Religious Studies for Health Professionals

“I love for medical schools to see that I studied the subject of religion while in college, because I will personally be working with people from different religions and cultures. Religious Studies has better prepared me to interact with people from all walks of life as a physician.” – UA Religious Studies and Biomedical Sciences Double Major

"My Religious Studies courses were invaluable when I took the MCAT and interviewed for entrance into medical schools. The Verbal section of the MCAT exam has ‘mind/body’ essay topics that are very abstract, and a lot of people have trouble. But I was used to writing about these issues in my Religious Studies courses. Through Religious Studies, I had a lot of practice with that kind of language and topic. Thank you for preparing me for this!” – Stephanie Cardenas

The Religious Studies major offers a track for students planning to enter health professions. The Religious Studies major for Health Professionals prepares students for the diversity of human experiences and perspectives they will encounter throughout their careers. Students double majoring in Religious Studies and a pre-health major have reported that this dual training has made them more competitive when applying for graduate and professional schools, and has better equipped them as health professionals to engage with their clients as whole people.

Interested students should contact:

Dr. Alison JamesonUndergraduate Advisor
Office: Learning Services Building 209    


At least 30 credit hours of Religious Studies (RELI) course work (10 courses), including the required courses and projects outlined below. At least 18 of these credits (6 of the 10 courses) must be at the 300 level or higher.

Two courses in Approaches to Religious Studies (6 credits):

  • RELI 200: Introduction to the Study of Religion (required for the major)
  • One additional “Approaches” course, such as “The Question of God” or “Sociology of Religion”

Three courses in Global Religions; choose one course in each of the following areas (9 credits):

  1. Asian Religions
  2. Abrahamic Religions (Judaism, Christianity, or Islam)
  3. Indigenous Religions

Three of the following courses in the Health Professionals Concentration Area (9 credits)

  • RELI 203 - Religion and Medicine in Western Healing Traditions
  • RELI 211 - Life After Death in World Religions and Philosophies
  • RELI 303 - Spirituality and Sickness: Religion and Health in the U.S.
  • RELI 313 - Health and Medicine in Classical Antiquity
  • RELI 326 - God, Humanity, & Science
  • RELI 333 - Buddhist Meditation Traditions
  • RELI 336 - Spirituality, Psychology and the Mind
  • RELI 359 - Buddhism and Healing
  • RELI 360 - Religion, Nature, and Climate Change
  • RELI 363 - Religion and Sex
  • RELI 367 - Yoga
  • RELI 404 - Religion, Gender, and the Body
  • RELI 406 - Religious Diversity in Healthcare: Intercultural Training
  • RELI/MAS/AIS 405 - Traditional Indian Medicine: Health, Healing and Well Being
  • RELI 482 - Tantric Buddhism

One RELI Elective (3 credits)

Senior Capstone: RELI 498 (3 credits)

  • A seminar-style class with other Religious Studies majors and a core Religious Studies faculty member.

For more information on Religious Studies courses, see:, or email: