Jewish Communal Service Certificate
Program Director: Dr. Hana Bor
The Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Jewish Communal Service is a 20-unit graduate program that prepares professional leaders for careers in the Jewish community. Students train for positions in a variety of settings, including Jewish Federations, Jewish Family Services, Jewish Community Centers, Jewish camps, Hillel, Jewish organizational life and synagogues. Core components include three graduate Jewish studies courses, three professional courses, a practicum seminar and a final project. All courses are selected with the approval of the Program Director.
- Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university**
- Official transcript from all post-secondary institutions
- Minimum of a B average: overall GPA of 3.00/4.00
- Statement of Intent: a one-page essay describing your academic and professional goals and how this degree program can help you achieve these goals
- Sample of Work: a written sample of an academic research paper, thesis chapter, lesson plan or another type of field-related writing sample, no more than 20 pages
- Two letters of recommendation, at least one from an academic source.
- Applicants must be available for an interview with the director, in person or by phone.
- Current résumé
- Applicants from other countries are subject to the same requirements for admission as are applicants from the U.S. Applicants from countries where English is not the language of university-level instruction will be required to submit the results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). JCS prefers a minimum score of 223 (computer-based) and 84-85 (internet-based). For information about testing center locations, please visit the TOEFL website.
- Applicants from other countries will be required to demonstrate proof of funding in order to obtain a visa to attend school in the U.S. This information is not required for admissions consideration.
Non-immigrant international students: See additional admission information in Graduate Admissions
**See Exceptions to Policy in Graduate Admissions
|Jewish Studies Courses|
|Select one of the following:||3|
|BIBLICAL LITERATURE AND CIVILIZATION|
|JEWISH LAW AND ETHICS|
|INTRODUCTION TO RABBINIC LITERATURE AND HISTORY|
|MEDIEVAL JEWISH HISTORY|
|JEWS IN THE MODERN WORLD|
|INTRODUCTION TO JEWISH THOUGHT|
|Select one course in Contemporary Jewish Studies. Examples of courses include:||3|
|DIASPORA JEWISH COMMUNITIES|
|AMERICAN JEWISH HISTORY|
|CONTEMPORARY JEWISH ETHICS: RESHAPING THE JEWISH IDENTITY IN OUR GENERATION|
|SPECIAL TOPICS IN JUDAIC STUDIES|
|Select one Jewish Studies elective||3|
|LJEC 600||LEADERSHIP IN JEWISH EDUCATION AND COMMUNITIES||3|
|Select at least one of the following:||3|
|PRINCIPLES OF JEWISH COMMUNAL SERVICE|
|MANAGMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES:LEADERSHIP AND SUPERVISION|
|STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT OF JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS: MATERIAL RESOURCES|
|Select one Jewish Communal Service Elective.||3|
|Complete four terms of the following:||2|
|JEWISH COMMUNAL SERVICE PRACTICUM SEMINAR|
|Submit a final project.|
- Demonstrate content knowledge in Jewish studies.
- Demonstrate knowledge of research techniques relevant to organization management and community development.
- Write clearly and persuasively for a variety of purposes and for different audiences.
- Applying appropriate critical-thinking/problem-solving skills and communication skills in discipline-specific contexts.
- Use technology to gather and evaluate information for decision making.
- Use technology to enhance productivity and outreach.
Jewish Studies Courses
JDST 544 BIBLICAL HEBREW I (3)
Introduction to Hebrew with emphasis on the grammar, vocabulary, syntax, and style of Biblical Hebrew. The fundamentals of Hebrew language;preparation to read and translate classical Hebrew texts. Foundation for continued studies of the classical Hebrew of the Hebrew Bible and rabbinic texts as well as the Hebrew of the contemporary idiom. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 545 BIBLICAL HEBREW II (3)
Introduction to the fundamentals of Hebrew language; foundation for continued studies of the classical Hebrew contain in the Hebrew Bible and rabbinic texts as well as the Hebrew of the contemporary idion. Prerequisites: JDST 544 Biblical Hebrew I or consent of instructor.
JDST 546 BIBLICAL HEBREW III (3)
Continued study of Biblical Hebrew tests with concentration on more complicated structures of Hebrew grammar, morphology, syntax, and vocabulary. Prerequisites: Six units of Biblical Hebrew or consent of instructor.
JDST 547 BIBLICAL HEBREW IV (3)
Reinforcement and expansion of existing knowledge of Biblical Hebvrew; use of classical Hebrew texts to review Biblical Hebrew grammar and to build vocabulary; introduction of literary features in Biblical Hebrew narrative. Prerquisites: JDST 546 or consent of instructor.
JDST 585 JEWISH LAW AND ETHICS (3)
Cutting edge issues of ethical and legal concern as understood by traditional Jewish legal and ethical sources and by contemporary Jewish thinkers. Basic structure and methodology of Jewish law. Understanding of the system through examination of different issues. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 600 BIBLICAL LITERATURE AND CIVILIZATION (3)
The Bible as the primary vehicle for the understanding of Israelite civilization. Critical examination of the Bible and its literature. Insights on literary form, style and function in ancient Israel; Israel's culture and history during the first millennium BCE; and Israel's religious ideas, institutions and theology. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 607 II SAMUEL - THE RISE AND FALL OF DAVID, THE KING (3)
Critical historical and literary analysis of the text of II Samuel, the narrative of the rise of the Davidic Kingdom centered in Jerusalem. Dramatic rise and tragic decline of David himself. Read and analyzed from a variety of exegetical perspectives. Exploration of viewpoints of author and audience and of the historical reality of the formative epoch of the ancient Israelite Kingdom. Prerequisite: None.
JDST 608 I KINGS: REFLECTIONS OF A GOLDEN AGE (3)
Careful reading and study of I Kings from a variety of exegetical perspectives. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 609 II KINGS; SOCIO-LITERARY PERSPECTIVES (3)
Survey of II Kings; the literary portrayal of ideological, historiographic, literary, theological and overarching cultural issues; nature of literary genres in II Kings. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 610 DIASPORA JEWISH COMMUNITIES (3)
Survey of Jewish world following World War II, examining Jewish communities in Israel, North America, Western, Central and Eastern Europe, South America, South Africa and Australia. Jewish life in each region, diverse challenges to maintaining Jewish distinctiveness; Diaspora Jewish communities' changing relationship to Israel and Zionism; shifting role of Israeli Jewry and American Jewry on the world stage in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 611 AMERICAN JEWISH HISTORY (3)
Comprehensive introduction to the 350-year history of the American Jewish community. The colonial and revolutionary periods: Jewish immigration to the U.S. from Central Europe (1840-1880) and Eastern Europe (1881-1924); life in the United Stated during the first half of the 20th century, including the impact of World War I, the depression, the Holocaust and the founding of Israel on American Jewish life; post-World War II developments including the crisis in Jewish liberalism, and complicated relations between Blacks and Jews; ethnic revival following the Six-Day War in 1967; debates over affirmative action; contemporary Jewish issues.
JDST 617 JEWISH STUDIES INTERNSHIP (3)
Practical experiences within the historical profession. Special Permit required. Prerequisites: Approval of the program director.
JDST 625 RACE, GENDER, SEXUALITY, AND JUDAISM (3)
In-depth look at critical social issues in contemporary Judaism. Significant primary and secondary source analysis. Focus on Jewish law, tradition, practice, and identity.
JDST 630 MEDIEVAL JEWISH HISTORY (3)
Jewish history from the seventh century through the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492.
JDST 631 JEWS IN THE MODERN WORLD (3)
Major transformations in Jewish history from the enlightenment through the conclusion of the twentieth century. Topics include: Jewish emancipation in Europe, religious transformations, the rise of modern anti-Semitism, East European Jewry and the emergence of Jewish politics and secular Jewish ideologies, the Zionist movement, the Holocaust, the founding and impact of the state of Israel, and the emergence of a vibrant American Jewish community. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 641 CLASSICAL HEBREW LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE II: SECOND SAMUEL (3)
Advanced Hebrew course that surveys the biblical book of 2 Samuel. Prerequisites: 12 units of college-level Biblical Hebrew or consent of instructor.
JDST 650 SPECIAL TOPICS IN JUDAIC STUDIES (3)
Diverse topics in the study of Judaism. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits provided a different topic is selected.
JDST 661 THE TANYA:THE MAGNUM OPUS OF HASIDIC LITERATURE (3)
Themes from the Tanya: the religious stature of the righteous; the influence of evil on the soul; the praxis of human attachment to divine reality; Hasidic gates of repentance and forgiveness; communion with the divine through spiritual happiness; letters of and words as diving ontology; the religious process of speech, thought, and action; and spiritual living in a state of nothingness. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 662 MYSTERIES OF THE HOLY ZOHAR (3)
Exploration of some of the focal Zoharic of the Holy Zohar, the most influential Kabbalistic composition, important to core beliefs of Jewish spirituality. Zoharic language symbolism, the mystery of Ein-Sof and the Ten Sefirot, and other esoteric doctrines in the Zohar. Attention to basic Zoharic terminology in Hebrew and Aramaic. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 663 CONTEMPORARY JEWISH ETHICS: RESHAPING THE JEWISH IDENTITY IN OUR GENERATION (3)
Innovative trends of Jewish ethics and spirituality in the new modern Jewish world. Contemporary ideologies of both secular and religious Judaism since the rise of Haskalah and Zionism. Reflections on the Jewish community in America, and on the Jewish people in Israel. Influential authors including Rosenzweig, Buber, Heschel, Kaplan, Soloveitchik, Agnon, Scholem, and Leibowitz. Jewish authenticity and individuality; existential freedom and ethical responsibility; assimilation and secularism; contemporary spirituality and creativity. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 666 INTRODUCTION TO JEWISH THOUGHT (3)
Examination of the religious ideas and the historical developments of Jewish thought over the last two thousand years. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 680 INTRODUCTION TO RABBINIC LITERATURE AND HISTORY (3)
Exploration of the history, literature and major personalities of the period from the return of the Jews from the Babylonian exile (516 BCE) until the Arab conquest of Palestine (c. 634 CE). Prerequisites: None.
JDST 681 RABBINIC THOUGHT (3)
Major topics in the thought of rabbis who lived between the 1st century BCE and the 7th century CE. Focus on the historical context, namely how to live a spiritual life without the Temple; the role of the Torah and rabbis without the Temple; and universal questions such as interpersonal ethics and treatment of the other.
JDST 683 DIRECTED INDIVIDUAL RESEARCH (1-4)
Research and reading with a topic to be selected by the instructor and student. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits. Special Permit required. Prerequisites: Graduate standing, 18 units of graduate work, and consent of program director.
JDST 697 DIRECTED READING IN JEWISH STUDIES (2-4)
Reading in areas with a topic to be selected by the instructor and the student. No more than 6 units of 697 and 797 may be applied toward a degree. Course may be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits. Special Permit required. Prerequisites: Graduate Standing, 18 units of graduate work, and consent of instructor and program director.
JDST 719 JEWISH STUDIES SEMINAR (0.5)
The seminar will be held three evenings each semester and be a combination of scheduled lecturers and faculty and student presentations. Register for this course every semester. Required of all Master's students.
JDST 781 FOR THE SAKE OF THE BOUND WOMAN, THE RABBIS WERE LENIENT (3)
Applications and adaptations of Jewish law regarding the issue of a man's disappearance: due to war, persecution or tragedy, that left his wife legally bound to a husband who was possibly dead; historical examples where this situation was prevalent including the Hadrianic Persecutions, the Crusades, the Holocaust and 9/11. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 783 HISTORY OF JEWISH BIBLICAL EXEGESIS I: FROM THE BIBLE TO THE CLOSE OF THE TALMUD (3)
Exploration of different ways the Bible was read and interpreted in ancient Jewish History Analysis of early history of different tools and approaches. Ways in which the Bible was understood within the Bible itself. Discussion of mechanisms such as trope and conscious preservation of variant reading. Examination of Bible interpretation in Philo, the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Apocrypha. Rabbinic literature from the 2nd through the 7th centuries C.E. and the Bible. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 784 HISTORY OF JEWISH BIBLICAL EXEGESIS II: FROM THE CLOSE OF THE TALMUD TO THE MODERN PERIOD (3)
Course will analyzes the history of different approaches to understanding the Biblical text used by Jewish scholars from the 8th Century to contemporary times. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 797 DIRECTED INDIVIDUAL RESEARCH IN JEWISH STUDIES (3)
Research and reading with a topic to be selected by the instructor and student. Special Permit required. Prerequisites: Graduate standing and 18 units of JDST core courses.
JDST 890 JDST DOCTORAL SEMINAR (0.5)
The seminar will be held three evenings each semester and be a combination of scheduled lecturers and faculty and student presentations. Register for the course in the second term. Required of all doctoral students. Prerequisites: None.
JDST 897 JDST THESIS (6)
Thesis research in Jewish Studies. An original investigation, using research methods and design, of a research problem. Students who have completed all other course requirements for the master's degree must register for JDST 897 for 6 units or take JDST 898 for three units for two consecutive semesters following completion of their didactic coursework. Special permit required. Prerequisites: Permission of graduate program director.
JDST 898 JDST THESIS (3)
Thesis research in Jewish Studies. This is JDST 897 taken over two consecutive semesters. Prerequisite: Permit from graduate program director.
JDST 899 THESIS CONTINUUM (1)
JDST 997 JDST DOCTORAL THESIS (6)
Thesis research in Jewish Studies. An original investigation, using research methods and design, of a research problem. Prerequisite: Permission of graduate program director.
JDST 998 JDST DOCTORAL THESIS (3)
Thesis research in Jewish Studies. An original investigation, using research methods and design, of a research problem. Special Permit required. Prerequisite: Permission of graduate program director.
JDST 999 JDST DOCTORAL CONTINUUM (1)
Doctoral thesis continuum.
Leadership in Jewish Education and Communal Servic Courses
LJEC 557 HEBREW LANGUAGE INSTRUCTIONS FOR EDUCATORS (3)
Hebrew is fundamental to any Jewish learning experience. This course will explore Hebrew from the vantage point of common language patterns, both written and spoken, that should be routinely incorporated into Jewish teaching. Students will address issues of language acquisition and develop skills for teaching Hebrew as a second language.
LJEC 600 LEADERSHIP IN JEWISH EDUCATION AND COMMUNITIES (3)
Discusses theoretical concepts, practical insights and their application to leadership within Jewish communal institutions. Focuses on inspiring and developing effective leadership by addressing topics such as building a vision, encouraging collaboration, overcoming obstacles, recognizing community values and institutional opportunities, and improving communication. Students create a personal growth plan to apply to their career path in order to understand and improve their leadership performance. Prerequisite: graduate standing.
LJEC 602 FOUNDATIONS JEWISH EDUCATION (3)
Explores the historical and theoretical foundations of Jewish education. Issues include: How did the Jewish day school, Hebrew school, and summer camp begin in the United States? What major problems do Jewish educators face and how have experts addressed these problems?.
LJEC 604 CURRICULUM PLANNING AND DECISION MAKING FOR THE JEWISH SCHOOL (3)
Provides the theoretical and practical sources for the design implementation of curricula in congregational, communal, or day school settings. Drawing from Jewish and general education sources, the course will examine primary dimensions of curriculum planning and decision making.
LJEC 606 FROM VISION TO PRACTICE IN JEWISH EDUCATION (3)
Explores the significance of school vision by learning different Jewish educational visions from multiple perspectives. Acting as social scientists, students will compare the espoused philosophy of schools to their practices in "real time" in order to develop an agenda for school change.
LJEC 610 PRINCIPLES OF JEWISH COMMUNAL SERVICE (3)
A comprehensive overview of the American Jewish community today, and a survey of specific challenges facing professionals in the field of Jewish Communal Service. Topics include major themes of American Jewish history; an introduction to the organization of the American Jewish community in the 21st century, including current day communal structures and institutional functions; an in-depth look at the most pressing issues confronting the American Jewish community today, as well as some of the newest solutions that have been raised by lay and professional leaders;and practical training in leadership skills.
LJEC 611 MANAGMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES:LEADERSHIP AND SUPERVISION (3)
Introduces broad foundations and current theories of leadership and challenges participants to consider how to implement successful leadership in 21st-century community organizations. This course guides students in considering how to apply leadership in realife personal and institutional settings. Practical training in leadership development.
LJEC 612 STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT OF JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS: MATERIAL RESOURCES (3)
Unique internal dynamics and external relationships of non-profit organizations and especially Jewish non-profits. Material resource issues such as; fiscal management, policy formation, strategic planning, marketing and fund-raising, advocacy, philanthropy and priority planning.
LJEC 614 JEWISH COMMUNAL SERVICE PRACTICUM SEMINAR (0.5)
The monthly practicum seminar provides an opportunity for Master of Arts in Jewish Communal Service students to study with their peers and professional leaders. Theoretical and practical aspects of contemporary issues are discussed as well as relations with lay leaders; and community visionaries. This seminar integrates the studies and professional development to enable students to be confident as they embark on their careers. Register for the course in the second term. Participation in the seminar is mandatory for a minimum of two years.
LJEC 615 MORAL QUESTIONS IN THE CLASSROOM (3)
Develop an understanding of competing models of moral education models that include: a virtues approach, cognitive developmentalism, and care ethics. Consider practical ways to teach texts in a variety of subjects to foster moral development as well as consider school-wide applications of moral education such as character education, discipline, and addressing bullying. Not open to students who have successfully completed EDUC 613.
LJEC 618 SUPERVISED JEWISH COMMUNAL SERVICE INTERNSHIP (1-3)
Students enrolled in the MAJCS program are required to complete a supervised field internship. This internship is carefully designed to develop leadership skills necessary to become a Jewish Communal Professional. The internship will enable students to develop the skills necessary for professional growth and adhere to the individual goals. Students must complete a minimum of two full days per week in a Jewish institution or organization. Special permit is required. Prerequisites: Consult with program director prior to registration.
LJEC 620 MODELS AND METHODS OF TEACHING LAW, CUSTOMS AND PRACTICE (3)
Provides a framework to understand Jewish religious practices. Students will learn a selection of laws, customs and rituals and will be provided with creative strategies, techniques and activities relevant to both informal and formal Jewish educational settings.
LJEC 621 MODELS AND METHODS OF TEACHING JEWISH HOLIDAYS (3)
Focuses on the processes of teaching and learning Jewish holidays. Combines effective pedagogy with content knowledge of Jewish holidays. Hand-on approach and innovative techniques to teaching holidays will be examined.
LJEC 647 TEACHING CLASSICAL JEWISH TEXTS (3)
his course focuses on different approaches to teaching Bible including the psychological, literary, and historical. Emphasizing a teaching approach of conduction good interpretive discussions, student will learn how to better engage learner of all ages.
LJEC 648 TEACHING CLASSICAL JEWISH TEXTS: A DEVELOPMENT APPROACH (3)
Students will explore stage theories of intellectual and moral development and build on the theories to develop age-appropriate lessons for teaching classical Jewish texts. Particular attention is paid to how children in PreK-12 settings understand stories.
LJEC 649 TEACHING CLASSICAL JEWISH TEXTS: A LITERARY APPROACH (3)
Reading classical Jewish texts entails surface level readings and more interpretive readings. In this course students will learn strategies for engaging students in reading, dramatizing, and applying the text to real-world problems.
LJEC 650 EXPLORATION OF HOLOCAUST EDUCATION (3)
Critical exploration of various topics of the Holocaust through art, literature, life stories, and film. Core information about the history of the Holocaust and the context and implications of that history. Examine effective teaching methodologies and challenge each student to prepare and present curricular units utilizing different teaching models. Not open to students who have successfully completed ILPD 650.
LJEC 655 TEACHING THE HISTORY, POLITICS AND CULTURE OF ISRAEL (3)
Given Israel’s rapidly changing society, U.S. students have questions about the Jewish State. Students will learn more information about Israel’s history, politics and cultural diversity, as well as methodologies to effectively communicate the complexities of these subjects to their own students.
LJEC 739 LEADERSHIP THEORY & PRACTICE FOR EDUCATIONAL LEADERS (3)
Focus on the theoretical and applied foundations of leadership concepts, principles, practices, and competencies; integration of theory and practice to apply these conceptual models of leadership in the education context; and the concept of the school as a learning organizational and its implications for the practice of educational leadership. This course is aligned with the standards established by the: Educational Leadership Council Consortium (ELCC), Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC), Maryland Instructional Leadership Framework (MILF), Technology Standards for School Administrators (TSSA). Not open to students who have successfully completed ILPD 739.
LJEC 764 QUALITATIVE RESEARCH IN JEWISH EDUCATION (3)
How can research help to understand and solve problems in Jewish schools today. By studying prior research in Jewish and general education, students will learn how to designs a research proposal for their own educational settings.