Curriculum & Course Information

At the DSR, we have thought carefully about the content and styles of teaching of our courses at different levels, as well as linkages to the next level of courses. 

Our 100-level courses introduce you to the study of religion, while tackling existential questions such as life, death, embodiment, the mind, and belief. We aim to provide communities of learning that provide foundational skills such as critical thinking, close reading, active listening, writing, oral presentation, and discussion. Our courses are either First Year Foundation Seminars (capped at 25) or larger lecture courses with tutorials (ideally 100+ students). Most of our first- and second-year courses also provide extra support through the Writing-Integrated Teaching program. 

Our 200-level courses give you entryways into specific religious traditions, including Buddhism, Christianity, Indigenous Religions, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism, as well as specific ‘lenses’ into the study of religion, for instance through language or music. We also teach you different methodological and disciplinary approaches through our ‘Study of Religion’ course, which is required for all Majors and Specialists. Overall, we encourage you to think comparatively about what counts as ‘religion’ in specific contexts. We complement larger gatherings in lectures with more intimate tutorials. 

Our 300-level courses focus on providing you with skills of critical thinking and knowledge exchange. We encourage you to think about significant themes that cross-cut religious traditions, such as migration, politics, human rights, sexuality, pilgrimage, spaces, visions and revelations, and so on, and we often draw on forms of experiential learning and multi-media platforms for presenting the results of lengthier research projects. 

Our 400-level courses consist of smaller and intensive seminars, where you engage closely with each other and with instructors. We encourage you to engage in advanced critical reflection on how and why you study religion in an academic setting and to develop your own voice as a thinker who can speak and write publicly about religion. We offer a Religion in the Public Sphere (RPS) community-engaged learning course, as well as seminars designed solely for undergraduates and several joint grad/undergrad seminars.