Buddhism and Jainism

Undergraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

The aim of the course is for the student to gain knowledge about selective aspects of Buddhism and Jainism, past and present, with particular emphasis on Buddhism in South Asia in recent past.

Learning Outcomes

The student has by the end of the course gained the following learning outcome defined in knowledge, skills, and general competence:


The student

  • has knowledge about Buddhism and Jainism with emphasis on changes in the recent past.
  • has detailed knowledge about the emergence of different interpretations of Buddhism and Jainism in South Asia in the modern period, about Buddhism as a religious and political identity in South Asia and about Western traditions of interpretations of these religions


The student

  • has the ability to analyze scholarly literature and to make own inferences.
  • has the ability to write texts based on reasoning
  • has experience with imparting information, theories, ideas, approaches to problems and with suggesting solutions regarding the themes of the course both in writing and orally

General competence:

The student is able to communicate about problematic areas, analysis, and conclusions in this field of knowledge.

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction

Autumn or spring

Place of Instruction

Required Previous Knowledge
Recommended Previous Knowledge
The course literature is in English. Students should therefore have a sound knowledge of English.
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap

Due to course overlap, students cannot take RELV223 in combination with RELV323

If combined, the outcome of credits will be reduced with 15 ECTS credits.

Access to the Course
The course is open to all students enrolled in the University of Bergen
Teaching and learning methods
Lectures (approximately 10, totally 20 hours)
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
Forms of Assessment

Written school exam (up to 3000 words) of 6 hours.

The exam assignment will be given in English.

The exam can be submitted in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading Scale
A graded marking scale (A to F) is used. A is the top grade and F means Failed.
Assessment Semester


There will also be assessment early spring semester (only for students with valid mandatory course requirements, if any), given that the course is instructed the semester before.

Reading List

The reading list runs to about 1000-1500 pages.

The reading list is published by July 1st for the autumn semester.

Course Evaluation
The course unit will be evaluated regularly.
Examination Support Material
If the course is given in English, a dictionary (without any notes in it) between your own language and English is permitted (for example, a German-English-German or a French-English-French dictionary). You may bring your own dictionary to the exam location. The teacher will check the dictionary at the exam location.
Programme Committee
The Programme Committee for The Study of Religions
Course Coordinator
The Programme Committee for The Study of Religions
Course Administrator
Department of Archaeology, History, Cultural Studies- and Religion (AHKR)