The International Master’s Degree Program in Israel studies offers students the opportunity to partake in an in-depth study of the State of Israel covering periods of the beginning of the Zionist movement to the present day. The course aims to elucidate the theoretical underpinnings of the Zionist project, communities of the Jewish diaspora and their relationship to the modern state of Israel, and the deep complexities of Israeli society in light of its multicultural character.
Recent years have witnessed an unprecedented growth of scholarly interest in Israeli history, politics, society and culture. Numerous programs, research centers and chair endowments in Israel Studies have been established in North America and Europe, adding a new, fresh and innovative dimension to existing programs in Judaic Studies. The Israel Studies program is designed for students who wish to deepen their understanding of the experiences of the Israeli population from a range of perspectives, against the wider backdrop of twentieth-century Jewish history, Middle Eastern politics and society.
The program will examine Israeli society from a variety of perspectives, including Aliyah and migration; economics and politics; culture, religion, history and the ties between Israel and Jewish communities abroad. The one-year program is taught in English over three consecutive semesters from October through August. Students wishing to pursue the thesis track will be required to submit a research thesis within one year of completing their coursework.
The field campus is one of the highlights of the program. Students, together with academic staff, spend three days in one of the country's historically rich regions. Locations include the Lower and Upper Galilee, the Negev, Jordan Valley, Beit She’an Valley, Jerusalem and its surroundings. Students engage in an exploration the areas' complexities, of both the past and present. Students meet public figures and Israeli citizens with the aim of developing dialogue and familiarity with Israeli society. The cost of the field campus is included in the tuition fee.
Hebrew and Arabic language courses are also available to students who are interested. Upon completion of the program, students will be awarded an MA in Israel Studies from the Faculty of Humanities and Department of Israel Studies.
Graduates of the program will be well placed to continue academic careers in their home countries both in Middle Eastern studies and the growing field of Israel studies specifically. They will also find the use for their studies in the fields of diplomacy and journalism; working for a variety of Israel-related NGOs, and points of cultural exchange between Israel and the world.
For the most recent list of courses, course description and schedule, please visit the program website.
The director of the Israel Studies department, Professor Gur Alroey, is also the director of the Israel Studies and 20th– century Jewish Histories (ISJH) International MA Program and the chair of the School of History at the University of Haifa. During the years 2009-2011 Alroey was a visiting professor at the Taub Center for Israel Studies at NYU and Schusterman fellow at Rutgers University. He has also authored a number of books related to Israel studies in both Hebrew and English, such as Seeking a Homeland: the Jewish Territorial Organization and its Struggle with the Zionist Movement, 1905-1925; Immigrants: Jewish Immigration to Palestine in the Early Twentieth Century and Bread to Eat & Clothes to Wear: Letters from Jewish Migrants in the Early Twentieth Century.
To explore the rest of the faculty members and their specializations please click here.
Faculty scholarships are available up to $4,500US for eligible applicants. Please inquire when applying.
The Haifa Center for German and European Studies (HCGES) is a joint venture of the University of Haifa and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD – Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst). HCGES was founded in 2007 with the goal of exposing students, researchers, and the community at large to a rich spectrum of topics related to modern Europe, and Germany in particular, since 1945.
The international Master of Arts program in German and European Studies at the University of Haifa is being launched as part of the teaching activities of the HCGES. The MA program is designed to acquaint students with topics related to Germany and Europe, highlighting Jewish and Israeli perspectives as well as the relationship between the Middle East and Europe. The program is interdisciplinary and allows students to approach German and European studies from a variety of angles while providing students with the opportunity to engage with other departments for a well-rounded education.
The MA program in German and European Studies aims to deepen students’ knowledge of Germany, Europe, and the European Union. The program is structured using the “area studies” model and offers a challenging and unique interdisciplinary curriculum that combines many fields of study including economics, law, political science, geography, environmental studies, sociology, history and literature. In addition to the core curriculum, students in the program acquire a strong command of the German language by studying 4-8 language hours per week. The program is available in two tracks: a thesis track and a non-thesis track. Students have the option to complete the program in one or two calendar years.
The program also includes an optional, though highly recommended, study tour to Germany and other European countries. The study tour is built around a chosen theme which changes every year. During the study tour, students visit EU institutions as well as other sites relevant to their studies. The cost of the study tour is not included in the program tuition.
For full curriculum please visit here.
Graduates of the program will be well placed to pursue career paths in cultural institutions, Europe-related NGOs, museums, galleries and places of learning, as well as other points of contact between Israeli and European countries.
Elective Courses (the list changes every academic year)
For more details on the current program curriculum, please visit here.
The Haifa Centre for German and European Studies is directed by Professor Eli Salzberger and includes staff with a number of subject-related area specializations. Also at the faculty is Winfried Schumacher who is our German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) lecturer at University of Haifa. He teaches language and additional culture and media courses at the Center for German and European Studies. He is also responsible for consulting students and researchers for the DAAD in Haifa and at the Goethe Institut in Tel Aviv.
For the full list of faculty staff please click here.
The program offers 15 DAAD scholarships annually, which covers tuition fees (around 14.000 NIS for the two years track and 27.000 NIS for the one year track). To obtain more information on DAAD scholarships and on how to apply, please click here. You can also visit the HCGES website for more information on scholarships.
In both teaching and research, our department combines a strong emphasis on English and American literature and culture with a wider, comparative and interdisciplinary framework. Our approach to literature and culture is diverse, both theoretically and methodologically, and we examine literature and culture from a variety of cognitive, formalist, historical, sociological, and psychological perspectives. We also encourage combinations and interactions with other fields of study in the humanities and social sciences.
Our research strengths include 19th and 20th century American fiction, Native American and African American studies, cultural Zionism, Holocaust memory, Shakespearean and Renaissance drama, book history, comparative literature, and cognitive poetics.
Courses in the literature stream have multiple foci, ranging from major authors, genres, and periods, to the history of reading, psychoanalytic criticism, modern Jewish studies, cognitive poetics, and critical race studies. Our students acquire tools for literary analysis along with an understanding of developments in cultural and literary history, while honing their skills in both written and oral expression.
The M.A. program offers either a Thesis (research) track or a non-thesis (general) track. Both are two-year programs. All tracks have three objectives: (1) to expose students to current research topics in the field; (2) to engage students in academic discourse, research methodologies and critical reasoning; (3) to train students in academic writing and usage of professional literature. All tracks are designed to take two years. Additionally, the goal of the thesis track is that students conduct original research and contribute to scientific knowledge.
1. Thesis track
Literature students in the thesis track take a methodology course in their first year. Beyond this, students may choose freely from the MA courses offered. All MA courses are run as seminars. Students must write a long seminar paper in two courses of their choice.
Overall, students in the thesis track take 24 points (comprising 50% of the final grade). They also write a research thesis (12 points, comprising 50% of the final grade). Students are encouraged to attend the departmental seminar throughout their two years of study.
All research students are expected to choose an advisor and begin working on their thesis proposal (approx. 5-7 pages plus bibliography) before the end of the first year. The thesis advisor works closely with the student, preparing the proposal. Once it is approved another faculty member serves as a second reader, and the student is asked to "defend" the proposal in a three-way conversation, modeled on the PhD proposal "defense." This conversation results in approval or a request for revision. When the proposal has been approved by both readers, the student may proceed with his/her MA research.
2. Non-thesis track
Students in this track take 36 points (comprising 80% of the final grade) plus a final oral exam (comprising 20% of the final grade). This exam is based on a reading list grounded in, but broadening, the content of two courses taken during MA studies. The list is prepared in consultation with the teacher of each course. Students take the exam once they have completed and received grades for all of their course work. The oral exam is administered by the two teachers plus the MA advisor.