Cantorial Course Requirements

AJR Cantorial Program Course Requirements

The following chart describes the courses and distributions required for cantorial ordination. Certain courses in each subject area are specifically required. Otherwise, there are distribution requirements indicating the number of courses to be completed in each subject. There may be additional requirements regarding the methodologies or approaches that should be represented among the courses within each subject area, as well as the level of study that should be attained within each subject.

Note that all courses are worth 2 credits unless otherwise stated

BIBLE (4 credits)
Introduction to Bible
Parashat Hashavua

HEBREW (27 credits)
Hebrew I (2 trimesters, 4 credits each)
Hebrew II (2 trimesters, 4 credits each)
Hebrew III (2 trimesters, 4 credits each)
Biblical Hebrew
Hebrew Reading Accuracy (1 credit)

HISTORY (6 credits)
Great Ideas and Debates of Jewish History I
Great Ideas and Debates of Jewish History II
American Jewish History, Society, and Culture*

LITURGY (11 credits)
Introduction to Siddur and Mahzor (0 credits)
Introduction to Liturgy
Shabbat Liturgy
Festival Liturgy
Yamim Noraim Liturgy
Tefillah and Seminar (with multiple courses totaling 3 credits)

PHILOSOPHY (4 credits)
Personal Theology
Pluralism

PROFESSIONAL SKILLS (15 credits)
Pastoral Counseling I
Pastoral Counseling II
Homiletics (1 credit)
Education (2 trimesters, 2 credits each)
Life Cycle I
Life Cycle II
Chaplaincy (1 credit)
Field Work Support Seminar (4 trimesters, 0 credit)
Core Concepts Seminar (4 trimesters, 0 credit)
Difficult Conversations (1 credit)

RABBINICS / HALAKHAH (8 credits)
Introduction to Mishna
Introduction to Talmud (2 trimesters, 2 credits each)
Introduction to Halakhah

SPIRITUALITY (4 credits)
Architecture of Ritual
Sacred Arts

CANTILLATION (6 credits)
Cantillation I: Torah, Haftarah, Yamim Noraim (3 credits)
Cantillation II: Shalosh Regalim, Esther, Eikhah (3 credits)

NUSAH** (25 credits)
Introduction to Modes (1 credit)
Shabbat I (4 credits)
Shabbat II (4 credits)
Yamim Noraim I (4 credits)
Yamim Noraim II (4 credits)
Shalosh Regalim (4 credits)
Hol and Minor Festivals (4 credits)

PROFESSIONAL CANTORIAL CURRICULUM (14 credits)
Conducting (1 credit)
Music of the Life Cycle (1 credit)
Musical Skills I (0 credits)
Musical Skills II (0 credits)
Musical Skills III
Empowering Community Through Singing (Guitar)
Music History
Sephardi / Mizrahi Maqamat and Music
Piyyutim
Entrepreneurial Skills

PEACE STUDIES (6 credits)
Introduction to Peace Studies
Community Building Through Peace Studies
Music and Conflict Resolution

ELECTIVES (10 credits)

Total: 140 credits

* Note that students living outside of the United States may take a comparable course in the Jewish History and Culture of their country instead of American Jewish History, Society, and Culture.
** All nusah classes meet twice weekly, with one didactic session, and one ‘lab/coaching’ session to review and hone the application of the material covered. Attendance at both sessions is required.