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Guide to the Department of Religious Studies records
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Historical Note
  • Scope and Content Note
  • Arrangement
  • Preferred citation
  • Processing Information
  • Related Material
  • Index Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: Department of Religious Studies records
    Date (inclusive): 1964-1995
    Collection number: USDA_1997_01
    Creator: University of San Diego Department of Religious Studies
    Extent: 1 box (.5 linear feet)
    Repository: University of San Diego, Archives and Special Collections
    Copley Library
    5998 Alcalá Park
    San Diego, CA 92110
    Abstract: These records contain correspondence, reports, and meeting minutes pertaining to the Department of Religious Studies in the early 1970s. The majority of these records pertain to discussions about the Catholicity of the merging USD College for Men and College for Women and general education requirements in religion.
    Languages: English

    Historical Note

    Until 1969 the College for Women and the College for Men had separate departments of theology with separate general education requirements. Catholic men, and all women, were required to take a theology course each semester. As discussions of merging the two colleges were occurring, and with personnel changes, the Department of Religious Studies became the first completely merged department in 1969. John R. Portman served as the founding chair of the Department of Religious Studies until 1974. The department professed to ensure the academic nature of courses in religion not character formation. Religious study was, and is, part of the general education requirement for each student. In 1972, general education requirements in religion changed to nine credits for all students. In 1974, Religious Studies was added to the list of majors.
    The prominent program the Department oversaw in the 1970s was the Ecumenical Center for World Religions. Founded by John R. Portman, the Center opened in January 1972 as a space to deepen students' understanding of world religions, for scholarly research about world religions, and to explore points of contact between religious traditions around the world. The Center also offered seminars each summer.

    Scope and Content Note

    The Department of Religious Studies records relate to the early administration of the department, namely discussions about the merger of the College for Men and the College for Women, programs put on by the department, and discussions of general education requirements. Records largely consist of correspondence, news releases and clippings, and reports. In addition to the early 1970s administrative records, are records for the Masters in Religious Education which was first offered in 1977.


    These records consist of one series of Administrative Records which are arranged in chronological order.

    Access Information

    These records are open for research.

    Preferred citation

    [Folder Title], Box # Folder #, Department of Religious Studies records, Copley Library, University of San Diego, Archives and Special Collections.

    Processing Information

    This collection was processed by Tessie Camina in 2008. It was further processed by Ashley Toutain in 2016.

    Related Material

    The M.R.E. (Masters in Religious Education) Newsletter is available for view in the University Archives and Special Collections.

    Index Terms

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Portman, John R.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    University of San Diego
    Jewish Chautauqua Society

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    San Diego (Calif.)

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    religion (field of study)