Religion and Culture

Designed for students with a diversity of backgrounds and interests in religion and international studies, these concentrations are in traditional liberal arts fields that focus on world cultures in a non-theological orientation. Students will develop skills in critical thinking, the analysis of complex issues, and oral and written expression.

Religious Studies, (B.L.S.)

Religious Studies is designed for students with a diversity of backgrounds and interests in religion. Students who are enrolled in the concentration may be considering employment in positions where a knowledge of different religious traditions would be an asset, such as counseling or social work, or they may be contemplating further study of religion in a theological seminary or religious studies graduate program. Religious Studies is a traditional liberal arts field that helps students to develop skills in critical thinking, the analysis of complex issues, and oral and written expression.

Asian Studies and International Trade, (B.L.S.)

China and Japan are two of the United States' most important trading partners and will undoubtedly continue to be so in the future. There is an ever-present need for American companies to hire individuals who possess the skills necessary to function in a global market, particularly one in which the countries of Asia are of critical importance. Yet few college graduates complete their studies having acquired the combination of business knowledge, language proficiency, cultural sensitivity, as well as experience abroad that will prepare them for a career in this global market. Our Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree in Asian Studies and International Trade aims to fill this void by providing students with the opportunity to pursue coursework in business and economics, foreign language, area studies, as well as a study abroad experience, thus allowing students to acquire the variety of skills that an increasing number
of companies seek as they hire those individuals who will play in important role in the on-going development of United States-Asian trade relations.

Judaic Studies (B.L.S.)

Bornblum Judaic Studies explores the experience of the Jewish people within the contexts of world cultures. Non-theological in its orientation, it provides students the opportunity to study related areas, including the history of the Jewish people, the structures and politics of Jewish communities, the Hebrew and Arabic languages, and the religious, intellectual, and aesthetic traditions of the Jewish people.

Admission to the Program

Undergraduate students admitted to University of Memphis may pursue a degree in the College of Professional and Liberal Studies by completing Declaration of Major form. 

Once accepted, students must seek academic advising prior to the start of each semester. Advisors will provide guidance in developing a meaningful educational plan that is compatible with the student's abilities, values, interests and career goals. Academic advising is available in-person, by phone and web conference. 

Fees and Scholarships

Students are encouraged to visit University and Student Business Services regularly to review fee charts, deadlines and other important details as they are subject to change. 

The College of Professional and Liberal Studies offers several scholarships for students meeting the stated requirements. Students may apply for scholarships through Tiger Scholarship Manager.

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Degree Requirements

Students seeking a liberal studies degree in a religion and culture concentration will select from a set of courses to form a coordinated plan of study. Requirements for this program include general education, core requirements, thematic studies, senior project and general electives. Students should seek guidance from their advisor every semester and follow the assigned degree plan. A minor may be pursued with this degree through the submission of a completed minor application. Approval must be granted from the graduation analyst of the minor they are seeking as well as the College of Professional and Liberal Studies graduation analyst. 

Thematic Studies

Thematic studies focus on significant themes in social, political, and religious history. All College of Professional and Liberal Studies students must complete 6 credit hours of thematic studies courses. These courses are offered on campus and online in many interdisciplinary topics.

Prior Learning Assessment

Students who wish to accelerate the completion of their degree may be eligible to earn credit through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) which includes credit earned by CLEP or DSST standardized exams, Experiential Learning Credit, or departmental credit by examination.

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File for Graduation

Undergraduate students who are within two semesters of graduation should review the required process to file for graduation. All parts must be completed by the posted deadline. 

Career Development

Students interested in learning more about career options in religion and cultural studies should review information and set an appointment to meet with a Career Specialist in our Career Services Office.

Local and National Organizations 

American Academy of Religion
Religious Education Association
American Theological Library Association
International Institute for Asian Studies
Association for Jewish Studies
European Association for Jewish Studies (EAJS)