Religious Studies

Chairperson: Linda Schearing
Professors: M. Cook, S.J.(Emeritus), J. Dallen (Emeritus), H. Doohan (Emerita), L. Doohan (Emeritus), J. Downey, P. Hartin, R. Large, P. McCormick,J. Milos, C.S.J, A. Nigro, S.J. (Emeritus), L.Schearing, C. Siejk, C. Skok (Emeritus)
, B. Tyrrell, S.J. (Emeritus)
Associate Professors: S. Dunn, R. Hauck, S. Kuder, S.J.,
K. McCruden, J. Sheveland
Assistant Professors: M. Garvin, SNJM, E. Goldstein J. Mudd, M. Rindge, A. Wendlinder
Senior Lecturer: V. Thompson
Lecturer: P. Baraza, A. Bass

The aim of the religious studies curriculum is to help students develop an informed, reflective, critical, and articulate consciousness of their own developing faith in relation to the development of the modern world. This aim is pursued through the study of scripture and Christian tradition and their application to major areas of contemporary life, especially the integration of religion and society. The Department of Religious Studies offers courses in the areas of scripture, historical and systematic theology, church history, moral theology, spirituality, and ministry.

Undergraduate students in all degree programs are required to take three religious studies courses (nine credits) sequenced as follows: one 100-level course, one 200-level course, and one 300-level course.

A Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in religious studies requires 33 credits: twelve required lower division credits; twenty-one credits from the upper division courses. Majors may concentrate in specific areas; e.g., biblical studies, theology, ethics, spirituality. The religious studies major focuses on an intellectual and spiritual appropriation of human experience that is both religious and moral. The major stresses Christianity, but it also requires a one semester study of world religions. This can be satisfied by taking either a survey course in world religions (i.e. Introduction to Asian Religions) or a one semester study of a specific world religion ( i.e. Buddhism, Hinduism, or Islam).

The Religious Studies Department also offers a minor in religious studies. A total of eighteen credits is required for the minor in religious studies, of which nine (9) credits must be upper division.

Only electives offered by the Department of Religious Studies or approved by the department chair may be counted toward the major.


B.A. Major in Religious Studies 33 Credits
Lower Division
RELI 110-112 Old Testament* 3 credits
RELI 120 or RELI 124 New Testament* 3 credits
(RELI 105 may substitute for either Old or New Testament)
RELI 200-240 History/Theology* 6 credits
Upper Division
RELI 330 Principles of Christian Morality 3 credits
RELI 492 World Religions
(or other non-Christian Religions)
3 credits
RELI - - - Electives 12 credits
RELI 499 Senior Symposium 3 credits

Minor in Religious Studies 18 Credits
Lower Division Courses
RELI 110-112 Old Testament* 3 credits
RELI 120 or RELI 124 New Testament* 3 credits
(RELI 105 may substitute for either Old or New Testament)
RELI 200-240 History/Theology* 3 credits
Upper Division Courses
RELI 330 Principles of Christian Morality 3 credits
RELI - - - Electives 6 credits
* for religious studies majors and minors ONLY: Advanced courses (400 level) in the areas of scripture, history/theology, and Christian morality MAY be substituted for this requirement. Approval from department chair is Required.


The core curriculum or common body of knowledge of the College of Arts and Sciences consists of 59 to 62 credits which are common to and required of all degree programs in the College: the first 31 credits (of which there is a more complete description in the General Degree Requirements and Procedures section of this catalogue) form the University Core, while the remaining 28 to 31 credits are common to all Arts and Sciences degrees.
Students should attempt to spread the core curriculum over their entire fours years at Gonzaga.

  1. Thought and Expression (7 credits): ENGL 101, SPCO 101, and PHIL 101 (preferably in the same semester).
  2. Philosophy (9 credits): PHIL 201, PHIL 301, and  PHIL  400 level elective.
  3. Religious Studies (9 credits): RELI 100, 200, and 300 levels: one course from each level.
  4. Mathematics (3 credits): one MATH (not CPSC) course on the 100 level or above; NURS 320 is substituted for a MATH course for BSN students; MATH 203 fulfills this requirement only for students who graduate with certification in Elementary Education.
  5. English Literature (3 credits): ENGL 102 or 103H or 105 or 106.
  6. History (6 credits): HIST 101 and either HIST 102 or HIST 112 in their first year. If they are unable to complete all six 100-level HIST credits in their first year, HIST 201 or 202 may be substituted for one 100-level course after the first year.
  7. Fine Arts (3 credits): one course in either VART, MUSC, or THEA from courses approved by Dean of Arts and Sciences.
  8. Laboratory Science (4 credits): one course with laboratory in either BIOL, CHEM, or PHYS.
  9. Mathematics or Natural Science (3 credits): one course in either MATH, CPSC, BIOL, CHEM, PHYS, or ITEC.
  10. Literature (3 credits): one British or American literature course (ENGL 201 - 285).
  11. Social Science (6 credits): CRIM 101, ECON, SOCI, POLS, or PSYC: two courses from these departments.
  12. Foreign Language or Culture (3 credits): one course in any foreign language (classical or modern) or one (foreign culture) course approved by the Dean of Arts and Sciences.  Foreign-language speaking students from foreign cultures who have completed the nine English core credits at Gonzaga prior to their fourth year (last thirty credits) may petition the Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences for a waiver of the foreign language or Culture requirement..
  13. Social Justice (3 credits): One course on Social Justice issues related to experiences of difference (like race, class, gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation), from courses approved by the Dean of Arts & Sciences; (may be combined with other core or major requirements).