Degrees and Programs Religious Studies

Prayer Chapel

Study with a group of committed scholars who are passionate about their work and their students and will invest in your education and spiritual growth.

Expand your view of faithful living as you witness the deep Christian faith of your professors and their varied denominational backgrounds. Be trained to think about and understand every area of the Christian faith so you can share your knowledge as it shapes your life. Prepare to answer a call to professional ministry or simply to live out your faith through your work and service in your church and community. Find your place in the millennia-old history of the Christian faith.

Major Requirements and Sample Schedule

RS 119, Early and Medieval Christianity

RS 120, Reformation and Modern Christianity

RS 142, World Religions

RS 159, Missiology

RS 180, Senior Seminar

One Old Testament course: RS 101, 102, 106, 108, 124, 154

One New Testament course: RS 110, 111, 113, 114, 116

Plus 20 units of Elective Courses 


Religious Studies Minor (20 units)

One of: RS 119, 120, or 151

16 additional elective units


Biblical Languages Minor (20 units)

GRK 001, 002, 101, 102, 151

HB 001,002


  • RS 010, Introduction to New Testament
  • Elective: GRK 001 (Elementary Greek) or HB 001 (Elementary Hebrew)


  • RS 001, Introduction to Old Testament
  • Elective: GRK 002 or HB 002 


  • RS 020, Christian Doctrine
  • Core course: RS 110, Jesus and the Gospels 


  • Core course: RS 142, World Religions
  • Core course: RS 101, Pentateuch 


  • Core course: RS 119, Early and Medieval Christianity
  • Core course: RS 159, Missiology 
  • Elective: RS 116, The Apocalypse


  • Core course: RS 120, Reformation and Modern Christianity
  • Elective: RS 100, Foundations of Spiritual Formation


  • Elective: RS 190, Religious Studies Internship


  • Core course: RS 180, Senior Seminar
Prayer Circle

Career Paths 

  • Business (especially international business)
  • Christian counseling, clinical counseling, spiritual direction
  • Foreign and domestic missions
  • Journalism and the arts
  • Law
  • Marketing and management
  • Medicine (including physical therapy), medical missions
  • Music, sacred music, worship leadership
  • Nonprofit organizations, NGOs, Peace Corps
  • Pastoring, youth ministry
  • Publishing
  • Social work, occupational therapy
  • Teaching (secondary school, undergraduate, postgraduate)

See career paths for graduates who majored or minored in religious studies at Westmont.

Key Skills Our Graduates Develop

They will employ close reading skills with regard to primary sources: observation; inquiry; attention to genre, context, intertextuality, and literary influence; awareness of their own assumptions and cultural biases; awareness of audience(s) and effect on readers.

They will display judicious use of scholarly resources (e.g., language tools, commentaries, monographs, journals, dictionaries, encyclopedias, electronic databases, library holdings, inter-library loan, web-based tools). They will acknowledge dependence and influence through appropriate notes and bibliography.

They will appropriate a range of critical methodologies (e.g., historical, literary, textual, rhetorical, socio-cultural), draw on insights across the range of relevant disciplines (e.g., linguistics; anthropology; sociology; philosophy; archaeology), and recognize the insights and pitfalls of various ideological approaches (e.g., post-colonial, feminist, Marxist).

Our graduates will understand the fundamental claims and logic of the Christian faith, appreciate the development of Christian theological traditions over time, and be able to think theologically.

They will faithfully interpret texts including the Bible and other primary sources in the worldwide Christian tradition.

They will fairly evaluate the theological claims of secondary sources and current voices within and outside the Christian tradition.

They will thoughtfully address intellectual and practical issues involving both narrowly theological matters and concerns in other disciplines.

They will be acquainted with, and increasingly formed in, the practices that Christian theology serves including worship, fellowship, mission, study (especially of the Bible), and ethical conduct.

They will increasingly recognize connections between personal faith, scholarly inquiry, and the shared life of God’s people in the world past and present.

They will sense no conflict between rigorous intellectual inquiry, faithful service, and passionate worship.

They will establish lifelong disciplines marked by theological reflection, Christ-like compassion, and robust engagement in the public square.

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