About the Department
The Tanakh department at Bar-Ilan University is the largest of its kind in the world devoted to the study of the Hebrew Bible. Our outstanding faculty of scholars cover a wide range of subdisciplines and contribute broadly to the scholarly community. Students considering graduate work are invited to propose research projects in a wide array of disciplines. We also offer a rich list of course offerings for registered students and for auditors. The department is rooted in the in-depth study of classical traditional texts as well as in cutting edge methodologies as well. This methodological openness is matched by an openness and camaraderie between faculty and students. We are proud not only of our academic excellence, but also of the warm scholarly community that we have created as well. I invite all who wish to plumb the depths of the Tanakh to join us at all levels of study.
The Tanakh department is dedicated to the teaching and critical study of the plain meaning of the text of the Hebrew Bible. The department also imparts tools for the study of the entire tradition of classical commentators – the ancient translations from the second-Temple period, Talmudic writings, medieval and early modern rabbinic commentators. Study in the department imparts tools for critical study in linguistic, historical, archaeological literary and theological approaches to the text.
B.A. and M.A. study offer students the basic skills of research and prepare them for higher level research. We encourage potential students to propose research projects and to join in the research efforts of the department's faculty. Tanakh study at Bar-Ilan also qualifies students to teach Tanakh in the elementary and secondary school systems in Israel. Students wishing to do so, also enroll for courses in the School of Education.
Hundreds of students representing many sectors of Israeli society study in our courses. In recent years, these have been joined by a large contingent of students from abroad, most of whom are pursuing advanced degrees. The broad range of students and faculty form a warm inviting scholarly community.