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Self-Designed Major in Religious Studies

Did you want to major in Religious Studies? You can by designing your own major.

Click here for a list of alumni who have self-designed majors in Religious Studies.

To be eligible for self-designing a major in Religious Studies students must

  • have a GPA of at least 3.0
  • complete at least twelve courses
    • at least six of which must be at the 300 or 400 level
    • no more than four of which may be completed at another institution
    • no more than three of which may be conducted as independent studies
  • complete a capstone project such as a senior thesis or senior project


Note that exceptions to the above requirements may be made for students transferring from other institutions.


Students should consult Professor Le Morvan ( on whether and how to pursue the self-designed major. They will need to define the central purpose and outline the nature of their proposed program of study and prepare a formal proposal including:

(1) a statement of justification and the goals of the major,

(2) a list of the courses that will constitute their program of study, and

(3) a preliminary description of the senior capstone project and the way in which it will serve to unify the course of study.


Each self-designed major proposal should reflect the particular interests of the student proposing it and a theme that has been developed with the advice and approval of a faculty sponsor. Proposals are approved by the Provost, as evaluated and recommended by the Self-Designed Programs Committee.

Students are strongly encouraged to submit proposals by the end of their sophomore year if possible.

In consultation with Professor Le Morvan, students may take at least twelve of the following courses as part of their self-designed major:

AAS 201/African and Diaspora Religions

AAH 105/Art History 1:From Caves to Cathedrals

AAH 106/Art History 2:Renaissance to Revolution

AAH 215/The Arts of South Asia

AAH 216/The Arts of East Asia

AAH 217/Arts of the Islamic World

AAH 232/Introduction to Medieval Art

CLS 250/Introduction to Greek Mythology

HGS 210/Introduction to Peace and Justice Studies

HIS 305/ REL 305 Ancient Christianity

HIS 307/Jews, Christians, and Muslims in the Premodern World

HIS 312/Medieval Culture and Society

HIS 313/REL 313/Medieval Christianity

HIS 331/Silk and Religion

HIS 338/Indian Civilization

HIS 341/Islamic History from Muhammad to the Ottomans

HIS 342/Modern Middle East

HIS 357/Religion and Politics in Africa

HIS 455/Readings Seminars (where topic has religious studies component)

HIS 498/Research Seminars (where topic has religious studies component)

HON 220/African Diaspora and Religion

HON 230/Islam in Comparative Perspective

HON 272/Philosophy of Religion (Prerequisite : One course in religion or philosophy or permission of the instructor)

HON 349/Cities and Sanctuaries of Greece and Rome

HON 351/An Odyssey in Greece

HON 362/Goodwives and Witches: Women in Colonial America

LIT 251/British Literature to 1700

LIT 317/The Witch in Literature

LIT 340/The Bible as Literature

LIT 354/Middle English Literature

LIT 358/British Literature and Religion: 1550-1700

MUS 351/Music from 600 to 1750: Gregorian Chant to High Baroque (Prerequisite: MUS 261)

PHL 250/Philosophy of Religion (Prerequisite : One course in religion or philosophy or permission of the instructor)

PHL 370/Special Topics in Philosophy (where topic has religious studies component)

PHL 391/Independent Study in Philosophy (where topic has religious studies component)

POL 362/Islam

POL 357/Middle East Politics

POL 357/Middle East Politics

PSY 390/Research Course: Learning Lab (where topic has religious studies component)

PSY 393/Independent Study (where topic has religious studies component)

REL 100/Basic Issues in Religion

REL 111/Buddhism and Buddhist Thought

REL 112/Hinduism and Hindu Thought

REL 113/Islam and Islamic Thought

REL 120/Early Judaism

REL 121/Modern Judaism

REL 220/Catholicism

REL 305/HIS 305 Ancient Christianity

REL 313/HIS 313 Medieval Christianity

REL 370/Special Topics in Religion (Prerequisite: One course in religion or philosophy or permission of the instructor)

REL 391/Independent Study in Religion (Prerequisite: permission of instructor)

SOC 375/Religion and American Culture (Prerequisite: SOC 101 or HON 216)

WGS 317/The Witch in Literature

WGS 373/Women & Spirituality

WGS 374/Ecofeminism