The Program

The Department of Jewish Studies offers a minor in Jewish Studies and a bachelor of arts in Modern Jewish Studies.

View the class schedule or the list of courses on the SF State Bulletin.

View of Ein Harod (Ayn Jalut in Arabic) in the eastern Jezreel Valley.

Bachelor of Arts in Modern Jewish Studies

The Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Jewish Studies is designed for students coming from any and all religious and ethnic backgrounds, and for those with no religious background at all. The teaching philosophy in the Department of Jewish Studies is to use academic approaches of disciplines from across the University to study religion, literature, history, culture, language, and all other aspects of Jewish life and experience.

The Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Jewish Studies requires a total of 30 units. All Jewish Studies majors are expected to take 12 units from the Core Courses, three units of a Culminating Experience, 12 units of Electives, and three units in a GWAR course.

Twelve units of complementary studies are required of all candidates for the Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Jewish Studies. These units are courses that have a prefix other than JS and that are not cross-listed with Jewish Studies. One of the recommended ways to fulfill this requirement is to take four Hebrew language courses.

Courses that fulfill the Core and Culminating Experience requirements must be taken for a letter grade. CR/NC grading is not accepted for Core and Culminating Experience courses.

Students must earn a grade of C or better in their selected GWAR designated course, and a C– or better in all other required degree courses.

See complete degree requirements for the B.A. in Modern Jewish Studies in the Academic Bulletin.

Minor in Jewish Studies

The Department of Jewish Studies welcomes students from other programs across the University who wish to examine religion, history, literature, language, culture, philosophy, politics, or a variety of other subjects connected to Jews, Judaism, Israel, and all matters Jewish and Israeli. Most Jewish Studies courses are offered not only as part of a Jewish Studies degree, but for the special interests of students in many other fields.

The Jewish Studies Minor consists of a total of 12 units. Courses approved for the Jewish Studies Minor have a prefix of JS and HEBR or are cross-listed with a JS course. That is, all Jewish Studies and Hebrew courses may be used for the minor in the following instances:

  • At least six units must be taken in upper-division courses;
  • only one course may be taken credit/no credit (CR/NC);
  • students must maintain at least a 2.0 grade point average (GPA) in Jewish Studies Minor courses.
  • All course work used to satisfy the requirements of the minor must be completed with a minimum grade point average of 2.0.

See complete degree requirements for the Minor in Jewish Studies in the Academic Bulletin.

General Education

Jewish Studies courses fulfill many requirements in both lower and upper division General Education. Here is a list of Jewish Studies courses along with their General Education attributes:

JS 280 Introduction to Jewish Studies (Units: 3) 

  • C2: Humanities

JS 301 Judaism, An Introduction (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Social Justice

JS 350 Jewish Social Responsibility (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Social Justice

JS 377 Jerusalem (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives

JS 408 Israeli Cinema (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives

JS 410 Kabbalah and Mysticism in the Jewish Tradition (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities

JS 415 The Hebrew Bible (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities

JS 425 Judaism: Religion and Text (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities

JS 430 Israeli Democracy: Politics, Institutions, and Society (Units: 3)

  • UD-D: Social Sciences
  • Global Perspectives

JS 437 Holocaust and Literature (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives
  • Social Justice

JS 449 American Jewish History (Units: 3)

  • U.S. History UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • American Ethnic and Racial Social Justice

JS 451 Jewish Literature of the Americas (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities American Ethnic and Racial
  • Global Perspectives

JS 480 European Jewish Writers (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives
  • Social Justice

JS 501 Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives

JS 540 Anti-Semitism (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives
  • Social Justice

JS 546 20th Century American Jewish Women Writers (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • American Ethnic and Racial
  • Global Perspectives

JS 560 The Arab-Israeli Conflict (Units: 3)

  • UD-D: Social Sciences
  • Global Perspectives

JS 632 Jewish History I: Beginnings to 1650 (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives

JS 633 Jewish History II: 1650 to Present (Units: 3)

  • UD-C: Arts and/or Humanities
  • Global Perspectives