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Studies in Religion

Study systems of religious belief and practice, and examine the religious dimension of human existence in all its diversity when you take the interdisciplinary Studies in Religion programme at Waikato.

Religion is a universal phenomenon expressed in many forms. It has been a vital and pervasive feature of human life throughout the course of history. Most people have experienced the influence of religious thinking, religious practices and religious institutions at some time in their lives. In the contemporary world, religion continues to be a significant force, shaping people's lives and influencing political and social outcomes.

Waikato's Studies in Religion programme provides an open-minded, cross-disciplinary investigation of religion. It draws on history, philosophy, politics, sociology and cultural studies to examine religious beliefs and practices, and develop insight, empathy and understanding into the religious elements of human existence.

Religion and culture are often intertwined, and your studies will provide a window into diverse cultures, past and present. Our programme combines religious studies papers with nominated papers from other subjects, enabling you to create a coherent programme of specialist study.

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Key information

Study Locations: Hamilton; Online

Study Studies in Religion in these qualifications

Studies in Religion as a specialisation of

Graduate Study

Studies in Religion is not currently a subject for graduate programmes. However, students may count 500 level RELS-coded papers towards their graduate programme in another subject, at the discretion of the Programme Convenor.

100 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
STREL101World Religions: Origins and Development19A (Hamilton)
An introduction to the study of religions, to the main religions of the world, and to select issues of religion in the world today.
STREL102World Religions: Contemporary Life and Practice19A (Hamilton)
A comparative examination of contemporary values and practices in the major world religions, this paper will involve a critical exploration of life-cycle rituals and beliefs, from birth to death, food and clothing preferences, festivals and other activities associated with what religions do.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
ANTHY207Magic, Witchcraft and Religion19B (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to the anthropological study of religion and illustrates the crucial role religion has played in shaping human societies and human history more generally.

300 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
RELS306Contemporary Issues in Religion: Extremism and Terror19B (Hamilton)
A critical exploration of selected contemporary issues in the study of religion.
RELS390Directed Study19A (Hamilton)
No description available.

500 Level

Code Paper Title Occurrence / Location
RELS590Directed Study19A (Hamilton), 19B (Hamilton), 19C (Hamilton) & 19Y (Hamilton)
Students have the opportunity to pursue a topic of their own interest under the guidance of academic staff.
RELS591Dissertation19A (Hamilton), 19B (Hamilton), 19C (Hamilton) & 19Y (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.

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Subject links

Studies in Religion Programme

Studies in Religion is available as a major for the BA or BSocSc. Studies in Religion may also be taken as a second major or supporting subject within other undergraduate degrees, subject to academic approval of the Faculty or School of Studies in which the student is enrolled.

To complete a major in Studies in Religion, students must gain 120 points above 200 level in Studies in Religion, including RELS206 and at least 60 points above 200 level. It is recommended that students intending to major in Studies in Religion include RELS101 in the first year of their programme of study.

To complete a support in Studies in Religion, students must gain 70 points in Studies in Religion, including RELS101, RELS206 and at least 20 further points above 100 level.

Note(s): Before enrolling in the major, students will need to complete 60 points at 100 level in any subject(s). In 2017, students majoring in Studies in Religion may replace RELS206 with RELS202.

Please note: For all graduate subject requirements check the information provided in the papers section above.



Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences:
Phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4030
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