Graduate Studies and Affiliation

Graduate Division of Religious Studies

If you are interested in pursuing graduate studies in Jewish religious texts and tradition, philosophical/religious thought, or cultures and societies, consider applying to the Graduate Division of Religious Studies (GDRS) at Boston University. We particularly encourage applicants interested in specializing in biblical studies and the history of biblical interpretation, early Judaism (Second Temple Jewish literature, apocrypha and pseudepigrapha, early Jewish magic, Josephus, Dead Sea Scrolls), Jews in medieval Christian society, Jewish and comparative religious thought and philosophy, German Jewish intellectual history, and theological responses to the Holocaust. Students admitted to the PhD programs of the GDRS are now typically eligible for a five-year dissertation fellowship.

The GDRS is a multi-disciplinary religious studies program that draws on graduate faculty from BU and the greater Boston area (BTI) for course work and advising. Students in the Division constitute a diverse cohort in a vibrant academic environment. We also provide entry-level teaching experience and mentoring. Students are expected to master languages and other skills required for scholarly expertise in their chosen field of study. Each student will work out a particular course of study based on academic interests, professional goals, and faculty guidance and advice.

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Graduate Affiliation

Non-GDRS students may seek affiliation with the Elie Wiesel Center. The EWCJS supports Jewish studies in many areas of inquiry, including the social sciences and the humanities, across Boston University. Graduate students working with Jewish-studies faculty or conducting research on themes related to Jewish history, culture, law, religion, or society are encouraged to seek affiliation with the Center. Affiliated graduate students are eligible to apply for research and travel support. (For details, please contact our office.)

If you are interested in affiliating with the Elie Wiesel Center, please send us a cv, a letter of intent, transcript, and a letter of support from your adviser and schedule an interview with the EWCJS director.

To maintain affiliation, we expect that you participate in the life of the EWCJS on a regular basis and submit a brief annual summary of research and other accomplishments for inclusion in our annual report. Active participation in the life of the Center includes regular attendance of, and an occasional presentation to, the monthly BUJS Faculty/Graduate Student Research Forum.


Affiliated graduate students are eligible to apply for travel and research support from the Elie Wiesel Center. Amounts of awards vary by need and availability. To apply, you must submit

  • a research proposal and impact statement
  • a detailed budget and indication of other sources of funding
  • an updated curriculum vitae
  • a letter of recommendation from your adviser.

Students who receive funding are required to submit a research/travel report  within six months of travel or completion of research.

For updated  information on funding opportunities, and other graduate inquiries, contact Michael Zank, Director, The Elie Wiesel Center for Judaic Studies, 147 Bay State Road, Boston, MA 02215; (617) 353-8096;