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The Department of Classical, Near Eastern and Religious Studies offers a unique interdisciplinary Master's program that allows students to specialize in the history and texts of Judaism and Christianity through the completion of coursework and a thesis. Students choose from a broad range of coursework in the archaeology and material culture, religion and mythology, literature and ancient languages, and history and cultures of the ancient Mediterranean and Near East from the Bronze Age to Late Antiquity. In the second year of the program, students write a thesis under the supervision of a faculty member.
The MA in Religious Studies is the only program in Canada to offer students the opportunity to focus on the early religious traditions of the Mediterranean and Middle East. MA students engage in a broad range of coursework and pursue multi-disciplinary research on the material culture, religious beliefs, languages and histories of the ancient Mediterranean and Near East. We have four full-time faculty specializing in Hebrew Bible studies, Jewish studies, and early Christianity and New Testament Studies. Our other faculty in Classical, Near Eastern and Religious Studies are interdisciplinary researchers whose work regularly engages with religion and myth, including the archaeology of Roman religion and Greek mythology.
What's grad school really like? Hear first hand from some of our Graduate Student Ambassadors on their experience so far. Ask them questions and hear their top tips for a successful grad school career.Register
Join Dr Julian Dierkes, Associate Dean, Funding, with Kelli Kadokawa and Shane Moore from the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies as they talk about funding opportunities for PhD's at UBC. Dr Dierkes will provide an overview of the different awards and scholarship available to incoming PhD students as well as providing some tips and advice on applying. We'll also be answering your questions.Register
The Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies establishes the minimum admission requirements common to all applicants, usually a minimum overall average in the B+ range (76% at UBC). The graduate program that you are applying to may have additional requirements. Please review the specific requirements for applicants with credentials from institutions in:
Each program may set higher academic minimum requirements. Please review the program website carefully to understand the program requirements. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission as it is a competitive process.
Applicants from a university outside Canada in which English is not the primary language of instruction must provide results of an English language proficiency examination as part of their application. Tests must have been taken within the last 24 months at the time of submission of your application.
Minimum requirements for the two most common English language proficiency tests to apply to this program are listed below:
Overall score requirement: 100
Overall score requirement: 7.0
Some programs require additional test scores such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Test (GMAT). The requirements for this program are:
The GRE is not required.
It is highly recommended that students have completed the equivalent of two years' of study (intermediate level) in one of Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew, or Latin prior to commencing the program.
A minimum of three references are required for application to graduate programs at UBC. References should be requested from individuals who are prepared to provide a report on your academic ability and qualifications.
Many programs require a statement of interest, sometimes called a "statement of intent", "description of research interests" or something similar.
Students in research-based programs usually require a faculty member to function as their supervisor. Please follow the instructions provided by each program whether applicants should contact faculty members.
Permanent Residents of Canada must provide a clear photocopy of both sides of the Permanent Resident card.
All applicants must complete an online application form and pay the application fee to be considered for admission to UBC.
Our research strengths in Religious Studies include Hebrew Bible studies, Jewish studies, and early Christian history and literature. Many of our faculty are interested in historiography, receptions of the ancient world, and digital approaches to the past. Additionally, our faculty have expertise in a large range of ancient languages and we offer rigorous training in Ancient Greek, Latin, Biblical Hebrew, and Classical Arabic as well as introductory courses in Akkadian, Middle Egyptian, and Coptic.
MA students complete coursework and a thesis. Students with deficiencies in ancient language study also complete undergraduate courses in Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew, Latin, and/or ancient Near Eastern languages (Akkadian, Coptic, Middle Egyptian). Students must demonstrate proficiency in one of French, German, Italian, or Spanish, usually through a translation exam or additional coursework.
Our students have access to work space in the Graduate Reading Room with exclusive access to a library of ancient texts and seminal scholarship relating to Classical, Near Eastern and Religious Studies and a computer lab for research and teaching equipped with eight powerful desktop PC computers with dual monitors and a variety of software packages (including ArcGIS, Adobe Creative Suite and Agisoft Photoscan) as well as a 3D printer.
|Fees||Canadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / Diplomat||International|
|Installments per year||3||3|
|Tuition per installment||$1,698.56||$2,984.09|
|Tuition per year|
(plus annual increase, usually 2%-5%)
|Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible)||$3,200.00 (-)|
|Other Fees and Costs|
|Student Fees (yearly)||$969.17 (approx.)|
|Costs of living (yearly)||starting at $17,242.00 (check cost calculator)|
Applicants to UBC have access to a variety of funding options, including merit-based (i.e. based on your academic performance) and need-based (i.e. based on your financial situation) opportunities.
All of our Master's students are funded. A typical minimum funding package for MA students is around $18,000 (domestic) or $21,000 per year for 20 months from a combination of Teaching Assistantships and fellowships. Most students receive additional funding from external scholarship competitions and Research Assistantship opportunities in the department, with the most successful students receiving over $30,000 per year. In addition, the Department provides support for student travel and research abroad.
All applicants are encouraged to review the awards listing to identify potential opportunities to fund their graduate education. The database lists merit-based scholarships and awards and allows for filtering by various criteria, such as domestic vs. international or degree level.
Graduate programs may have Teaching Assistantships available for registered full-time graduate students. Full teaching assistantships involve 12 hours work per week in preparation, lecturing, or laboratory instruction although many graduate programs offer partial TA appointments at less than 12 hours per week. Teaching assistantship rates are set by collective bargaining between the University and the Teaching Assistants' Union.
Many professors are able to provide Research Assistantships (GRA) from their research grants to support full-time graduate students studying under their direction. The duties usually constitute part of the student's graduate degree requirements. A Graduate Research Assistantship is a form of financial support for a period of graduate study and is, therefore, not covered by a collective agreement. Unlike other forms of fellowship support for graduate students, the amount of a GRA is neither fixed nor subject to a university-wide formula. The stipend amounts vary widely, and are dependent on the field of study and the type of research grant from which the assistantship is being funded. Some research projects also require targeted research assistance and thus hire graduate students on an hourly basis.
Canadian and US applicants may qualify for governmental loans to finance their studies. Please review eligibility and types of loans.
All students may be able to access private sector or bank loans.
Many foreign governments provide support to their citizens in pursuing education abroad. International applicants should check the various governmental resources in their home country, such as the Department of Education, for available scholarships.
The possibility to pursue work to supplement income may depend on the demands the program has on students. It should be carefully weighed if work leads to prolonged program durations or whether work placements can be meaningfully embedded into a program.
Canadian residents with RRSP accounts may be able to use the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) which allows students to withdraw amounts from their registered retirement savings plan (RRSPs) to finance full-time training or education for themselves or their partner.
Please review Filing taxes in Canada on the student services website for more information.
Applicants have access to the cost calculator to develop a financial plan that takes into account various income sources and expenses.
These statistics show data for the Master of Arts in Religious Studies (MA). Data are separated for each degree program combination. You may view data for other degree options in the respective program profile.
This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.
The following areas of concentration are offered in the Master's program: Biblical Studies; Christian Thought and Institutions; History of Religions; Islamic Studies; and Judaic Studies. The Ph.D. program at present provides training in Early Judaism, Christian Origins, and Religions of the Late Antique Mediterranean.