Barry Holtz

Theodore and Florence Baumritter Professor of Jewish Education

Department: Jewish Education , Melton Research Center, William Davidson Graduate School

Phone: (212) 678-8034


Building Room: Brush 206

Office Hours: Tuesday 10:00 a.m.–noon


BA, Tufts University; MA and PhD, Brandeis University

Barry W. Holtz is the Theodore and Florence Baumritter Professor of Jewish Education at The Jewish Theological Seminary. From 2008 to 2013 he served as dean of the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education of JTS. He leads courses in teaching classical texts, professional development for teachers, philosophy of Jewish education, and current issues confronting Jewish education.

Dr. Holtz has written and edited numerous publications in the field of Jewish education. His Back to the Sources: Reading the Classic Jewish Texts, a Book-of-the-Month Club selection, is widely used as a textbook for university and adult education courses. His most recent book, Rabbi Akiva: Sage of the Talmud, was published by Yale University Press in 2017.

Dr. Holtz served for 12 years as codirector of JTS’s Melton Research Center for Jewish Education, where he supervised the writing and publication of several volumes of the Melton Graded Curriculum materials for Jewish schools across North America.


  • Book-of-the-Month Club selection, 1984: Back to the Sources: Reading the Classic Jewish Texts.
  • Book-of-the-Month Club selection, 1992: The Schocken Guide to Jewish Books
  • National Jewish Book Award, 2004: Textual Knowledge: Teaching the Bible in Theory and in Practice. 



Dr. Holtz’s research focuses on the pedagogy of Jewish sources with an emphasis on the relationship between Judaica scholarship and the teaching of Jewish classical texts, and between Jewish thought and Jewish educational theory. He also works in the field of professional development for educators.