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National College Credit Recommendation Service

Board of Regents  |  University of the State of New York

Judaic Studies - Coopersmith Career Consulting

Descriptions and credit recommendations for all evaluated learning experiences

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced). 

Dates:

November 2020 - Present. 

Objectives:

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to: assess the more complex details of the concepts and laws of blessings according to the halacha of the Jewish religion.  Students are required to identify and explain major points of disagreement among the early sources. Additionally, students will be able to successfully apply major principles and individual details to various circumstances.  

Instruction:

Advanced Studies of Blessings I (JST-315) is a self-study course that culminates in a final examination. Students become familiarized with the primary sources of Halacha through Tur and Beis Yosef, gaining the ability to trace Halacha to its source and identify the points of dispute among rishonim.  Students discuss  concepts and sources for complex laws of brachos and the ability to apply their knowledge of the Halachic principles of Brachos to various situations and analyze what rules come into play in any given case. Topics include the underlying meaning and reasons for blessings, dealing with cases of doubt, rules of saying “amen,” saying blessings on behalf of others, the proper sequence of blessings, and the criteria for which a blessing said on one item can exempt another item.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Judaic Studies, Near Eastern Studies, or Religion (10/20).

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced). 

Dates:

November 2020 - Present. 

Objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to: describe and analyze complex practices, principles, customs and laws pertaining to Jewish blessings; and apply halachic principles of brachos to various situations and circumstances.

Instruction:

Advanced Studies of Blessings II (JST-320) is a self-study course that culminates in a final examination. Students will demonstrate the requisite knowledge and skills to apply halachic principles of Brachos to various situations and analyze what rules come into play in any given scenario. Topics include the halachic ramifications of leaving the place of the meal or deciding to end the meal, determining what is considered the main part of a mixture, the definition of bread, pas haba b’kisnin and when it is considered a meal, determination of Bracha for berries, situations where fruits and vegetables do not receive their primary Bracha, and the rules of what is included in the Bracha of borei pri hagafen.  

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Judaic Studies, Near Eastern Studies, or Religion (11/20). 

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced).

Dates:

May 2023 - Present. 

Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to: trace various Jewish practices to their sources; demonstrate the role of Jewish history in Jewish festivals and holy sites; articulate the organization of the Jewish calendar and the order of Jewish festivals and life-cycle events; identify the ritual practices of the Jewish festivals and life-cycle events; assert the role of holy places and objects in Jewish religious practice; deduce the kosher status of various foods based on its characteristics; correlate Jewish practices in regard to clothing and appearance with the meaning the meaning that they represent; infer a Torah philosophy towards interpersonal relationships based on halachic principles; and identify blessings and prayers with their appropriate occasions.

Instruction:

Comprehensive Basic Jewish Practices  assesses students’ knowledge of basic Jewish practices.  Students learn about the concept of the weekly Sabbath and all of the Jewish festivals and fasts and understand what they commemorate, and all of the main practices conducted on those days according to Torah tradition.  Additionally, all of major life-cycle events are covered in this course, including the rituals which Jews follow for these events.  Holy sites and objects and physical symbols are described, and their halachic ramifications are discussed. Additional topics include the laws of prayers, blessings and kosher food.  The discussion of halacha is not limited to the area of laws between man and G-d but includes laws of charity and interpersonal relationships.

Credit recommendation:

In the lower division baccalaureate/associate degree category, 6 semester hours in Jewish Studies, Religion, Near Eastern Studies, or Sociology (5/23).

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced).

Dates:

March 2021 - Present.

Objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to: to identify the textual sources for Torah principles as found in Pirkei Avos; show familiarity with the teachings of Pirkei Avos and the commentary of Rabbeinu Yonah; apply the ethical principles of Pirkei Avos to various practical situations; trace the transmission of the Torah; to recognize the relationship between the ethical teachings of Pirkei Avos and proper interpersonal relations; and explain the beliefs of reward and punishment according to the sages of Pirkei Avos.

Instruction:

Ethics of the Fathers I (ETH-340) examines the ethical messages and teachings of the first three chapters of Tractate Avos along with the essential comments and teachings of Rabbeinu Yonah of Gerona in his commentary on those chapters. Students should know Rabbeinu Yonah’s explanations of the words of the mishnah and the concepts he derives from the mishnah. Concepts involve understanding the transmission of tradition, good character traits, proper interpersonal relations, reward and punishment, and pure service of G-d.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Jewish Studies, Philosophy, History, Ethics, or Education (5/21). NOTE: Students may only receive credit for this course OR Ethics of the Fathers (PHL-340). 

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced). 

Dates:

March 2021 - Present. 

Objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to: identify the textual sources for Torah principles as found in Pirkei Avos; show familiarity with the teachings of Pirkei Avos and the commentary of Rabbeinu Yonah; apply the ethical principles of Pirkei Avos to various practical situations; elaborate the attitudes towards wisdom and how to attain it as expressed in Pirkei Avos; explain  the relationship between the ethical teachings of Pirkei Avos and proper interpersonal relations; and explain the beliefs of reward and punishment according to the sages of Pirkei Avos.

Instruction:

Ethics of the Fathers II (ETH-345) is a course which examines the ethical messages and teachings of the last three chapters of Tractate Avos along with the essential comments and teachings of Rabbeinu Yonah of Gerona in his commentary on those chapters. Students should know Rabbeinu Yonah’s explanations of the words of the mishnah and the concepts he derives from the mishnah. Concepts addressed in this course involve defining a Torah value system, ethical character traits, ethical attitudes towards Torah study, how to successfully pursue wisdom, and reward and punishment.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Jewish Studies, Philosophy, History, Ethics, or Education (5/21).

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced). 

Dates:

March 2021 - Present.

Objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to: explain why the Sages of the Talmud viewed financial self-sufficiency as a crucial value; assess and prioritize competing values in the area of money and wealth according to rabbinic scholarship; describe the relationship between trust in G-d and pursuit of livelihood; identify varying aspects of financial planning and their significance within the framework of Torah money ethics; evaluate various career options and their suitability according to Torah ethical teaching; evaluate how financial matters impact on someone's character; identify the dangers of both poverty and wealth; and discern how financial life is replete with mitzvos and Divine guidance.

Instruction:

Ethics of Wealth (ETH-400) explores Torah values and ethics regarding money, wealth and work. Utilizing traditional sources from the Bible, Talmud, and their classic commentaries as well later rabbinic sources, students consider topics such as financial self-sufficiency and its significance, financial planning and investing, as well as vocational and professional options for employment. Other topics focus on how issues relating to money play a role in mitzvah observance and personal character.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Jewish Studies, Philosophy, History, Ethics, or Education (5/21).

Length:

Varies-self study. 

Dates:

February 2022 - Present.

Objectives:

Upon completion of the course, students will be able to: identify the rules promulgated in the applicable Talmudic section; describe the rulemaking and thought processes used by the Talmud and its commentaries to generate legal rulings and principles in the applicable section; analyze the discussions, debates and arguments made in the Talmud and commentaries in the applicable section; explain the strength and weakness of each position in presented Talmudic debate; resolve apparent difficulties in the Talmud through students own thought processes and by referencing applicable commentaries. 

Instruction:

Intermediate Talmud challenges students mind through an in-depth study of the Babylonian Talmud. Students examine the prescribed section including major selected commentaries, focusing on legal, philosophical and ethical principles. Although topics will vary by prescribed chapters, all students will be asked to engage in in-depth study and analysis and to achieve mastery of the prescribed Talmudic section. Students consult with Talmudic experts on the appropriate subject and may be subject to oral and/or written assessments by these experts to assess achievement.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Judaic Studies, Near Eastern Studies, or Religious Studies (2/22). NOTE: A two digit sub-code [01 through 63] which follows the title 'Intermediate Talmud (Talmud 310) specifies individual tractates within the intermediate level of Talmudic Studies. Students complete multiple tractates and credit may be awarded for completion for each intermediate Talmud tractate. 

Length:

Version 1 and 2: Varies (self-study). 

Dates:

Version 1: June 2017 - February 2022.  Version 2: March 2022 - Present.

Objectives:

Versions 1 and 2:  Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to: identify artistic motivations and key features of Jewish art of Antiquity; trace the development of popular motifs in Jewish art; compare and contrast Jewish art of Antiquity from different places; compare and contrast Jewish art of Late Antiquity with that of nearby cultures; identify strengths and weaknesses of various theories of art interpretation as they apply to Jewish art of Antiquity; explain changes in Jewish art from the Second Temple period through the end of Late Antiquity; analyze Jewish art of Antiquity from multiple perspectives, including political, social, and religious; and apply rabbinic sources to questions of Jewish art. 

Instruction:

Version 1: Jewish Art of Antiquity examines visual Judaism from the time of the settlement of the Jewish people in the Land of Israel, with major emphasis on Late Antiquity, including the major archaeological finds from that period in both Israel and the Diaspora and their significance, a variety of interpretations of these pieces and the debates over various theories of interpretation, social, political, and religious contexts, and comparisons between different works from the period. Special attention is given to the rabbinic view on art and specific types of art, and what level of influence the rabbis may have had over the producers of the art in this period. Version 2: Same as Version 1 with expanded breadth, depth and scope. 

Credit recommendation:

Version 1: In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 3 semester hours in Art, Biblical Studies, History, Judaic Studies, Near Eastern Studies, or Religious Studies (6/17). Version 2: In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 6 semester hours in Art, Biblical Studies, History, Judaic Studies, Near Eastern Studies, or Religious Studies (2/22 revalidation). 

Length:

Varies (self-study, self-paced). 

Dates:

November 2020 - Present. 

Objectives:

Upon successful completion of the learning experience, students will be able to  identify, explain, analyze, interpret, and apply the theories they learned in the area of Jewish blessings and assess basic concepts related to blessings; identify major principles; analyze the underlying premises of the principal laws and customs; and apply them to varied and novel situations. 

Instruction:

This distance learning course covers blessing structure, blessings made in vain, the response of amen, discharging the obligation of others, initial blessings, sequence of blessings, principle versus subsidiary items, the status of staple foods, and the use of the general blessing of shehakol (the blessing recited over any food or drink that does not fall into a higher category of blessing).

Credit recommendation:

In the lower division baccalaureate/associate degree category, 3 semester hours in Anthropology, Judaic Studies, Sociology, or Religion (11/20).

Length:

Varies (self-study; self-paced).

Dates:

March 2022 - Present.

Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to: discuss the history of the Orthodox Jews in America from 1880-1945; describe the challenges Jewish immigrants faced as they encountered American culture and society, and in particular the challenge of material abundance; identify the obstacles that caused Jews to weaken in religious commitment as well as the various methods and institutions that worked to preserve tradition; outline the accomplishments of Orthodox Jews in different aspects of American society; develop a deep understanding of the causes and manifestations of anti-Semitism during this period and relations between Jews and gentiles; understand Orthodox Jewish immigrant relations with previously established Jewish groups; and forecast the behavior of typical immigrants under various circumstances and draw parallels from leaders, methods, and ideas of those times to apply them to other similar circumstances.

Instruction:

The History of Orthodox Jewry in the United States (1880-1945) (HIS-460) assesses students' knowledge of the history of Orthodox Jewry in the United States and the challenges they faced, primarily from the years 1880-1945, focusing on the influx of Russian immigrants and how they confronted American society, as well as their relations with the Jews who arrived in the U.S. previously. It deals with the challenges of material abundance and various threats to religious life and details the variety of major steps taken by the Orthodox community to preserve Torah traditions. It also provides context on various types of anti-Semitic movements that arose at this time and important Jewish social and political leaders and legislation as it related to the Jews, as well as the varied American Jewish responses to the holocaust and the accompanying refugee crisis.

Credit recommendation:

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 6 semester hours in Judaic Studies, Sociology, Anthropology, History, Jewish History, or as a General Elective (2/22).

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