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RST-311-20, World Religions (FA14)

INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Wakoh Shannon Hickey

SCHEDULE/DAY/TIME: Semester/Tuesday/6:45-8 p.m., 9/02/2014 – 12/09/14

CONTENT:

What do we mean by the term "religions"? What does that category include? This course begins with those questions. We will explore a variety of religious traditions: their worldviews, stories, rituals, practices, holidays, ethics, and subgroups. We will see how families of religions are related (e.g., those originating in India, and those originating in in the Middle East), what they have in common, and how they differ.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES:

By the end of the course, students should be able to define key vocabulary terms in the traditions studied; explain key teachings and practices; describe major sub-groups; make comparisons; apply broad theories of religion to particular cases; analyze how and why particular traditions have changed over time; and evaluate religious teachings, texts, practices, and sites both empathetically and critically.

METHODS:  

We will draw upon a textbook, some primary sources, and material objects. Methods will include lectures, discussions, videos, audio recordings, reading and writing assignments, self-assessments, teamwork, visits to religious sites, and exams.

REQUIREMENTS AND ASSIGNMENTS: 

To be determined, will depend upon text selections. Two or three comparative exams, and probably short writing assignments and review quizzes.

REQUIRED TEXT(S) OR MATERIALS:

To be determined. Course is web-assisted. Students must have access to a computer or tablet and the internet.

READINGS AND/OR ASSIGNMENTS TO BE DONE PRIOR TO THE FIRST CLASS:

Textbook will be announced well before class begins. Students should have the text in hand and be ready to start working with it on the first day of class. Students are expected to attend all class meetings.