Talk:New Brunswick Theological Seminary

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Good article New Brunswick Theological Seminary has been listed as one of the Social sciences and society good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
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Revision - AUG13[edit]

Working on revision and expansion of the article. Will add photos (so I removed the tag above). Planning on the following outline.--ColonelHenry (talk) 12:56, 12 August 2013 (UTC)


  • two or three paragraph lede
  • 1.0 History
    • 1.1 establishment and early history (1784-1810)
    • 1.2 New Brunswick, sharing with Queens/Rutgers College (1810-1856)
    • 1.3 Old Campus...the "Holy Hill" (1856-1966)--building Hertzog Hall,Sage Library, Suydam Hall (1870s)/ Redevelopment (1966-2012) -- tearing down old buildings, building Zwemer Hall, etc.
    • 1.4 New redevelopment project (2012-2014), declining enrollment
  • 2.0 Administration and organization
    • Affiliation with RCA / Governance: President, Trustees / Two campuses (NB and Jamaica/StJohn's Queens)
  • 3.0 Academics and admissions
    • 3.1 Admissions (student body statistics on enrollment, retention, international students, financial aid and tuition costs) (no public records on this)
    • 3.2 Degrees and programs offered
    • 3.3 Gardner A. Sage Library
    • 3.4 Student life (not enough to justify a section)
  • 4.0 Notable people
    • Brief paragraph about impact of alumni on church, missions, academia etc.- add brief paragraph on faculty/notable preacher alumni.
    • 4.1 Alumni - removed to list article
    • 4.2 Faculty (including presidents, administrators) - removed to list article
  • 5.0 References
  • 6.0 External links


  • If the alumni/faculty list grows over 20, I will create List of New Brunswick Theological Seminary people with sections on presidents/administration, faculty, and alumni.
  • Add to notable people that there X number of alumni (living or total) if I can find any information from NBTS Admissions/Alumni offices not done.

Images needed[edit]

  • Suydam Hall (not needed, 1880 image of campus depicts it)
  • New construction in process?
  • New campus after completion--esp. inside shots of new chapel? (will have to wait until 2014)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:New Brunswick Theological Seminary/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Dr. Blofeld (talk · contribs) 22:37, 1 January 2014 (UTC)

Might not be able to get to it for up to a week though as I do have some other reviews to complete.♦ Dr. Blofeld 22:37, 1 January 2014 (UTC)

  • That's ok. with me, just let me know when you're ready.--ColonelHenry (talk) 02:49, 3 January 2014 (UTC)

  • "Today, the seminary enrolls 197 students (as of fall semester 2012).[" 2012 isn't today, As of the fall of 2012, the seminary had 197 students" would be better.♦ Dr. Blofeld 17:52, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "Dutch Reformed Synod of New York" -no link?
  • Reply Sadly, no. The only Synod of New York articles are connected to Presbyterian polities, not Reformed. One area where Wikipedia is lacking is in articles on various regional church government or administrative units in most Protestant denominations. --ColonelHenry (talk) 19:18, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Why is Queen’s College italicized in the first instance?
  • "In 1792, the Synod was aware that "Some of the students find it exceedingly difficult," because of lack of funds, "to pursue their studies in the commercial emporium of New York" and sought to establish their seminary outside of the New York City" -quoting looks awkward here, it would be better if you paraphrased it I think.
  • "In 1807, there was an effort, lead by Rev. Ira Condict (1764–1811) and other church leaders, to revive Queen’s College, and agreed to coordinate with the Synod on theological education, to hire professors, and establish a library." led rather than lead and you can remove the first three commas. I'd place a full stop after College and then "They opened"..
  • "In 1823, the Synod paid off a significant portion of Queen’s College’s debts, provided ministers to serve as theology professors." - "provided that the ministers served as theology professors"?
  • Reply - the suggestion isn't correct, they appointed ministers within the Synod to serve at the college as professors. I will clarify.--ColonelHenry (talk) 19:25, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "In the 1870s, the campus would be expanded " why would be? Was.
  • "Under the leadership of Howard Hageman as president, the seminary "initiated in the late 1970s, a program focused on second career and bi-vocational students." a strange thing to quote, best to paraphrase I think.
  • "Throughout the nineteenth century, the institution became known because of the efforts of missionaries serving throughout the world.[12] T" This is a break in continuity, seems out of place and should be moved up to that period. A paragraph break needed before Today too I think.
  • What is "distance learning technology"?
  • Addressed/Reply - It is when an institution sets up regional centres for classes done by videoconference, online, etc., either in partnership with other schools or companies, or to directly offer online classes. I added a few words "and online classes".--ColonelHenry (talk) 19:44, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • $300,000,000 you can write as $300 million.
  • Why quote "500-student Honors College"?
  • Done - no reason, didn't think it was a general term. quotations removed.--ColonelHenry (talk) 19:36, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • In the redevelopment sub section you should really use Template:Convert in all instances for those who don't work in acres and feet...
  • Done - Parenthetical conversions into metric equivalents added manually. I rarely use the template because of context/syntax issues, the template would render it awkward "a five-acres lot" instead of the correct "five-acre", and "30,000-square-feet building" instead of the correct "30,000-square-foot building".--ColonelHenry (talk) 19:53, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
Yes, I understand.♦ Dr. Blofeld 21:00, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "The board consists of twelve to twenty-four trustees, serving for three-year terms, who are required to be "confessing Christians who acknowledge a commitment to the authority of the Bible over all matters of faith and practice, the sovereignty of God, and the Lordship of Jesus Christ over all of life."[17] A majority of the board's members must be RCA members, and each of the church's regional synods are represented by one member.[17] The by-laws further empower the seminary's trustees to provide it "with such property and buildings; faculty, administration, and staff; library and information resources; equipment and supplies as are necessary for the effective accomplishment of the Seminary’s purpose." A bit concerned with the reliance on long quotes, I think again it would be best to write the last part in your own words.
  • Reply: These are direct quotes from passages in the seminary's by-laws, and I thought that the quotations from by-laws said it better than I could paraphrase--that the by-laws were more precise than I could render it. Is there a better way you could suggest that I write this? --ColonelHenry (talk) 19:40, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
I'll trust your judgement. So long as the quoting is reduced at least in some areas of the article!♦ Dr. Blofeld 20:27, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Repetition of "offers".
  • Done - revised the section, there is only one remaining use of the word "offers"--ColonelHenry (talk) 21:22, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
Gardner library
  • Overuse of quotes again, includes "rare manuscripts and several of the world's earliest printed books dating from the 15th century." and topics of "biblical studies, theology, Reformed Church studies, general church history and denominational history"[30] and is expanding its collection "to include strengths in such areas as the African-American religious experience, urban ministry, and Asian immigrant materials."especially. Jumble them around, reword slightly maybe, but they don't really need quoting.
  • Done - I've substantially revised this section to address these comments.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:59, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
Notable people
  • Again you should really paraphrase "was held in highest esteem in the nineteenth century, when it produced internationally known missionaries."
  • Done - revised/paraphrased. --ColonelHenry (talk) 20:44, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "John Van Nest Talmage (B.D. 1845), served for over forty years in China for American Reformed Mission[34] " misplaced comma and lack of a full stop.
  • Image, I think you should probably source "His sermons were later published in 3,000 journals and said to reach 25,000,000 readers worldwide."

Overall I'm a bit concerned with how easy it is to read and learn from. A lot of the earlier history has you wondering how relevant it is and the frequent use of quotes throughout affect the flow and readability I think. A consistent problem I find is your tendency to add too many commas, they're superfluous in quite a few places I noticed, try to keep that in check! I removed a few examples myself. The content is there for GA, but I'd appreciate it if you could address the above points and try to improve the quality, flow and focus of the prose and how easy it is to glean direct facts from. Can you try to get an editor or two to read and copyedit this to get another perspective? I'll put on hold, given that I think the work needed on it is more than trivial. Give me a bell when you think it's ready, thanks.♦ Dr. Blofeld 18:32, 8 January 2014 (UTC)

  • @Dr. Blofeld:... Reply: I think I've addressed your specific concerns listed above. I moved a few sections around, and I'll do a quick copy-edit for readability issues and to address your concern on superfluous commas (a bad habit of mine, I admit) and see what I can conjure. I should have it done before the end of the evening.--ColonelHenry (talk) 21:53, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, I'll look again at it in a few days time. If you could get somebody else to read it through and OK it too this would be great.♦ Dr. Blofeld 14:23, 12 January 2014 (UTC)

Comments by Eric Corbett[edit]

Establishment and early history (1784–1810)

  • "The Rev. Dr. John Henry Livingston (1746–1825) organized seminary in 1784—at first offering instruction students in his home." That image caption makes no sense whatsoever.
  • Addressed - revised the caption.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:20, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Campus on "Holy Hill" 1856–2012

  • ""Mrs. Ann Hertzog of Philadelphia donated $30,000 to build a the Peter Hertzog Theological Hall ..."
  • Addressed - revised the sentence.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:23, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "During the Revolution was the site of a British artillery redoubt ..."
  • Addressed - revised the sentence with "the hill was the site..." and made some of the dating/information more precise.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:38, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Why the scare quotes around Holy Hill?
  • Reply: Because in American English it's typical to put quotation marks around nicknames and other sobriquets.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:38, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "In the 1870s, the campus was expanded with the construction of Suydam Hall to honor James Suydam". So that was the sole purpose of extending the campus, to honor Suydam?
  • Addressed - revised that entire paragraph after noticing other issues.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:38, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Degrees and programs

  • "... seeking advanced courses in theology, Bible studies, Church History, and Servant Leadership". Why is theology not capitalised here when it was in the lead?
  • Addressed - don't know. capitalised for consistency.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:48, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "The Master of Arts (M.A.) program is focused toward concentration in ..." It can be focused on or it can concentrate on, but "focused toward concentration in" makes no sense.
  • Addressed - The context for "concentration" in American academia is synonymous with "majoring in", I hope the context and revision clarifies this.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:48, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "The vigorous program is intended for ministry candidates ..." In what sense is it vigorous? Is that perhaps meant to be rigorous?
  • Addressed - "vigorous" removed (it was described as "vigorous" in that it is a more intensive, more focused program in shorter duration than the M.Div.).--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:56, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "It is research degree that combines academic research and a focus on ministry or mission ..." There's a lot of these missing indefinite articles.
  • Addressed - revised accordingly.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:56, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "The doctoral candidate can chose a general course of study concerning the challenges urban ministry ..." I can't parse that at all.
  • Addressed - revised the sentence.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:56, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Gardner A. Sage Library

  • "The library maintains current subscriptions for more than 300 periodicals." as opposed to historical or future subscriptions?
  • Addressed - "current" removed.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:59, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "... contains strong resources regarding Dutch history, culture, and Dutch Colonial Studies." What's a strong resource?
  • Addressed - strong → comprehensive.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:59, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Notable people

  • "A recent financial gift to the seminary ..." How recent is recent?
  • Addressed - revised sentence to reflect donors and Spring 2011 for the gift.--ColonelHenry (talk) 21:13, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "New Brunswick Theological Seminary has had a close relationship with both Rutgers University ..." Haven't we been told this before?
  • Addressed - removed the sentence, revised the next.--ColonelHenry (talk) 21:13, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "Two seminary graduates, served as president at Rutgers ..." The punctuation makes this unintelligible. And is "president at Rutgers correct?
  • Adddressed - removed comma, at→of.--ColonelHenry (talk) 21:13, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Eric Corbett 20:01, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

@Eric Corbett: - Many thanks for your comments here (which I am hopeful I satisfactorily addressed), and for your several revisions in copyediting the article earlier today. If you & Dr. Blofeld can review my responses above and let me know if there's anything further that needs attention, I am much obliged for your help and suggestions. Thanks again.--ColonelHenry (talk) 21:16, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Thanks Eric and the Colonel. I'll take another look at this tomorrow, shan't keep you waiting much longer!♦ Dr. Blofeld 21:21, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

GA review – see WP:WIAGA for criteria

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose quality:
    B. MoS compliance:
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. References to sources:
    B. Citation of reliable sources where necessary:
    C. No original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Major aspects:
    B. Focused:
  4. Is it neutral?
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
    B. Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:

Much improved, well worth the wait!♦ Dr. Blofeld 12:36, 21 January 2014 (UTC)