Religious studies

Second cycle degree

Class: LM-64 - Religion

Duration: 2 years

Branch: Padova

Language: Italian

Open access with admission requirements

Number of non-EU students resident abroad: 3

of which Chinese ("Marco Polo" Programme): 1

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Brief overview of the course

Characteristics and objectives
The Master's Degree Program in Religious Studies (inter-university with the Ca' Foscari University of Venice) originates from a twofold need: to train specialists in the study of religious traditions endowed with a solid knowledge of their languages and literary sources, of their history and of the cultures in which these traditions expressed and still express themselves; to enable students to apply their knowledge by utilizing comparative methodologies in the study of religious phenomena, so as to address the intercultural contexts of contemporary societies with competence and critical acumen. First and foremost, the course aims at endowing students with a variety of methodological tools through which to analyze religious experience.
The Master's Degree Program in Religious Studies is innovative since it combines an in-depth study of the historical and cultural development of world religions with the learning of their languages, which are truly essential in order to have access to their sources and testimonies. Consequently, the course articulates itself into two distinct phases. 1. Basic teaching. A comprehensive teaching is offered relative to the history, phenomenology and sociology of religions, as well as to their ethno-anthropological and philosophical dimensions. This basic teaching is further enhanced through seminars which help students to skillfully compare the various religious traditions through the study of common themes (such as scriptures, ritual, myth, etc.). Each lesson of the seminar - coordinated by a supervisor - is led by a specialist of a particular religious milieu. 2. Specialized teaching. The knowledge imparted at this stage is aimed at deepening the students' understanding of a plurality of religious traditions which are historically linked to one another. These traditions are investigated by having recourse to their sources and through an analysis of the wider socio-cultural context in which they developed. A critical study of the sources and an autonomous, wise comprehension of religious events require the reading of texts in the original and thus the acquisition of thorough linguistic and philological competences.

Occupational opportunities
Graduate students will have the capacity to act as social workers and experts in the various sectors of interreligious relations and communication and multi-confessional social contexts, in both public and private institutions. They will be capable of exercising functions of responsibility in Italian and international research centers on religious phenomena; in religious publishing houses as well as in publishing houses with religious series or interests in the field of religions; in religious studies centers and institutes. They will be entitled to sign teaching contracts in both public and private schools, primary and secondary, for the training of teachers, students and parents, and for offering information on the main cultural and religious traditions of the world so as to efficaciously integrate school curricula.

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