University of Sydney Handbooks - 2012 Archive

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Hebrew (Modern)

Hebrew (Modern) is in the School of Languages and Cultures (SLC). It is an interdisciplinary program for second/foreign language learning. The program's major aim is the development of the ability to converse and communicate with other users of the language both orally and in writing. The program facilitates and nurtures communicative use of Modern Hebrew, as well as covering a range of Modern Hebrew discourse and literary texts.

Program structure and content
Modern Hebrew is the main official language of the State of Israel. It is a continuation and expansion of Hebrew in its various historical manifestations, as well as being inextricably bound up in Zionism and modern Israel. The units of study offered facilitate 'language in use' as it is spoken in Israel, as well as issues of contemporary Israeli society and culture. The two junior units provide an introduction to the Hebrew alphabet, alongside conversing, reading, and writing in simple everyday Hebrew. In the senior units of study, oral communication continues to be fostered, whilst further developing spoken skills, as well as engaging in a variety of texts and text types from higher registers of the language.

The program offers several entry points depending on students' proficiency in using the language. All prospective students must contact the Coordinator to arrange for a placement test.

Requirements for a major
Students who wish to major in Modern Hebrew must complete 36 senior credit points from among HBRW2605 to HBRW2612. This means that students who are placed in units between HBRW1011 to HBRW2604 are also required to complete 36 senior credit points from among HBRW2605 to HBRW2612.

Up to 12 credit points from approved cross-listable units of study may be cross-listed towards the Modern Hebrew major. Students should, however, plan their cross-listings carefully: no units of study can count towards more than one major.

Sample Pathway
The following is an example only.

Sample one: Students wishing to major in Modern Hebrew

  • First year: HBRW2605 and HBRW2606 Modern Hebrew 5 and 6.
  • Second year: HBRW2607 and HBRW2608 Modern Hebrew 7 and 8.
  • Third year: HBRW2609 and HBRW2610 Modern Hebrew 9 and 10.

There is a full exchange program with a number of universities, and students can spend up to a semester or a year on exchange.

Intending honours students must obtain a credit average in 48 senior credit points, including their Modern Hebrew major from among HBRW2605 to HBRW2612. Exemptions may be granted if the proposed honours thesis topic requires knowledge of another relevant field of study. Honours students will undertake three seminars, and write a 15,000-word thesis.

Contact/further information
Program website:
Course Coordinator: Ms Yona Gilead, Department of Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies, Room 625, Brennan MacCallum Building A18, phone: +61 2 9351 4829, email:

, or contact the SLC office .