Department Of Religious Studies and Philosophy


Within the context of a Christian liberal arts tradition, our mission in both graduate and undergraduate education is to provide an atmosphere of open inquiry, honesty, and integrity where issues of religious understanding, faith, practice, and philosophy can be explored. Our intention is to prepare lifelong learners who are self-aware, critical and analytical thinkers, committed to a life of service with and for God and humanity.



To assist both undergraduate and graduate students in achieving:

  1. An appreciation for the Judeo-Christian tradition in the context of a liberal arts tradition;
  2. A developing spiritual life that integrates the physical, mental, psychological, and social dimensions of life;
  3. An ability to think, to reason, and to communicate with critical awareness in the context of religious studies and philosophy;
  4. An ability to translate critical thinking into responsible life choices;
  5. A commitment to the pursuit of life-long learning; and
  6. Preparation for pursuing advanced studies and professions related to serving God and humanity.



Students who choose to major in the Department of Religious Studies and Philosophy will demonstrate:

  1. Basic skills in biblical interpretation and exegesis, and
  2. Skills in critical thinking, and written and oral communication.



Gardner-Webb’s Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Religious Studies provides a fully accredited baccalaureate degree in religion. Graduates will be prepared to assume positions in churches or social agencies or to go on to seek higher academic degrees at a university, school of divinity, or seminary.



Prior to enrolling in the Religious Studies Program, the applicant should have the following in his or her academic transcript:

■ 60-64 semester hours from a regionally accredited junior college or senior college


Some courses required for admissions may be completed concurrently with course work by taking such courses offered in the curriculum. Such concurrent enrollment for courses required for admission must be completed within the first year of enrollment and may extend the time required to complete enrollment within the first year in the program:


Religion 304 or equivalent (1 course)

Religion 305 or equivalent (1 course)

English 101 (1 course)

English 102 (1 course)


Failure to register for a course required for admission will prohibit the student from registering for any subsequent semester until courses required for admission are complete.



As with all DCP majors, approximately half of the Religious Studies track consists of our Core Curriculum of Liberal Arts. A student must complete 36 hours in the Religious Studies major, 18 of which must be completed with the University. The classes particular to the Religious Studies major, consist of the following:


Religious Studies Core Curriculum 18 hours


■ Spiritual Formation (3 hours)

   REL 371

■ Introduction to Philosophy (3 hours)

   PHI 300

■ Christian Theology (3 hours)

   REL 333

■ Introduction to Christian History ( 3 hours)

   REL 321

■ Ministry Practicum (3 hours)

  REL 358 (Can be substituted for RELI 397/ Internship)

■ Senior Seminar (3 hours)

  REL 490

■ Biblical Studies (6 hours)

  Select Two: REL 302, 303, 306, 307, 311, 312, 314, 316, 317, 351, or 352>


Select One REL 326, 343, 346, or 378


Prerequisites: Courses which must be completed prior to entry in the GOAL program:


❐ a. 60-64 semester hours from a regionally accredited junior or senior college

❐ b. Equivalent of Religion 304

❐ c. Equivalent of Religion 305

❐ d. Equivalent of Gardner-Webb’s English 101

❐ e. Equivalent of Gardner-Webb’s English 102


Gardner-Webb Course work:

A. University Core - See GOAL Core Curriculum Checksheet

B. Major: 3 hours each for a total of 36 hours (check, then circle course taken)


I. Spiritual Formation

  ❐ REL 371

II. Introduction to Philosophy

  ❐ PhI 300

III. Christian Theology

  ❐ REL 333

IV. Introduction to Christian History

  ❐ REL 321

V. Practicum/ Internship

  ❐ REL 358 or RELI 397

VI. Senior Seminar

  ❐ REL 490

VII. Biblical Studies

  ❐ REL 302, 303, 306, 307, 311, 312, 314, 316, 317, 351, or 352

VIII. Practical Theology

  ❐ REL 326, 343, 346, 370, 373, 374, 375, 376, 377, or 378

X. Religion Electives

  ❐ Any Religion or Philosophy course


C. Electives (Take as many hours as needed to complete 64 senior college hours and the minimum 128 semester hour requirement for graduation)


Elective courses taken.


View courses for this program