501 Hall of Languages
Director of Undergraduate Studies:
Biko Mandela Gray
513 Hall of Languages
Philip Arnold, Arun Brahmbhatt, Zachary Braiterman, Virginia Burrus, Gareth Fisher, Ken Frieden, Biko Mandela Gray, M. Gail Hamner, Mariaelena Huambachano, Jeanette Jouili, Tazim Kassam, William Robert, Marcia Robinson, Joanne Punzo Waghorne, James Watts
Knowledge of religion is critical in today’s world. The academic study of religion at Syracuse University offers students opportunities to explore religion in cross-cultural and interdisciplinary contexts.
Students who take our courses learn to interpret the dynamics of religious thought, convictions, actions, and expressions. Some of the questions that they engage include: What kind of life is most worth living? How do we understand the nature of the world? How do we relate to ourselves and to others?
Students study religious life and thought from the perspectives of arts, ethics, ethnography, gender, history, literature, mythology, philosophy, political theory, psychology, scriptural studies, social sciences, and theology.
The academic study of religion is not simply a critical undertaking. It is also often a transforming experience, introducing students to unfamiliar aspects of their own world, and to the religious realities of our global situation.
The Department of Religion has articulated three goals that shape its teaching and its expectations of what students in its courses and programs may expect to gain from this study:
1. to understand better the nature and diversity of religious expressions in the contemporary world and in history, and their power in peoples’ personal and collective lives;
2. to think more deeply and critically about religious experience and its modes of expression and forms of interpretation;
3. to recognize and appreciate the difficulties and possibilities in a disciplined study of religion; and to become aware of a diversity of approaches and methods within that study.
The Department’s student learning outcomes are elaborations of these goals.
For all Arts and Sciences|Maxwell students, successful completion of a bachelor’s degree in this major requires a minimum of 120 credits, 96 of which must be Arts and Sciences|Maxwell credits, completion of the Liberal Arts Core requirements, and the requirements for this major that are listed below.
Students dually enrolled in Newhouse* and Arts and Sciences|Maxwell will complete a minimum of 122 credits, with at least 90 credits in Arts and Sciences|Maxwell coursework and an Arts and Sciences|Maxwell major.
*Students dually enrolled in the College of Arts and Sciences|Maxwell as first year students must complete the Liberal Arts Core. Students who transfer to the dual program after their first year as singly enrolled students in the Newhouse School will satisfy general requirements for the dual degree program by completing the Newhouse Core Requirements.