Program Planning


Religious Studies (RELS)

Religious Studies (RELS)
Faculty of Arts and Science

Religious Studies 1000

Introduction to World Religions
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Structure, belief and practices of Eastern and Western religious traditions.

Religious Studies 2001

Studying Religion Critically
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Critical examination of common presuppositions and theories about religion, including the distinction between “personal spirituality/faith” and group activity, the arbitrary boundaries between religion and other spheres of life (e.g. politics, social structure, and art), and whether “religion” is reducible to social or psychological factors. Introduction to various scholarly ways of understanding religion in general and particular religions as products and producers of human culture and identity. The limits of “outsider” knowledge of religious traditions.
Prerequisite(s):
Religious Studies 1000
Equivalent:
Religious Studies 2000 (Anatomy of Religions) (prior to 2013/2014);
Religious Studies 3000 (The Critical Study of Religion) (prior to 2010/2011);
Religious Studies 3000 (What is Religion?) (prior to 2010/2011)

Religious Studies 2100

The Hindu Tradition
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Thought and practices of classical Hinduism; reform and sectarian movements; significant thinkers in modern Hinduism.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 2200

The Buddhist Tradition
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Thought and practice of Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 2300

East Asian Religions
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Religious thought and practices of China and Japan, including Taoism, Confucianism, Shinto and East Asian Buddhism.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 2400

Judaism
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
An introduction to the history, beliefs, and practices of Judaism from the formation of biblical texts to the modern world, with attention to the concepts of Jewish identity and tradition, the formation of Rabbinic Judaism, and the modern plurality of Jewish practice.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 2450

Bible Survey
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
A survey of the major episodes, themes, and literary styles of the Old and New Testaments emphasizing the significance of the Bible to Jewish and Christian beliefs and practices and to Western culture in general. Biblical stories and motifs; variety of interpretations illustrated through classics of Western art and literature. Some consideration of historical processes in the creation of the various biblical canons.
Prerequisite(s):
Four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 2500

Christianity
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
A survey of the development of Christianity from its beginning to the present, with attention to its beliefs and practices, and its role in Western society.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 2600

Islam
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Historical development of Islam from the pre-Islamic period to and including the Ottoman Empire, the Qur’an, beliefs and practices of Islam.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science

Religious Studies 3000

Studies in Religious Traditions (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Issues and aspects of various religious traditions.
Prerequisite(s):
Will be specified (including any recommended background) for individual offerings

Religious Studies 3100

Studies in Indian Religion (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Issues related to the major religions of India.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 2100 or Religious Studies 2200

Religious Studies 3300

Studies in East Asian Religions (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Issues related to the major religions of China, Korea and Japan.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 2200 or Religious Studies 2300

Religious Studies 3350

Studies in Bible (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
The critical study of Jewish and Christian Bibles’ literature, theories of composition, original cultural and religious milieus, and history of interpretation, from ancient times to the present.
Prerequisite(s):
Religious Studies 1000
Equivalent:
Religious Studies 3450 (Hebrew Bible) (prior to 2013/2014) is equivalent to the same offering in the Religious Studies 3350 Series;
Religious Studies 3850 (Ancient Hebrew Religion) (prior to 2013/2014) is equivalent to the same offering in the Religious Studies 3350 Series;
Religious Studies 3400 (Hebrew Bible Introduction) (prior to 2013/2014) is equivalent to the same offering in the Religious Studies 3350 Series

Religious Studies 3400

Studies in Judaism (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Selected Topics in the history, culture, literature and thought of Judaism, from the formative period to the present.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or seven courses (21.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science
(Additional prerequisites may be specified, including any recommended background, for individual offerings)

Religious Studies 3501

Studies in Christianity (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Selected topics in the history, culture, literature and thought of Christianity, from the formative period to the present.
Prerequisite(s):
One of Religious Studies 1000 or seven courses (21.0 credit hours) in Arts and Science
(Additional prerequisites may be specified, including any recommended background, for individual offerings)
Equivalent:
Any offering in the Religious Studies 3000 Series with the same title as the offering in the Religious Studies 3501 Series;
Religious Studies 3510 (The Early Church) (prior to 2010/2011) is equivalent to the same offering in the Religious Studies 3501 Series

Religious Studies 3600

Studies in the Islamic Tradition (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Introduction to the Islamic intellectual tradition, with a focus on one of the subtraditions of theology, philosophy, mysticism, or Quranic commentary. Classical and/or modern Muslim responses to questions pertaining to the nature of ethics, language, revelation, the human being, the cosmos, and God. Emphasis on textual analysis through a close study of important primary sources.
Prerequisite(s):
Religious Studies 2600
Equivalent:
Religious Studies 3000 (Islamic Theology and Philosophy) (prior to 2010/2011) is equivalent to the same offering in the Religious Studies 3600 Series

Religious Studies 4000

Seminars in Religious Studies (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Seminars in selected areas of Religious Studies.
Prerequisite(s):
Will be specified (including any recommended background) for individual offerings

Religious Studies 4001

Concepts and Methods in the Study of Religion
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Examination and critique of the basic concepts and methodological approaches in the academic study of religion.
Prerequisite(s):
Four courses (12.0 credit hours) in Religious Studies
Note:
This course is designed primarily for students who have declared Religious Studies majors and minors.

Religious Studies 4110

Seminars in Eastern Religions (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Seminars featuring selected topics in the history, culture, literature and thought of Eastern Religions, from the formative period to the present.
Prerequisite(s):
Will be specified (including any recommended background) for individual offerings

Religious Studies 4400

Seminars in Western Religions (Series)
Credit hours: 3.0
Contact hours per week:
3-0-0
Seminars featuring selected topics in the history, culture, literature and thought of Western Religions, from the formative period to the present.
Prerequisite(s):
Will be specified (including any recommended background) for individual offerings

Religious Studies 4995

Undergraduate Thesis
Credit hours: 6.0
Contact hours per week:
Variable
This is a challenging, work-intensive, research-oriented course. Students will be expected to conduct fieldwork, text, or library-based research, submit a report in the form of an undergraduate thesis which will be made publicly available, and report orally on the work. In consultation with their Thesis Supervisor, students will define a research problem and formulate a research plan.
Prerequisite(s):
Fourth-year standing (a minimum of 90.0 credit hours) AND
A cumulative GPA of 3.30 or higher AND
An Independent Study (3.0 credit hours) in Religious Studies at the 3000 or 4000 level
Note:
Contact hours will vary. Students should be aware that this course involves regular contact with the Thesis Supervisor as well as considerable independent work.