Religious Studies for Health Professionals

The Religious Studies major for Health Professionals prepares students for the diversity of human experiences and perspectives they will encounter throughout their careers.

“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 concentration for students planning to enter health professions. Students pairing a Religious Studies major with pre-health science coursework (such as the Pre-Health Thematic Minor) 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    


Degree Requirements

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.

One required course and one course of student's choice (6 units)

RELI 200 Introduction to the Study of Religion (required)
One additional Approaches course, such as The Question of God or Sociology of Religion

Choose one course in each of the following areas (3 courses total, 9 units)

Asian Religions
Abrahamic Religions
(Judaism, Christianity or Islam)
Indigenous Religions

Choose three of the following courses (9 units).

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/CLAS 313 Health and Medicine in Classical Antiquity
RELI/PHIL 326 God, Humanity, & Science
RELI/EAS 333 Buddhist Meditation Traditions
RELI/PSY 336 Spirituality, Psychology and the Mind
RELI/EAS 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/MAS/AIS 405 Traditional Indian Medicine: Health, Healing and Well Being
RELI 406 Religious Diversity in Healthcare: Intercultural Training
RELI/EAS 482 Tantric Buddhism





Choose one elective course. (3 units)

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

RELI 498 Senior Capstone


Questions? For more information on Religious Studies courses, look over our Course Descriptions or contact a Religious Studies advisor.