Religious Studies at Saint Martin's University is an interdisciplinary academic program in which students with a variety of interests can explore various religious traditions, values and practices, and their impact on humanity. Although Judeo-Christian heritage is emphasized, the program fosters respect for and understanding of other religious traditions.

Program Highlights

Our faculty is composed of active scholars who travel the world in pursuit of deeper understanding that can be shared with our students. Faculty interests and expertise include:

  • The Dead Sea Scrolls
  • Early Judaism
  • Biblical studies
  • Semiotics
  • Transcendentalism of the mid-19th century
  • Christian Spirituality
  • Benedictine Studies

For more than 30 years, the University’s Spiritual Life Institute institute, held during the summer, has explored topics to cultivate religious literacy, challenge pre-conceived notions and shed light upon the spiritual journey. Religious Studies students have the opportunity to participate in these week-long discussions with internationally recognized groups of scholars. 

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  • Career paths

    Religion majors have a wide range of pathways available to pursue, such as:

    • Pastoral ministry (ordained or non-ordained)
    • Graduate studies, such as university professor, medicine, ordination in a faith, or law school
    • Education
    • Non-government organizations (NGO) attached to the United Nations
    • Non-profit organizations, such as Catholic Community Services or the Peace Corps
    • Government or foreign service
    • Event planning, hospitality or the service industry
    • Non-profit or non-governmental organizations
    • Publishing
    • Marketing and management

    For a complete list of professional applications, visit "What Can I Do With Major?". For additional information about how Saint Martin’s can help you find the career for you, visit our Career Center.

Requirements

Major

  • 40-46 semester hours of CORE requirements
  • 9 semester hours of lower-division courses
  • 24 semester hours of upper-division courses
  • Lower-Division courses (9 semester hours)
    • RLS 110 - Introduction to Religious Studies
    • Two courses chosen from:
    RLS111Introduction to Religious Studies
    RLS201Introduction to Hebrew Scriptures
    RLS202Introduction to the New Testament
    RLS203Introduction to Theology

     

  • Upper-Division courses (24 semester hours)

     Choose seven (7) 300-level courses in one of the emphases below:

    General Degree in Religious Studies
    • Three courses chosen from RLS300-329
    • Two chosen from RLS330-349
    • Two chosen from RLS350-379.
    • One of these requirements may be satisfied by taking RLS397 - Directed Study, RLS398 - Internship, or RLS399 – Spiritual Life Institute
    Biblical Studies Emphasis
    • One course chosen from RLS300-329
    • One chosen from RLS350-379
    • Five courses chosen from RLS330-349.
    • Two of the latter requirements may be satisfied by taking RLS380 - Koine Greek I, RLS381 - Koine Greek II, RLS382 - Biblical Hebrew I, RLS383 - Biblical Hebrew II, RLS397 - Directed Study, RLS398 – Internship, or RLS399 – Spiritual Life Institute
    Christianity and Culture Emphasis
    • One course chosen from RLS300-329
    • One chosen from RLS330-349
    • Five courses chosen from RLS350-379
    • Two of the latter requirements may be satisfied by taking RLS380 - Koine Greek I, RLS381 - Koine Greek II, RLS384 - Latin I, RLS385 - Latin II, RLS397 - Directed Study, RLS398 –Internship, or RLS399 –Spiritual Life Institute
    RLS499Senior Thesis

     

Minor

  • Nine (9) semester hours of lower-division courses
  • Nine (9) semester hours of upper-division courses
  • Lower-Division courses (9 semester hours)

    Two courses chosen from:

    RLS110Introduction to Religious Studies
    RLS200Modern Theories of Religion
    RLS205
    -or-
    RLS210
    Introduction to Biblical Studies
    -or-
    Introduction to Christian Thought

     

  • Upper-Division courses (9 semester hours)
    RLS 300-329Choose one course
    RLS 330-349Choose one course
    RLS 350-379Choose one course
    • One of these requirements may be satisfied by taking RLS397 - Directed Study, RLS398 – Internship, or RLS399 – Spiritual Life Institute

Saint stories

Fr. Kilian leading students in prayer

The lodestar of Saint Martin's

Through his classes, Father Kilian offers students a little more understanding of the material…and a little better understanding of themselves.

Father Killian Malvey, O.S.B. College of Arts & Sciences Professor

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Faculty