About REL 020 OL1

Comparison of diverse practices and beliefs from selected religious traditions and cultures.


Open to Degree and CDE students; Cross listed with REL 020 ZOL; Total combined enrollment = 60

Section Description

This course uses three “case study” religions to explore the questions of “What is religion?” and how can we begin to compare religions? We’ll look at stories, rituals, beliefs, and social roles from Buddhism, Islam, and Native American religions, using the theories of scholars of religion. We’ll explore how religion can be intensely personal, involving visions and experiences that change a person, and change the course of history. We’ll grapple with the ways religions shape our understanding of what it means to be good or evil, and what it means to be a human, or a god, or an animal, and what happens to us after we die. We will work together to explore the diversity we find within religious traditions, reflecting complicated relationships between religion and culture, demonstrating that religion, far from being a fixed object that we can pin down, is fluid over time and across the globe.

Section Expectation

This is an asynchronous online course. You will have weekly readings and reading responses (some readings may be replaced with streaming films or other media), and there will be some recorded lectures from the instructor. There will also be an open-door policy, where you may make an appointment to meet with the instructor over Teams or on-campus for individual office hours by arrangement.


The course work will consist of reading responses, journals, and a project that involves a limited research component using the resources available through the Howe library.

Course Dates



Online (View Campus Map)

Important Dates

Note: These dates may change before registration begins.

Note: These dates may not be accurate for select courses during the Summer Session.

Last Day to Add
Last Day to Drop
Last Day to Withdraw with 50% Refund
Last Day to Withdraw with 25% Refund
Last Day to Withdraw


    There are no courses that meet this criteria.