* Augustana College offers a major and minor in religion. The department's 10 full-time faculty all have the Ph.D. and together teach from a wide range of religious, theological and philosophical perspectives.
College chaplain Richard Priggie with students who participated in Augustana's first interfaith baccalaureate in 2009. They are, from left, Mohammed Hussain of the Muslim Student Association; Courtney Ward of the Jewish Student Organization; and Colleen Kilbride of the Interfaith Understanding Committee.
* Augustana's General Education Studies (AGES) includes a Christian Traditions course, providing every Augustana student the opportunity to think about and wrestle with the religious, theological and ethical issues of human life.
* Affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Augustana educates students with a distinctively multidisciplinary approach that is foundational to pursuing further studies in any discipline, and to living a life that makes a difference.
* Students taking religious ethics classes learn to analyze and assess ethical arguments from a variety of perspectives, and are empowered to form their own ethical views on important and timely issues -- from reproductive technology to economic globalization, and from homosexuality to global warming.
* Students engage in conversations about religious meanings, practices and beliefs as well as questions of existence and values as expressed in diverse traditions. Through academic and critical perspectives, students learn to integrate different views that consider history, sociology, archaeology, philosophy, ethics and faith.
* Courses in the religion department also contribute to the academic programs in African American studies, anthropology, Asian studies, business administration, church music, classics, education, Medieval and Renaissance studies, medicine, and women's and gender studies.
Outside the classroom
* Religion classes at Augustana often consider the religious communities of the Quad Cities and beyond as part of their "textbook," and challenge students to think about how religious traditions differ from and relate to one another. Students learn by experience as they interact with local communities from different faith backgrounds.
* Some religion courses also use service learning as part of the classroom experience; students participate in various aspects of local religious community life, such as tutoring, working in soup kitchens, leading youth groups or activities, and other forms of community service.
* One of the college's wide variety of international experiences is "Faiths in Dialogue," a 10-day traveling course to Rome. In Rome, students engage in discussion with church officials and study early Reformation Christianity as they explore such historically prominent places as the Vatican, St. Peter's Basilica and San Giovanni in Laterano.
* Augustana offers more than 150 extra- and co-curricular student groups. While several of these are related to specific forms of religious belief -- such as the Catholic Organization for Religious Experience, the Muslim Student Organization and campus ministries' Interfaith Understanding Group -- these activities also represent the broad range of religious thought on campus, which provides a valuable setting for studies in religion. One department faculty member is a practicing Lutheran parish minister and another is the college's Muslim student advisor; a college librarian serves as the Jewish student advisor.
* The Center for Vocational Reflection on campus offers resources and support for students interested in pursuing graduate theological studies and a career in the ministry.