In 2016, Dr. Marion Larson participated in a Teaching Interfaith Understanding faculty development
seminar, run in partnership between the Council of Independent Colleges and Interfaith America, and
generously funded by the Henry Luce Foundation. For information on future seminars, and to access
more resources created by seminar alumni, visit The Council of Independent Colleges.
This course compares important literary works from both the Christian and Islamic worlds from the Middle Ages to the present, and emphasizes literary and historical study, as well as vigorous dialogue and inquiry, as vital tools for understanding present-day Christian and Muslim cultures. A significant cross-cultural experience, involving interaction with Muslim communities, is required.
Students experience an off-campus person-to-person intercultural engagement of at least 25 hours with a specific cultural group that supports the development of awareness of the student’s own culture and the culture with which the student is interacting. Students develop an increased understanding of the complexity and tension cultural difference has on interaction with others. This experience places students in an experiential learning environment (domestic or abroad) that included faculty guided preexperience preparation and post-experience processing.