Explore the history, texts, and functions of religion within different societies and cultures, gaining a deeper understanding of the historical and contemporary issues around religion.
Key learning outcomes
Through the master's degree in the field of religion you:
- Develop an understanding of the historical origins, central teachings, and devotional practices of the major religious traditions.
- Build knowledge of religion’s role in political, economic, and cultural life through historical, social, and cultural contexts.
The degree includes nine courses—at least three taken on campus—and a thesis.
- Get started. You begin by completing three admission courses from the program curriculum. This is your opportunity to demonstrate your commitment and ability to perform well as a Harvard student.
- Apply to the program. While you are completing your third admission course, you submit your application. We have application periods in the fall, spring, and summer.
- Continue your studies, online and on campus. As you progress through the program, you choose from courses offered on campus or online, in the fall, spring, or summer. To fully experience Harvard, you take at least three courses on campus as part of your degree.
- Complete your thesis. Working with a thesis director, you conduct in-depth research on a topic relevant to your work experience or academic interests, producing publishable quality results. You’ll emerge with a solid understanding of how research is executed and communicated.
- Graduate with your Harvard degree. You participate in the annual Harvard Commencement, receiving your Harvard University degree: Master of Liberal Arts (ALM) in extension studies, field: Religion.
Affordability is core to our mission. Our 2016–17 graduate tuition is $2,550 per course; the total tuition cost of earning the graduate degree is approximately $25,500.
There are a number of financial aid options available once you’re admitted to the program.