MA Program

The program requires a total of 24.0 units, including RELS 800, RELS 801 and RELS 802 (Core Courses) at 3.0 units each and RELS 898 (Master's Essay) at 6.0 units. Grad courses, with the exception of RELS 898 are normally weighted at 3.0 units.  

Students who have not completed in their undergraduate programs the equivalent of the Queen's University course RELS 354 "Theory in Religious Studies" will be required to take RELS 854.

A poster giving information on a Master's Degree in Religious Studies

Course Requirements

At least 6.0 units must be taken from the lists of Dedicated Courses and Cross-listed Courses. 

Not all of our graduate courses are offered in any given year. A current course list is posted on our website during the summer prior to the start of the new intake of graduate students. 

Core/Required Courses: 

RELS 800 Professional Development Seminar
Monthly seminar series for building graduate students¿ professional academic and alt-academic skills through workshops, Q&As, and presentations about topics including: publishing, conferencing, funding, applying for further graduate study or employment, etc. Topics will be timed to the appropriate point in the cycle of each academic year (i.e. sessions on SSHRC and OGS will occur early in Fall semester).

RELS 801 Core Course I: Religion and Modernity
Examines the nature of religious transition in response to various pressures for religious change.

RELS 802 Core Course II: Theory and Method in Religious Studies
Looks at recent articulations and applications of theories and methods in Religious Studies.

Dedicated Courses:

Like our core courses, these courses are restricted to graduate students. At least 3.0 units must be chosen from the list of Dedicated Courses. At least two Dedicated courses will be offered each year. 

Cross-listed Courses:

These courses will be offered concurrently with a linked undergraduate course. A maximum of 6.0 units from this list is permitted for the MA program. Graduate students will be required to attend classes with the undergraduate students but will have separate course requirements.

Note: With the approval of the Graduate Co-ordinator, students are permitted to take relevant graduate-only courses in other departments.

Master Essay (6.0 Units)

All M.A. students must complete a Master's Essay, a research paper of between 40 - 60 pages that demonstrates appropriate competence in the application of theoretical and methodological approaches to a suitable research topic in the study of religion.

Master's Essay Requirements (PDF, 128KB)

What our students have to say:

“As an international student, studying religious studies at Queen’s was a very enriching experience, that greatly contributed to the growth of my analytical and critical thinking in a friendly environment. This program has brought new insight into my life and I’m very grateful for that.” -Faezeh Izadi (MA '20)

"Religions have been and still are a significant phenomenon in our society, regardless of our personal positions. Approaching these realities from the social sciences perspective opens new horizons of enquiry and a more comprehensive understanding. Certainly, studying the MA in Religious Studies at Queen's University has been a deeply enlightening experience." - Francisco Zepeda Trujillo (MA '20)


Please see the School of Graduate Studies website for information and policies pertaining to all graduate students at Queen's.

View our Grad Map! Get program-specific advice on academics, research, networking, building experience, and launching your career all in one place.