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General Education Requirements

The Religion Department offers four courses that fulfill the Writing Intensive (WI) Requirement: REL 155, 210 , 304 and 342; five courses that fulfill the Domestic component of the Perspectives on Diversity Requirement: REL 204, 230, 299, 330 and 350; and 10 courses that fulfill the International component of the Perspectives on Diversity Requirement: REL 155, 165, 171, 172, 180, 286, 304, 310, 380 and 425. The Department also regularly offers Earlham Seminars.

The Religion curriculum integrates General Education learning goals with the wider learning goals of the study of religion. Earlham Seminars teach students the essential skills of close analysis of texts, critical thinking, cogent writing, and effective public presentations while introducing them to religion as an academic discipline. Writing Intensives enhance these developing skills with the ability to synthesize themes and materials from different disciplines and genres. Courses fulfilling Domestic and International Diversity introduce students to multiple perspectives on the nature of ultimate reality, humanity, and social relations, and to the role that religion plays in promoting or resisting injustice and violence. They challenge them to entertain multiple worldviews sympathetically, to ponder the nature of religion itself in all its expressions, and to learn to respectfully negotiate differences of culture and belief in classroom and community.

In addition to these general education goals, students majoring and minoring in Religion should be able to understand how religion constructs their own and others' cultures; to grasp religion as a multi-faceted phenomenon and make interdisciplinary connections between religion and other fields of experience and study; to understand the role that religion plays globally in promoting conflict and peace; to demonstrate awareness of the variety of issues and methods in the modern study of religion; and integrate rigorous intellectual inquiry with commitment to a particular faith or way of life.

The Major

Religion as a major field of study provides a center around which to integrate liberal arts studies as well as a background for vocations such as ministry, teaching, counseling and social work.

Students majoring in Religion are expected to take a minimum of 32 credits. Majors will work with their adviser to develop a program that challenges them and meets their particular needs.

  • Coursework must include four common courses:
    • REL 301 Religion Majors and Minors Colloquium
    • REL 310 Is Religion "T(t)rue"?
    • REL 360 World Faiths, World News
    • REL 488 Senior Capstone Experience: Research Seminar
  • At least one course from Block A and one from Block B:
    • Block A
      • REL 171 Sacred India: Tradition and Transformation
      • REL 172 Buddhist Traditions
      • REL 180 Islam
      • REL 286 Judaism
      • REL 380 Religions of East Asia
    • Block B
      • REL 155 Hebrew Scriptures
      • REL 165 New Testament
      • REL 210 Quakerism
      • REL 230 History of African American Religious Experiences
  • Three upper-level (300+) elective courses in Religion
  • Remaining credits from among any of the offerings in Religion

The Minor

A Minor in Religion consists of at least 20 credits, which together must satisfy the following requirements:

  • At least two upper-level (300+) courses, including REL 320 Is Religion "T(t)rue"?
  • REL 301 Religion Majors and Minor Colloquium
  • At least one course from Block A and one from Block B:
    • Block A
      • REL 171 Sacred India: Tradition and Transformation
      • REL 172 Buddhist Traditions
      • REL 180 Islam
      • REL 286 Judaism
      • REL 380 Religions of East Asia
    • Block B
      • REL 155 Hebrew Scriptures
      • REL 165 New Testament
      • REL 210 Quakerism
      • REL 230 History of African American Religious Experiences
  • Electives from general Religion offerings