The Master of Arts in comparative religion at Western Michigan University is designed to provide students with a strong foundation of knowledge of at least two religious traditions, the principal classical works in the field of comparative religion, and the central issues of theory and method that underlie the discipline of the study of religion. The accelerated degree program allows current WMU undergraduates to accumulate credit hours towards the completion of the MA while still enrolled as an undergraduate. Students may take up to 12 credit hours of 5000 and 6000 level courses for graduate credit. The designated courses may be used to complete both the bachelor’s degree and the master’s degree.
Students who complete the MA go on to further graduate level work (including law school, medical school, and Ph.D. programs), to jobs in academia (teaching, advising, libraries), and to work in non-profits and non-governmental organizations.
Early in your junior year, contact the graduate advisor of the Department of Comparative Religion to discuss this option and review the requirements, timelines and application procedures.
Before completing your application, apply for graduation by completing your undergraduate audit with the College of Arts and Sciences advising staff, and returning the audit form to the Registrar's Office.
Apply for admission to the comparative religion master's program and complete the necessary application materials; applications are due January 15 each year.
Upon acceptance into the AGDP, meet with the graduate advisor of the Department of Comparative Religion and an undergraduate academic advisor to prepare a program of study that meets the requirements for both degrees.
An AGDP Course Approval Form listing which graduate courses will be counted in both degrees will be sent to you and to the Office of the Registrar.
WMU has a new online graduate application system that allows all students (domestic and international) to submit required information into one system. General application information for the University, as well as specific requirement for individual programs, are captured into this system.
The Department of Comparative Religion requires applicants to include some program-specific information. Applicants are encouraged to bookmark this information for quick reference while working through the graduate application process.
faculty research and publications
Our faculty are involved in a variety of research areas and regularly publish books and articles.
Financial assistance in the form of graduate assistantships is available on a competitive basis. The department may also award graduate scholarships.
The Graduate College offers Graduate college Fellowships, available on a competitive basis, as well as Thurgood Marshall Assistantships, available on a competitive basis for students from minority groups. Contact the Graduate College at (269) 387-8212.
Information about student loans and other federal, state, and University need-based financial aid programs may be obtained from Financial Aid at (269) 387-6000.
Information about on-campus housing may be obtained from Residence Life at (269) 387-4735.