Program

The religious studies major introduces students to world religions and gives them the methods for studying religion, drawing on disciplines such as history, anthropology, sociology, psychology, and gender studies.

The study of religion is a vital component in understanding the various cultures of the world throughout history up to the present. The major introduces students to world religions including Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and religions of Africa, as well as courses on sacred texts, religion and society, and theories of religion. Our courses are both systematic and historical, addressing the historical development of religions, including their texts, beliefs, and practices, and topics such as religious ethics, religion and society (e.g. politics, the environment, medicine), and religion and literature. Courses also introduce students to a range of methods for studying religion, drawing on disciplines such as history, anthropology, sociology, psychology, and gender studies.

Requirements for the Major

Nine courses including a 100-level Religious Studies elective; Religious Studies 240; Religious Studies 490 (Senior Capstone) or Religious Studies 495, 496 (Honors)*; and six Religious Studies electives. The electives must include a 300-level Religious Studies elective, two courses in Transformations (Traditions and Practices), and at least one course in each of the three remaining non-Introductory domains of inquiry – Representations (Texts and Contexts), Power and Difference and Additional Department Electives

* With the Department’s approval, students with a cumulative average of 3.00 or higher, and an average of 3.20 or higher in Religious Studies, may elect to write an Honors Thesis (495/496) during their senior year.

 

Requirements for the Minor

Five courses from the department’s offerings are required, including 101 and at least three courses above the 100-level.