Religious Studies Major + Minor

Analyze faith and belief

Religion intersects nearly all aspects of life, and as the world becomes ever more interconnected, you will more often be exposed to religions and worldviews you may be unfamiliar with.

Religious studies introduces you to these religious traditions — some familiar, some foreign — and the texts, ceremonies, theologies and more associated with them. Our accomplished and enthusiastic teaching faculty provides a comprehensive treatment of the basics regarding the history and beliefs of major world religions.

Religion is persistent and is a part of virtually all civilizations and cultures. While many degree programs come and go, the study of religion is always relevant and adaptable as is it continually explored through new lenses. Through religious studies, you will gain a deeper insight into the way people think, feel and act.

Religious studies is an important thing to study. It teaches you about people, yourself and why we are where we are today. It forces you to think critically about the tough questions in life, and dig deep to find out who you are as a person. Just like art and music, religious studies plays an important role in shaping a well-rounded individual.

Ashlei Buhrow, '16 religious studies graduate

Religious studies major, liberal arts

36 credits

This degree requires three credits from a selection of core courses and a mixture of credits from different areas in monotheistic religions, Asian religions and methodological approaches, with the option of taking remaining coursework in those categories or courses in topical and historical approaches.

All religious studies majors must also complete a capstone essay from a choice of four seminar courses. The essay must be approved for capstone credit by the faculty teaching the course. Other upper-level courses may also be considered with prior approval by faculty. Students must submit a major research paper produced for the course in order to fulfill the capstone requirement.

Religious Studies degree plan
University, college, major requirements

Need clarification on the requirements for majoring in religious studies? Start by looking at the information in the catalog, then make an appointment and talk to your academic advisor.


Centennial hall

Religious studies minor, liberal arts

24 credits

For the religious studies minor, choose three credits from core courses, three credits from a seminar course, with the remainder coming from a mixtures of monotheistic religions (six credits), Asian religions (six credits), methodological approaches (three credits), and topical and historical approaches courses.

See the online course catalog for the course listing and further details.


How do I declare a philosophy or religious studies major, minor or certificate?

If you're interested in any of the above, or changing from your current major, see your academic advisor or contact the philosophy and religious studies program director at

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