Religious Studies (RS)
RS-101 Introduction to the Bible (3 credits)
This course is a study of the sacred literature of the Jewish and Christian religions. Key concepts and great themes of both testaments are studied.
RS-102 Belief & Unbelief in the Brave New World (3 credits)
This introductory course in the phenomenon of religious faith examines the classic examples of the case for and against living in faith,with the view of enabling students to evaluate their own attitudes toward religion. Faith traditions of Western and Eastern cultures provide additional data for this evaluation.
RS-103 Ethics: Religious and Philosophical Perspectives (3 credits)
This course is an introduction to ethical reasoning, theories of morality, and questions related to the good life. Potential topics of discussion include moral duty, virtue, pleasure, and happiness, the religious ethic of St. Marie-Marguerite d'Youville, and contemporary ethical issues. Topics may be approached from religious/theological or philosophical perspectives. Crosslisted with PHI-103
RS-189 Topics in Critical Inquiry (3 credits)
Critical inquiry is the process of gathering and evaluating information, ideas, and assumptions from multiple perspectives to produce well-reasoned analysis and understanding, and leading to new ideas, applications and questions. This course is intended to introduce new students to intellectual inquiry at the university by engaging them in in-depth study of a single topic utilizing a variety of perspectives and methods. The course emphasizes the essential role of critical and creative thinking to their lives as students, citizens, future professionals, and productive members of their communities.
RS-189L Topics in Critical Inquiry Lab (1 credits)
Critical inquiry is the process of gathering and evaluating information, ideas, and assumptions from multiple perspectives to produce well-reasoned analysis and understanding, and leading to new ideas, applications and questions. This course is intended to introduce new students to intellectual inquiry at the university by engaging them in in-depth study of a single topic utilizing a variety of perspectives and methods. The course emphasizes the essential role of critical and creative thinking to their lives as students, citizens, future professionals, and productive members of their communities. The lab for the course is an interdisciplinary application lab, wherein students work in teams to demonstrate what they learned in the didactic portion of the course through the creation of a project, presentation, art object/installation, play, podcast, short film, co-authored reflection (debrief) on a simulation experience, etc. Faculty who design the didactic portion of the course together will design this portion as a 5-week experiential component of the course, which might include community partnerships or field trips. Students who take the course and lab will be invited to display their project results in a one-afternoon presentation at the end of each semester (to be arranged by college events personnel).
RS-202 Life of Christ (3 credits)
This is a study of the person of Jesus Christ in history and in faith including theories regarding his identity and his role,his impact on society from his day to ours.
RS-209 Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (3 credits)
This course surveys the main elements of the history, thought and practice of the major religious traditions of the Western world: Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
RS-211 Catholicism Today (3 credits)
This is a systematic study of the foundational beliefs of catholicism; where they came from,how they have changed and how they are interpreted today.
RS-214 Challenges of Death (3 credits)
This course examines the ways in which death challenges human meaning and action. Topics such as the meaning of suffering and death,challenges of death to morality,psychological spiritual processes of dying and bereavement are considered.
RS-309 Letters of Paul to the Early Christians (3 credits)
This is a study of letter writing in the Hellenistic era and St.Paul's use of this pedagogical technique for addressing religious,social and cultural problems faced by the primitive christian church. St.Paul's response to these issues in the epistles provide a framework for discussion of several major theological themes,including faith and revelation,grace and salvation, and the development of doctrine.
RS-312 Bioethics Seminar (3 credits)
Ethical dilemmas and problems posed by developments in the biosciences are analyzed. Problems discussed include choices for life or death,allocation of resources,human experimentation,reproductive technologies,professional client relationships,etc.
RS-314 The Message of the Prophets (3 credits)
This course is designed to introduce the student to the prophetic literature of the Old Testament. The religious importance of the prophetic books will be examined through an investigation of the political cultural and theologcial milieu of the Middle East from the tenth to the fifth centuries B.C. The course also explores the impact of the prophetic personality in our times regarding questions of social justice,peace and international relations.
RS-315 Spirituality in Human Experience (3 credits)
This course explores the history of spirituality in human experience. Traditional and non-traditional expressions will be investigated as will varied applications in life. Offered as needed.
RS-316 Catholic Social Teaching (3 credits)
This course provides a historical,theoretical and practical overview of the principles and themes of the Roman Catholic encyclical tradition. It explores views of christian social responsibility through classic texts and contemporary problems.
RS-350 The Holocaust (3 credits)
This seminar studies the Holocaust-the destruction of some 11 million "undesirables" in Germany during World War II-with special emphasis on its historical, religious, and ethical dimensions.
RS-351 Religion in American History (3 credits)
This course will explore the many important issues in American religious history over the past 400 years. Offered as needed.
RS-369 Psychology of Religion and Spirituality (3 credits)
This course will focus on understanding the purpose, development and experience of spirituality, religious thought and practice and it's implication for individual and social behavior. Offered as needed.
RS-389 Special Topics (3 credits)
This is a variable topic seminar that deals with selected humanities themes as announced when the course is offered.
RS-411 Mysticism (3 credits)
This course defines mysticism, the history, theory, phenomena and practices of selected mystical school and the positive and negative aspects of the mystical experience.
RS-412 Special Studies in Religion (3 credits)
This course explores selected issues of concern to students and faculty in religious studies in seminar format. Topics are announced at the time of registration. Students follow a schedule of readings, discussion and research writing.
RS-420 Special Topics (3 credits)
This course examines interactions among individuals and groups within institutions. Attention is paid to the role of the state and the super-state in perpetuating social stratification in both North America and globally, and how unequal power relations organize society and shape identities. The ways in which individuals negotiate their lives in different social and economic contexts are also considered. Fundamental sociological concepts are investigated, such as culture, socialization, stratification, social structure, social institutions, and social interactions. This course meets the core requirements in sociology.
RS-444 Religious Studies Internship (3-12 credits)
Religious Studies majors complete an internship in line with their career aspirations. Internships can take place in a variety of institutional and business settings and are designed to build on and extend classroom learning with practical experience in a setting with a meaningful religious component. Possible placements include organizations that address social justice issues, healthcare, or the environment, and business settings that require religious literacy. Prerequisite: Religion major and permission of instructor; Offered as needed.