Learning Outcomes

Religious Studies majors will achieve the quintessential goal of liberal education—to acquire multiple critically examined frames of reference for understanding and engaging the world. Toward this overarching goal they will:

  • develop sufficient familiarity with three religious traditions to
    • describe their beliefs, history, and practice, their historical and geographical diversity, and their interaction with institutions, groups, and individuals,
    • identify and analyze their manifestations in text and culture,
    • participate in debates regarding the critical issues associated with their study, and
    • describe and analyze their relationships with other religious traditions.
  •  develop sufficient proficiency in a variety of disciplinary and theoretical approaches to the study of religion so that they
    • know the basic history of the discipline from the eighteenth century to the present,
    • recognize and distinguish them in secondary sources,
    • explain their relative strengths and weaknesses,
    • analyze their application in the study of various phenomena, questions, and critical issues, and
    • lay a foundation for their critical integration in a broader understanding of the nature of religion.
  • carry out sustained research and writing on a topic in the field of religious studies that requires them to
    • locate, read critically, and deploy in original thought relevant primary and secondary resources,
    • produce a technically sound research paper in a the genre relevant to the research assignment (e.g., descriptive, analytical, compare-and-contrast, etc.), and
    • communicate research results to audiences unfamiliar with the field, in written and oral form.