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Undergraduate Studies

Major Requirements

The major requires 44 credits in religious studies courses, not all of which need to carry the REL subject code. Of the 44 credits, 8 must be in World Religions (REL 101, 102), 28 must be upper division. Of these upper-division credits, at least 16 must be in courses with the REL subject code.

Courses used to satisfy major requirements must be taken for letter grades and passed with a mid-C or better.

Honors in Religious Studies

Requirements for a degree with honors in religious studies typically include the following:

  1. Satisfaction of the requirements for a major
  2. A cumulative grade point average of 3.80 in courses taken to satisfy the major requirements
  3. Formal approval of the department

The candidate for honors shall request approval no later than the second week of fall term in the senior year. Students are strongly encouraged to meet with the undergraduate adviser before applying. Application forms are available in the department office.

A faculty committee supervises the honors thesis project. Candidates typically register for 3 credits of Research (REL 401) for both fall and winter terms of the senior year to prepare for writing the thesis. Contingent on satisfactory progress, the candidate then enrolls for 4 credits of Thesis (REL 403) spring term. A first draft of the thesis must be submitted six weeks before the end of spring term and the final draft two weeks after that.

Minor Requirements

The minor in religious studies requires 24 credits, including 8 in World Religions (REL 101, 102). Of the remaining 16 credits, at least 8 must be from upper-division courses.

Grading Policy

What follows is meant to help students understand departmental expectations regarding the grading of course assignments. These are general expectations, but specifics will vary depending on the needs and assignments of course level, course type, and subject area.

Students have the responsibility to attend carefully to course syllabi, assignment descriptions, and oral instructions in class and in conference regarding the evaluation of course assignments. There may be additional sources of information, such as written comments on essay assignments and additional documentation on course web sites.

Some of the differences in expectations may be found in such areas as: greater outside research needed for upper level seminar writing assignments as well as expectations regarding exams and written assignments for language-related courses, as opposed to other types of courses.

A+
Work of the highest distinction, rarely awarded.
A
Excellent grasp of material, precise and sophisticated execution of assignment, reasonably free of errors. In addition, where applicable, great originality, depth of insight, and thoroughness of research will characterize work at this level.
B
Fulfillment of main criteria of assignment demonstrating good grasp of material, with high level of execution with some room for improvement. Where applicable, work at this level does not contain the same level of originality, insight, or thoroughness of research as work evaluated at the 'A' level.
C
Fulfillment of a good portion of the criteria of assignment demonstrating promising but incomplete grasp of material, with fair execution leaving room for improvement. Where applicable, work at this level contains some originality and insight, and research remains rudimentary.
D
Fulfillment of some of the criteria of assignment with poor grasp of material, and poor execution of assignment. Where applicable, work lacks originality, insight, and is deficient in research.
F
Work that fails to fulfill basic requirements of assignment, remains largely incomplete with little grasp of material, and fails to execute required elements properly.