About the Religious Studies Major
Mother Teresa. Gandhi. Buddha. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Each of these individuals have one thing in common: a strong religious belief. Religious beliefs have been given credit, or even blamed, for innumerable "miracles" and "disasters," which begs the question, "Who is right?" A program in religious studies can help students form their own answers to such questions.
Many religious studies majors find an interest in the various cultures, traditions, and rituals that are linked to religions around the world. Curriculum for this major varies greatly, but courses include much research, reading, writing, and discussion. Specific coursework for a number of various religious faiths and communities should be expected. Topics include the sociology, psychology, philosophy, anthropology, literature, and art of religion; mythology; phenomenology; scriptural and textual studies; and religious history and politics. Degrees are offered from undergraduate through graduate levels.
Many courses are held in typical classroom settings, though some may require observations, interviews, or engagement in research. Some courses will likely entail visiting local worship centers of various faiths. Many opportunities exist for students graduating with a degree in religious studies. Career choices such as priests, ministers, rabbis, or nuns are obvious. Less obvious choices include teachers and mental health counselors.