This unique and interactive course takes a comprehensive look at the Eastern traditions of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Hinduism, and Shinto. Using a variety of both current and historical materials, the class promotes understanding of Eastern cultural perspectives, and notes differences with traditional Western ideals. Weekly discussions are based on thought provoking questions that promote intriguing and meaningful conversation. Together with entertaining lectures and readings from legendary figures such as the Dalai Lama and Confucius, the class joins together for an overall fulfilling and memorable learning experience.
Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)
Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:
- Compare and contrast histories, philosophies and practices of the major East Asian Religions.
- Appreciate ideologies and philosophies that may be different from their own.
- Critically analyze the merits and constraints of these global religions.
- Identify the role of geography in the development of these cultures.
- Demonstrate critical thinking through inquiry based discussion, interpretation of primary source materials, writing assignments, and exams.
- Exhibit a thorough understanding of ideas and principles of each topic religion.
- Assess the importance tolerance, empathy, and cultural understanding.
Course Activities and Grading
Discussions (Weeks 1-7)
Quizzes (Weeks 4 & 6)
Group Project (Week 6)
Research Project (Week 7)
Final Exam (Week 8)
Available through Charter Oak's online bookstore
- Nadeau, Randall L. Asian Religions, A Cultural Perspective. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2014. ISBN-10: 1-118-47196-2 or ISBN-13: 978-1-118-47196-8
- Dalai Lama. Ethics for the New Millennium Riverhead Books, 1999. ISBN-10: 1-57322-883-4 or ISBN-13: 978-1-57322-883-1
Readings and Exercises
Topics: Introduction to Hinduism
Topics: Hinduism: Traditions and Castes
Topic: Buddhism Across the East
Topic: The Dalai Lama & Tibet
Topic: Shinto and Japan
COSC Accessibility Statement
Charter Oak State College encourages students with disabilities, including non-visible disabilities such as chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, or psychiatric disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with the Office of Accessibility Services at OAS@charteroak.edu.
COSC Policies, Course Policies, Academic Support Services and Resources
Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies, and see also specific policies related to this course. See COSC Resources for information regarding available academic support services and resources.