Introduction to Judaism, Christianity and Islam

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Introduction to Judaism, Christianity and Islam

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    An introduction to the three major religions which originated in the Middle East.

    The paper examines the three religious traditions that originated in the Middle East and that today claim the allegiance of half the world's population. The three traditions are closely related, but their adherents have often entered into vigorous and at times bloody conflicts; between them, they have made and remade the world as we know it today. Just as importantly, they have provided millions of people all over the globe with enduring ways of understanding this world and their own way of existing in it. The contemporary world, with all its complexity, is almost incomprehensible if we do not have a firm grip on the influence that these religions have had. Their close study has perhaps never been as important.

    Course Structure
    After a brief methodological introduction, the course divides into four principal parts: sections devoted to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are capped by five lectures devoted to the Western religious traditions' struggles with modernity.

    -Tutorial attendance/online discussions 10%
    -Essay outline 5%
    -Essay (1,500-2,000 words) 20%
    -Final exam 65%

    Learning Outcomes
    Students who successfully complete the paper will be able to:
    -Identify and discuss the principal beliefs characteristic of Judaism, Christianity and Islam
    -Identify and discuss the most common practices associated with each religion
    -Identify and discuss key moments in the historical development of all three traditions
    -Discuss some of the ways in which the adherents of each religion have responded to the challenges of modernity

    A coursebook has been developed for the course

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.