Religious Education

Religious Education

The mission of Religious Education at Brigham Young University is to assist individuals in their efforts to come unto Christ by teaching the scriptures, doctrine, and history of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ through classroom instruction, gospel scholarship, and outreach to the larger community.


Dean: Scott C Esplin
Associate Dean: Gaye Strathearn
Associate Dean: Tyler J Griffin

Contact Information: 

370 JSB





The purpose of religious education is to teach the restored gospel of Jesus Christ from the scriptures and modern prophets in a way that helps each student

  • Develop faith in and a testimony of

    • Heavenly Father and His “great plan,”

    • The Savior, Jesus Christ, and His infinite atoning sacrifice, and

    • The restored gospel of Jesus Christ, including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; the Prophet, Joseph Smith; and the other modern prophets, seers, and revelators.

  • Become lifelong disciples of Jesus Christ, who make and keep covenants, who love God and others, and who are able, willing, and committed to gather Israel on both sides of the veil.

  • Strengthen their ability to find answers, resolve doubts, respond with faith, and give reason for the hope within them in whatever challenges they may face.

Degrees Offered

Religious Education offers two programs leading to a master's degree: Master of Arts Religious Education designed for individuals recommended by Seminaries and Institutes and Master of Arts Chaplaincy for military, hospital, and prison chaplain candidates.

For further information on these programs, please contact the Religious Education Office. No other degree programs are offered in this area.

Doctrinal Foundation and Religious Electives

Religion courses are an integral part of the university curriculum that conforms to university standards and expectations. While students are enrolled at BYU, they are required to take religion courses from BYU. See Doctrinal Foundation and Religious Electives information on the University Core Explained page in this catalog.

Religious Studies Center

Scott C. Esplin, Director 

Jared Ludlow, Publications Director
167 HGB 

The Religious Studies Center (RSC) is the research and publication arm of Religious Education. It continues to pursue its original charter to encourage and sponsor serious, faithful, gospel-related scholarship and the ensuing publication of that scholarship. It fulfills the charge to help meet the university's commitment to religious studies and Religious Education's aim to teach and preserve the doctrine of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It also serves the greater Church through the publication of the works of Religious Education faculty and other scholars who have written important, timely, scholarly work of a faith-promoting nature.

To encourage and promote religiously oriented scholarship, the RSC awards grants and provides other financial assistance. It proactively reaches out to faculty to encourage research in specific areas and supports them in the publication of their findings. To accomplish this the RSC sponsors two faculty mentors, known as area directors, who oversee and fund research in Church history and ancient scripture.