Goals and Objectives

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Graduates of the CSU, Chico Department of Religious Studies will:

  • Possess essential knowledge of the historical emergence, cultural contexts, scriptural and oral traditions, teachings, practices, and contemporary expressions of the world’s major religious traditions.
  • Comprehend the component forms of religious life, including ritual, myth, doctrine, philosophy, ethics, and material culture.
  • Understand how religion informs and is informed by other dimensions of human experience and knowledge, such as gender, ethnicity, social organization, politics, economics, and science; and how religions are used both to support and to critique social structures and institutions.
  • Achieve competence in the interdisciplinary, comparative approach to the study of religion, which employs the tools and perspectives of such disciplines as anthropology, sociology, philosophy, theology, ethics, history, psychology, and literary theory.
  • Acquire the skills of critical reading, listening, and reasoning that foster conversation and enrich civil and academic discourse about religion.
  • Develop the ability to communicate effectively in speech and writing in a variety of formats.
  • Master the research skills and methods appropriate to the contemporary study of religion, including library and Internet research.