Undergraduate

Helping Those in Need, One Person at a Time

Religious and Theological Studies major Laulie Eckberger ’14 found her passion through service at St. Edward’s. Hear Laulie’s story.

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Religious and Theological Studies Major Serves in Peru and Guatemala

Matthew Gunnar Aragones ’15 participated in a service trip to Peru with Campus Ministry and an occupational ministry in Guatemala through Students International. 

Go on to Grad School

Of the BA in Religious and Theological Studies students at St. Edward’s who pursued graduate studies, 100% have been accepted into graduate programs.

Religious and Theological Studies Students Accepted to Divinity Schools

Harley Roberts ’14 was accepted with full funding to Harvard Divinity School. She was also admitted to Yale, the University of Chicago and Boston University. Chandler Sager ’14, Matthew Aragones ’14 and Rachel Soucie ’13 were accepted to Duke University Divinity School.

Religious and Theological Studies

The Bachelor of Arts in Religious and Theological Studies at St. Edward’s investigates the meaning and purpose of life through a close examination of Christianity and other religious traditions. Through critical inquiry, research and in-depth discussions, you’ll explore the history, thought and ongoing development of Christianity and other world religions. And you’ll prepare for fulfilling careers related to your theological and religious interests, such as ministry, social work or teaching.

Bachelor of Arts in Religious and Theological Studies

Overview:

As a BA in Religious and Theological Studies major, you’ll examine and evaluate diverse cultures, current affairs and the local and global impact of different belief systems — from Christianity, Judaism and Hinduism to Buddhism and Islam. Within this program, you’ll design your own course of study that suits your interests and goals. For example, you may focus in world religions, systemic theology or biblical studies.

Many students select this degree to prepare for graduate school, seminary or pastoral ministry. Close interaction with faculty at St. Edward’s — and time spent in classes, advising sessions and independent research projects — allows you to learn more about career options and the choice of doing graduate work.

With a Bachelor of Arts in Religious and Theological Studies, graduates work in a variety fields. For example, you could become an editor for a religious publication, a program coordinator for a church, a fundraiser for a faith-related nonprofit, or a teacher within a church-based elementary or secondary school. Graduates of this program often pursue advanced degrees. Many have become college professors, ministers, social workers, doctors and lawyers. Our students have attended leading graduate schools such as Notre Dame, Fordham, Duke and Harvard.

Degree Plan:

For detailed descriptions and timing of courses, please see the Undergraduate Bulletin (course catalog).

I. FOUNDATION COURSES (21 CREDIT HOURS):
• Rhetoric and Composition I and II*
• College Mathematics
• Computational Skills
• Oral Communication
• Modern Language

II. CULTURAL FOUNDATIONS (18 CREDIT HOURS):
• Literature and Human Experience
• Understanding and Appreciating Arts
• American Experience
• American Dilemmas*
• History and Evolution of Global Processes
• Contemporary World Issues

III. MISSION COURSES (15 CREDIT HOURS):
• The Human Experience
• Ethics*
• Religious Studies/Philosophy
• Science in Perspective
• Science in Depth

IV. CORE COURSES (43 CREDIT HOURS):
• Methods in Religious Studies
• Introduction to Religions of the World
• Basic Christian Questions or Introduction to Catholicism
• Introduction to Christian Morality
• Introduction to the Hebrew Bible
• Introduction to the New Testament
• History of Christian Theology I
• History of Christian Theology II
• Senior Seminar
Electives in the Major (18 CREDIT HOURS)
• Lower- and upper-division Religious Studies courses

V. CAPSTONE COURSE (3 CREDIT HOURS)

VI. GRADUATION CERTIFICATION:
You must register for this course in your graduating term to be certified for graduation.

* These courses are prerequisites for Capstone.

Internships

All BA in Religious and Theological Studies majors are encouraged to complete an internship. Internships are excellent opportunities to explore your passion for a particular aspect of the applied religion experience and to engage in social justice and community service. An internship is an outstanding addition to your résumé and can give you a distinct advantage for graduate school or your career path.

Past internships have included youth ministry, hospital ministry, student teaching, living and working in a Zen Buddhist community, and being a teaching assistant for a Religious and Theological Studies professor.

Research

At St. Edward’s, you’ll participate in professional-level research that’s typically reserved for graduate students at larger universities. A major research paper is central to the BA in Religious and Theological Studies degree. You’ll work alongside professors to conduct academic research, as you build confidence and skills and prepare for graduate studies and your career.

In addition, religious and theological studies majors have presented at the following venues:

  • McNair Scholars program conferences
  • Southwest Commission on Religious Studies (which includes the American Academy of Religion, the Society for Biblical Literature, the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, and the American Schools of Oriental Research)
  • St. Edward’s University Honors Presentations
  • Symposium on Undergraduate Research and Creative Expression (SOURCE) at St. Edward’s University

Students may also publish their research in Arete, the St. Edward’s University academic journal.

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