in Protestant curriculum. Religious Education, 61 (3), 169-173.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1960, November). Evaluate your work. International Journal of Religious Education, 37 (3), 19, 22.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1983b). From practice to theory - and back again. In M. Mayr (Ed.), Modern masters of religious education (pp. 87-114). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1959b). The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1962). How to evaluate your Christian education program. Philadelphia, PA: Published for the Cooperative Publication Association by Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1958). In one Spirit: Senior highs and missions.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1984a). Protestant philosophies of religious education. In M. J. Taylor (Ed.), Changing patterns of religious education in an age of change (pp. 23-38). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (Co-compiler with George B., Jr.). (1995). Religious education, 1960-1993: An annotated bibliography Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1986c). (Ed.). Renewing the Sunday school and the CCD. Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966). Research and evaluation in Christian education. In M. J. Taylor (Ed.), An introduction to Christian education (pp. 144-156). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1986b). Sunday school renewal. In D. C. Wyckoff (Ed.), Renewing the Sunday school and the CCD (pp. 187-210). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1955b). The task of Christian education. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1995a, Spring). Theology and education in the twentieth century. Christian Education Journal, 15 (3), 12-26.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1961b). Theory and design of Christian education curriculum. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1972d). To know God: Working out what we live by. Foundations for teaching church leaders. Theology for teaching - Perspective I. Christian life curriculum. St. Louis, MO: Christian Board of Publication.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1955a, May). Toward an informed and valid practice in Christian education. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 48 (4), 20-24.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1970a, Winter). Understanding your church curriculum. Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 63 (1), 77-84. (Originally a paper presented at a consultation of the World Council of Christian Education in Switzerland in 1964. Later given as a lecture at the Southern Baptist Religious Education Association meeting in Denver, Colorado, May 31, 1970.)
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1985a). What curriculum is - and is not. In J. C. Purdy (Ed.), Always being reformed: The future of church education (pp. 38-46). Philadelphia, PA: Geneva Press.

Book Reviews

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1991, Winter). [Review of the book A teachable spirit: Recovering the teaching office of the church]. Religious Education, 86 (1), 161-164.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1989, New Series). [Review of the book Congregations: Their power to form and transform]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 10 (3), 291-292.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1988, Spring). [Review of the book Ethnicity in the education of the church]. Religious Education, 83 (2), 301-303.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1987, January). [Review of the book Churchmen and the Western Indians, 1820-1920]. Theology today, 43 (4), 591-593.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1986d, July). [Review of the book Presbyterian Missionary Attitudes toward American Indians, 1837-1893]. Theology Today, 43 (2), 298-301.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1985b, New Series). [Review of the book The sacraments in religious education and liturgy]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 6 (3), 242.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1985c). [Review of the book The content of religious instruction: A social science approach]. Christian Education Journal, 6 (2), 72-74.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1984c). [Review of the book Education for continuity and change: a new model for Christian religious education]. Christian Education Journal, 5 (2), 76-77.

Bibliography

Articles

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1995a, Spring). Theology and education in the twentieth century. Christian Education Journal, 15 (3), 12-26
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1986a, New Series). Learning and teaching in the Spirit. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 8 (1), 40-55.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1983a, New Series). Tennent as Symbol. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 4 (3), 178-182.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1981a, May-June). Religious education in a pluralistic society. Religious Education, 76 (3), 142. Editorial essay introducing the theme of this issue.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1980a, Autumn). The Sunday school curriculum. Reformed Review, 34 (1), 34-46.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1980b). The curriculum enterprise in perspective. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 3 (1), 26-30.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1980c, September-October). Curriculum in religious education. Religious Education, 75 (5), 506. Editorial essay introducing the theme of this issue.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1980d, January-February). As American as crab grass: The Protestant Sunday school. Religious Education, 75 (1), 27-35.
  • Wyckoff, D. Campbell. (1979, January-February). German religious education: An analysis. Religious Education, 74 (1), 100-105.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1977, January). Architect of education: An interview by Kendig Brubaker Cully. New Review of Books and Religion, 1 (5), 4.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1975a, Fall). Bibliography for lay Christian educators. Duke Divinity School Review, 40 (3), 209-212.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (With Batson, C. D.). (1973, Winter). An alternative model for ministerial education. Theological Education, 9 (2), 100-111.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1972a, March). And then plan wisely. Colloquy, 5 (3), 9-11. Also published as Finding resources. In J. H. Westerhoff (Ed.), A colloquy on Christian education (pp. 220-228). Philadelphia, PA: United Church Press, 1972.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1972b, January-February). Developing a Christian mentality. Religious Education, 67 (1), 18-21.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1971a, July). Four questions on youth work. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 64 (2), 61-67.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1970a, Winter). Understanding your church curriculum. Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 63 (1), 77-84. (Originally a paper presented at a consultation of the World Council of Christian Education in Switzerland in 1964. Later given as a lecture at the Southern Baptist Religious Education Association meeting in Denver, Colorado, May 31, 1970.)
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1968a, November-December). The import of the 'Bloom taxonomies' for religious education. Religious Education, 63 (6), 478-484.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1967a, September-October). Toward a definition of religious education as a discipline. Religious education, 62 (5), 387-394.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966a, October). One in a million: The Templeton prizes on the extraordinarily gifted. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 60 (1), 49-63.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966b, May-June). Design in Protestant curriculum. Religious Education, 61 (3), 169-173.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966c, May). The war on poverty and the Christian educator. International Journal of Religious Education, 42 (9), 10-11, 42.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966d, January-February). Instruction, the person and the group. Religious Education, 61 (1), 11-12.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1965a, November). Issues in church education today. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 59 (1), 43-52.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1963a, February). Can character be changed?: A Protestant viewpoint. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 56 (2), 50-58.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1962a, July). Appraising program and process. Review and Expositor, 59 (3), 300-311.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1962b, January). The Gospel empowering the teaching church. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 55 (2), 48-60.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1961a, September). The question of leadership. International Journal of Religious Education, 38 (1), 4-6.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1960, November). Evaluate your work. International Journal of Religious Education, 37 (3), 19, 22.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1959a, May). Principles of Christian education administration in practice. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 52 (4), 30-36.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1955a, May). Toward an informed and valid practice in Christian education. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 48 (4), 20-24.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1953, May-June). Samuel Lowrie Hamilton. Religious education, 48 (3), 150.

Chapters in Books

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1990). Curriculum in the small membership church. In Religious education in the small membership church (pp. 164-183). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1986b). Sunday school renewal. In D. C. Wyckoff (Ed.), Renewing the Sunday school and the CCD (pp. 187-210). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1985a). What curriculum is - and is not. In J. C. Purdy (Ed.), Always being reformed: The future of church education (pp. 38-46). Philadelphia, PA: Geneva Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1984a). Protestant philosophies of religious education. In M. J. Taylor (Ed.), Changing patterns of religious education in an age of change (pp. 23-38). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1983b). From practice to theory - and back again. In M. Mayr (Ed.), Modern masters of religious education (pp. 87-114). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1976). Curriculum theory and practice. In M. J. Taylor (Ed.), Foundations for Christian education in an era of change (pp. 127-137). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1972c). Religious education. In Contemporary Christian trends (pp. 72-83). Waco, TX: Word Books.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1970b). Historical perspectives on religion and education in the American scene, B. In K. B. Cully (Ed.), Does the church know how to teach: An ecumenical inquiry (pp. 22-38). New York: The Macmillan Company.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1967b). Christian education redefined. In Church in the modern world: Essays in honor of James Sutherland Thompson (pp. 203-223). Toronto, Ontario: Ryerson Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1966). Research and evaluation in Christian education. In Marvin J. Taylor (Ed.), An Introduction to Christian education (pp. 144-156). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1963). Curriculum. In K. B. Cully (Ed.), The Westminster dictionary of Christian education (pp. 170-173). Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.

Books

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1995). Religious education, 1960-1993: An annotated bibliography. Co-compiler with George Brown, Jr. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (Ed.) (1986c). Renewing the Sunday school and the CCD. Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (Edited with Don Richter). (1982). Religious education ministry with youth. Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1961b). Theory and design of Christian education curriculum. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1959b). The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1955b). The task of Christian education. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.

Curriculum

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1989b). Corinthians: Power to be Christians. Faith for Life. In D. Griggs & P. Griggs (Managing Eds.). Pittsburgh, PA: Logos Program Associates.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1989a). Corinthians: Guidelines for Christian living. Faith for Life. In D. Griggs & P. Griggs (Managing Eds.). Pittsburgh, PA: Logos Program Associates.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1972d). To know God: Working out what we live by. Foundations for teaching church leaders. Theology for teaching - Perspective I. Christian life curriculum. St. Louis, MO: Christian Board of Publication.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1958). In one Spirit: Senior highs and missions.

Manuals

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (with Wilkinson, H. T.) (1984b). Beautiful upon the mountains: A Handbook for church education in Appalachia). Memphis, TN: Board of Education, Cumberland Presbyterian Church.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1962). How to evaluate your Christian education program. Philadelphia, PA: Published for the Cooperative Publication Association by Westminster Press.

Book Reviews

  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1991, Winter). [Review of the book A teachable spirit: Recovering the teaching office of the church]. Religious Education, 86 (1), 161-164.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1989, New Series). [Review of the book Congregations: Their power to form and transform]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 10 (3), 291-292.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1988, Spring). [Review of the book Ethnicity in the education of the church]. Religious Education, 83 (2), 301-303.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1987, January). [Review of the book Churchmen and the Western Indians, 1820-1920]. Theology Today, 43 (4), 591-593.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1986d, July). [Review of the book Presbyterian Missionary Attitudes toward American Indians, 1837-1893]. Theology Today, 43 (2), 298-301.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1985b, New Series). [Review of the book The sacraments in religious education and liturgy]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 6 (3), 242.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1985c). [Review of the book The content of religious instruction: A social science approach]. Christian Education Journal, 6 (2), 72-74.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1984c). [Review of the book Education for continuity and change: A new model for Christian religious education]. Christian Education Journal, 5 (2), 76-77.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1983c, April). [Review of the book The creative word: Canon as a model for Biblical education]. Theology Today, 40 (1), 92-94.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1983c, April). [Review of the book The Bible in American education]. Theology Today, 37 (4), 532.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1981b, January). [Review of the book Christian religious education: Sharing our story and vision]. Theology Today, 37 (4), 534-535.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1975b). [Review of the book Ecclesial man: A social phenomenology of faith and reality]. Review of books and religion 5, 9.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1974, March-April). [Review of the book Dauntless women in childhood education, 1856-1931]. Religious Education, 69 (2), 282-283.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1971b, December). [Review of the book The big little school: Two hundred years of the Sunday school]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 64 (3), 127-128.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1971c, July-August). [Feature Review of the book Research on religious development: A comprehensive handbook]. Religious Education, 66 (4), 286-290.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1968b, July). [Review of the book Wilderness kingdom, Indian life in the Rocky Mountains, 1840-47. The journals and paintings of Father Nicolas Point]. Theology Today, 25 (2), 274-277.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1965b, November-December). [Review of the book The educational mission of the church]. Religious Education, 60 (6), 484.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1965c, October). [Review of the book The educational mission of the church]. Theology Today, 22 (3), 451-453.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1965d, October). [Review of the book The educational mission of the church]. Theology Today, 22 (3), 451-453.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1963b, February). [Review of the book Moral education in family, school, and church]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 56 (2): 80-82.
  • Wyckoff, D. C. (1963b, February). [Review of the book Christian education in theological focus]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 56 (2), 82-84.

Excerpts from Publications

Wyckoff, D. C. (1955a, May). Toward an informed and valid practice in Christian education. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 48 (4), 20-24.

"An informed Christian education practice will thus be nourished on the systematic disciplines, set in historical perspective, and immediately relevant to the deepest needs of the times.What is called for, however, is not only an informed practice, but a valid practice. A valid practice is one that accomplishes its assigned tasks. Its means, methods, and results match its commission." (p. 22)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1955b). The task of Christian education. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.

"To lead and guide the pupil to the place where he may experience the reality of God, know something of his will, love him, and serve him directly: this is our task." (p. 167)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1959b). The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.

"It appears, then, that the most promising clue to orienting Christian education theory so that it will be both worthy and communicable is to be found in recognizing and using the gospel of God's redeeming activity in Jesus Christ as its guiding principle." (p. 98)

Wyckoff, D. Campbell. (1961b). Theory and design of Christian education curriculum. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press.

"The task of Christian education is the nurture of the Christian life. In order that such nurture may be effective in accomplishing its purpose, the church as a rule rejects reliance upon haphazard means and adopts a reasoned and planned teaching-learning process for its educational work. A curriculum is a plan by which the teaching-learning process may be systematically undertaken." (p. 17)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1962b, January). The Gospel empowering the teaching church. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 55 (2), 48-60.

"The teaching Church is the worshiping, witnessing working community of persons in Christ so involving persons of every age and experience level in her life and work that they are vitally aware of the gospel and respond in faith and love, their whole field of relationships being seen in a new perspective made possible by this awareness and response." (p. 58)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1972a, March). And then plan wisely. Colloquy, 5 (3), 9-11. Also published as "Finding resources" In J. H. Westerhoff (Ed.), A colloquy on Christian education (pp. 220-228). Philadelphia, PA: United Church Press, 1972.

"But the basic evaluative question is: Are we discovering and doing the will of God here and now? The starting point is God's action. When a congregation plans, that planning is a theological and biblical inquiry and enterprise. Work on our curriculum goes forward in the recognition of the fact that God is always creating something new and always requiring something new and creative of us." (p. 9)

Wyckoff, D. C. (With Batson, C. D.). (1973, Winter). An alternative model for ministerial education. Theological education, 9 (2), 100-111.

"Theory and practice should be dealt with simultaneously, not sequentially, and the motivation for consideration of the former should always come out of personal involvement in the latter." (p. 111)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1980b). The curriculum enterprise in perspective. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 3 (1), 26-30.

"While it is impossible to speak for all curriculum people, it is possible to articulate a consensus that seems to be developing: It is the function of curriculum to provide a plan for developing, maintaining, and enhancing those understandings, attitudes, and skills that serve the church's purposes in worship, witness, and work." (p. 28)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1980a, Autumn). The Sunday school curriculum. Reformed review, 34 (1), 34-46.

"Curriculum only takes place where teachers and learners are at work together, and that means that curriculum must not only be understood locally, but planned, conducted, and evaluated locally, as well" (p. 46).

Wyckoff, D. C. (1986a, New Series). Learning and teaching in the Spirit. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 8 (1), 40-55.

"Back of the learning and teaching act there is faithfulness in vocation and mission, part of which is a deep commitment to the discipline of religious education. The development of the discipline is also a work of the Spirit, calling religious educators together to examine their task and the ways in which it may be best understood and fulfilled. For the religious educator it is a demanding and lifelong pursuit, but one in which the Spirit guides, supports, and corrects." (p. 55)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1990). Curriculum in the small membership church. In Religious education in the small membership church (pp. 164-183). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.

"The area most likely to be overlooked in planning the curriculum is, strangely, that of aesthetic experience. One would think that, since the aesthetic experience is one of intense emotion (variously expressed in music, drama, the graphic arts, and literature), it would be at the heart of the curriculum plan. Cognitive experience and rational values have, however, been given greater emphasis." (p. 165)

Wyckoff, D. C. (1995a, Spring). Theology and education in the twentieth century. Christian Education Journal, 15 (3), 12-26.

"Christian education, when it is approached deductively, is a derivative discipline, basically theological and secondarily behavioral. When it is approached inductively, it may or may not be theological, depending on its primary disciplinary orientation." (p. 21)


Recommended Readings

Boys, M. C. (1989) Educating in faith: Maps and visions. San Francisco, CA: Harper and Row, Publishers.
Brown, G., Jr. (2005, Autumn). Memorial: DeWitte Campbell Wyckoff, January 4, 1918 - April 5, 2005. Religious Education.
Burgess, H. W. (1996). Models of religious education: Theory and practice in historical and contemporary perspective. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books/SP Publications. (Cf. Chapter 4, especially pages 115-116).
Chaapel, B. (1984). D. Campbell Wyckoff: PTS teacher, administrator, and scholar for nearly 30 years. Alumni News: Princeton Theological Seminary, XXIII (4), 11, 32.
Cully, K. B. (1977, January). Architect of education: D. Campbell Wyckoff interviewed by Kendig Brubaker Cully. The New Review of Books and Religion, 1 (5), 4.
Cully, K. B. (1965). The search for a Christian education - since 1940. Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press. (Cf. pp. 90-93).
Dykstra, C. (1984). Education, the Gospel, and the marginal. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, V (1), 13-20.
Reed, J. E., & Prevoost, R. (1993). A history of Christian education (Foreword by F. B. Edge). Nashville, TN: Broadman and Holman Publishers. (Cf. Chapter, especially pp. 351-353).
Rogers, D. B. (1984). The Empowering Gospel: D. Campbell Wyckoff's concept of the guiding principle. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, V (1), 21-27.
Wyckoff, D. C. (1983b). From practice to theory - and back again. In M. Mayr (Ed.), Modern masters of religious education (pp. 87-114). Birmingham, AL: Religious Education Press.

Reviews of Wyckoff's Writings

Johnson, C. H. (1962, Winter). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. The Perkins School of Theology Journal, 15 (2), 51.
Uthe, E. W. (1962, November). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Lutheran Quarterly, 14 (4), 363-365.
Nelson, C. E. (1962, May). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Union Seminary Quarterly Review, 17 (4), 404.
Van Dyke, A. H. (1962, May). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Reformed review, 15 (4), 59-60.
Little, S. (1962, Spring). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Encounter, 23 (2), 213.
Chamberlin, J. G. (1962, January). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Theology Today, 18 (4), 525-528.
Taylor, G. A. (1961, November). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Christianity Today, 6 (4), 44.
Benignus, E. L. (1961, October). [Review of the book Theory and design of Christian education curriculum]. Ecumenical Review, 14 (1), 134-135.
Cully, Iris V. (1960, July). [Review of the book The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times]. The Princeton Seminary Bulletin, 54 (1), 64-65.
Stickford, W.W. (1960, April). [Review of the book The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times]. Journal of Bible and Religion, 28 (2), 270-271.
Johnson, C. H. (1959). [Review of the book The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times]. The Perkins School of Theology Journal, 13 (1), 37.
De Jong, J. (1959, December). [Review of the book The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times]. Reformed Review, 13 (2), 57-58.
Smart, J. D. (1959, October). [Review of the book The Gospel and Christian education: A theory of Christian education for our times]. Theology Today, 16 (3), 395-396.

Author Information

George Brown, Jr.

George Brown, Jr. is G.W. and Eddie Haworth Professor of Christian Education and Associate Dean at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan.

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