The Department

The Religious Studies Department at Humboldt State University offers a range of courses, including classic, large lecture classes; small, upper-division seminars; hands-on, service-learning classes; and experiential workshops. For a breakdown of our department’s student make-up, look at the Department Enrollment data on the HSU website.

Who Majors in Religious Studies?

Religious Studies attracts a wide spectrum of students, with varying reasons for studying religion. Some are interested in how religion operates from a cultural and social perspective. Others study religion as part of their own personal search for meaning. Some persons are attracted to the study of religion because its methodology teaches and requires one to see through the eyes of other peoples, to develop empathetic and critical capacities in learning.

What can I do with a Religious Studies Major?

Anything you want! A major in Religious Studies is best seen in the context of a liberal arts education. Like most undergraduate majors in the Humanities and Social Sciences, our degree is not limited to a single focus. This is actually an asset rather than a liability, for the job market of today is different that in the past, requiring adaptablilty, critical and creative thinking, and global perspectives. Employers are desiring, and hiring, liberal arts trained persons because of their skills in these areas. Religious Studies develops critical thinking, the ability to see a variety of world views and relationships, a global perspective, and an understanding of key elements of human life. These enable you to choose any number of vocations. Some of our graduates are pursuing careers as lawyers, writers, professors, social workers, therapists, teachers, high level computer programmers, and independent business people.

As one of our graduating seniors says about his degree: “I especially find it meaningful to learn about different ways of life through the study of the world’s religious traditions, while reflecting upon how I might incorporate some of this knowledge into what I understand of my own life. I have improved in a variety of skills in this major; all of which I will use next year as a graduate student in Humboldt’s teacher credential program.”