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    Columbia Campus
  Jul 14, 2024
2010-2011 Undergraduate Studies Bulletin (Frozen) 
2010-2011 Undergraduate Studies Bulletin (Frozen) [Archived Catalog]

Religious Studies, B.A.

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Learning Outcomes Department of Religious Studies 
Curriculum College of Arts and Sciences 

Learning Outcomes

Students who graduate with a B.A. in Religious Studies should be able to …

  • identify scholarly aspects of religions and the frameworks of beliefs. This comprehension should include aspects of texts, practices, and beliefs in the complex phenomenon known as religion.
  • compare beliefs, experiences, values, and rituals in different historical periods and cultural settings. They will demonstrate skills of comparison and analysis of different religious texts, beliefs, and practices with respect to differing cultural contexts and/ or historical periods.
  • demonstrate knowledge of different scholarly approaches and understand the different conclusions reached.
  • demonstrate a level of reflection and critical thought with respect to general and in-depth knowledge of world religions and different scholarly approaches to the study of religion.


Degree Requirements (120 Hours)

  1. College Core
  2. Distribution Requirements
  3. Cultural Awareness and Writing Emphasis Requirements
  4. Major
  5. Cognate or Minor
  6. Electives

College Core for B.A. and B.F.A. Degrees - Curricula I

Students are encouraged to demonstrate the level of accomplishment represented by core courses by means of advanced examinations. See the section on advanced placement in the “Admissions Policies and Procedures ” section.

Writing (6 Hours)

English 101 and 102 must each be passed with a grade of C or higher, and must be completed within the first sixty hours of the degree in order to count these hours toward the total needed for graduation. English 101 is prerequisite to English 102, and students must complete both English 101 and 102 (or equivalent) before taking any other English course.

Foreign Languages (0-9 Hours)

Demonstration of proficiency in one foreign language equivalent to the minimal passing grade on the exit examination in the 122 course. Students can demonstrate this proficiency by successfully completing Phase II of the Proficiency Test or by successfully completing the 122 course, including the exit exam administered as part of that course.

History (9 Hours)

Mathematics/Analytical Reasoning (6 Hours)

Select 1 option from the following:

Option One

  • MATH 122  or MATH 141 
  • Select 1 additional course from Mathematics (MATH) at a higher level, Philosophy (PHIL) 110 , 111 , Statistics (STAT), or Computer Science (CSCE)

Option Two

Select 1 option from the following:

  • PHIL 110  and PHIL 111 
  • Two courses in Statistics (STAT)
  • Two courses in Computer Science (CSCE)


MATH 221 and 222, Basic Concepts of Elementary Mathematics I and II, are open only as electives to students pursuing certification in Early Childhood or Elementary Education.

Laboratory Sciences (8 Hours)

Select 2 laboratory courses from the following:

  • Anthropology (ANTH) ANTH 161 
  • Astronomy (ASTR)
  • Biology (BIOL)
  • Chemistry (CHEM)
  • Environmental Studies (ENVR) ENVR 101 , ENVR 101L 
  • Geology (GEOL)
  • Marine Science (MSCI)
  • Physics (PHYS)

Each science course must have a co-requisite laboratory. The 2 courses need not be taken in the same field. Lab credit cannot be applied unless its co-requisite lecture is also applied.

Philosophical Reasoning (3 Hours)

  • Select 1 course in Philosophy (PHIL), excluding PHIL 110 and PHIL 111

Distribution Requirements for B.A. and B.F.A. Degrees - Curricula I

Humanities (12 Hours)

Must include areas specified below. Major prerequisites may be used for no more than three hours of the Humanities requirement. 399 courses and internships may not fulfill this requirement.

Fine Arts (3 Hours)

A course or courses dealing with the study and/or practice of the visual and performing arts. Students may take courses in art studio, art design, art history and appreciation, film, media arts, music history and appreciation, music theory and performance, theatre history and appreciation, acting, stagecraft, theatre design, and dance to fulfill this requirement.

Courses in speech (SPCH) apply to the humanities requirement, but do NOT satisfy the fine arts requirement. Theatre production laboratories (THEA 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 219, 220, 221), one-hour credits for participation in music organizations (band, chorus, orchestra), dance company, and MART 302 do NOT apply to the fine arts requirement or to the humanities requirement.

Literature (200 or higher) (3 Hours)

A literature course numbered 200 or higher. Students and their advisors should note that this requirement includes the sophomore literature courses in the Department of English (ENGL 270-289), but is not limited to these courses. Higher level literature courses in the Department of English as well as comparative literature courses and literature courses taught in foreign languages may be included.

Additional Humanities (6 Hours)

Select  2 courses from the following:

  • African American Studies (AFRO)
  • Art (ARTS)
  • Art Education (ARTE) excluding 399, 465, 471, 555, 595,
  • Art History (ARTH)
  • Classics (CLAS)
  • College of Liberal Arts (COLA) pending content
  • Comparative Literature (CPLT)
  • Dance (DANC) excluding 177, 577 
  • English (ENGL) 270 or higher
  • European Studies (EURO) 300   only
  • Film and Media Studies (FILM)
  • Foreign Languages and Literatures (ARAB, CHIN, FREN, GERM, GREK, ITAL, JAPA, LATN, PORT, RUSS, SPAN, SWAH) excluding 100 levels and 315
  • History (HIST)
  • Latin and American Studies (LASP) 201 , 301 , 341 , 342 , 361 , 371 , 398  pending content, 441 , 442 , 447 , 471 , 481  only
  • Linguistics (LING) 301 , 405  pending content, 421 , 431 , 440 ,441, 442 , 502 , 503 , 504 , 505  pending content, 512 , 514 , 530 , 540 , 565 , 600 , 610 , 620 , 627 , 650  only
  • Media Arts (MART) excluding MART 302 and 399
  • Music (MUSC) excluding one-hour credits for participation in music organizations and 399
  • Philosophy (PHIL) except 110, 111, 399, 511
  • Religious Studies (RELG)
  • Southern Studies (SOST) 298 , 299 , 301 , 302  pending content, 305 , 405  pending content
  • Speech (SPCH)
  • Theatre (THEA) excluding THSP 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 219, 220, 221, 399
  • Women’s and Gender Studies (WGST) 111 , 307 , 308 , 320 , 321 , 430  pending content, 437 , 464  only

Social Sciences (9 Hours)

Select 3 courses from at least 2 of the following subject areas: 

  • Anthropology (ANTH) excluding 161, 399 and 501
  • Criminology and Criminal Justice (CRJU) excluding 202, 301, 399, 494
  • Economics (ECON) excluding 399, 421, 499, 524, 595. ECON 221 and 222 or 224 are prerequisite to all upper level courses. Students may apply 221 and 222, or 224, but not both, to the degree
  • Geography (GEOG) excluding 201, 202, 399, 595
  • Latin American Studies (LASP) 301 , 311 , 312 , 315 , 322 , 325 , 331 , 351 , 398  pending content, 425 , 451 , 455  only
  • Linguistics (LING) 300 , 340 , 405  pending content, 442 , 505  pending content, 540 , 541 543 , 545 , 567 , 570 , 600  only
  • Political Science (POLI) excluding 379, 399
  • Psychology (PSYC) excluding 226, 227, 228, 399, and 594-599; 101 is prerequisite to all courses numbered 400 and above
  • Sociology (SOCY) excluding 220, 399; 101 is prerequisite for all others
  • Southern Studies (SOST) 298 , 299 , 301 , 302  pending content, 305 , 405  pending content
  • Women and Gender Studies (WGST) 112  , 210  , 300  , 301  , 304  , 305  , 307  , 308 , 310 , 351 , 352 , 358, 430  pending content, 454 , 525 , 554 , 555 


No more than 3 hours of major prerequisites may be applied towards the fulfillment of the Social Science requirement.

Internship and independent study courses as well as social science statistics courses may not be applied to the social sciences requirement.

Cultural Awareness Requirements for B.A. and B.F.A. Degrees - Curricula I

Students must complete the specified number of courses in each of these areas, but may use these courses to satisfy other degree requirements except where specifically restricted.

Cultural Awareness (9 Hours)

A minimum of 3 courses, with at least 1 course from each of the following:

  1. a course treating in some specific way the culture of the student's foreign language
  2. a course in North American studies
  3. a course in a culture other than American or Western European

A wide variety of courses can be considered under the general category of "Cultural Awareness." Students are directed to consult the Guidelines for Advisement and their major advisors for specific courses.

Major Prerequisite (3 Hours)

Religious Studies Major (24-30 Hours)

A minimum grade of C is required in all major courses.

General Major (24 hours)

  • Select 2 courses from Group A
  • Select 2 courses from Group B
  • Select 1 course from Group C
  • Select an additional 3 courses from RELG 300 or above

Intensive Major (30 hours)

  • RELG 498 - Advanced Project
  • Select 2 courses from Group A
  • Select 2 courses from Group B
  • Select 1 course from Group C
  • Select 4 courses from RELG 300 or above

B.A. with Distinction (30 Hours)

Students who fulfill the requirements for the Intensive Major and earn a minimum major GPA of 3.75 and a cumulative GPA of 3.50 will be awarded the degree "With Distinction in Religious Studies" upon graduation.

Cognate or Minor (12-18 Hours) for B.A. and B.F.A. Degrees - Curricula I


The cognate is designed to support the major. The cognate must consist of twelve (12) hours of courses at the advanced level, outside of but related to the major, and the cognate must be approved by the major department through the major advisor. The cognate may be taken in one or more departments or degree programs, depending on the interests of the student and the judgment of the advisor. In certain cases, cognate courses may be selected from the professional schools.

  • Cognates must be selected from outside the student's major program.

It should be emphasized that the cognate is not a second set of elective courses to be chosen at random by the student. The cognate must be approved by the advisor as being related to the major field of study. The Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs will not recognize cognates that have not been approved by the major department. Students are urged to consult their departmental advisors for specific requirements in their major.

  • All cognate courses must be passed with a grade of C or higher.


In place of the cognate a student in the College of Arts and Sciences may choose a minor consisting of at least 18 credit hours of prescribed courses. The subject area of the minor may be related to the major. Students pursuing interdisciplinary minors who wish to use courses in their major department for minor credit must petition the College Committee on Scholastic Standards and Petitions for permission to do so.

The minor is intended to develop a coherent basic preparation in a second area of study. It differs from the cognate inasmuch as the courses must be concentrated in one area and must follow a structured sequence. Interdisciplinary minors can be designed with the approval of the dean.

  • Courses applied toward general education requirements cannot be counted toward the minor.
  • No course may satisfy both major and minor requirements.
  • All minor courses must be passed with a grade of C or higher.
  • At least half of the courses in the minor must be completed in residence at the University.

Electives for B.A. Degrees and B.F.A. - Curricula I

Students should take note that the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees in Curricula Section I require a minimum of 120 semester hours in academic subjects. (Other degrees may require more than 120 semester hours.)

No courses of a remedial, developmental, skill-acquiring, or vocational nature may apply as credit toward degrees in the College of Arts and Sciences. The College of Arts and Sciences allows the use of the Pass-Fail option on elective courses.

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