Required Courses and Policies

Required Courses

While each student's plan of study is distinct, majors and concentrators typically begin their work in the Department with a gateway course (1000-level) and introductory courses (2000-level). These include courses introducing students to theoretical and contemporary topics in the study of Religion, as well as courses on the history, philosophy, texts, and practices of religious traditions. Students deepen their knowledge of religion by way of thematic and topical issues, traditions, and interdisciplinary methodological issues in intermediate lecture courses (3000-level) and seminars (4000-level). They are encouraged to plan a course of study that will establish depth in one topic or tradition (for example, philosophy, mysticism, or Buddhism) as well as breadth across disciplines and regions. All majors and concentrators enroll in RELI UN3199 Theory any time after their freshman year. Many students pursue independent research or an honors thesis guided by a Religion faculty member in their final year of study.

For the current term’s schedule of courses, as well as those for the subsequent and upcoming terms, visit the Course Schedule. For a list of Religion courses, including those not offered in the current and upcoming terms, visit the Undergraduate Course Descriptions page.

Theory (formerly Juniors Colloquium)

All students in the Department of Religion are required to take RELI UN3199 Theory. This course, offered annually, surveys important theoretical and methodological approaches to the academic study of religion. The colloquium also provides a valuable opportunity to interact with other majors and concentrators in your class.

Departmental Policies

Important notes for all students in the Department of Religion

  • Only one three-point “Guided Readings and Research” course may be counted for departmental credit and only if the student is writing a senior thesis.
  • Courses may not be counted to fulfill the requirements of more than one department’s program requirements, with the following exception: Courses may be counted to fulfill both departmental requirements and the Global Core requirement.

Degree Requirements

Students are encouraged to declare their major/concentration by the end of the sophomore year or the beginning of their junior year. Prospective majors and concentrators should first arrange to meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies. To ensure compliance with degree requirements, majors must meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies at least annually.