EP 48: How to Access Authentic Islamic Knowledge in a Digital Age – Shaykh Ruzwan Mohammed

Can Online Islamic Courses Ever Replace Traditional Studying?

This week we’re joined by Shaykh Ruzwan Mohammed – co-founder, author and educational director of the iSyllabus Islamic studies course.

In this episode, Shaykh Ruzwan and Usman have an interesting discussion on the digital era and the shift from traditional face-to-face Islamic learning into an online environment.

Social media and the internet in general can have it pros and cons, however in times like today when we’re forced to adopt online learning during a global pandemic, the shift from the traditional classroom to a digital one has quickly become a necessity and educational institutions have been forced to adapt.

For those previously unable to access their favourite teachers in person, this has only brought about a positive shift in the way they learn their Deen. However, some argue that online courses can never replace the benefits that face-to-face experiences provide.

Having authored and taught the widely popular iSyllabus Islamic Studies programme in the UK over the last decade, Shaykh Ruzwan and his team have recently made the shift to online learning and reimagined the process to ensure their students study the most holistic, in-depth and logically progressive curriculum possible, whilst doing their best to mitigate any missing aspects of the in-class experience.


  • A brief overview of Shaykh Ruzwan’s journey of studying Islam and what inspired him to begin.
  • What are the pros and cons of online learning?
  • Can online learning be considered to be ‘traditional’ as well, given that a change of times necessitates a change in teaching methods?
  • Online learning can never be the same as face-to-face classes… can it?
  • What about people who don’t have access to their local Imams and scholars. Isn’t online learning the only way for them?
  • Can a proper teacher-student relationship be formed through the screen?
  • Why modern students don’t have the desire to undergo proper tarbiyah.
  • The mindset students should adopt towards online Islamic education.
  • Do you even need a teacher? Why can’t you just learn on your own?
  • The differences between preservation and presentation, and which one you should be focusing on.
  • The issue of ‘celebrity Shaykhs’ and engaging in online controversy.
  • Red flags to look out for in online personalities and institutions.
  • How do you know that your favourite speakers are actually qualified and share authentic knowledge?
  • The problem with social media and the fear of missing out.
  • The story of Imam Abu Hanifa and the lost treasure.
  • What makes a good online Islamic studies programme?
  • The biggest mistake Islamic institutions make when creating courses.
  • The story behind the iSyllabus course.
  • How the reimagined online iSyllabus Islamic studies course was formed and what it contains.
  • Why Shaykh Ruzwan believes Islamic studies should be taught in English.
  • And more!

The iSyllabus One Year Diploma in Islamic Studies
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The iSyllabus Online Diploma Step by Step Course is designed to give Muslims of all backgrounds confidence in themselves by empowering them with Islamic knowledge they can trust.

The course aims to equip you to be confident in what you know, while respecting legitimate differences of opinion. We will explain not only what scholars disagree upon, but also why.

The modules will provide an indispensable base from which to increase your faith. The Diploma course serves as an excellent entry to a nuanced yet fulfilling experience of the Islamic sciences as they relate to both the individual and society in the 21st Century.

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About Shaykh Ruzwan

Shaykh Ruzwan Mohammed is a Sunni theologian and scholar. A graduate in Geopolitics and Arabic from the University of Glasgow, in 1993 he left to travel and study with a wide array of leading scholars and theologians in various countries in the Muslim world. In the process, he studied the Turkish language at the University of Ankara and as part of his formal Islamic training, he graduated from the Fat’h Islamic Law College in Damascus, graduating from the prestigious 6-year program with a distinction of merit, achieving overall first position in his year of graduation from the college.

In the summer of 2009, he co-founded the Solas Foundation, which focuses on offering quality and transparent religious consultancy in the areas of Islamic ethics and education. He is the author and educational director the iSyllabus Islamic studies program.

Learn more about Shaykh Ruzwan.

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