The study of Religion has held a central place at Athens State University for almost a century. The Religion major was initiated in 1938 and continues the long tradition of preparing students for their chosen vocations into this new century.
The study of religion has a broad relevance for today’s world. It explores the nature and importance of religions both past and present. It also looks at what the role of religion will be in the future. The program promotes an appreciation of the diversity and richness of the world’s religious traditions seeing them in light of social, cultural, and historical contexts. The program offers courses in theology, world religions, religion and society, religious history, religion and culture, biblical studies, and more.
The value of studying religion in a state university is that you get a chance to explore not only your tradition but also gain an understanding and appreciation of the diversity and richness of other religious traditions. It attempts to provide an objective study that explores ideas critically and openly.
More about our BA in Religious Studies
Diversity: This program embraces and welcomes students from different perspectives and views. The program is an academic study of religion. We are not concerned with what students believe so as long as they can think critically and function in an academic and professional setting. This means acting professionally. We want students who can engage ideas critically and respect their fellow students and their views even when they disagree.
Preparing students for their future: We prepare students for further education or employment in many different careers. (See frequently asked questions for details)
Research and Writing
Ability to use these skills in further education or real-life opportunities.
Paths for completing the religious studies program: The program has a significant amount of flexibility built into it. Students can use electives to prepare for further education or work in non-profit organizations or religious institutions such as a church ministry as a pastor, youth minister, or other types of religious organizations.
Accreditation: Our program is fully accredited with SACS.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I do this degree all online?
Yes, you can. We will offer optional Zoom meetings at times allowing students to attend and engage with other students. Meetings are generally recorded so students can view them if they cannot attend.
What jobs will this degree prepare me for?
Our graduates across the years have found employment in a vast number of fields. Job opportunities for this degree will prepare one for further education or work in Religious Institutions, Non-Profits, Counseling, Community Service, Pastoral Leadership, Children or Youth Ministry, Adult Education, social work, or other helping professions. It would also allow one to teach courses in religion at private and public high schools. Note any religion course taught in a public school must be neutral in that it cannot promote any religion. The degree can also prepare students for any job related to the critical skills listed above. The things you can do with this degree are endless and depend on your interest and the marketplace.
Do I have to be religious?
All you need is an interest in religious studies. It is about what religion is and what it means for humanity. Membership in any particular religion is unnecessary for a critical understanding of the role of religion and what it offers society.
Will I be able to pursue my specific interests in research areas?
Yes, we will work with you to find areas of interest to you allowing your research to be personally rewarding. All Classes provide students with basic research opportunities. Students may have an area of interest within specific courses and may seek permission to research in those areas.
Some electives are part of the program. If you are not doing a minor you would have additional hours you might apply to your focus. There are also directed studies one can use. You could focus on leadership or biblical languages or a combination of courses.