As the Jewish world changes and our clerical roles contract, expand, and evolve, cantors often find themselves wishing they had the tools to fulfill all that is being asked of them as spiritual leaders.

AJR proudly offers cantors a streamlined but rigorous opportunity to add rabbinic ordination to their already impressive mastery of nusah, tefillah, and Jewish leadership. This track of the Rabbinic Program is for those invested and/or ordained cantors who are looking for more than just continuing education – it is designed for those seeking intensive pursuit of an additional respected degree.

Rabbi Luis Cattan

“My journey as a rabbi began about thirty years ago and could have never been materialized if it wasn’t for AJR’s Cantors to Rabbis program”
– Rabbi/Cantor Luis Cattan (’00),
Immediate Past President, Cantors Assembly

Course Requirements

The Cantors to Rabbis track of the Rabbinical Program requires a minimum of 60 credits. In addition, students are responsible for taking the comprehensive exams required of rabbinical students and for fulfilling the requisite Ritual Skills requirement. Students in this track who have not already completed a Master’s Degree in Jewish Studies or in a Jewish field will also need to complete the AJR Master’s in Jewish Studies, including a Master’s Project, as part of their program, which typically adds an additional 30 credits.

Course requirements assume significant competency in areas such as Hebrew, Liturgy, and Professional Skills. Proficiency will be evaluated on an individual basis. If necessary, students may be required to take additional courses.

Please note: Courses are 2 credits each unless otherwise indicated.

Bible (8 credits)
Introduction to Parshanut
Electives (6 credits)

Hebrew (8 credits)
Hebrew III (2 trimesters, 4 credits each)

Philosophy (11 credits)
Modern Philosophy
Personal Theology
Medieval Philosophy
Bioethics (1 credit)

Rabbinics/Halakha (24 credits)
Intro to Mishna
Intro to Talmud (2 trimesters, 2 credits each)
Intermediate Talmud (2 trimesters, 2 credits each)
Advanced Talmud (2 trimesters, 2 credits each)
Intro to Codes (2 trimesters, 2 credits each)
Advanced Codes

Professional Skills (7 credits)
Conversion (1 credit)
Life Cycles (1 credit)
Education or  Counseling**
Homiletics (1 credit)

Spirituality  (2 credits)
Spirituality elective

TOTAL: 60 credits*

*If necessary, students may be required to take additional courses.
**Whether a student needs to take Education or Counseling will be determined in consultation with the Academic Dean.

Scholarship Opportunity

A special scholarship for students enrolled in the Cantors to Rabbis track discounts the part-time tuition to $980 per credit. Students considering full-time study should contact the office for more information.