Department of Religious Studies
Description of Majors
The biblical studies major provides opportunities for students to know about the history, composition, and transmission of biblical texts; to use scholarly resources and different interpretive approaches to engage with biblical texts; and to value the variety of resources and diversity of contexts in which biblical texts continue to play a role.
Courses in this major are drawn from the related areas of theology, Bible, and religion as students explore the biblical sources of Christian religion and its theology, practice, and relation to life and culture. This major is especially valuable for pre-seminary students.
Christian Ministries Complementary may be taken only in conjunction with another major. This approach strengthens students’ preparation for servanthood in today’s world by connecting theological, biblical, and ministerial knowledge with students’ base of knowledge. It offers the opportunity to be equipped for lay ministry while preparing for another profession, and gives students a broad base in preparation for graduate study in ministry. This track includes study in four contextual areas for ministry: public, congregation, family/interpersonal, and workplace.
Christian Ministries is designed as a stand-alone major. This approach is designed for students desiring to enter ministry upon graduation, but who might choose to continue their studies later, and for students entering seminary immediately upon graduation. Involving academic theory as well as practical dimensions of ministry, this track gives students both depth and breadth of preparation. A minor or cognate in a related area of study may also be added to this track.
The Youth Ministries major allows students who anticipate service in congregations, para-church organizations or other contexts to link their interest in adolescents with the development of their own ministry identity. The major directs attention to the needs of young people and their families while also providing an orientation to ministry practice that will serve well those students whose ministry careers come to include other responsibilities. Additional coursework in other departments is encouraged so as to broaden the range of the student's ministry resources.