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Religious Studies focuses on issues that involve values, ethics, power and morality, and their institutional and individual expression in all cultures. Religious Studies graduates are trained to grapple with the problems of colliding belief systems, and are aware of ways in which conflict and good intentions can serve the interests of powerful institutions. In particular, Religious Studies teaches the critical evaluation of competing claims and methods of resolving these.

The interdisciplinary Religious Studies major consists of 36 credits, six credits of which are earned by taking two required courses: Introduction to Religious Studies (Religious Studies 1010) and the Religious Studies Capstone Seminar (Religious Studies 4990). The remaining 27 credits are earned by taking new and existing courses in three areas: Cultural Inquiry, Scientific Inquiry, and Doctrinal Inquiry. In addition, a Religious Studies Minor is being offered, consisting of 15 credits, with Introduction to Religious Studies (Religious Studies 1010) required.

It is expected that students completing the Religious Studies Major will understand the influence upon culture and the influence of culture upon religion; analyze the influence of religious value systems on individuals; apply appropriate methods of research and argumentation to questions concerning religion and culture; communicate their findings in clear well-reasoned writing; and express cultural literacy concerning the major religions of the world.


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