M.A. in Archaeology & the Ancient Near East

Why M.A. in Archaeology & the Ancient Near East?

  • Study with leading faculty members at the Hebrew University’s Institute of Archaeology
  • Participate in major archaeological excavations and surveys
  • Gain access to our cutting-edge analytic laboratories
  • Live in Jerusalem, a historical city and access point to important archaeological sites and museums
  • Hybrid study options available for the Autumn semester

The Hebrew University’s Institute of Archaeology, in conjunction with the Rothberg International School, offers a degree combining formal classroom studies and hands-on field experience at excavations and surveys. The M.A. in Archaeology & the Ancient Near East examines the history and culture of ancient Israel during the Bronze and Iron Ages. Students will acquire proficiency in the academic fields of archaeology, ancient texts, and ancient languages.

In the classroom, you will study with leading members of the Hebrew University faculty. In the field, you will complement your studies as a participant in major excavations and surveys, where you will gain hands-on experience. In your scholarly analysis, you will be aided by the cutting-edge facilities of the Institute of Archaeology, including the Computerized Archaeological Laboratory (with 3D scanning), the Laboratory for Archaeological Materials and Ancient Technologies, and the Institute’s renowned Collection Room.

The program’s Jerusalem location provides students with direct access to important archaeological sites, museums, and other world-renowned facilities. 

The program consists of required and elective courses taken over two academic semesters, and a study excavations during the Summer semester. Autumn semester is offered in a hybrid form, i.e., can be attended online or in-person.

The program consists of 36 credits over three semesters.

2023/2024 Course Catalog

Information about the M.A. in Archaeology & the Ancient Near East starts on page 57 of the above catalog. Please note that the M.A. program is subject to change. The information provided in the catalog will help you get a sense of the structure of the program and kinds of courses offered, but changes are made from year to year.

Seminar Papers
You will submit at least two seminar papers. Seminar papers are required in order to graduate but do not count towards the program’s credit requirements.

The academic faculty of the Institute of Archaeology is composed of leading authorities in the field of Biblical Archaeology. They offer courses on a wide variety of topics, such as pottery, burial rites, biblical languages, among others.

Prof. Naama Yahalom-Mack is the academic head of the MA program, as well as the academic head of the Department of Archaeology of the Biblical Period at the Institute of Archaeology. Prof. Yahalom-Mack specializes in archaeometallurgy (the study of ancient metals) in the Bronze and Iron Ages.

Click here for a partial list of the Archaeology and the Ancient Near East lecturers.

The Hebrew University’s RIS offers a rich extracurricular activities program, including tours, social and cultural events, lectures, and more. We support you throughout your stay with us so that Jerusalem becomes your home away from home. Learn more about the Office of Student Life here.

Click here to view one of the OSL’s weekly emails to students with information about events taking place on campus and around Jerusalem.

Early admissions

  • Apply: November 15, 2023 – January 15, 2024
  • Application fee: US $120
  • First tuition payment of US $1,500 by: February 15, 2024
  • Remaining tuition payment by: March 31, 2024
  • Early admissions scholarship: US $1,000 (for students who apply and pay tuition in full by the above deadlines)
  • Additional scholarship for students who pay tuition in full by February 15, 2024: US $1,000 (total of $2,000 scholarship)

Regular admissions

  • Apply: January 16 – June 1, 2024
  • Application fee: US $120
  • Tuition payment by: June 21, 2024

Students who pay the tuition in full by May 1, 2024, will receive a scholarship of $500.

Late admissions

  • Apply: June 2 – August 1, 2024
  • Application fee: $250

For a list of our scholarship dates and deadlines, please check our Scholarships and Financial Aid page.

Cancellation Policy
Applicants who complete their tuition payment and then decide to cancel their enrollment in the M.A. program will receive a full refund, but will be charged a withdrawal fee, as follows:

  • Cancellation by June 1, 2024$250 withdrawal fee
  • Cancellation by August 1, 2024: $500 withdrawal fee
  • Cancellation by October 28, 2024: $750 withdrawal fee

For information about withdrawal fees after October 29, 2024, please refer to our Tuition Fees & Refunds page.

Arrive on campus by: Approximately one week before your program starts; specific dates will be sent to accepted students via email.

Program length: October, 2024 – August, 2025. Check our academic calendar for exact dates.

Fees & Refunds

For information about tuition, health insurance, and housing fees and refunds, see our Tuition Fees & Refund page.


A number of merit and need-based scholarships are available. See our Scholarships and Financial Aid page for more information.

For tips and ideas regarding scholarships and financial planning from our current and former students, see our How Did You Finance Your Studies pamphlet.


To be eligible for acceptance, you must have the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education recognized by the Hebrew University
  • Minimum B average (85/100 or equivalent)
  • Demonstrated knowledge of English

In addition to your online application, you will be required to submit the following documents:

  • Academic Records: Applicants must submit transcripts and diplomas from all prior academic degrees.
  • Proof of English Proficiency: A TOEFL exam score of 80 or above, IELTS exam score of 6 or above, or Amiram exam score of 120 or above. **
  • CV and Statement of Purpose
  • Two Academic Recommendations
  • Photocopy of your Passport ID page
  • Medical Form and Disclaimer Form (the latter for US citizens only) – both forms may be downloaded from the application website.

All documents may be uploaded to your application directly or sent to gradiv2@savion.huji.ac.il as email attachments.

** If you have completed a degree at a university at which English is the sole language of instruction, or if you have completed a degree in English Language and Literature, you can request an exemption. You must submit documentation from your university verifying English as the language of instruction. Exemption is not automatic and is determined on a case-by-case basis.



Questions about the Curriculum
Email Prof. Naama Yahalom-Mack
Academic Head of the M.A. in Archaeology & the Ancient Near East

Questions about Admissions, Scholarships, Housing, and Other Practical Matters
Email the Division of Graduate Studies
Call us: +972 2 588 1194


Click here to meet Prof. Naama Yahalom-Mack – the Academic Head of the M.A. in Archaeology & the Ancient Near East – and learn about her research at the Hebrew University’s Institute of Archaeology! 

Fast Facts

Language of Instruction:


Degree Earned:

Master of Arts

Career Outlook:

Academia, field archaeology, museum and archive work


One year (three consecutive semesters)

Start Dates:



Accredited bachelor’s degree

Application Deadline:

June 1, 2024


See Tuition & Fees  page

Take a look at our pages for prospects, students, faculty and staff, alumni, and parents – or contact us!

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Pre-Semester Program: “Encountering Jerusalem”
Practical Hebrew Beginners4 credits
Modern Standard Arabic Beginners 5 credits
Jerusalem: A Journey Through Time and Space3 credits
Pre-Semester Program: “Encountering Jerusalem”
Practical Hebrew Beginners 4 credits
Israeli Society3 credits