Jewish Ethics

Alan Mittleman
David Kraemer
Burton L. Visotzky

Associate Professors
Eliezer Diamond
Stefanie B. Siegmund
Eitan Fishbane

Assistant Professors
Yonatan Brafman, Program Director; BA and MA Advisor
David Hoffman
Leonard Sharzer, MD

Master of Arts
Admission Requirements

Visit the Gershon Kekst Graduate School admissions webpage. An undergraduate degree with a major in Jewish Studies, Religious Studies, Ethics, or its equivalent is beneficial but not required.

Degree Requirements


In addition to prerequisite courses, students are required to complete 30 graduate credits as follows:

•  First Year Seminar (3 credits)
•  Ethics in Jewish Tradition and Community: a theory-based course on the history and methods of Jewish ethics (3 credits)
•  Moral Theories: a theory-based course surveying ethics and/or moral philosophy, (3 credits)
•  Two electives in Jewish ethical theory chosen from the following (6 credits):

•  Narrative Ethics: including but not limited to midrash, Aggadah, and biblical literature
•  Philosophical Ethics: considering the philosophical elements of Jewish ethics
•  Halakhah and Ethics: addressing the role of halakhah in Jewish ethics
•  Feminist Jewish Ethics: engaging feminist theory, feminist ethics, and gender studies
•  Comparative Religious Ethics: comparing Jewish ethics with Christian, Muslim, and other religious ethics

•  Three electives in applied Jewish ethics from the fields below (9 credits)

  • Bioethics
  • Legal ethics
  • Environmental ethics
  • Business ethics

•  Two Jewish studies electives, chosen in consultation with an advisor (6 credits)

Master's Degree Program Internship or Thesis
Depending on their career trajectory, students will have capstone project options. Students focusing on Jewish bioethics and/or those interested in more clinical work will complete a 150-hour internship and attend an accompanying biweekly seminar with other Jewish Ethics students at this stage. This yearlong, 3-credit class will give students the opportunity to process their internship with a facilitator and their peers while synthesizing this experience with the academic course work that they have taken. Students' participation in the seminar and their field experience will culminate in a seminar paper. 

Those who are more interested in ethical theory or for whom a thesis will prove beneficial may apply to write a traditional master's thesis. Students interested in writing a thesis should consult with their advisor and apply at the end of their first year of course work.

Search the Course Catalog for Jewish Ethics courses.