The Major in Religious Studies

The major prepares students for any career that requires critical thinking, analysis, oral and written communication skills, and the ability to reflect on questions of meaning and value. The study of religion is excellent pre-professional preparation for fields such as law, teaching, medicine, counseling, social work, conflict resolution, international business, foreign service, journalism, various ministries and other careers in non-profit organizations and public service. While some of our majors go on to do graduate work in religion or related academic fields, other graduates find themselves well prepared for careers requiring imagination, problem solving, communication, self-understanding, and awareness of human diversity.

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  • REL S 396W (3 units)
  • REL S 400 (3 units)
  • Area A. Sacred Texts (3 units): REL S 301, 305, 310, 315, 373 
  • Area B. Traditions (9 units): RELS 320, 325, 328, 330, 337, 338, 339, 345, 352, 357, 458 [or Asian Studies 458], 470 [or American Indian Studies 470], 507 [or History 507], Asian Studies 351 [or Philosophy 351], Philosophy 353, 401A, 565 
  • Area C. Theories and Methods (3 units): REL S 343, 350, 353, 395, 424 [or Anthropology 424], Philosophy 535 
  • Area D. Critical Issues in Religion (6 units): REL S 341, 356, 363, 364, 370, 376, 379, 380, 390A, 390B, 405 [or Humanities 405], Political Science 562, Women's Studies 515 
  • Electives: additional units selected from any of the four upper division areas (6 units)

Courses with variable content (496, 580, 581, 582, 583, 596) may be used in the four areas of study when deemed relevant by the department advisor.

Please visit our Courses page for further information.

Because Religious Studies is interdisciplinary and multicultural it is an excellent degree to complement many other majors. Double majors are easily accommodated within a well-designed four-year course of study, since the Religious Studies major has only a 36-unit requirement. Graduates from the program have had double majors with Psychology, Biology, History, Communications, Philosophy, and other fields where the study of religion enhances or focuses the second major.


For more information about the Religious Studies major please contact an advisor.


Professor Roy Whitaker

Office: AL-670
Email: [email protected]

Important Links:  Class Schedule |  SDSU Catalog |  Major Academic Plan