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Hebrew Language Curriculum at IUB

"My Hebrew has improved immensely over the years, and it is largely due to the IU Jewish Studies Modern Hebrew Language Program. The faculty is wonderful!"
-- Leah Boresow

  1. Hebrew Language Curriculum Overview
  2. The Hebrew Placement Exam
  3. Hebrew Activities Outside The Classroom:
    1. Hebrew Lab Sessions
    2. Hebrew Tutorial services
  4. How to Receive IU Credit for Hebrew Courses Not Taken at IUB
  5. FAQ or How to Find Out Additional Information
  6. Contact Information

1. Hebrew Language Curriculum Overview

The Hebrew language curriculum at IUB consist of a four-year sequence of Language and Literature courses. The undergraduate courses are offered through the Borns Jewish Studies Program and the Graduate courses are offered through the NELC (Near Eastern Languages and Cultures) Department. Undergraduate students may earn a Minor in Hebrew through the Borns Jewish Studies Program.

The Hebrew Program offers two language tracks:

  1. The Modern Hebrew Language Track, which consists of the following sequence of courses:
    JSTU-H100, JSTU-H150, JSTU-H200, JSTU-H250, JSTU-H300, JSTU-H350, JSTU-H375, JSTU-H497 and a variety of specialized-topic courses at the 400 level, which are offered each year. At the graduate level each of these courses has a parallel section under the NELC Department.
  2. The Biblical Hebrew Language Track, which consists of the following sequence of courses:
    JSTU-H100, JSTU-H150, JSTU-B200, JSTU-B250, JSTU-H300, JSTU-H350, JSTU-H497 and a variety of specialized-topic courses, which are offered each year. At the graduate level most of these courses have a parallel section under the NELC Department.

In both language tracks, courses must be taken in sequence. Except for the JSTU-H100/NELC-H501 course, all other courses have prerequisites which require students to successfully complete lower language levels.

Both language tracks share the same first year courses (JSTU-H100 and JSTU-H150 for the undergraduate students, and NELC-H501 and NELC-H502 for the graduate students). Each of these language tracks offers a different second year course-sequence (JSTU-H200/NELC-H503 and JSTU-H250/NELC-H504 for the Modern Hebrew Track, and JSTU-B200/NELC-N473 and JSTU-B250/NELC-N517 for the Biblical Hebrew Track).

Hebrew language courses are offered at the 100 through the 400 levels for undergraduates, and at the 500 level for graduate students. The undergraduate 100-200 level courses comprise the first two years and satisfy the foreign language requirement, in both the Modern Hebrew and the Biblical Hebrew language tracks. These courses meet with the 500 level courses, for the graduate students, respectively.

The first year courses (100-150/501-502) are offered 4 times a week Monday-Thursday during the morning and early afternoon hours. Each meeting is 50 minutes. Classes are conducted in small groups normally of 20 or less students, allowing personal focus and frequent verbal communication between the instructors and the students in the class. Instructors are thus able to develop a personal relationship with each student in class. Classes are conducted in the target language: solely in Hebrew. This allows students to acquire the language faster and reach a solid level of understanding, by offering many daily opportunities to speak, read and write in the language, right from the very beginning. For details on the exact courses offered this semester, please see the course descriptions.

The second year courses (200-250/503-504) are offered 3 times a week: Monday, Wednesday, Friday during the morning and early afternoon hours. Each meeting is 50 minutes. Classes are conducted in small groups normally of 20 or less students, allowing personal focus and attention to every student through frequent verbal communication between the instructor and the students in class. Instructors are thus able to develop a personal relationship with each student in class. Classes are conducted solely in Hebrew. This allows students to acquire the language faster and develop strong conversational abilities, while also supporting their reading and writing skill development. For details on the exact courses offered this semester, please see the course descriptions.

The third year courses (300-350/505-506) are offered 3 times a week: Monday, Wednesday, Friday during the morning or early afternoon hours. Each meeting is 50 minutes. Classes are conducted in small groups normally of 15 or less students, allowing personal focus and attention to every student through frequent verbal communication between the instructor and the students in class. Instructors are thus able to develop a personal relationship with each student in class. Classes are conducted solely in Hebrew. This allows students to acquire the language faster and develop strong conversational abilities, while also supporting their reading and writing skill development. For details on the exact courses offered this semester, please see the course descriptions.

Hebrew language courses are offered during both the fall and the spring semesters. All Hebrew Language courses must be taken in sequence, whether students start their studies in the fall or in the spring semester. To determine whether students should start their Hebrew studies at the very beginning or should skip to a higher language level, students with prior Hebrew background are required to take the Online Hebrew Placement Exam or the Hebrew Profeciency Exam. These exams determine if students may skip a level and whether they may receive any special or transfer Hebrew language credit for some of the levels they skip.

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2. The Hebrew Placement Exam and the Hebrew Proficiency Exam

The Hebrew Placement Exam
The Hebrew Placement Exam is offered online (foreignlanguageplacement.indiana.edu/exam). It may take up-to 60 minutes. Students can take this exam by logging into IUB’s Online Language Placement Exams webpage, from any computer with internet access. It is strongly recommended that all new incoming freshman and transfer students complete the Hebrew Placement Exam prior to freshman summer orientation. Students who do so will receive their Hebrew placement during their advising session at orientation. The results of the placement exam allow students to fulfill Hebrew course prerequisites and enroll in a Hebrew course for the fall and/or the spring semester. This exam does NOT award any credit for prior Hebrew studies/knowledge. Students who place above the basic Hebrew level and want credit for the second year courses they skip MUST complete the course into which they have placed, earning a grade of C or higher in that course. Credit may only be awarded for skipping the second year Hebrew courses. Students who are interested in Hebrew language transfer credit should take a second exam: the Hebrew Proficiency Exam.

The Hebrew Proficiency Exam
Students who have taken Hebrew courses at another college/university, for which they want transfer credit, should take the Hebrew Proficiency Exam, before starting their Hebrew studies at IUB. This exam determines whether students may receive any IU Hebrew language credit for any Hebrew courses taken away from the IUB campus. The exam may also determine whether students can skip any Hebrew language levels at IUB. Aside from awarding transfer credit, the exam may also fulfill course prerequisites, required to enroll in a Hebrew course beyond the very elementary level, and at the intermediate or advanced levels. The Proficiency Exam is offered four times a year: at the beginning of each semester and once before the registration period starts, during the course of the semester. To see the next exam session check the Hebrew proficiency exam schedule. To sign-up for the next available exam session, please email the Director of the Hebrew Language Program (Ayelet Weiss), at ayweiss@indiana.edu.

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3. Hebrew Activities Outside the Classroom

The Hebrew program at IUB offers certain activities to build and strengthen Hebrew language use.

The Hebrew program offers lab sessions, where students can individually practice the material they learn, outside the classroom setting, at their own pace. To use the lab sessions, students must be enrolled in a Hebrew course during the semester.

The Hebrew Program offers tutorial services for students who are currently enrolled in the Hebrew Language courses. This service allows students to receive weekly assistance from other Hebrew language students, who study at a higher language level. This service is provided free of charge and is supervised by the Hebrew language faculty. Tutorial sessions are offered once a week, during the weeks of the semester. Tutors and tutees are paired-up by the program and continue to work together throughout the semester. Students who enjoy this service must therefore commit to meeting their tutor on a regular basis, every week, at a predetermined time and location. Each tutor and each tutee determine their own meeting time and place. Students interested in being a tutor in Hebrew should contact the Hebrew Program Director, Ayelet Weiss, at ayweiss@indiana.edu. Hebrew Tutors may receive credit for tutoring students in a given semester. For additional details about such credit, please contact the Hebrew Program director. Students who want to benefit from this language tutorial service, in order to strengthen their language skills and abilities, may contact their own language teacher to request the service, or may contact the Hebrew Program director at ayweiss@indiana.edu.

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4. How to Receive IU Credit for Hebrew Courses Not Taken at IUB

Students who take Hebrew language courses at other higher education institutions may apply to transfer that credit to IUB. Such credit may be transferred from anywhere in the world, and may apply as Hebrew language credit, instead of taking a Hebrew language course at IUB. In order to apply for such credit, students must fill out a Hebrew Credit Application Form and submit their course materials and their official transcripts, along with their application. This application should be completed as soon as possible after students complete such studies, and should be submitted to the Hebrew Program Director, upon the student's return to campus. Students who go through the Overseas Studies Program will receive credit for their Hebrew courses; however, such credit does not count instead of a Hebrew course at IUB. In order to receive credit which counts in lieu of a Hebrew course at IUB, it is necessary to apply for such credit directly with the Jewish Studies Program. For further details please check the Hebrew Credit Application Form, or email the Hebrew Program Director, Ayelet Weiss, at ayweiss@indiana.edu.

Students who attend the IU-Jerusalem Program, at the Rothberg International School of Hebrew University in Jerusalem, may receive Hebrew credit for all of their Hebrew courses in Jerusalem, if they take the Intensive Language Courses. Students who do not take the Intensive Language Courses in Jerusalem, or who take Hebrew courses at any other institute, would likely need to take a proficiency exam, in order to determine the exact Hebrew credit they might receive for their transferred courses. Each such credit will be determined based on the student’s Hebrew Credit Application, on a case-by-case basis, while taking into consideration the levels a student had studied, the grades received, and the results of the Hebrew proficiency exam. The final credit decision is made by the Hebrew Program Director. This decision will determine the exact Hebrew credit distribution on the student’s IU-transcript, including all awarded credit for any Hebrew courses taken at other Universities.

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5. FAQ or How to Find Out Additional Information

This section will display the frequently asked questions students present, regarding any Hebrew courses, Hebrew language policies, or Hebrew Language opportunities.

This section will also contain information about available Hebrew resources on campus and on the web.

This section is currently under construction.

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6. Contact Information

The Hebrew Language offices are located within the Borns Jewish Studies Program offices in Goodbody Hall and the Memorial Hall buildings, on the Bloomington campus of Indiana University.

The Hebrew Language Faculty:

Ayelet Weiss
Hebrew Program Director
Senior Lecturer of Hebrew
Office: Goodbody Hall 312
Phone: 812-855-2338
Email: ayweiss@indiana.edu

Michal Maoz-Levy
Senior Lecturer of Hebrew
Office: Memorial Hall West 008
Phone: 812-856-1936
Email: mmaoz@indiana.edu

Leah Cover
Visiting Lecturer of Hebrew
Office: Memorial Hall West 009
Phone: 812-856-1431
Email: lecover@indiana.edu

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