Skip to Navigation
    McMaster University
   
 
  Sep 24, 2017
 
 
    
School of Graduate Studies Calendar, 2014-2015 [-ARCHIVED CALENDAR-]

Religious Studies, M.A.


Return to Areas of Study Return to: Areas of Study

Admission


The normal minimum requirement for admission to M.A. study is graduation with B+ standing in an Honours program or equivalent in Religious Studies, or in a related discipline with significant emphasis on the study of religion. Related disciplines include Anthropology, Sociology, History, Philosophy, Theology, Classics, Near Eastern, South Asian, and East Asian studies. Graduates with preparation in related fields may be required to take a certain amount of undergraduate work in Religious Studies.

All incoming students should have completed the equivalent of six units (one full year course) of undergraduate work in Asian religions. Students who do not meet this requirement will be expected to fulfill their breadth requirement by taking six units of undergraduate courses, or by writing two Breadth Requirement examinations, or by taking a three unit undergraduate course and writing one Breadth Requirement examination.

A candidate for the M.A. degree will be required to spend at least one calendar year in full-time graduate study or the equivalent in part-time study. There are two routes to the M.A.: the thesis route and the project route.

A. M.A. with Thesis


The thesis route entails the following requirements:

  1. The candidate must demonstrate a reading knowledge of a language other than English which is most useful in the area in which the thesis is written. Guidelines for fulfilling this requirement are specified in the Departmental Handbook. Additional languages may be required;
  2. A minimum of six half courses must be completed with at least B- standing, four half courses must be at the graduate level and must be taken in the major area of study; the other two half courses must be in the minor area of study;
  3. The completion of RELIG ST *701 Issues in the Study of Religions ;
  4. A thesis must be completed; the thesis should show an ability to deal with first-hand material in a limited problem in Religious Studies; the thesis must be defended in an oral examination; all M.A. degree candidates who have completed their oral defence must submit their revised thesis to both the Department and the School of Graduate Studies by the deadline dates specified for the second convocation following their defence. (Note: Text-critical studies or translation with commentary are acceptable, with the approval of the advisory/supervisory committee, as the functional equivalent of a thesis.)

B. M.A. with Project


The project route entails the following requirements:

  1. The candidate must demonstrate a reading knowledge of a language other than English appropriate to work on the project. Guidelines for fulfilling this requirement are specified in the Departmental Handbook. Additional languages may be required;
  2. Completion of six half courses as defined above, plus RELIG ST *701 Issues in the Study of Religions ;
  3. Completion of a project and the passing of an oral or written examination on the substance of the project. A “project” is defined by the faculty members of a departmental field. Normally a project will cover broad areas of learning. Projects will permit students to move into new areas, to read large and unfamiliar bodies of texts, and to deal comprehensively with large questions in central areas of concern.

Return to Areas of Study Return to: Areas of Study