Majors and Minors
The religion curriculum cultivates an understanding of the fundamental
texts, basic beliefs and practices, historical development, and cultural
contexts of the world's religions with the goal that students discover
for themselves a genuine appreciation of, and respect for, the rich
diversity of religious perspectives.
Anyone wishing to understand more about what life is about will find the
study of religion rewarding. The academic study of religion involves
looking at religious beliefs and practices in a careful, analytic, and
objective manner, and studying other religious traditions in their own
contexts. The academic study of religion neither expects nor requires
that students be believers in any religion.
A degree in religion from Otterbein University prepares students to
apply for professional ministerial study at the seminary level or
graduate study in religion and/or theology, as well as in a variety of
The philosophy curriculum provides students the opportunity to engage
with contemporary philosophical issues, while gaining a thorough
grounding in the history of philosophy. Students will develop an
appreciation for the principles of reasoned argumentation, and an
ability to pose and answer philosophical questions. Students will use
their philosophical skills to analyze issues that are fundamental to
other disciplines, and will come to see how considering the "big
questions" is a crucial aspect of living a good life.
Philosophers seek wisdom by asking fundamental questions about what
there is (metaphysics), what we can know (epistemology), what kinds of
people we should be (ethics), what is beauty (aesthetics), and how we
should reason (logic). A major in philosophy will help students to
develop critical reading and thinking skills to answer some of life's
most difficult questions.
Otterbein University's philosophy program prepares students go on to
graduate or professional schools, usually in law, medicine or business.
It also is a good background for many careers, including teaching,
nursing, art, communication, psychology and music.
You may also choose to pursue a double major or minor.
a student, you may not only have an interest in religion or philosophy,
but another discipline as well. Many Otterbein students choose to
double major and minor in religion and/or philosophy because:
It's easy to do!
You earn an immediately marketable degree while also "feeding your soul."
These majors/minors enhance and complement many other majors.
Graduate schools offer tailor-made combinations of interests as well.
Most of the majors/minors at Otterbein are compatible with religion and philosophy, but those that seem to work best are:
History and Political Science
Mathematics and Computer Science
Here's what our double majors/minors are saying:
"In the field of advertising and public relations, I'm able to have
conversations about other cultures and feel comfortable doing it."
"I'm in art, and the religion courses at Otterbein offered depth to my profession."
"As a parent, I'm able to instill respect for other religions and cultures in my children and their school environments."
"Having studied religion from an academic perspective at Otterbein, I
understand the emotions and history that are brought to the table when
- "I'm in the military and served in
Afghanistan. I was able to do my duties without being judgmental of
another person's culture."
"It helps set the foundation for learning to keep an open mind, not
jump to conclusions, and always evaluate each person, belief and value
"Critical thinking is a skill that can be used in any profession and
in all aspects of life. Regardless of the subject matter, the ability
to think critically is of vital importance for success."
"Although I didn't realize studying philosophy would impact every
aspect of my life, it absolutely has. Philosophy has influenced and
challenged my previous beliefs. As a person I have become more open to
new experiences and more open to those completely unlike me. I find this
"I relate philosophy literally to everything I think and do. This
might drive most people crazy, but for me it's endless entertainment."
"It may sound cliché, but my education gives me an advantage in
terms of problem solving and critical analysis in a "real world" which
lacks any sort of linear organization."