This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others. 

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An Introduction to the Summa Theologica by St. Thomas Aquinas, Part One

Learn how to reason and understand Thomistic philosophy in this relatable course that simplifies the complex for your student. Learn how to think intelligently about God and the world He made — and how to exercise reason in its highest form. Get easy-to-understand philosophy at its very best.

Total classes: 12

Prerequisite: None

Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th grade. Mature middle school students are welcome.

Suggested credit: 1 full semester Philosophy or Theology

Special Notes: This is Part One of a 2-part course. Students are expected to sign up for Part Two in the spring.


Every Christian should be grounded in an understanding of solid principles of Christian philosophy and Dave Palmer believes the younger a person learns them, the better he or she will be equipped to live an authentically Christian life in the midst of our challenging culture. The Catholic Church’s understanding of philosophy is based on the teachings of St. Thomas Aquinas and his classic, The Summa Theologica. This class is designed to provide students with an overview of the main themes and teachings of The Summa Theologica over the course of two semesters. The focus of the class is on Thomas’ teaching on the end and purpose of the human person, which is to spend eternity with God and how one best accomplishes this goal through a life of virtue, holiness, and awareness of the presence of God in our everyday experiences.


Class 1 – Introduction… Why study the Summa Theologica?

Class 2 – Can We Be Certain That God Exists?

Class 3 – Who and What Is God?

Class 4 – What Can We Know About God?

Class 5 – What does God do? His Intellect, Will, and Providence

Class 6 – The Most Holy Trinity & the Angels

Class 7 – The Unique Dignity of the Human Person

Class 8 – What makes human actions good or evil?

Class 9 – The Will and The Passions

Class 10 – Good and Bad Habits

Class 11 – The Various Kinds of Law

Class 12 – Grace, Justification, and Merit

Materials and Homework

Course Materials: The Summa by St. Thomas Aquinas, which can be found free online.

Homework: Homework will consist of taking a weekly quiz and answering short essay questions based on class material most weeks. Other assignments will include taking pictures of interesting creatures and making a connection between the creatures and God as their creator. Students will also be asked several times each semester to use a particular God-given talent that they have (writing stories, making slideshows, videos, etc.) to create a project to best explain the subject matter of that week’s lesson. Estimated two hours per week spent on reading and assignments outside of the classroom.

Important Dates

Class Dates: Thursdays, September 12 to December 12, 2024. (No class Oct. 17 & Nov. 28)

Starting Time: 2:30 PM Eastern (1:30 Central; 12:30 Mountain; 11:30 Pacific)

Duration: 1 hour 15 minutes (75 minutes)

Choose from courses in all subject areas for your upper grade school, middle school, and high school student—taught by worldwide experts in Catholic education.
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