Dr. Younus Y. Mirza is a Visiting Researcher at Georgetown University and the Founding Director of Global Virtual Learning at Shenandoah University.  He defended his dissertation in Arabic and Islamic Studies from Georgetown University and has taught at Millsaps and Allegheny Colleges.  His current research focuses on the relationship between the Bible and the Qur’an and the shared stories between them.  He is a co-author of the book The Bible and the Qur’an: Biblical Figures in the Islamic Tradition and has published in various journals such as the Journal of the American Academy of Religion (JAAR), the Journal of Qur’anic Studies (JQS) and Islam Christian-Muslim Relations (ICMR).  In his teaching, he has been profiled by Interfaith America and has won a teaching award for his First Year Seminar course.  He regularly teaches classes on the Qur’an,  Biblical and Qur’anic Prophets, Marriage and Sexuality in Islam and Islam and Other Religions.

His blog “What’s in a Name?” explains the origins of his research interests and his academic writings can be accessed here.

Senior Editor
Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Religion
Fall 2021 – Present

Visiting Researcher
Georgetown University, Center for Christian-Muslim Understanding, Washington, DC,
Fall 2017 – Present

Scholar in Residence and Founding Director of Global Virtual Learning
Shenandoah University, College of Arts and Sciences, Winchester, VA, Summer 2018 – Present

Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies
Allegheny College, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Meadville, PA,
Fall 2013 – 2018

Courses Taught: Introduction to Islam, the Qur’an, Islam and Other Religions, Marriage and Sexuality in Islam, Modern Islamic Movements and Islam in America

Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Religious Studies
Millsaps College, Department of Religious Studies, Jackson, MS, Fall 2012 – Spring 2013

Courses Taught: Modern Islamic Movements, Jesus in the Qur’an: The Reception of Biblical Literature in the Islamic Tradition, Muhammad Comes to America: The History of Islam in the United States

Adjunct Professor of Islamic History, Georgetown University,  June 2012

Course Taught: Introduction to the Islamic World; Organized a guest lecturer series

Arabic Teaching Assistant, Georgetown University, September 2006- May 2007, September  2008 – December 2010

Courses: intensive beginning and intermediate Arabic

 PhD, Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies, Georgetown University, May 2012

Dissertation Topic: Ibn Kathir (d. 1373): His Intellectual Circle, Major Works and Qur’anic Exegesis

Coursework Included: Prophetic Reports, Arabic Biographical Dictionaries, Arabic Grammatical Theory, Islamic Sectarianism, Classical Arabic Prose and Poetry, Islam & Modernity, Islamic Theology

Graduated with Distinction, Center for Contemporary Arab Studies Arabic Language Scholarship, University of Qatar, , 2005-2006

Master of Arts with distinction in Arab Studies, Culture and Society, Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service May 2005

Coursework Includes: Islamic Movements, Qur’anic Exegesis, Sufism, Contemporary Muslim Intellectuals, Qur’an and History, Arab Culture and Society

Bachelors of Science in Foreign Service, cum laude in Culture and Politics, Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service May 2005
with a Certificate in Islam and Muslim-Christian Understanding

Presidential Scholar, Elliot School of Foreign Service, George Washington University, 2000-2001


American Academy of Religion (AAR) Collaborative International Research Grant 2018

Invited to join NetVUE working group on Vocational Exploration in Multi-Faith Contexts,  August 1st 2016 – 2018

Selected Participant, Interfaith Understanding Teaching Workshop at DePaul University organized by the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), August 2014


Adviser to the Study of Religion Across Civilizations (SORAC) Morocco-US Exchange Program, 2014 – Present

Faculty Advisory Board Member, America’s Unofficial Ambassadors, 2014 – 2017

Middle East Studies Association (MESA), 2005 – Present

American Academy of Religion (AAR), 2006 – Present

Society of Biblical Literature (SBL), 2011 – Present


Arabic (fluent)
English (fluent)
French (reading)
German (reading)
Persian (intermediate)
Urdu (listening)

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