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.