About the Program
FSU offers a full sequence of both Modern and Biblical Hebrew, which can fulfill the Arts and Sciences language requirement and can also be used to fulfill multiple major and minor requirements at Florida State University.
With Modern Hebrew, students will develop competence in the four skills necessary for communication in any foreign language: reading, writing, speaking, and listening. While students primarily interested in communicating in the language of contemporary Israel will want to take the Modern Hebrew sequence, students interested primarily in Biblical and Rabbinic Hebrew will also find some knowledge of Modern Hebrew helpful in reinforcing and solidifying their knowledge of basic grammar and vocabulary, as well as in increasing their confidence in reading unvocalized texts.
The focus of Biblical Hebrew is to learn the grammar and vocabulary of Classical Hebrew as quickly and thoroughly as possibly in order to translate the biblical text. Typically six chapters of the Bible are translated during the first year and twelve to fifteen chapters in the third-semester course. Students interested in reading post-biblical Hebrew (including Modern Hebrew) will also find the close reading and grammatical analysis in the Biblical Hebrew courses helpful for improving their reading and translation skills. Biblical Hebrew is especially important for students wanting to read post-Biblical ancient and medieval texts, including the Hebrew of the Siddur (prayer book).
Hebrew language courses can be used to fulfill requirements for Middle Eastern Studies, International Relations, Religion, and the Hebrew minor; and it satisfies the Arts and Sciences language requirement.
Why Study Hebrew
As the language of the Bible, Hebrew has had an incredible amount of influence on religion and culture. Economically, it's the language of Israel, which is a global leader in science and technology.