The Graduate School

The Graduate School of The Jewish Theological Seminary is the largest academic program of advanced Jewish Studies in North America and offers programs leading to the degrees of MA, MPhil, DHL, and PhD.

All programs are open to qualified students irrespective of age, sex, race, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin.

Applicants to the master's programs must possess a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university, and present evidence of the ability to pursue studies on the graduate level. Applicants to doctoral programs are strongly encouraged to have earned a master's degree in Jewish Studies or a related discipline.

MA Program

The MA program of The Graduate School is designed to provide advanced academic training in areas, including but not limited to Bible and Its Interpretation, Rabbinic Literatures and Cultures, Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies, Modern Jewish Studies, Jewish Ethics, Jewish Art and Visual Culture, Jewish Gender and Women's Studies, and broad-based Jewish Studies. It also conducts two dual-degree programs for students pursuing careers in Jewish professional leadership, one with the Columbia University School of Social Work and another with the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs.

The Graduate School offers a number of merit fellowships for students pursuing the MA. In addition to general Graduate School MA merit fellowships, fellowship opportunities include the Ben Zion and Baruch M. Bokser Memorial MA Fellowship in Classical Jewish Studies; Phyllis and Gerald Haas Graduate Fellowship in Jewish Communal Service; William Randolph Hearst Endowed Scholarship; Robert Lee Kohn's Foundation Fellowship; Klagsbrun Fellowships for Jewish Leadership; Sylvia and Julius Pollak Scholarship Fund for Michigan Students, the Satinover Family Fellowship in Jewish Women's Studies; David G. and Syd E. Cullen Fellowship; Bernard Manekin Fellowship in the History of Jewish Art; Tuttleman Fellowship for Jewish Art; and Pollak Family Charitable Fund Fellowship for the Master's Program in Jewish Art.

Application Procedures
Application forms may be obtained by visiting the Graduate School Admissions page or the Office of Admissions, The Graduate School of The Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway, New York, NY 10027; (212) 678-8022.

An applicant for admission must submit the following:

• A completed application form and a $65 fee;

• An official transcript of academic records from each college and university previously attended;

• Official scores of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE);

• Three letters of recommendation, at least two of which must be academic references; and

• A writing sample in English.

Applicants whose native language is other than English and who have not been educated at a college where English is the language of instruction must submit official scores of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). A minimum TOEFL score of 100 (Internet-based) is required. For more information, please contact The Graduate School's Admissions Office at (212) 678-8022.

An interview with a member of the admissions committee and/or program advisor is recommended, and may be required.

Requirements
All incoming students are required to take a first-year seminar during their first semester of graduate study. The seminar will highlight the critical methodologies and interdisciplinarity essential to practitioners of Jewish Studies. First-year seminars are 3 credits each and count toward the degree.

In addition to the first-year seminar and all program requirements, students must complete the following prerequisite courses, demonstrate that the same materials were taken for credit previously, or show proficiency by examination:

Hebrew
All entering students must take the Hebrew placement examination online. In order to receive the degree, students must demonstrate proficiency in Hebrew equivalent to the level of HEB 5203 (Intermediate Hebrew II). Beginning with their first semester of matriculation, students must study Hebrew every semester until this proficiency is achieved.

Prerequisite Courses

MDS 5102: Classics of the Jewish Tradition A focus on the classics of the medieval and modern age, considering the social, religious, and historical significance of each of the works against the background of the period in which it was written. This seminar must be taken during the first year of graduate study.

BIB 5011: Introduction to Hebrew Bible An introduction to the contents, structure, and themes of the Hebrew Bible. Integrated with that content, the course will also introduce students to a variety of methods in the study of Bible, both traditional and modern.

TAL 5025: Introduction to Text Study An introduction to the major works of the classical rabbinic cannon produced by the Rabbis in late antiquity. The Mishnah, Tosefta, halakhic midrashim, aggadic midrashim, and Babylonian and Palestinian Talmuds will be considered in light of the historical and theological setting in which each work was produced, its literary characteristics, and its relationship to the other works of the classical rabbinic canon. Students should take this course after completing both BIB 5011 and demonstrating Hebrew proficiency at the level of HEB 2201.

Hebrew and prerequisite courses are not counted toward degree credits.

Course Work
Most programs require completion of at least 30 graduate-level credits. A minimum of 18 credits must be taken at the New York City campus of JTS. All courses must have the approval of the program advisor.

Consortium
All matriculated MA students in The Graduate School may take up to one course per semester at one of the MA consortium schools which include the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary. Students must receive the approval of the advisor and register for those courses on their JTS registration cards. The host institution reserves the right to give its own students priority enrollment.

Transfer Credit
Students in a graduate-level program of JTS may request transfer credit for graduate-level course work completed at another accredited institution, under the following conditions: (1) the grade being transferred must be "B" or higher; (2) the grade may not be more than 10 years old; (3) Hebrew courses are not subject to transfer credit; (4) the credit may not have been applied to another degree; (5) credit must have the dean's and advisor's approval.

Comprehensive Examination
In most programs, upon completion of all course work, a student is required to prove competence in his or her chosen field by passing a comprehensive examination. The date of the examination is determined in consultation with the student's academic advisor.

The comprehensive examination will be graded on the following scale: pass with distinction, pass, or fail. A student who fails the comprehensive examination may take it once more. A second failure automatically terminates the student's participation in the MA program.

In lieu of a comprehensive examination, students in the MA/MSW dual-degree program participate in special seminars and students in Jewish Art and Visual Culture take two internships. Certain programs may require a thesis in lieu of a comprehensive examination.

Completion of Requirements
All work must be completed within six years of the date of admission to the program. The dean regularly reviews student files to ascertain that appropriate progress is being made toward the completion of degree requirements. Permission for an extension must be requested in writing and submitted to the dean.

Normally 12 credits or one-sixth of the student's total program credit requirements (whichever is greater), must be completed each year for a student to remain eligible for federal Title IV funds (student loans).

MA with Distinction
The MA degree with distinction offers an additional opportunity for students who wish to engage in serious research on the MA level and be recognized for their efforts on their transcripts and diplomas.

In addition to completing all degree requirements, a candidate for the degree of MA with distinction must:

• Maintain at least an A- average;

• Receive a "pass with distinction" on the comprehensive examination or thesis;

• Submit a suitable essay to the program advisor for approval. The essay may not be identical with one submitted for the satisfaction of a course requirement but may be identical with one submitted for consideration for a prize; it may be a revision of a paper submitted for a course requirement.

Students having neither a comprehensive examination nor a thesis should contact the program advisor for further information on how to fulfill these requirements. Graduation with distinction is noted on a student's transcript.

Special MA Programs

Joint Graduate School MA/Ordination Program
Students enrolled in the The Rabbinical School of The Jewish Theological Seminary who wish to study simultaneously for a master's degree in The Graduate School may apply to The Graduate School for admission to the joint master's/ordination program. Students currently enrolled in The Rabbinical School are encouraged to apply no later than the fall semester of their third year in the program and, if accepted, begin the MA program in The Graduate School the following semester. The Graduate School will follow its regular admissions procedures. Upon the approval of the student's Graduate School advisor, the course requirements for the MA can be met in part by courses taken in The Rabbinical School in the student's field of concentration. At least 18 credits of course work must be applied exclusively to the MA degree and not toward Rabbinical School requirements. All requirements for the master's degree (course work, applicable foreign languages, and examinations or thesis) remain in effect.

Joint Graduate School MA / Davidson School MA Program
Students currently enrolled in the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education who wish to study simultaneously for a master's degree in The Graduate School may apply to The Graduate School for admission to the joint master's degree program. The Graduate School will follow its regular admissions procedures. Upon the approval of the student's Graduate School advisor, the course requirements for the MA can be met in part by courses taken in The Davidson School of JTS in the student's field of concentration. At least 21 credits of course work must be applied exclusively to the MA degree and not toward Davidson School requirements. All requirements for the master's degree (prerequisites, course work, applicable foreign languages, and examinations or thesis) remain in effect.

Conversely, students currently enrolled in The Graduate School who wish to study simultaneously for a master's degree in The Davidson School may apply to The Davidson School for admission to the joint master's degree program. All requirements for the Graduate School master's degree (course work, applicable foreign languages, and examinations or thesis) remain in effect.

Joint Graduate School MA / Cantorial Investiture Program
Students currently enrolled in the H. L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish Music of The Jewish Theological Seminary who wish to study simultaneously for a master's degree in The Graduate School may apply to The Graduate School for admission to the joint master's/investiture program. They are encouraged to apply no later than their second year in the H. L. Miller Cantorial School and to begin the program no later than their third year. The Graduate School will follow its regular admissions procedures. Upon the approval of the student's Graduate School advisor, the course requirements for the MA can be met in part by courses taken in the H. L. Miller Cantorial School in the student's field of concentration. At least 18 credits of course work must be applied exclusively to the MA degree and not toward H. L. Miller Cantorial School requirements. All requirements for the master's degree (course work, applicable foreign languages, and examinations or thesis) remain in effect.

BA/MA Option
A special BA/MA program has been developed in conjunction with the Albert A. List College of Jewish Studies of The Jewish Theological Seminary. Details about application procedures and requirements may be found in the List College section.

DHL Program
The program leading to the doctor of Hebrew Literature degree in The Graduate School is designed for students who wish to pursue advanced academic work in a field of Jewish Studies but do not wish to pursue an academic career. The degree is intended to certify that the recipient is qualified to teach his/her field on an undergraduate level and in nonuniversity settings. This program may be pursued on a part-time basis.

Programs leading to the degree of doctor of Hebrew literature are available in Hebrew Bible and Its Interpretation, Rabbinic Literatures and Cultures, Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies, and Modern Jewish Studies.

Application Procedures
Applications can be accessed online.

An applicant for admission as a degree candidate must submit the following:

• A completed application form and the $65 fee;

• An official transcript of academic records from each college and university previously attended;

• Official scores of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE);

• Three letters of recommendation, at least two of which must be academic references; and

• A sample of written academic research in English in the field of study.

An interview with a member of the admissions committee and/or program advisor is recommended and may be required.

Applicants whose native language is other than English and who have not been educated at a college where English is the language of instruction are encouraged to submit official scores of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), in addition to the GRE. A minimum TOEFL score of 100 (Internet-based) is required. For more information, please contact The Graduate School's Admissions Office at (212) 678-8022.

Requirements

First-Year Review
The candidacy of each first-year DHL student will be reviewed after the first year, generally during the student's third semester. The student's advisor and area coordinator, in conjunction with the dean, will review the progress the student has made and assess the student's potential to complete the degree. If the advisor or dean is not satisfied with the student's progress or potential, the student will be dropped from the DHL program but will be allowed to complete the current academic year.

Hebrew
All entering students must take the Hebrew-placement examination and demonstrate knowledge of at least one year of college-level Hebrew, placing into HEB 2103 or higher. To receive the degree, students must demonstrate proficiency in Hebrew equivalent to the level of HEB 5999 (Reading Hebrew Academic Texts). Students must demonstrate Hebrew language proficiency at the HEB 5999 level before they are able to take a comprehensive examination.

Prerequisite Courses
Hebrew and prerequisite courses listed immediately below are not counted toward the credit minimum. In addition to all program requirements, students must complete the following prerequisite courses, demonstrate that the same materials were taken for credit previously, or show proficiency by examination:

MDS 5102: Classics of the Jewish Tradition A focus on the classics of the medieval and modern age, considering the social, religious, and historical significance of each of the works against the background of the period in which it was written. This seminar must be taken during the first year of graduate study.

BIB 5011: Introduction to the Hebrew Bible An introduction to the contents, structure, and themes of the Hebrew Bible. Integrated with that content, the course will also introduce students to a variety of methods in the study of Bible, both traditional and modern.

TAL 5025: Introduction to Rabbinic Literature An introduction to the major works of the classical rabbinic cannon produced by the Rabbis in late antiquity. The Mishnah, Tosefta, halakhic midrashim, aggadic midrashim, and Babylonian and Palestinian Talmuds will be considered in light of the historical and theological setting in which each work was produced, its literary characteristics, and its relationship to the other works of the classical rabbinic canon. Students should take this course after completing both BIB 5011 and demonstrating Hebrew proficiency at the level of HEB 2201.

Course Work
A minimum of 30 credits of graduate course work beyond the master's degree in Jewish Studies or a related field is required. Twenty-one credits are to be in the field of specialization. A minimum of 18 credits must be taken at the New York campus. All courses must be approved by the advisor.

Consortium
All matriculated DHL students may take courses offered through the DHL consortium, including the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Columbia University, Fordham University, and Union Theological Seminary. Students must receive the advance approval of the advisor and register for those courses on their JTS registration cards. The host institution reserves the right to give its own students priority enrollment.

Transfer Credit
Students in a graduate-level program of JTS may request transfer credit for graduate-level course work completed at another accredited institution, under the following conditions: (1) the grade being transferred must be "B" or higher; (2) the grade may not be more than 10 years old; (3) Hebrew courses are not subject to transfer credit; (4) the credit may not have been applied to another degree; (5) credit must have the dean's and advisor's approval.

Comprehensive Examination
Programs require a comprehensive examination in the field of specialization after completion of course work. The comprehensive examination will be graded on the following scale: pass with distinction, pass, or fail. A student who fails the examination may take it once more. A second failure automatically terminates the student's participation in the DHL program.

Dissertation
A candidate is required to write a dissertation in the field of specialization. This work must be a contribution to the field and may be a synthesis of extant scholarship on the topic. A written proposal for the dissertation must be submitted for approval to a faculty advisor. Both the proposal and the advisor's written approval must be submitted to The Graduate School for approval by the dean. The dissertation is then to be written under the supervision of the faculty advisor who approved it. Dissertations must be written in English.

Upon completion of a first draft of the dissertation and upon the recommendation of the faculty advisor, the advisor and dean shall select and appoint one additional reader. Rejection of a dissertation automatically terminates the student's participation in the DHL program. Upon final approval by both readers, the dissertation requirement shall be considered fulfilled. Thereafter, the dissertation shall be prepared in final form for deposit at least six weeks before the date on which degrees are conferred. Guidelines for the preparation and deposit of doctoral dissertations are available in the Office of The Graduate School.

Completion of Requirements
All work for the DHL must be completed within 10 years of the date of admission to the program. The dean regularly reviews student files to ascertain that appropriate progress is being made toward the completion of degree requirements. A candidate engaged in the writing of the dissertation may apply in writing to the dean for an extension, which ordinarily cannot exceed two years.

To be considered making satisfactory academic progress in order to continue receiving federal Title IV funds (student loans), full-time students normally must complete all the course requirements within the first four years of the program or a minimum of one-third the required number of credits, depending on area of specialization and prerequisites needed. Students in the fifth and sixth years prepare for the comprehensive exam and begin research for the dissertation. The remaining years are devoted to completion of the dissertation, which must be defended by the second semester of the seventh year.

PhD Program

The program leading to the PhD in The Graduate School provides advanced academic training in broad areas of Judaic scholarship with intensive specialization in one area in preparation for an academic career. The degree certifies that the recipient is qualified to teach a wide range of Judaica on the undergraduate level and to train graduate students in his/her field of specialization. It also requires the knowledge of foreign languages and may require course work at other institutions participating in a consortium with The Graduate School. It is a full-time program.

Students working toward the PhD may specialize in one of the following academic clusters:

  • Hebrew Bible and Its Interpretation
  • Rabbinic Literatures and Cultures
  • Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies
  • Modern Jewish Studies

Upon successful completion of all requirements for the PhD other than the dissertation, a student may apply for the degree of MPhil.

The Graduate School offers a number of substantial merit fellowships for students pursuing PhD studies. All entering students are automatically considered for these fellowships. These include the

• Professor Saul Lieberman and Dr. Judith Berlin Lieberman Graduate Fellowships in Talmudic Studies, made possible by the Dr. Bernard Heller Foundation

• Dr. Bernard Heller Fellowship

• Rabbi Seymour Siegel Scholarship

• Rabbi Benjamin Plotkin Fellowship

• Gerson D. Cohen Fellowship

• Stroock Fellowship in Ancient Judaism

• Anna and William Blanksteen Fellowship for the study of European Jewish Civilization

• Robert Lee Kohns Foundation Graduate Fellowship

• Michael Klebanoff Graduate Fellowship

• Jacob Shatzsky Memorial Fellowship

• Stanley J. Friedman Graduate Fellowship in Jewish History

• Louis and Alice Shimberg Fellowship

• Betsy and Edward E. Cohen Fellowship

• Elbogen Fellowship

All entering and continuing PhD students are automatically considered for these fellowships.

Application Procedures
Application forms may be obtained by visiting the Graduate School Admissions page or by visiting the Office of Admissions, The Graduate School of The Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway, New York, NY 10027; (212) 678-8022.

An applicant for admission as a degree candidate must submit the following:

• A completed application form together with the $50 fee;

• An official transcript of academic records from each college and university previously attended;

• Official scores of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE);

• Three letters of academic recommendation; and

• A sample of written academic research in English in the field of study.

An interview with a member of the admissions committee and/or program advisor is recommended, and may be required.

Applicants whose native language is other than English and who have not been educated at a college where English is the language of instruction must submit official scores of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). A minimum TOEFL score of 100 (Internet-based) is required. For more information, please contact the Graduate School's Admissions Office at (212) 678-8022.

Requirements

Residence
Two consecutive academic years of full-time residence are required of all students in the PhD program.

Full-time residence demands that advanced study be the student's principal responsibility. The student must be free to devote himself/herself primarily to study and research, schedule courses without limitations on hours, participate fully in The Graduate School's programs and attend academic conferences. A student fulfilling full-time residence may accept outside employment only with permission of the dean.

Find information concerning student status following completion of the two-year residence requirement.

First-Year Review
The candidacy of each first-year PhD student will be reviewed after the first year of residence, generally in the student's third semester. The student's advisor, in conjunction with the dean, will review the progress the student has made to date and assess the student's potential to complete the degree. If the advisor or the dean is not satisfied with the student's progress or potential, the student will be dropped from the PhD program, but will be allowed to complete the academic year in progress.

Hebrew
All entering students must take the Hebrew placement examination online. To receive the degree, students must demonstrate a proficiency in Hebrew equivalent to the level of HEB 5999: Reading Academic Hebrew Texts. Beginning with the first semester of matriculation, students must study Hebrew every semester until this proficiency is attained.

Prior to taking the Comprehensive Examination, doctoral students are required to pass a proficiency exam in reading Hebrew academic texts, for which HEB 5998: Introduction to Reading Academic Hebrew Texts and HEB 5999: Reading Academic Hebrew Texts provide the requisite skills.

Prerequisite Courses
Hebrew and prerequisite courses listed immediately below are not counted toward the credit minimum. Students must complete the following prerequisite courses, demonstrate that the same materials were taken for credit previously, or show proficiency by examination:

MDS 5102: Classics of the Jewish Tradition A focus on the classics of the medieval and modern age, considering the social, religious, and historical significance of each of the works against the background of the period in which it was written. This seminar must be taken during the first year of graduate study.

BIB 5011: Introduction to the Hebrew Bible An introduction to the contents, structure, and themes of the Hebrew Bible. Integrated with that content, the course will also introduce students to a variety of methods in the study of Bible, both traditional and modern.

TAL 5025: Introduction to Rabbinic Literature An introduction to the major works of the classical rabbinic cannon produced by the Rabbis in late antiquity. The Mishnah, Tosefta, halakhic midrashim, aggadic midrashim, and Babylonian and Palestinian Talmuds will be considered in light of the historical and theological setting in which each work was produced, its literary characteristics, and its relationship to the other works of the classical rabbinic canon. Students should take this course after completing both BIB 5011 and demonstrating Hebrew proficiency at the level of HEB 2201.

Course Work
A minimum of 30 credits of graduate course work beyond the master's degree in Judaica is required. Twenty-one credits are to be in the area of specialization and ancillary subjects; the remainder may be distributed according to the student's needs. All programs must be worked out in consultation with the program advisor and requires the advisor's advance approval.

As part of the 30-credit minimum, PhD students are required to take at least one graduate-level course in religion (which may include Theory and Method in Study of Religion, History of Religion, or similar courses approved by The Graduate School) or a discipline-specific methodologies course at one of the institutions in the consortium.

Consortium
The Graduate School has a consortium agreement on the PhD level with numerous institutions, including the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Columbia University, Fordham University, New York University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton University, Union Theological Seminary, University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Yale University, and Yeshiva University. Students may be required to take courses at other universities for supplementary study in the area of their specialty. A student may receive credit for courses taken at these institutions only with the advance approval of the advisor and if he/she registers for them at JTS. These credits are not considered transfer credits. The host institution reserves the right to give its own students priority enrollment.

Transfer Credit
A student who wishes to request transfer credit for graduate-level courses taken at other institutions of higher learning must submit an official transcript with complete course descriptions to the dean. Credits counted toward another degree will not be considered. The maximum number of credits accepted for transfer is 12. No credit will be accepted for transfer from courses in which a grade lower than a B was earned. To be considered for transfer, credits may be no older than 10 years.

Foreign Language Requirements
Every PhD candidate must demonstrate reading proficiency in German and at least one other modern research language to be determined by the candidate's program. Some programs require proficiency in additional languages as well. Proficiency can be demonstrated by one of three options. First, by examination. Foreign language examinations are scheduled through the Graduate School office. Use of a dictionary is permitted during the exam. Second, by course work completed within the previous four years. Two years of study of a foreign language on the undergraduate level with a grade of B or better each semester of the second year will be accepted in lieu of the examination. The third option is successful completion of the second semester of a yearlong reading course with a grade of B or better. Foreign language requirements must be completed prior to submitting a dissertation proposal for approval.

Comprehensive Examination
Most programs require a comprehensive examination in the field of specialization and related ancillary subjects. It is to be taken upon completion of all required course work and foreign language examinations. The comprehensive examination will be graded on the following scale: pass with distinction, pass, or fail. A student who fails the examination may take it once more. A second failure automatically terminates the student's participation in the PhD program.

Dissertation
Upon completion of all course and examination requirements, the student must select an appropriate dissertation topic for an original contribution to the area of research. A written proposal must be submitted to the advisor for approval, after which the student brings the dissertation proposal to a committee of three faculty members, including the advisor, for a formal defense of the proposal. (If the committee does not approve the proposal, the student may submit one revised proposal. If the revised proposal is not approved, the student's participation in the PhD program is automatically terminated.) Both the proposal and the proposal committee's approval are then submitted to The Graduate School Office for final approval. The dissertation is written under the direct guidance of the advisor who approved the proposal and a second member of the faculty selected by the advisor and the student in consultation with the dean. Dissertations are written in English.

After the dissertation is approved by the advisor and the second reader, it is defended before a committee. The committee consists of at least five members: the advisor, the second reader, and three other faculty members, one of whom is from another JTS program, and one of whom is from another institution. The committee will be determined by the dean, the advisor, and the student. Copies of the approved dissertation must be submitted to the Office of The Graduate School for distribution to the members of the committee at least eight weeks before the defense. A student must apply for permission to defend the dissertation during the registration period of the semester in which he/she plans to defend. The defense committee may approve the dissertation as submitted, accept it with minor or major revisions, or reject it. If major revisions are required, a subcommittee will be appointed by the defense-committee chair and advisor in consultation with the dean to review the revised dissertation. Rejection of a dissertation automatically terminates the student's participation in the PhD program.

After final approval by the defense committee or the subcommittee, the dissertation shall be prepared in final form for deposit prior to the start of the next semester. Guidelines for the preparation and deposit of doctoral dissertations are available in The Graduate School office.

Completion of Requirements
A candidate must complete all requirements for the PhD degree including courses, demonstration of foreign language proficiency, comprehensive examination, and deposit of the dissertation in no more than seven years from the date of formal admission to the PhD program. The dean regularly reviews student files to ascertain that appropriate progress is being made toward the completion of degree requirements. However, candidates engaged in the writing of the dissertation may apply in writing to the dean for an extension, which ordinarily cannot exceed two years.

To be considered making satisfactory academic progress in order to continue receiving federal Title IV funds (student loans), full-time students normally must complete all the course requirements within the first three years of the program or a minimum of one-third the required number of credits, depending on area of specialization and prerequisites needed. Students in the fourth and fifth years prepare for the comprehensive examination and begin research for the dissertation. The sixth and seventh years are devoted to completion of the dissertation, which must be defended by the second semester of the seventh year.

Special Doctoral Program

Joint Doctoral/Ordination Program
Students who wish to study simultaneously for the PhD degree and rabbinic ordination may apply to The Graduate School and The Rabbinical School for admission to the joint doctoral/ordination program. Students currently enrolled in The Rabbinical School are also eligible to apply, no earlier than the fourth year of rabbinical school. Each school will follow its own admissions procedures.

Upon the approval of the student's doctoral advisor, the course requirements for the PhD can be met in part by courses taken in The Rabbinical School in the student's field of concentration. All requirements for the doctoral degree (course work, foreign languages, examinations, and dissertation) remain in effect. To be considered for fellowships, students must take a minimum of 15 doctoral program credits per year.

Nondegree Students

Students who wish to take courses, either as auditors or for credit, but who do not intend to earn a degree, may be admitted as nondegree students. Applicants must submit a completed application form together with the $35 fee and an official transcript indicating satisfactory completion of a bachelor's degree.

Any nondegree student placed on academic probation is subject to dismissal from The Graduate School.

Students who wish to be accepted as degree candidates at a later date may apply up to 9 credits of the work done as nondegree students within the previous 10 years.

Certificate in Pastoral Care and Counseling

The Certificate in Pastoral Care and Counseling represents an integrated pastoral care curriculum that includes academic learning, professional skills, and religious and personal identity formation. Students who are interested in preparing themselves for the world of professional chaplaincy will be in an excellent position to become leaders in the field. Students who wish to become clergy or religious professionals in agencies or schools will have the in-depth pastoral training to serve the needs of their congregants, clients, and students on a high level and with expertise in the rich pastoral resources of Judaism.

The new Certificate in Pastoral Care and Counseling can be earned by anyone enrolled in any MA program at JTS.

View a more detailed description of the program and its requirements.

Academic Standards

Attendance
Regular attendance is expected. Instructors shall have the right to stipulate attendance requirements and penalties that may be incurred as a result of failure to comply with these requirements, provided that they so stipulate within the first two weeks of the semester.

Grades
The grading system is as follows: A, excellent; B, good; C, fair; D, poor; F, failure. No credit will be given for grades of C- or lower.

Once a grade has been received in the Registrar's Office, it may be changed by the course instructor only upon written application from the instructor to the dean of the school in which the student is enrolled. The dean's approval will be required.

Graduate students are permitted to take one course per year pass/fail, with the permission of the program advisor. Hebrew language courses and prerequisites cannot be taken pass/fail.

Auditing
The grade R signifies that the student has attended classes and completed all course work except for the final exam and/or paper. Students must notify the Office of the Registrar, in writing, by the date stipulated in the Academic Calendar, of their intention to audit. Failure to do so will mean that the course is being taken for credit. No credit will be given for courses taken for the grade R; such courses will not count toward fulfilling the requirements for the degree.

Withdrawal
With the permission of the dean, students may withdraw from a course by the date listed in the Academic Calendar. In such cases, the symbol W will appear on the transcript. Students who discontinue attendance in a course and who fail to withdraw formally within the designated period will receive the appropriate alternate letter grade.

Academic Probation
An MA or DHL student who receives in any one semester one grade of D (or lower) or two grades of C (or lower) will be placed on academic probation the following semester. To be restored to good standing, a student must register for course work for the next semester equivalent to the number of credits which led to the probation and may neither receive a grade lower than B- nor take an Incomplete during the semester of probation. Failure to meet this standard will constitute grounds for dismissal. The student shall have the right to appeal in accordance with the Student Disciplinary Procedures, available in the Office of the Registrar.

A PhD student who receives a grade lower than B will be placed on academic probation the following semester. To be restored to good standing, the student must register for the next semester and may neither receive a grade lower than B nor take an Incomplete during the semester of probation. Failure to meet this standard will constitute grounds for dismissal. The student shall have the right to appeal in accordance with the Student Disciplinary Procedures, available in the Office of the Registrar.

Students in The Graduate School are permitted no more than one semester of probation toward any degree.

Incompletes
A student who, for compelling reasons, finds it necessary to postpone the submission of required course work may petition for an Incomplete (INC). The student must obtain a Request for Incomplete Form from the Office of the Registrar. This form must contain all information requested, including a description of the work to be completed and the due date, which cannot be later than the date specified in the Academic Calendar. The form must be signed by the student and course instructor. The dean should also be notified of any approved incomplete. The form must be returned to the Office of the Registrar. The last day to request an INC and submit the form is indicated in the Academic Calendar.

All outstanding course work must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar no later than the date specified in the Academic Calendar. Generally, this date is six weeks from the end of the final examination period.

The registrar shall record that the work has been submitted and provide a written receipt to the student for the work received. The registrar will transmit the completed work to the instructor. No work should be sent or given directly to the instructor by the student. The student is advised to retain a copy of all work submitted to the Registrar's Office.

After a student has the receipt for the submitted work, the grade of INC shall remain on the student's transcript until a grade has been submitted by the instructor. If a student fails to submit the outstanding work to the Registrar's Office by the specified due date, the grade of INC will be converted to the alternate letter grade previously submitted by the instructor. This alternate grade reflects the instructor's assessment of a student's performance taking into account the fact that work is missing. Students should be aware that the missing work may have been counted as an F (or 0) in the computation of the final grade for the course.

In special circumstances, the dean has the authority to grant an extension for the submission of overdue work as long as it is agreeable to the instructor. This extension must be sent in writing by the dean to the Registrar's Office.

Students may not request an INC for any course during the semester of their graduation.

All incompletes must be submitted and awarded grades before a student can move on toward his/her other degree requirements, including preparing for comprehensive exams and the writing of a thesis or dissertation. Incompletes can stand permanently only when a student has completed enough other credits to fulfill the degree requirements.

Absence from Final Examinations
A student who, because of illness or personal emergency, cannot be present for a scheduled final examination must inform the Registrar's Office as soon as possible to indicate the reasons for the absence. The Registrar's Office will inform the instructor and the dean of the student's absence. The student must arrange with the instructor for a makeup examination if the student still cannot be present for the regularly scheduled makeup examination day. The instructor will inform the Registrar's Office of the arrangement and provide the office with the exam so that it can be given to the student.

Students may not request incompletes in advance for an in-class final examination. The student must take the makeup examination as soon as possible, but no later than the date indicated in the Academic Calendar governing the completion of outstanding work.

Leave of Absence
Students who, for compelling reasons, are unable to take courses or continue with appropriate academic progress in a particular semester may request a leave of absence from the dean and must register for a leave of absence each semester until they resume their studies.

MA students may generally not be granted a leave of absence for more than one semester; DHL and PhD students, for not more than two semesters. During the period of leave, a student may not take an examination, written or oral, be advised by the academic advisor, or submit any part of a thesis or dissertation required for the completion of a degree.

Continuous Registration
The Continuous Registration category applies to matriculated students who, for extenuating academic circumstances, cannot register for Graduate School courses in a given semester but will still receive academic advisement. Students who have completed all course work and who are eligible for Extended Residence may not enroll as Continuous Registration.

Graduate School students may enroll in the Continuous Registration category for no more than one semester while in residence in New York.

Students of The Graduate School who are dually enrolled in The Rabbinical School or H. L. Miller Cantorial School and who cannot take courses in The Graduate School during their required semester or year in Israel should enroll as Continuous Registration in The Graduate School.

MA students who have not completed their course work but take courses only during the summer sessions must register for Continuous Registration each semester. Students must attend at least one summer session each year to be eligible.

Written approval must be obtained from a dean of The Graduate School to register for the Continuous Registration category.

Extended Residence
Students in the MA and DHL programs of The Graduate School who have finished all course work but have other requirements (such as examinations, theses, dissertations) to complete must register for this category. Students in the PhD program who have finished all course work but have not yet completed all comprehensive and language examinations must register for this category.

Matriculation and Facilities
Students in the PhD program who have finished all course work and completed all other requirements except for the dissertation must register for this category.