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About Religious Studies at Linfield

Religious Studies Portrait

Studying religions means feeding your curiosity.

Do you like to ask big questions? Maybe you've considered these:

  • How do our beliefs and values influence our daily actions?
  • How does belonging to a community, religious and otherwise, shape the way we think about ourselves?
  • How do stories, religious or not, help us create meaning and purpose in our lives?

Then your journey on religious exploration has already begun! We’d be thrilled to help you explore even further in the Department of Religious Studies at Linfield.

Exploring different perspectives.

Religions identify various problems in the world and in ourselves, and they offer various solutions. Religions contain great plurality. In our classes, you will encounter many perspectives as we explore how different religions have asked and answered the big questions of life.

Our Department of Religious Studies will help you to articulate your own answers to your big questions. We will also encourage you to take your questions beyond the classroom – into the real world!

Beyond the classroom.

Our classes will enable you to gain firsthand experiences in our local community with trips like:

  • A Friday prayer at a mosque in Portland
  • A Shabbat service at a synagogue in Salem
  • Evening devotions at a Hindu temple in Tigard
  • A meditation and ritual service at a Tibetan Buddhist temple in Portland
  • A Sunday service at a historically black church in Vancouver, WA
  • A Trappist monastery in nearby Lafayette, OR

Your studies can take you around the world.

Immersing yourself in cultures and religions delivers some of the best most meaningful learning experiences you could ask for you. You could have opportunities to travel around the world to study:

  • Judaism, Christianity, and Islam in Jerusalem/Palestine
  • Buddhism in Nepal and Bhutan
  • Religion and Sports in the United Kingdom

Our expert faculty will help you create your own plan of study with courses tailored to your personal interests. Several of our courses toward a Religious Studies degree are cross-listed with other programs, like History, Political Science, Gender Studies, Environmental Studies, and Sport Management.

For those who wish to go deeper, we also offer independent studies and specialized language courses in Biblical Hebrew, Greek and Sanskrit.