The Department of Hadith provides instruction in two main branches of hadith studies: riwāyat al-ḥadīth (the study of hadith chains) and dirāyat al-ḥadīth (the study of hadith texts), with a focus on developing proficiency in three particular areas of learning:

  • (1) Hadith nomenclature (muṣtalaḥ al-ḥadīth)
  • (2) Hadith criticism (naqd al-ḥadīth)
  • (3) Hadith text study (matn al-ḥadīth).

Within the Intermediate Islamic Studies program, students are exposed to an understanding of Islamic ethics through the textual study of hadith works like Imam al-Nawawī’s Riyāḍ al-Ṣāliḥīn. A more thorough exposure to al-mafhūm al-islāmī (Islamic content) is achieved through the study of Imam Tabrīzī’s hadith super-collection Mishkāt al-Maṣābīḥ in the final year of the intermediate program.

Hadith nomenclature at the intermediate level is introduced through basic texts like al-Bayqūniyyah and ʿAbd al-Ḥaqq al-Dihlawī’s Muqaddamah fī Uṣūl al-Ḥadīth and proficiency developed through a critical study of Ibn Ḥajar’s Nuzhat al-Naẓar and its various commentaries, including Muḥammad Akram al-Sindī’s Imʿān al-Naẓar and Mullā ʿAlī al-Qārī’s Sharḥ Sharḥ al-Nukhbah.

In the Advanced Islamic Law and Islamic Theology program, an expansive study of primary hadith collections with a critical view of their chains and texts is divided into stages, beginning with a study of hadith literature through a legal lens. Students are taught to understand the arguments of a legal school through the study of their hadith evidences primarily using Imam Mālik’s al-Muwaṭṭā (through the transmissions of Muḥammad b. al-Ḥasan al-Shaybānī and Yaḥyā b. Yaḥyā al-Laythī) and Imam al-Ṭaḥāwī’s Sharḥ Maʿānī al-Āthār, and secondarily through Imam Abū Ḥanīfah’s Kitāb al-Āthār and various Masānīd as well as Imam Muḥammad’s Kitāb al-Ḥujjah ʿalā Ahl al-Madīnah.

Source criticism (takhrīj al-ḥadīth wa dirāsat al-asānīd) is then both theoretically studied and practically applied through the various Sunan works, including those of Imam Ibn Mājah and Imam al-Nasāʾī. Students critically analyze the zawāʾid (narrations unique among the six canonical works) of Ibn Mājah with a focus on the critique of their narrators (rijāl) and also understand the process of hadith takhrīj (source citation and ruling) through the chains of Imam al-Nasāʾī’s al-Mujtabā.

The Advanced level program culminates with a complete and detailed reading of the Sunans of Imams Abū Dāwūd and al-Tirmidhī, with a brief commentary of the legal discussions involved in each chapter of the texts and a study of the two Ṣaḥīḥs of Imams al-Bukhārī and Muslim with a focus on studying their works through the the lens of the author and not necessarily through one’s madhhab (Legal School of Thought).


Mawlana Bilal Ali Ansari

Liaison, Department of Hadith

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550 Regency Dr.
Glendale Heights, IL 60139

Mon – Thu 8:00A.M. – 3:00P.M. CST
Fr 8:00A.M. – 12:00P.M. CST

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