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Religion & Culture

You can begin this program at an
off-campus site through a satellite campus or regional partner.

Expand your worldview by studying religion as it relates to the world’s cultures socially, theologically, philosophically and psychologically. Investigate the societies from which major world religions emerged. Specialize in a nonsectarian program of study with courses in world religions, Confucianism, Daoism, religions of China and Japan, Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, biblical literature and feminist theologies, as well as various thematic courses that allow you to investigate the perspectives of various religions on issues as varied as non-violence, leadership, and death and dying.

Program Options

Bachelor of Arts - Religion & Culture

  • B.A. Four-year
  • B.A. Three-year
  • B.A. Honours
  • Double Honours
  • Minor

Admission Requirements and Deadlines

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What is Religion and Culture?

As people increasingly see the role religion plays on a worldwide scale, an education in Religion and Culture is also gaining importance. In our department, students examine various religious approaches to some of humanity’s most timeless issues, such as gender, violence, leadership and death/dying. The department is a non-sectarian program of study, with courses in all major world religions including: Confucianism, Daoism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Those pursing a degree in Religion & Culture need only a desire to expand one’s worldview and skills in critical thinking; being religious is in no way a prerequisite. Our program offers students the chance to conduct a broader study of religion in the context of human culture.

Throughout the ages, religious beliefs and practices have occupied (and continue to occupy) an important place in human lives. They have shaped the histories and perspectives of individuals and entire civilizations, as religion not only expresses humanity’s deepest hopes but also provides various ways of coping with the uncertainties of mortal existence. As a result, the study of religion is a fascinating way to explore the aspirations, fears, concerns, and biases that characterize the human condition, providing students with valuable cross-cultural perspectives drawn from the world’s religious traditions.

Religion and Culture: Is it for you?

  • Students will benefit from the diversity within our department, which features a group of scholars trained in the relevant languages, histories, philosophies and social sciences. Specialists in Buddhism, Hinduism, Chinese Religion(s), Judaism, Christianity and Islam provide diverse perspectives on systems of faith and worship throughout the world.
  • The Religion and Culture Program offers a look at religion as a vital, relevant component of human life and culture.
  • The Religion and Culture program offers students the opportunity to study major world religions and the societies from which they evolved (and are continuing to evolve).
  • Alternate methods of learning are advocated through presentations given by guest speakers, which encourage students to explore the religious diversity within our local community.
  • Students have access to excellent library resources, course variety, extracurricular events and great faculty-student interaction at all levels of the program.
  • The Department of Religion and Culture is comprised of a group of scholars from different backgrounds whose common concern is the scientific study of religion.

Sample Classes

  • RLST 211: Hindu Religious Tradition
    A study of the historical, social, doctrinal, and ritual aspects of Hinduism.
  • RLST 382: Sex, God and Rock n' Roll Re-Vamping the Sacred
    This course on religion, music, and pop culture will investigate the intimate connections between human musicality and sexuality, and assess their impact on definitions of divinity and the sacred. Theoretical issues include the ideology of sacred/profane dichotomies, musical/sexual taboos, and the politics of gender, race and class as expressed in ritual and liturgy.
  • RLST 413: Seminar in Religious Thought
    An advanced seminar in contemporary religious thought focusing on an important theme such as the nature of religious belief, the problem of suffering and evil, or religious pluralism.

Career Opportunities

  • Religious Issues Writer
  • Political Consultant
  • Denominational Executive
  • Director of Social Services
  • Humanitarian Aid Worker
  • Missionary
  • Public Educator
  • Community Program Manager
  • Foreign Services Worker
  • Cultural Affairs Officer
  • Cultural Interpreter

Skill Sets Gained

  • Communication skills: written and/or oral
  • Critical and analytical thinking
  • Decision-making skills
  • Resolving conflicts
  • Teamwork/Interpersonal skills

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