Higher education in North America increasingly implores teachers to adopt frameworks of values education, pre-professional student-learning, and assessment backed by the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL). Teacher-scholars in religious studies have reason to question whether such initiatives put a critical understanding of our data at odds with the ideological state apparatuses within which our institutions are situated. Thinking with the work of Louis Althusser, this chapter historicizes classroom tensions and outlines an alternative way for theoretically-minded scholars to negotiate the task of pedagogy.

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The American Academy of Religion’s Religious Literacy Guidelines: What U.S. College Graduates Need to Understand About Religion.
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Episode of The Religious Studies Project features a roundtable discussion about the religious literacy guidelines of the American Academy of Religion. Newton talks about his research in conversation with colleagues Drs. Rebekka King, Jenna Gray- Hildebrand, Kevin Minister, Bradley Onishi, Chris Jones, and David McConeghy. Download the episode here.


Richard Newton, “Teaching: Teaching in the Ideological State of Religious Studies: Notes Towards a Pedagogical Future,” Constructing Data in Religious Studies – Examining the Architecture of the Academy, ed. Leslie Dorrough Smith (Sheffield, UK: Equinox), 235-245.