What We Teach
Religion Department faculty use an academic, non-confessional methodology in teaching religion that does not aim to argue for the truth of one, all, or no religions. Instead, faculty analyze religious beliefs, practices, texts, and institutions both descriptively and critically as intellectual, historical, and cultural phenomena.
The Religion Department offers courses in all the great world religions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Chinese and Japanese religions. We teach a range of courses on Hebrew Bible, New Testament, and American religious history. In addition, we offer cross-cultural and thematic courses that examine particular topics, including women and religion, religion and politics, human rights, ethics, religious pluralism, mythology, mysticism, witchcraft, and film.
Religion Department faculty are dedicated to teaching and training students. Religion majors have ample opportunity to participate in lively classroom discussions, meet with faculty outside the classroom, and get to know other students in their major.
The Religion Major offers students a broad but flexible program of study. Students take introductory courses that survey methods of studying religion, Asian religions, and Western religions. They also complete coursework on a range of different religions and regions of the world, but have the choice of doing more focused study on a particular religious tradition or topic.
Highly qualified Majors are encouraged to pursue, under the close supervision of a faculty advisor, an Honors Project comprising an extended research paper on a topic of their choice.