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Brent Top

Professor
Church History and Doctrine

210G JSB
Provo, UT 84602

Biography

Bio: Brent L. Top is a professor of Church history and doctrine and former dean of Religious Education. He was born and raised in Idaho Falls, Idaho, and served a full-time mission to the Denmark Copenhagen Mission. He received all of his degrees from Brigham Young University—a BA in history, a master's degree in instructional media, and a PhD in instructional science and technology. Before joining the BYU Religious Education faculty in 1987, he worked for the Church Educational System as a released-time seminary teacher, an institute teacher, and an administrator. Dr. Top served as associate dean of Religious Education from 1997 to 2002. He held the endowed Professorship in Moral Education for two years before his call as president of the Illinois Peoria Mission (2004–7). He was appointed department chair in June 2009. He is married to the former Wendy Cope from Idaho Falls. They are the parents of four children and reside in Pleasant Grove, Utah, where Brother Top served as the president of the Pleasant Grove East Stake.

Courses Taught: Doctrines of the Gospel, Teachings of the Living Prophets, Marriage and Family, Doctrine and Covenants, New Testament

Areas of Expertise: Doctrine, living prophets, priesthood and church government, late 20th-century Church history

Areas of Research: Doctrine, youth and families, effective parenting, moral education

Languages: Danish

Research Interests

Theology and History of LDS Interfaith Endeavors, Doctrine, Strengthening LDS youth and families

Teaching Interests

Eternal Family, Doctrines of the Restoration, Missionary Preparation, Scripture courses

Professional Citizenship

  • Other, Mormon Channel, 2009-01-01 - 2009-01-31 - Present

Courses Taught

2020

  • REL C 200 : Section 007
  • REL C 200 : Section 011
  • REL C 200 : Section 017
  • REL E 650 : Section 001
  • REL C 200 : Section 003
  • REL C 200 : Section 010

2019

  • REL C 200 : Section 004
  • REL C 200 : Section 009

2018

  • REL C 333 : Section 002

2017

  • REL C 130 : Section 002
  • REL C 130 : Section 003

2016

  • REL C 130 : Section 005

2015

  • REL C 130 : Section 004
  • REL C 130 : Section 001

2014

  • REL A 211 : Section 012
  • REL C 650 : Section 001
  • REL C 431 : Section 001

2013

  • REL C 431 : Section 001
  • REL C 130 : Section 004
  • REL C 130 : Section 030

2012

  • REL C 431 : Section 001
  • REL C 130 : Section 005
  • REL C 650 : Section 001
  • REL C 431 : Section 001
  • REL C 333 : Section 008

2011

  • REL C 431 : Section 001
  • REL C 431 : Section 003

2010

  • REL C 431 : Section 002
  • REL C 650 : Section 001

2009

  • REL C 130 : Section 006
  • REL C 333 : Section 002
  • REL C 333 : Section 004
  • REL C 431 : Section 002
  • REL C 431 : Section 003
  • REL C 234 : Section 011
  • REL C 234 : Section 012

2008

  • REL C 431 : Section 002
  • REL C 431 : Section 003
  • REL C 333 : Section 015
  • REL C 333 : Section 019
  • REL C 431 : Section 002
  • REL C 431 : Section 002
  • REL C 431 : Section 004

2007

  • REL C 431 : Section 001
  • REL C 431 : Section 002

2004

  • REL C 431 : Section 003
  • REL C 234 : Section 003
  • REL E 699R: Section 001

Publications

  • Skinner AC, Millet R, Olson CF, Top BL. October (4th Quarter/Autumn), 2011. LDS Beliefs: A Doctrinal Reference. Salt Lake City, Utah: Deseret Book Company.

Presentations

  • Top BL. Old Books, Old Methods, But Enduring (Even Eternal) Influence. Latter-day Saint Educators Annual Conference. June, 2019.
  • Top BL. “The First Principles of Man are Self-Existent with God” The Immortality of the Soul in Mormon Theology. Conference on the Soul. June, 2013.
  • Top BL. “How Great the Goodness of Our God” The Plan of Salvation’s Perfect Balance of Justice and Mercy. Eighth Annual Easter Conference. March, 2013.
  • Top BL. Holding On to the Iron Rod Even When You Can't See the Tree of Life. Annual BYU Women's Conference. April, 2012.
  • Top BL. The Effects of Personal and Family Religiosity on Adolescents' Delinquency, Self-Esteem and Academic Achievement. Cultivating Morality: Human Beings, Nature, and the World. From a study of over 5000 Latter-day Saint (Mormon) adolescents living in the USA, Mexico and the UK, it was found that personal religiosity directly and family religious practices indirectly were related to lower levels of three different categories of delinquent behaviour--offenses against others, offenses against property and status offenses Religiosity was also found to be significantly related to higher levels of academic achievement and aspiration and self-esteem Discussion of the role of religion in the development of morality. October, 2011.
  • Top BL. The Shield of Faith: The Protective Power of Faith and Family. Annual LDS Chaplains Conference. Presentation given to LDS chaplains and chaplain candidates concerning research on religiosity and LDS youth and young adults Particular emphasis was give to how these professionals can help strengthen LDS teens and families by strengthening personal spirituality. October, 2010.
  • Top BL. Virtue: A Principle of Power. Virtue and the Abundant Life. October, 2010.
  • Top BL. "Helping Our Children Reach Their Full Potential". Annual Convention (Keynote Address). Presentation given to annual convention of public school teachers, administrators and officers of state and local chapters of Parent-Teacher Association The presentation focused on research the author has conducted regarding how to help young people learn and grow emotionally Specific suggestions, developed through research and experience, were given concerning how incorporating moral education into our education methods actually enhances academic achievement. May, 2010.
  • Top BL. Reclaiming the Joy of the Sabbath. Women's Conference. 2009.
Brent Top