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College of Arts & Sciences

Religious Studies

Why pursue a religious studies degree at North Central College?

An undergraduate degree in religious studies is, for many, a calling and a career path. Students who major in religious studies become experts in the history and practice of many religions. In a religious studies major, you’ll learn to engage with sacred texts and sources with a critical eye, communicating ideas and arguments with sensitivity. Some students who study religion will choose careers in ministry such as a missionary, chaplain or youth director, while others will choose roles like a teacher, lawyer or non-profit employee. At North Central College, you’ll work closely with faculty to explore some of life’s most challenging questions in topics such as philosophy, history, psychology, sociology, ethics and ministry. As an expert at evaluating, reasoning and navigating through complex issues, religious studies majors add value to a wide range of environments.

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN

  • Providing religious services and spiritual guidance to individuals or groups
  • Understanding faith from numerous religious perspectives including Christianity, Hinduism, Taoism, Judaism, Buddhism and Islam
  • Examining religious traditions and histories

then a degree in RELIGIOUS STUDIES might be for you.

Why study religious studies at North Central College?

In the Classroom

Coursework topics:

  • Christian Ethics and Spirituality
  • Cross, Violence and Resistance
  • Death and Dying
  • Hollywood, Values and Religion
  • Islam
  • Judaism
  • Nature and Well Being
  • Religion and Political Order
  • Religious Harmony in China
  • Religious Pluralism in Japan
  • Sexuality and Christianity
  • Spiritual Liberation in India
  • The Bible
  • The Global Buddha: Permeating Space-Time
  • Topics in Religious Ethics
  • Women and the Bible
  • World Religions

Beyond the Classroom

As a religious studies major, you can:

  • Apply for internships and jobs through robust faculty and alumni networks or the Center for Career and Professional Development.
  • Experience different religious practices through our Contemplative Series and campus ministry offerings.
  • Get involved with The Union, a social venue that incorporates music, art, film and spirituality.
  • Begin graduate-level coursework at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, with up to 15 hours of elective credit put towards your degree.
  • Attend Focus, a weekly interdenominational worship and fellowship group.

 

More Department information

 

Religious Studies, B.A.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 32 credit hours, including:

Religion Courses

One course from each of the following areas:

Biblical Studies

Theology

Ethics

Asian Traditions

Electives

Minimum of ten credit hours of RELG electives (PHIL 360 and ANTH 345 count towards this requirement). Maximum of two credit hours towards the ten credit hours of required electives can be earned through internship or independent study (in addition to RELG 498).

Capstone

Additional Requirements for the B.A. Degree

Students must demonstrate elementary competence in a foreign language. For more information, see the B.A. Degree Requirements within the Academic Regulations section of this catalog.

Religious studies minor

Minor Requirements

A minimum of 20 credit hours, including:

Biblical Studies

Theology and Philosophy of Religion

Ethics

One of the following:

Asian Traditions

One of the following:

Religious Studies Internships and Jobs

A North Central education integrates career preparation with rich academic study. By gaining your religious studies degree, you will foster a deeper understanding of other cultures and their religious traditions. Our faculty encourages you to refine and apply your knowledge in an interconnected world. Here you'll learn to think independently and work globally to solve problems and lead.

Internships

  • Assistant program director, Mountain Tennessee Outreach Project, Coalmont, TN
  • Intern, Junior/Senior Scholars, Naperville
  • Intern, Humanitarian Service Project, Carol Stream, IL 

Graduate School

Recent graduates in religious studies have been accepted at:

  • Princeton Theological Seminary
  • Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
  • Chicago Theological Seminary
  • Vanderbilt University
  • DePaul University
  • Illinois State University

Careers

Recent graduates in religious studies include:

  • Executive Director, Center for Faith and Human Rights
  • Professor of Law, DePaul University
  • Associate Porfessor, Garrett- Evangelical Theological Seminary
  • Senior Manager, Disney Corporation
  • CEO, Tri-State Media Ministry
  • Acute Care Social Worker, Middleton VA Medical Center
  • Chaplain, Springfield Memorial Center

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Merit scholarships, grants, loans, campus employment - these are just some of the resources available to you. Over 95 percent of students and 100 percent of all eligible students receive aid. Let our team partner with you in finding the best value for your education.

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