The CRCS MA program is focussed on the cross-cultural study of religion as a complex and vital aspect of human experience in all its diversity and as a vital social identity in the context of Indonesia. The academic study of religion is grounded in critical analysis of religious experience, identity, organization, politics, and thought through methods and theories drawn from such academic disciplines as anthropology, sociology, political science, cultural and gender studies, and the field of religious studies. It asks what each of us, with our own religious identities, can learn from each other as together we seek a deeper understanding of each other and work together for a just and peaceful future. Students belonging to faith traditions in Indonesia and the world study and learn about each other from and with faculty and staff who also come from diverse religious and cultural backgrounds.

This program offers a Master of Arts (M.A.) (S-2). Over four semesters and one inter-session term, students are to earn 44 credits, including writing thesis (8 credits) based on original research. Students are expected to devote 40 hours a week while enrolled at CRCS in order to complete the two-year program in a timely manner.

Curriculum is the systematic planning and development of courses, methodology and methods of evaluation, through which CRCS conducts its educational programs. Since its establishment in 2000, the CRCS MA curriculum has developed in response to student and faculty interests and the changing needs of Indonesian religious life. In its present form, the curriculum is centered on three areas of study: Interreligious Relations; Religion, Culture and Nature; and Religion and Public Life.

To complete this two-year program, each student is required to pass a set of core courses in the first year. Additionally, each student is expected to choose a specific focus of interest. During the intersession between the two years and during the first semester of the second year, students may take elective courses relevant to their area of study both within CRCS and in graduate programs throughout Gadjah Mada University. Finally, each student is required to write and defend a thesis based on original research as a final project.

CRCS also offers opportunities for students from other programs and for the public to take courses without enrolling in the degree program, provided certain requirements are met. The tuition for a course is Rp. 500.000 for Indonesians and US$ 250 for international students. To take courses for credits, the cost is Rp. 1.250.000/course for Indonesians students and US$ 350 for international students.

English is the language of instruction at CRCS. Before beginning the MA program, students are required to complete a one-month Intensive English course. In addition, CRCS provides non-credit Academic English equivalent to 3 credits each semester as well as writing consultation. CRCS has been supported through cooperation between UGM and Oberlin Shansi of Oberlin College (Ohio, U.S.A.) which provides two native English instructors each year.


  • Classrooms with audiovisual capabilities.
  • International and national workshops.
  • Research seminars and conferences.
  • Free Internet access throughout.
  • Specialized religious studies library, developed by CRCS and ICRS

The joint CRCS-ICRS Library is transitioning to become more integrated with the Gadjah Mada University library system, although it continues to be adminstered separately.
Our library provides students and faculty access to around ten thousand books on themes and fields related to religious and cross-cultural studies including anthropology, sociology, psychology, theology, and world and Indonesian history, reflecting CRCS’s three areas of study. Most of the collections has been purchased to support teaching and research in CRCS’s language of instruction, English. Since the establishment of the PhD program of Indonesian Consortium for Religious Studies in 2007, more books have been added in response to the needs of their students and faculty as well. In addition to an extensive collection on world religions and a collection on religion and science given by International Society for Science and Religion (ISSR) the library has also received a large Arabic-language collection on Islamic studies from a private institution of Libya. The library also subscribes to international and national periodicals and daily newspapers and maintains a specialized reference collection of dictionaries and encylopedias. A complete collection of student theses can also be read there.

The growth of the library has also been supported by generous individuals, research projects, students’ fees, and funding agencies that include The Asia Foundation (2003-2004), The Templeton Foundation (2003-2005), and NZAID (2008-2009). Research projects by CRCS faculty members have also contributed to the volume of the library collection. Every year, in additions, CRCS and ICRS allocate Rp. 80.000.000,- for library. Many visiting professors and lecturers, mainly from the US, have given their books to the center. We are especially grateful to the eminent historian of Southeast Asia Prof. Anthony Reid who has just made the CRCS-ICRS library the new home for his personal scholarly collection of around 2500 books and journals on various themes mostly in the history of Southeast Asia.