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Program Requirements

College of Arts and Science Language Requirement

  • Students who wish to satisfy the A&S language requirement with Hebrew must complete two semesters of Hebrew. Alternatively, students with prior Hebrew coursework elsewhere can take the placement exam to fulfill this requirement.

Proficiency Exam

  • The Hebrew language proficiency exam is offered before the Fall or Spring semester.  To register for the exam, students should contact Professor Mazalit Haim at to schedule a meeting that will help evaluate the student’s preparedness to take this exam.

Jewish Studies Majors

  • Students must complete two semesters of Intermediate Hebrew to fulfill this requirement. Alternatively, they may take an exam to prove intermediate-level proficiency.

Jewish Studies Minors

  • Hebrew is not required for the minor. However, students may count Hebrew classes as electives towards the minor.

Levels of Hebrew at Vanderbilt

  • Beginner Level I – No prior knowledge of Hebrew is needed. Students learn the Hebrew alphabet and acquire Hebrew vocabulary to ask and answer basic questions. Students learn to read short textual units.
  • Beginner Level II – Students begin mastering aspects of Hebrew  grammar, such as verb conjugations and verb tenses. They read longer texts and apply their learning in conversations, simulating real-life experiences.
  • Intermediate Level – Students master a variety of language skills. They read short stories in Hebrew, conduct conversations about themselves and family members, and write short texts.
  • Advanced Level–Students who wish to pursue advanced level Hebrew may do so through independent study. Please contact for further information.

Intercultural Competence

  • At Vanderbilt, there is a strong focus on intercultural competence in the study of Hebrew. This means that along with language skills, there is a strong emphasis on the diverse perspectives, material cultures, and practices that shape this language. Movies, music and visual art constitute an integral part of our Hebrew language classes and cultural events. Israeli artists and writers are often invited to discuss the many facets of Israeli culture and society with students.