Modern Hebrew at the University of Washington
Modern Hebrew courses at the UW are offered primarily through the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilization. However, some opportunities exist that may not be self-evident from the UW Time Schedule. If you’re not sure how to find the course that’s right for you, contact Professor Naomi Sokoloff. There are plenty of options! Our students range from absolute beginners to PhD students who have themselves become professors of Hebrew.
Hebrew is a perfect complement to undergraduate majors and graduate studies in a range of fields, including Comparative Religion, Comparative Literature, Jewish Studies, International Studies, Linguistics, International Business, Communications, Near Eastern Language and Civilization, and Anthropology.
Elementary and Intermediate Language Classes
UW offers a full-year sequence of Elementary Modern Hebrew (MODHEB 101-102-103) and a full sequence of Intermediate Modern Hebrew (MODHEB 201-202-203). Note that parallel graduate sections are also available.
Each summer, the UW offers Intensive Elementary Modern Hebrew (MODHEB 105), an intensive course that in nine weeks covers material equivalent to MODHEB 101-102-103. This course is also open to high school students in 10th grade and above; college students; and community members. Note that non-matriculated students need to apply to Summer Quarter before they can register for courses. Learn more about UW’s Summer Quarter here.
Beyond Second Year
UW offers a range of courses designed for students at the third year level and beyond. These classes are open to students who have completed MODHEB 103, to students who have studied elsewhere and have skills equivalent to or more advanced than MODHEB 103, and to native speakers.
These courses include Introduction to Hebrew Literature (MODHEB 401-402-403), Hebrew Poetry (MODHEB 404), Hebrew Fiction (MODHEB 405), Hebrew Poems and Prayers (MODHEB 406), and Hebrew in Song (MODHEB 407). Learn more about these classes here.
In addition, there are a number of opportunities for students to register for Independent Study credits (MODHEB 490). For example, students enrolled in a literature-in-translation course taught by Professor Sokoloff may choose to do some of the reading in Hebrew, complete some extra assignments (such as writing compositions in Hebrew), and earn 2-3 additional credits along the way. Please contact Professor Sokoloff about courses suitable for this arrangement.
Not Sure Where You Fit In?
Did you grow up speaking some Hebrew at home, but never really learned to read and write? Did you study at an ulpan in Israel and now feel unsure which level Hebrew class at UW will work for you? Please contact Professor Sokoloff for help assessing your skills and for advice on placement.
Another resource that may be helpful: our on-line learning tools, available to UW students through the Language Learning Center’s Moodle site. These materials include vocabulary lists, sample sentences, reading passages, listening exercises, grammar exercises, and quizzes to accompany the material covered in Elementary Modern Hebrew. Serving as courseware for students in MODHEB 401-402-403, the Moodle materials are also open to any enrolled students. All you have to do is set up an account with a user name and password through LLC. Some students who don’t fit easily into MODHEB 401-402-403 have worked with these materials to earn Independent Study credits. For more information, contact Professor Sokoloff.