Program for the Study of Religion


Program for the Study of Religion

University of California, San Diego

The Study of Religion is an intellectually exciting program focused on a subject matter that many scholars in the arts, humanities, sciences, and social sciences consider to be an intrinsic dimension of humanity—religion. Religion originates in literature, social organization, imagination, emotions, culture, sexuality, even the physical body itself.

At UCSD, the Study of Religion is an exclusively undergraduate program, offering both a major and a minor. Because there is no graduate component, we take pride in the fact that we are able to give close attention to our undergraduate students. Religion students take small upper-division classes, work closely with professors of national and international scholarly reputation, and develop skills that enable them to describe, compare, interpret, and explain—critical skills that they will use long after leaving the university.

Major and Double Major

The major in the study of religion is designed to be completed in two years. It consists of 12 upper-division courses (48 units). Lower-division courses—numbered 1-99—cannot be used for the major.

Read the general university requirements for a major.

Double Major

You may be eligible to add Study of Religion as a second major provided you are in good academic standing and on track to complete all university and degree requirements within four years.

Read the general university requirements for a double major.

At least 10 courses must be unique to each major. Two upper-division courses may overlap between the majors. Refer to our course catalog or consult the program coordinator to see which courses you might be able to use for both.

Look for these tradition designations on the program’s quarterly courselists:

• (B) Buddhism
• (C) Christianity
• (EA) East Asian
• (H) Hinduism
• (I) Islam
• (J) Judaism
• (P) Paganism


The minor in the study of religion can be completed in 1-2 years. It consists of seven courses (28 units), of which at least five must be upper-division. To add a minor you must be in good academic standing and on track to complete all university and degree requirements within four years.

Please read the general university requirements for a minor and seek advising from your college if you have questions about your eligibility.

You must obtain a letter grade of C- or better in courses used for the minor.

You may apply 1 or 2 of these lower-division courses to the minor:

• ANTH 1. Introduction to Culture
• HUM 1. The Foundations of Western Civilization
• HUM 2. Rome, Christianity and the Middle Ages
• MMW 11. Prehistory and Ancient Foundations
• MMW 12. Classical and Medieval Traditions
• PHIL 31. Introduction to Ancient Philosophy
• RELI 1. Introduction to Religion
• RELI 2. Comparative World Religions
• RELI 3. Technoscience and Religion
• SOCI 1. Introduction to Sociology
• SOCI 2. The Study of Society

Events 2019-2020

Subscribe to studyofreligion-l to receive emails about upcoming events. Events are free and open to students, faculty, staff and the general public unless otherwise noted.

Fall 2019

Oct. 24 – Film Screening “Under the Shadow” [student event]
Nov. 12 – The Weight of God (Rae Armantrout)
Nov. 19 – Carnival in the Zen Temple (Ben Van Overmeire)
Nov. 26 – 25 Years of Religions in the Public Sphere (Jose Casanova)
Dec. 5 – Truths and Lies in the History of Modern Iran (Yann Richard)


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