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Religious Studies Major

After completing the Religious Studies major in the Theology major, students will be equipped to:

  • Articulate the difference between religious studies as an academic discipline and confessional approaches to the study of religion including the advantages and limitations of the religious studies approach.
  • Evaluate some of the most influential methods used in the study of religion and apply them in the study of particular cases.
  • Understand at least two religious traditions beyond an introductory level, including their histories, beliefs, practices and contemporary expressions.
  • Understand the historical nature of religious texts and traditions, and the tensions that exist between the realities of religious change and the needs of religious identity.
  • Recognize and think critically about some of the general features typical of most if not all religions, such as conceptions of deity, forms of religious community, forms of ritual practice, types of religious experience, ethical norms, etc.
  • Identify and describe the embeddedness of religion in society and culture, as well as the religious dimensions of social, political and cultural phenomena not conventionally identified as "religious."
  • Apply the tools of religious studies to understanding the nature of religious conflict.