Religious Studies


Religious Studies Mission and Outcomes


The Religious Studies program at Clarke University prepares students to explore the spiritual dimensions of human existence and think critically about the connections between faith and life in our world today. This spiritual search for meaning, grounded in the teachings of the Catholic tradition, investigates Christian theology and concepts of God, relates an understanding of contemporary biblical scholarship and Christian faith, and explores the ethical and social responsibilities of Christians living in a global community. Students learn how theological inquiry, discernment and other spiritual practices are foundational to exercising personal leadership, ministry, and living out one’s own vocation. Students come to see that their life and actions stand as a continual witness to shape a more just and peaceful world.

A Distinctive Vision

With its global experience and faculty commitment to mission and evangelization, this Clarke University program is distinctive from other religious studies programs in the country. Spirituality shapes our mission and identity as each student is invited to deepen their spiritual values and understanding of vocation. As the only BVM University in this country, Religious Studies at Clarke University highlights a 180 year history of Catholic women religious and their associates witnessing to their faith as rooted in BVM core values. Nestled in the upper Mississippi valley with its agricultural, industrial and technological richness, Religious Studies at Clarke University serves the Church and attends to marginalized and vulnerable populations, from the local community to the wider world. Raising social consciousness, reflecting on the Catholic social tradition, and acting for justice is integral to student experience in our department, but it is also true of the Clarke University experience.  Whether studying solely in the Religious Studies major or in combination with another major discipline, a Clarke University Religious Studies degree gives students new perspectives that translate into job advantage, graduate school, enrichment, and preparation for living thoughtfully and courageously in the 21st century!


Majors in religious studies will be proficient in the following outcome areas:

  1. Contemporary Catholic Theology & Theological Reflection: Demonstrate an understanding of Catholic theology, its central theological themes, and relate these to contemporary Christian life and mission. 
  2. Scripture: Demonstrate an understanding of scriptural texts and employ the basic principles of Catholic biblical interpretation.
  3. Contemplation and Action (Spiritual Development and Pastoral/Professional Skills): Engage in spiritual practices and service to support a life of faith, spiritual growth, and the development of pastoral and professional skills.
  4. Catholic Social and Moral Teaching: Investigate Catholic social teaching and moral theology for enriching moral life and for creating a more just and peaceful world.


  • Support Clarke - Spring
  • Arts at Clarke 2016
  • Transfer Fall 2015