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BA (Hons) in Religion, Philosophy and Ethics

BA (Hons) in Religion, Philosophy and Ethics

Students studying RPE programme will be benefited from the writing, public presentation, and critical thinking skills learnt from the programme, as well as close student-teacher relationship which is unique in our Department.


Programme Aims

In order to realize the mission of the Department, the B.A. (Hons) in Religion, Philosophy and Ethics Programme emphasizes the following general aims:
To equip students with reasoning and analytical skills;

  • To enhance student’s ability to present lucid arguments and make independent judgment;
  • To encourage students to reflect on academic issues from a cross-disciplinary perspective;
  • To provide opportunities for students to develop their creative writing and thinking;
  • To stimulate students’ initiatives of self-learning;
  • To produce graduates of distinction committed to life-long learning; and
  • To create an aura in which academic discussion with one another, including teachers and students, is both valued and practiced.


Programme Objectives

The main objectives of the B.A. (Hons) in Religion, Philosophy and Ethics programme are as follows:

  • To equip students with critical, analytical and interpretative skills with which they may understand religious and philosophical traditions, and schools of ethical thought in an objective way;
  • To provide students with substantial information about ideas and practices of major religious and philosophical traditions, thus building a solid foundation for their understanding and interpretation;
  • To help students develop capability in correlating religious ideas and values, philosophical traditions, and schools of ethical thought to socio-cultural problems;
  • To widen students’ perspective in the understanding of both the human person and human culture through a comparative study of different religious and philosophical traditions, showing the range of human responses to life problems;
  • To prepare students for postgraduate studies in at least some major religious or philosophical traditions; and
  • To assist students in preparing for careers in education, cultural affairs and related fields.


Programme Intended Learning Outcomes (PILOs)

After having completed the B.A. (Honours) in Religion, Philosophy and Ethics Programme, the students should be able to:

  • Explain the main ideas of major religious traditions, and major schools of philosophy and ethical thought;
  • Display critical, analytical and interpretative skills in their understanding of religious traditions, major philosophical problems, and crucial ethical issues;
  • Articulate the relevance of religious ideas/values, philosophical arguments and ethical analysis for socio-cultural issues;
  • Evaluate critically the arguments for and against major religious worldviews, major schools of philosophy, or various ethical theories;
  • Facilitate interdisciplinary dialogue between religion, philosophy and other disciplines.


Unique Features

  1. First Ever RPE Programme in Asia for the World
    • The programme, specializing in three different but closely related disciplines of religion, philosophy and ethics, is the first-of-its-kind not only in Hong Kong, but also in Asia.  RPE is a multidisciplinary programme and in fact one of the flourishing programmes in the international trend in recent decades. Examples include the RPE programme in King’s College London and University of Nottingham in UK.
  2. Four Study Areas
    • Foundational courses covering key areas of religion, philosophy and ethics are covered in second year. Starting from third to fourth years, students can choose major electives among the four study areas, namely Philosophical Studies, Christian Studies and Comparative Religion, The Interdisciplinary Study of Religion, as well as Ethics and Society. The multiple foci of the programme would be able to cater for the diverse interests of students.  Students can choose to declare or not a concentration in one of the four study areas at the end of their second year of study.

  3. Critical Thinking
    • We emphasize nurturing students’ abilities in critical thinking, justifying arguments and evaluating claims, which help to enhance their reasoning and analyzing skills.  These are transferable skills which are essential to many professions.
  4. Value Analysis
    • We emphasize the analysis of underlying moral values, social values, political values and cultural values in current issues, which are diverse, complex and often in conflict with one another.
  5. Excellence in Liberal Arts Education
    • Our programme provides a channel for achieving the higher goals of liberal arts education, namely, (a) the cultivation of the ability to analyse complex human problems with intellectual rigor, and (b) the cultivation of practical wisdom for moral reasoning and impartial value analysis.