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Religious Studies

The RELS department office is closed until further notice. Faculty will be delivering course content online using a combination of Zoom and Canvas, and advising will continue via email or tele-conferencing; faculty and staff will be available through email.

Students with enrollment or advising issues should continue to use for appointments or email The University is still working on the logistics of pass/fail grades but at this time, students will have 7 days after grades are posted to opt for pass/fail. Tfhe deadline to drop a course has been extended to April 17. If any RELS students did not receive the email from Provost Harper with the details of these upcoming changes, please contact Lee Green (

In order to comply with recent public health statements from our Provost, in consultation with OUHSC and the Centers for Disease Control, we are not, at the direction of the University, meeting one-on-one with students. Please contact us via email or call the offices for assistance (all of this contact information is available here on our website). We appreciate your respect of these rules instituted to keep us all safe and virus-free.


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By examining human activity through religion, both in the present and the past, students gain not only a deeper understanding of their own experience with religion, but how much religion is shaped by human experience.  The study of religion also expands the ability to think critically and imaginatively.

Please explore this website to learn more about religious studies and the Religious Studies Department at OU.  Our faculty offer courses in four specializations leading to a BA degree, and we offer an inviting, welcoming, and rigorous scholarly community.  Welcome!

What is Religious Studies?

·      Interdisciplinary, flexible, academic exploration of a variety of religious traditions and varying approaches to the study of religion

·      A thriving academic department, a Bachelor of Arts major; courses for the degree come from 30 faculty in 15 different departments and programs on campus

·      Specialties and concentrations are available in Islamic studies, Asian studies, Christian studies, and Biblical literature, but breadth is also encouraged.


Why Religious Studies?

·      Because the curriculum is flexible, you can shape your own degree plan.  Good degree planning will allow you to focus on a specific religious tradition, many traditions, or a more comparative approach.

·      By adding a religious studies double major or minor, you can make your current degree stronger and equip yourself with the skills needed to participate in the global community of the 21st century.

·      The relationship of religion to societal, cultural, and political activity means that the study of religion informs the understanding of all human activity.