Religious Studies Department

Religious Studies Degree Requirements

The following degree requirements are those reflected in the 2015-2016 course catalog.

Religious Studies Major

10 courses, 5 of which must be 300-level or above, distributed as follows:

  • RELI 110 The World’s Religions: An Introduction
  • A concentration of three courses, selected in consultation with the student’s departmental advisor, that achieves a deep coverage of a particular religious tradition or set of related issues in the study of religion. The concentration should cohere in such a way as to define and inform the student’s particular interest in a tradition, a topic or a method of studying religion. The concentration must include at least two courses in Religious Studies (one of which must be at the 300 level or above) and may include one course in other related disciplines or interdisciplinary programs (e.g., anthropology, art history, classics, English, gender studies, history, philosophy, politics, sociology). The concentration must be finalized in writing by the end of the year prior to graduation and must be approved at that time by both the student’s departmental advisor and the chair of the department. Once the requirements for the concentration have been agreed upon in this manner, no changes may be made to the concentration unless, in extraordinary circumstances, such changes are approved by both the student’s advisor and the department chair, in consultation with the department as a whole.
  • Four elective courses in Religious Studies demonstrating learning beyond the area of concentration.
  • RELI 395 Approaching the Study of Religion
  • RELI 497 Senior Colloquium
  • 5 of the above courses must be 300-level or above


In addition to the courses, an Odyssey project in any category demonstrating engaged learning applicable to the student’s concentration in the field of religion, selected in consultation with the student’s departmental advisor.

Senior Capstone Experience

The Senior Capstone Experience for the religious studies major centers upon the successful completion of RELI 497 Senior Colloquium.

Philosophy and Religious Studies Major

10 courses distributed as follows:

  • no fewer than four courses in philosophy
  • 2 must be chosen from
    • PHIL 285 Ancient Philosophy
    • PHIL 302 Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Philosophy
    • PHIL 306 Nineteenth Century Philosophy
  • No fewer than four courses in religious studies
  • PHIL 370/RELI 370 Philosophy of Religion (may be counted towards the four courses in either philosophy or religious studies)
  • PHIL 487 Senior Major Seminar
    PHIL 497 Senior Thesis
    RELI 497 Senior Colloquium
  • only 2 of the ten courses may be at the 100-level

Philosophy and Religious Studies majors cannot major or minor in either philosophy or religious studies. Note that RELI 497 Senior Colloquium requires RELI 395 Theory and Research in Religion.


6 religious studies courses, including 2 at the 300-400-level