University of Notre Dame Theology Department Ranked First in the World

Rare Book Room Research 14

While it likely comes as no surprise that Notre Dame is highly regarded for its religious and theological studies, for the second consecutive year it has been ranked number one for theology, divinity, and religious studies by QS World University Rankings, putting it ahead of peers like Harvard, Oxford, and Duke.

“This recognition is a tribute to the strength and breadth of our faculty’s expertise and research, as well as the rich learning community that is created by the talented graduate students who come to study with us, combining probing intellectual curiosity with deep pastoral concern for church and world,” said J. Matthew Ashley, associate professor and acting chair of the department at the time.

Notre Dame’s program is rooted in the idea of “faith seeking understanding,” which encourages the exploration of truth. The program has six principal areas: moral theology, history of Christianity, liturgy, biblical studies, systematic theology, and world religions and world Church.

The department offers a Ph.D. track, as well as four master’s programs. While all undergraduates are required to take two theology courses as part of the University’s core curriculum, nearly 500 undergraduates choose to major or minor in theology. Of those theology majors, 98 percent found fulltime employment or entered graduate school, the military, or service work within six months of graduation.

As opposed to many of its peer institutions, Notre Dame’s department is explicitly and unabashedly Catholic, which is prominent in the composition of its faculty and in its offered curriculum, but it also encourages exploration and dialogue with other perspectives and faith traditions. The department remains committed to serving the Church, the academy, and society, and aspires to both academic and pastoral flourishing.

As Notre Dame roots itself in an education of heart and mind alongside the pursuit of truth, the theology department remains a stalwart contributor to those goals.