The Major and Minor

Undergraduates desiring a sharper focus on issues of religion may choose either to major or minor in Religious Studies. A full discussion of the requirements for the major and the minor is available on the Religious Studies page of the College Catalog.

The major requires students to explore one particular question in detail in a senior BA paper. During May of their third year, students choose a faculty adviser and a research topic, and plan a course of study for the following year. Both the Director of Undergraduate Studies and the Religious Studies preceptor can help with this task. 

BA Paper proposals must be approved by the Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students will enroll in the senior seminar convened by a preceptor during the Autumn and Winter quarters. This seminar helps students create their bibliographies, hone their writing, and present their research. The BA paper will be due early in the spring quarter. Normally it should be between 30 and 40 pages; the upward limit is firm.

For more information about the Religious Studies program, please contact Russell Johnson, Assistant Director of the program, at or Carolina López-Ruiz, Director of the program, at

All those who are interested in the study of religion at Chicago are invited to sign up for the “religiousstudies” listhost at: The listhost distributes information about requirements for the major and minor, new courses, fellowships and other opportunities, and Divinity School events like lectures and conferences that you are welcome to attend.