Religious Studies Curriculum

Requirements for Majors

The Religious Studies major requires a minimum of 32 semester hours of course work.

In consultation with their departmental adviser, students choose broadly among the departmental course offerings. While some of these courses will be at introductory and intermediate levels (10000 and 20000-level), students should participate in the 30000-level seminars, as often as possible, toward the goal of developing sophistication within the discipline. The major participates in at least two such seminars, one in Hindu or Buddhist Studies and one in Biblical Studies, as approved by their adviser. As part of the departmental capstone requirement, one of these must be in the major's senior year.

Because the academic study of religion is inherently multicultural, majors normally complete one year of foreign language study.

Majors are also required to fulfill the departmental capstone requirement in conjunction with their final four-hour advanced-level seminar, in consultation with their Religious Studies academic adviser.

Students who wish to pursue graduate work are advised to take more than the minimum number of courses, and are encouraged to take at least two courses in each of three areas: Hindu Studies, Buddhist Studies, and Biblical Studies.

Requirements for Minors

In conjunction with their departmental adviser, students who minor in Religious Studies pursue a minimum of 20 semester hours of course work. These hours include at least one course by each departmental faculty member as well as one 30000-level seminar.

Requirements for Honors

In order to receive departmental honors, in addition to having the minimum GPA requirement, student must fulfill additional requirements, in consultation with their Religious Studies academic adviser, and receive the approval of the Religious Studies faculty, who will review the student's overall work. The minimum GPA requirement is: (1) an overall GPA that is equal to 3.1 or better; and (2) a departmental GPA that is equal to 3.7 or better.

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Department Courses

  • Western Christianity
  • Introduction to the Bible
  • Wizards, Sorcerers, and Shamans
  • Tricksters Holy Fools Study of Laughter Play & Madness
  • Asian Religions
  • The Religious World of the First Century
  • Old Testament Literature and Interpretation
  • New Testament Literature and Interpretation
  • Judaism
  • Hinduism
  • Buddhism
  • Religious Imagination Realities
  • Creativity and Mindfulness in Buddhism
  • Topics in Bible Study
  • Topics in the Lost Books of the Bible
  • Seminar in Biblical Literature
  • Seminar in Asian Religions