Contact Religious Studies

Chair: Fr. William Graf
Email: wgraf@sjfc.edu
Phone: (585) 385-8251

Religious Studies Program Requirements


Note: The Undergraduate Catalog contains the most detailed Religious Studies degree information including program requirements and course descriptions.


B.A. in Religious Studies

The B.S. in Religious Studies requires 10 courses in consultation with a departmental faculty advisor for a total of 30 credits. Four of the courses must be at the 300 level or higher, including REST496—Independent Study. Six of the courses must be completed in one of the concentrations listed below.

In your Independent Study course, you will write a major research paper under the direction of a member of the Religious Studies department, culminating in an oral presentation to fellow Religious Studies majors and minors.

As a Religious Studies major, you will be encouraged to select a foreign language—biblical, classical, or modern—that will help you explore the primary sources of your major study.

You may also combine a religious studies program with other fields such as history, communications, business, education, psychology, political science, philosophy, literature, sociology, anthropology, languages, or international studies.

Minor in Religious Studies

A minor in Religious Studies requires 18 credit hours in one of the concentrations listed below.

Religious Studies Concentrations

The Religious Studies department offers the following concentrations:

  • Roman Catholic Theology - to recognize the methods and sources of Roman Catholic Theology
  • World Religions - to recognize and research world religions, both Eastern and Western
  • Ethics - to emphasize a personal and communal process of moral decision-making from professional, cultural, and religious perspectives
  • World Scriptures - to read and explore the original sources of various world religions in translation to appreciate the literary richness of selected World Religions

Religious Studies Curriculum

Departmental offerings include courses which:

  • Center on the historical development of religious ideas, movements, and institutions
  • Center on analysis of religious thought and behavior
  • Examine primary religious texts and literature
  • Explore the role of religion in society

In foundational 100- and 200-level courses, you will be expected to be able to:

  • Recognize the texts of the major world religions and recognize at least two ways of interpreting these texts
  • Describe a religion using its sacred words, rituals, normative actions, and institutional composition
  • Recognize contemporary intra- and inter-religious controversies
  • Use the library facilities, including the Internet, to aid  in accomplishing these tasks

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