Religious Studies

The Department of Religious Studies pursues a critical and comparative study of religions. This study aims to illuminate the dynamics of religion as a dimension of human culture and to develop theories and methods that advance our understanding of religion in its cultural and historical context. The faculty offers instruction in methodologies in:

  • The study of religion
  • Religion and gender
  • History of religions
    • Hinduism
    • Buddhism
    • Religions of China and Japan
    • Islam
    • Christianity
    • Judaism
    • Native American and other traditional religions
    • Religion and dance
    • Religions in North America.

Related areas of study include a dual master's degree with the Departments of History or Asian Languages and Civilizations. There is also a certificate program in ethnographic and transcultural filmmaking. Opportunities for interdisciplinary study are available among a wide selection of departments such as:

  • Anthropology
  • Sociology
  • Asian languages and civilizations
  • Comparative literature
  • Philosophy
  • Classics
  • Women's studies
  • Theatre and dance
  • Journalism and mass communication
  • Fine arts.

Degrees Offered


Degree Details

Requires 31 semester hours of course work, including three required core seminars, a thesis representing four to six semester hours of thesis research, a comprehensive final exam, and a competence (fourth semester) in a language other than English and use of this language in the student’s course of study.

Admissions Requirements

Applicants must:

  1. Hold a baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an accredited college or university.
  2. Have an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.75.
  3. Have completed at least 12 semester hours (or the equivalent) of undergraduate course work directly related to the academic study of religion.
  4. All citizens/U.S. residents must complete the GRE test.
  5. Provide three letters of recommendation.
  6. Provide a statement on Academic Goals and Activities.
  7. Provide a writing sample.

Fall Domestic Application Deadline

January 5, 2017

Fall International Application Deadline

January 5, 2017

Contact Information

University of Colorado Boulder
Department of Religious Studies
Graduate Program Administrator
Humanities 240
292 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309-0292
Phone: 303-492-8041
Fax: 303-735-2080

Department of Religious Studies website