John Nordin has taught in the Communication Studies Department at the University of Minnesota for 15 years. He teaches and is the textbook co-author for Comm1313W Analysis of Argument, a writing intensive class. He views argumentation theory as illuminating a wide range of discourse, not only public policy disputes. He also regularly teaches honors sections of Public
Speaking and a freshman seminar on religious arguments.

He created and leads a study abroad class to Greece to expose students to the foundations of democracy, formal drama, rhetoric and other issues. These issues are also addressed in his honors seminar on The Greeks and the Eternal Human Questions.

He earned his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has held positions an adjunct professor in Religion, taught Computer Science at the University of Nairobi, Kenya, and was a IT project manager where he earned the Project Manger Professional certification.
After earning an M.Div degree from the Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary he served parishes in Iowa and Colorado as a Lutheran Pastor.

He has published articles on Iranian politics, humor in religious institutions, and database design. He has published a hymnal, written several unpublished novels and is a published poet.

Educational Background & Specialties
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Educational Background

  • Ph.D.: Transportation Systems, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1980 -
  • M. Div.: Theology, Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, 1994 -


  • Argumentation
  • Public Speaking
  • Ancient Greece
  • Biblical Studies
  • Project management