GMIT will hold a special information evening for its BA in religious studies programme on Monday September 15.
This programme is the only religious studies degree offered in the west, and the only one delivered in an institute of technology in Ireland. The programme is a marker of GMIT’s pioneering response to educational needs and, in order to be as accessible to as many people as possible, the programme is also delivered on a flexible learning basis.
GMIT has been delivering religious studies programmes for almost 20 years at its Dublin Road campus. This programme offers insight into a number of great religious, ethical, and cultural traditions; emphasis is on the Christian tradition but students also study and engage with Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism. Students explore their own religious beliefs in the light of other faiths and other academic disciplines, and gain excellent training in critical thinking across a wide range of religious, ethical, and cultural issues and contexts.
Barry McMillan, programme chair and media contributor (RTE Radio One’s God Slot ), and a holder of GMIT’s President’s Award for Teaching Excellence, says there is growing demand for knowledge about the world’s great religions and their impact.
“Religion shapes our lives in significant ways, and graduates of our programme have a rounded understanding of its influence on personal, national, and global scales,” Mr McMillan said. “In a time of pluralism, secularism, and religious extremism, it is increasingly important for people to understand the phenomenon of religion, the beliefs and practices of the major religious traditions, and to be able to discuss and consider these in an informed and balanced fashion.”
The programme is offered on a flexible learning basis to suit adult learners. It is delivered two evenings per week (Monday and Wednesday ) across two academic semesters, over three academic years for a Level 7 degree, or four academic years for a Level 8 honours degree. The honours programme is recognised by the Registration Council for Secondary Teachers as a pathway to the professional diploma in post-primary education.
Connie Masterson, a graduate of the programme, says she found the degree challenging and stimulating. “Studying the module on world religions, primarily Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism, provided a great foundation and context for the modules on Christianity, as well as broadening understanding of other points of view, historically, culturally and politically - which are very relevant for today’s global difficulties,” Ms Masterson said.
“I also enjoyed the modules on faith and culture, which helped us students to expand our understanding, challenge our prejudices, and examine issues from minority as well as dominant cultural views.”
Anyone interested in studying this degree should now apply for the Level 7 degree, the Level 8 degree, or simply for individual modules.
Contact Barry McMillan (programme chair ), Department of Languages & Humanities, GMIT, at 091 742472, or email [email protected]. You can also read more about the programme at www.gmit.ie/lifelong-learning-galway/tourism-and-arts/bachelor-arts-religious-studies
The information evening will take place on Monday September 15 in Room 1034, GMIT Dublin Road, at 6.30pm.