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Department of Religious Studies

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Minor in Religious Studies

Students minoring in religious studies gain a broad understanding of religions around the world and explore a chosen religious tradition in depth. Successful students develop a highly portable analytical skill set that equips them to pursue graduate degrees in religion or cognate disciplines, as well as professional degrees and careers in fields such as Law, Diplomacy, Medicine, and Business. Minors will gain the ability to reason intelligently about one of the most difficult and sensitive topics in any society. By virtue of the variety of religious cultures studied, the training will deepen students’ mutual understanding and sensitivity to prepare them to become truly responsible global citizens.

Minor in Religious Studies                              

18 Credit Hours.  The Minor will introduce the rich diversity of religious traditions (BREADTH component), initiate depth in at least one tradition (DEPTH component), and encourage further exploration of different perspectives or traditions through ELECTIVES. A maximum of one course (3 credit hours) from outside the department may count if it is included in any of the three components of the major (Breadth, Depth, and Tools of the Discipline). No course may be used to satisfy more than one of the three components of the minor. 


BREADTH COMPONENT (9 Credit Hours) - ensures a familiarity with the rich diversity of religious traditions in the world.

A. Encountering Religious Diversity  (3 credit hours). RLST 1010. An introduction to the field of religious studies and select traditions. 

B. Introductory Course in African or Western Traditions (3 credit hours). Introductory course in a religious tradition originating in the Mediterranean, Middle East, Africa, or the Americas (including but not limited to Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Egyptian religions, traditions of Sub-Saharan Africa, Native American traditions).  

C. Introductory Course in Asian or Non-Western Traditions (3 credit hours). Introductory course in a religious tradition originating in Asia or the pacific (including but not limited to Hindu and Buddhist traditions and those traditions originating in East and South Asia).   


DEPTH COMPONENT (3 Credit Hours) - organized according to three tracks: traditions,  geographies, and theories and themes. The student must choose one of the two religious traditions used to meet the Breadth component introductory course to delve further into that religion.   

A. Traditions.
Buddhist Traditions
Christian Traditions 
Hindu Traditions
Indigenous Traditions

Islamic Traditions
Jewish Traditions

B. Geographies.  
Africa, West Asia, and the Mediterranean
The Americas
East Asia
South/Southeast Asia

C. Theories and Themes.
Religion in the Literary and Visual Arts
Theories of Religion, Science, and/or Psychology


ELECTIVES (6 Credit Hours) - may be drawn from any of the courses listed under the Breadth, Depth, or Tools of the Discipline component of the major.  

A.  Note: Students may elect to deepen an area of study or they may build additional breadth in other traditions, regions, or themes.

B Note:  With approval from the Director of Undergraduate Studies in Religious Studies and a minimum 3.3 GPA in the minor, the student may take RLST 4970, "Majors Colloquium."
[ Course Guide ] 


Minors Worksheet Tool  - Use to plan and detail courses to date toward the fulfillment of a minor