Religious Studies Undergraduate Program

Religious Studies Undergrads

Lucas Smalldon

Lucas Smalldon '12

For me, Religious Studies has opened doors. And with each open door, I see ten new ones to explore. That's the excitement of education at work, and when it happens that way, it's one of the best feelings in the world.

Submissions being accepted for the new Undergraduate journal Invocations
All are welcome

Understanding religion is at the heart of understanding who we are as global citizens. In religious studies classes, believers and non-believers, practitioners and non-practitioners work together to assess the complexity and variety of the human experience and to understand how religion shapes people's lives throughout the world. Our department offers a flexible program, dedicated teachers, and an array of courses that examine religion from historical, ethical, philosophical, legal, and anthropological perspectives. Members of our faculty have won numerous teaching awards as well as research grants, and students often remark that they were drawn to the department because of the high quality of the professors and the lively conversations in the classroom.

Where a religious studies degree can take you

Many people wonder how Religious Studies prepares students for life after college. Our alumni repeatedly seek us out to tell us that these classes taught them how to think carefully and critically about the world and their place in it. The discipline of religious studies is particularly adept at training students to think clearly, to speak and write well, and to analyze complex, multi-faceted phenomena. Graduates from this department have gone on to be successful in an enormous variety of jobs and careers in business, law, teaching, and non-profit sectors. Our students have also won many of the top scholarships awarded by IU (we boast repeated winners of the Palmer-Brandon scholarship), and we have successfully placed numerous students in the highly competitive Teach for America program.

How can I get involved?

Photo of Michael Ing
Michael Ing, Director of Undergraduate Studies

There are numerous opportunities to become involved in the extra-curricular life of the department. We have an active Undergraduate Religious Studies Association (URSA) led by students, and this organization sponsors numerous activities throughout the year, including service projects, movie nights, and academic panels about religion in the world today. The department also sponsors service-learning projects, honors theses, independents studies, and undergraduate essay contests.

For more information, please contact Aaron Ellis, Religious Studies Academic Advisor.