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Interfaith Youth Core and Dominican University are delighted to share this curriculum for the course entitled Introduction to Interfaith Leadership.


Introduction to Interfaith Leadership


Dominican University and Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC) have built an eight-lesson curriculum exploring the fundamentals of Interfaith Leadership through generous funding from the Henry Luce Foundation. The world today requires interfaith leaders, and this course offers a comprehensive and academically rigorous examination of this concept.

Media Format & Access

This complete curriculum is available in two formats:
Downloadable Resources for in-class and blended learning: You may download the resources on this page for use in your own course. There is no fee to use these materials, and we may contact you to learn more about how you are using them, and to measure their strengths and weaknesses.

Online Learning: Individuals interested in taking this course as a free online offering may do so through Canvas.net. This online course features the same content and structure as the downloadable curriculum here, and will be facilitated by faculty from Dominican University. The online version of the course offers unique opportunities for engagement between students and other individuals around the country through interactive discussions and activities in one virtual classroom. Register for the online course here.

Course Structure & Design

This curriculum was designed to be adaptable to meet the needs of faculty in diverse settings and disciplines. Thus, while the complete curriculum represents an entire course, it is broken up into several constituent parts:

8 lessons, each of which is designed to be equivalent to roughly one week’s worth of content and instruction in a typical introductory-level undergraduate course.

Each lesson is divided further into 3-5 learning modules, each of which comprises:

  • 2-5 learning objectives;
  • A 3- to 12-minute video;
  • Suggested readings; and
  • Suggested discussion questions, activities, and assessments.


You are invited to use this curriculum in whatever format best suits your needs, either by using only select modules and/or by using select components within any given module.

With that said, the designers believe that this curriculum functions best when students engage each learning module as an integrated whole. We therefore strongly encourage you to utilize both video content and associated activities in your classes where appropriate.

In order to showcase what we believe is the optimal version of this course, we have indicated which activities and readings are required in the Canvas version of the course administered by Dominican University. We have also included a variety of additional suggested and recommended activities and readings throughout the curriculum.

Please contact Carolyn Roncolato at carolyn@ifyc.org if you have any questions about content or how to use this curriculum in an upcoming course.

This project was made possible by generous funding from the Henry Luce Foundation.

Frequently Asked Questions

What will my students learn through the Introduction to Interfaith Leadership course?

This eight-lesson course covers an array of topics, beginning with fundamental questions around religious identity and moving on to building blocks of social theory, pluralism, and religious literacy. Students will explore some of the history of interfaith cooperation in the United States, learn skills such as dialogue facilitation, and be able to better recognize and address issues of religious difference and its impact on everyday life, including in several professional sectors such as business, medicine, and education.

Who is the appropriate audience for this course?

The course was designed to be engaged by undergraduate students in the classroom, either through blended or online learning models. Some campus professionals have also found these materials useful for student leadership trainings, interfaith clubs, and even staff development. The skills and knowledge included in this course will be relevant to students interested in the liberal arts and humanities, as well as professions such as medicine, business, education, and technology that are experiencing rapid religious diversification.

What does this curriculum include?

Each of the eight lessons is divided into 3-5 short modules, consisting of dynamic video content, discussion questions, and recommended readings and learning activities. Several videos feature Eboo Patel, president and founder of Interfaith Youth Core, and interviews with young professionals in a variety of fields, sharing their own experiences with interfaith leadership in their day-to-day lives. These multiple elements work together to strengthen student learning, and encourage application of that learning to students’ lives outside the classroom. See descriptions of each module with sample components.

May I use certain modules in my courses, instead of the whole curriculum?

This course was designed with rigorous attention to learning outcomes and process, and therefore functions best as a whole, with lessons and modules building on one another. However, it was also designed to be adaptable to the diverse needs of individual courses and faculty, which is why we have identified the learning objectives of each module, and have packaged each module individually. We encourage you to pick and choose the modules that will best serve your students, and to use only what works for you.

How do I access the resources, and what does IFYC need from me in return?

These resources are completely free for you to download and use in your course or program. You may access the full curriculum from our site, or register here to participate in the online course taught by Dominican University faculty. In exchange for using this material for free, we ask that you help us to assess these resources. After you access this curriculum, IFYC will contact you to offer support and solicit information about your plans for implementation, and by downloading these materials, you agree to provide this information to the best of your ability. Your responses will be invaluable to our continued work in the area of curriculum development. You also agree to credit IFYC and Dominican University where appropriate.

What have other faculty said about the course?

“My students used to resent having to take a required religions course.  They thought it was useless and irrelevant to their major fields of study.  Most of them invested the bare minimum of effort needed just to pass.  IFYC's Interfaith Leadership curriculum resources help them to see how crucial it is for them, in their professional lives, to have the skills and knowledge to build bridges with diverse people who orient around religion differently.  The quality of their written and oral assignments has rocketed up Bloom's taxonomy from basic religious literacy knowledge, to keen analysis, application, and evaluation.”

Joan Crist, Calumet College of St. Joseph

Who can I talk to for more information, or for assistance implementing this curriculum into my course?

If you have any questions, or would like to speak to someone about how to best integrate these resources into an existing course or plan for a new course, contact Carolyn Roncolato (carolyn@ifyc.org).