Major and Minor

The Department of Religion offers a rich list of courses on a subject that you will encounter in many other departments. This is because religion is at the core of all cultures and societies. Because religion is such a ubiquitous aspect of world culture today, and has been throughout human history, the academic and comparative study of religion study is surely of critical importance for any liberal arts education. Many students find that either a major, modified major, or minor in religion is an excellent choice for a concentration in the liberal arts.

Religion Major/Minor/Modified Major Requirements

How to Declare your Religion Major, Minor, or Modified Major:

  1. Request a meeting with Religion Department Chair, Professor Reiko Ohnuma. Be prepared to discuss your academic interests, specific courses that you would like to take, and any questions you may have regarding the major. Exemptions, special permissions, and proposals need to be addressed by Professor Ohnuma as well.
  2. Review the requirements of the major, minor, or modified major and fill in your worksheet (see links below) and DartWorks major planner with your proposed course of study.
  3. Bring the completed worksheet to your meeting with Professor Ohnuma.
  4. Confirm your proposed course of study for approval in DartWorks.

Watch for occasional email announcements (events of interest, major degree requirements, Commencement, etc.) from the Religion Department.

Religion Major and Minor Planner Worksheets

The Dartmouth Organization, Regulations and Courses (ORC) contains online information about Religion course requirements. Please refer to the ORC of your matriculation year for the appropriate major requirements, and/or see the worksheet for your class year, here:

See also the online Religion Course Schedule to find the correct course numbers (include decimals when provided) for the terms being offered.

Educational Aims and Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to describe and articulate a wide range of religious phenomena (e.g., ritual, scripture, worship, meditation, religious art, etc.) from multiple cultural contexts.

  • Students will demonstrate, through oral and written expression, the ability to think analytically and critically about religion and religious phenomena.
  • Students will demonstrate an ability to interpret, evaluate, and make use of typical theories and methods used in the academic study of religion (e.g., anthropological, sociological, textual, literary, etc.).
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to critically engage with primary and secondary sources to articulate a thesis about religious phenomena and argue for it persuasively in the form of a 25-page Senior Essay.

Dartmouth's Religion faculty discuss the value of a liberal arts education