• A grade of B- or better must normally be obtained in each course credited towards the master’s degree. Please refer to section 11.2 of the Graduate Calendar.

Students must complete 4.5 credits, consisting of the following:

  • RELI 5801 (0.5 credits) Seminar in the Discipline. This mandatory seminar introduces students to graduate level work in Religious Studies. A faculty team addresses current debates and practices in both the discipline and profession. Students are evaluated on a pass/fail basis.
  • RELI 5802 (0.5 credits) Seminar in Religion and Public Life. This mandatory seminar introduces the main methodological and theoretical tools of the program. The course focuses on key thinkers and case studies to approach “religion and public life” from Religious Studies perspectives.
  • RELI 5780 (0.5 credits) Graduate Research Seminar. This mandatory seminar, intended as a workshop, guides students through the process of producing a major research paper proposal and the initial stages of writing the Research Essay.
  • RELI 5908 (1.5 credits)  Research Essay: A major research essay on a topic related to the theme of Religion and Public Life. The topic must be chosen with the approval of the Research Essay supervisor.
  • An additional 1.5 credits at the 5000-level chosen with the approval of the Graduate Program Coordinator. A selection of 5000-level thematic elective seminars in the study of Religion and Public Life are offered each year. For an up-to-date statement of course offerings and to determine the term of offering consult the class schedule at: https://central.carleton.ca/ Specific content of thematic elective courses reflects the interests and expertise of the instructor. Please refer to current course descriptions at http://www.carleton.ca/chum/religion/ for more detailed information.
  • With the approval of the Graduate Studies Coordinator, a maximum of 1.0 credit may be selected from courses offered at the 4000-level, or in a related field, or at another university.
  • Each year, the Religion program offers 4000-level undergraduate 0.5 level courses, which are open to students in the qualifying year and, with permission, to students in the M.A. program. Consult the Undergraduate Calendar for course information.
  • NOTE: Students who have not taken Theory and Method RELI 4741 (previously 4740) or its equivalent in their undergraduate coursework must take RELI 4741 as an additional program requirement.   RELI 4741 is offered regularly in the Fall semester only.  Students should check their offers of admission carefully to ensure that they register for and complete this requirement.

Guidelines for Completion of Master’s Degree

  • Full time students enrolled in the 4.5 credit M.A. program are expected to complete RELI 5801 and RELI 5802 in the first term of study and RELI 5780 in the second term of study. The Research Essay (RELI 5908) should be submitted by end of the Summer Study Semester. All elective coursework should be completed by the end of the second term of study.
  • Full time students are required to file with the Graduate Studies Coordinator a detailed proposal of their Research Essay by the end of the second term of study. Part-time students must submit a detailed proposal of their Research Essay by the end of the term in which they are registered for RELI 5780.
  • The program is designed to be completed in a three term academic year.
  • Part-time students enrolled in the 4.5 credit M.A. program are expected to complete the required core courses (RELI 5801, 5802 and 5780) by the end of the third year of study. The Research Essay and all course work must be complete by the end of the sixth year of study.
  • Students are not permitted to take for graduate credit courses they have already undertaken at the undergraduate level.

Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of the MA in Religion and Public Life students can expect to have gained competency in the following:

  • Sophisticated understanding of the reciprocal relationship between religion and society cross-culturally in both contemporary and historical contexts: how religious concepts, notions, and behaviours are constructed by culture on the one hand, and how they inform it on the other.
  • Grasp of the analytical category ‘religion’ itself and the categories: public, publics, public life, public sphere, secularization, and the post-secular. And the ability to apply these concepts and categories in the analysis of particular cases.
  • Facility in the articulation of oral and written arguments supported by evidence garnered through developed skills in the conduct of research.