The Hebrew Language Program

Language Coordinator: Rina Kreitman

The MESAAS Hebrew Language Program is designed to develop skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing in Modern Hebrew, as well as an appreciation of Hebrew/Jewish culture. The four-year program offers courses at all levels.

Beginners who cannot read or write basic Hebrew should register for First Year Modern Hebrew: Elementary I, which is offered only in the fall semester.

Students wishing to study Hebrew at a level above the introductory level must take a placement test before registration. Those seeking to waive a language requirement must take a proficiency test.

Students who have passed the Jerusalem Examination or have scored 700 or above on the College Board SAT Subject Test in Modern Hebrew are exempt from the language requirement and may take courses in Hebrew literature.

Courses

W1510-W1511 First Year Modern Hebrew: Elementary I (fall) and II (spring)

5 points per semester

For complete beginners who wish to acquire basic vocabulary and structures, and to develop their conversation, reading and writing skills. The readings include short authentic dialogues and adapted passages. Vocabulary centers on the students' immediate surroundings and their simple daily activities. Cultural topics are presented in conjunction with the readings.

W1512-W1513 Second Year Modern Hebrew: Intermediate I (fall) and II (spring)

5 points per semester

For students who have completed one year of Elementary Hebrew at Columbia or the equivalent, and who wish to further develop their conversation, reading and writing skills. Readings include authentic dialogues and short adapted stories and articles. Grammar instruction covers the five main categories (binyanim) of the Hebrew verb system. Discussion and short compositions in Hebrew. Cultural topics are presented in conjunction with the readings.

W1516 Intermediate Hebrew: Intensive Grammar Review

4 points per semester

For advanced students with a Hebrew school background, who wish to review, systematize and expand their knowledge of the language through an intensive study of grammar, especially the Hebrew verb system. Readings include selections from Modern Hebrew literary and journalistic texts. Discussion and compositions in Hebrew. Students placed in this course have to take only one semester to fulfill their college language requirement in Hebrew.

W1517-1518 Hebrew for Heritage Speakers I (fall) and II (spring)

4 points per semester

Hebrew for Heritage Speakers I forms part of a year-long sequence with Hebrew for Heritage Speakers II. The course is intended for those who have developed basic speaking and listening skills through exposure to Hebrew at home or in day-school programs but do not use Hebrew as their dominant language and have not reached the level required for exemption from the Columbia language requirement. The course focuses on grammar and vocabulary enrichment, exposing students to a variety of cultural and social topics in daily life and beyond. By the end of the semester students are able to read and discuss simple texts and write about a variety of topics. Successful completion of the year-long sequence prepares students to enroll in third-year modern Hebrew.

W4510-W4511 Third Year Modern Hebrew: I (fall) and II (spring)

For students who have completed Intermediate or Upper Intermediate Modern Hebrew at Columbia or the equivalent, and who have a good basis in the Hebrew verb system. Continued vocabulary building and practice in all four language skills, with an emphasis on reading comprehension. Readings include adapted as well as authentic literary and journalistic texts. Discussion and composition in Hebrew. Cultural topics are presented in conjunction with the readings.

W4512-W4513 Readings in Hebrew Texts I (fall) and II (spring)

4 points per semester

For students who have completed Third Year Modern Hebrew or the Intensive Grammar Review section of Intermediate Hebrew at Columbia, or the equivalent. Continued vocabulary building and practice in all four language skills, with an emphasis on reading comprehension strategies. Readings include authentic selections of literary, journalistic and academic Modern Hebrew texts. Assignments also include two reading projects chosen by each student in his/her area of interest. Discussion and composition in Hebrew. Cultural topics are presented in conjunction with the readings.