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Biblical Language and Literature


Programs in Biblical language and literature teach people the ancient languages of the Near East.

In Biblical language and literature programs, students typically study ancient Greek and Hebrew. They learn about the culture or the people who spoke these ancient languages. They learn how languages spread through Sumer, Judea, Egypt, Babylon, Syria, Persia, and Anatolia.

Biblical language and literature programs include topics such as:

This program prepares students for further graduate study in Biblical studies or theology.


In Biblical language and literature, students may be able to specialize in:


A few colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degrees in Biblical language and literature. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Very few universities offer graduate degrees in Biblical language and literature. A master’s degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor’s degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master’s degree.

See schools that offer this program.

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Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, and good test scores. In addition, you must be able to demonstrate that you can speak, read, write, and understand Greek and Hebrew at an advanced level.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Program Courses

This program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

Graduate Program Courses

Graduate programs in Biblical language and literature typically require:

Things to Know

Many programs in Biblical language and literature are part of religious or divinity schools but not always. Many non-religious institutions offer courses or degrees in this subject.

Colleges that do not have complete programs in Biblical language and literature may offer elective courses as part of a major in interdisciplinary studies or liberal arts.

Students who major in Biblical language and literature may be required or encouraged to spend some time living, working, and studying abroad. Most programs coordinate semester abroad or work internships. In most cases, you can participate in these after you have completed at least two years of language study.

At some schools, courses in Biblical language and literature are offered through Classics or Jewish studies programs.

Many Biblical language and literature programs also offer language courses in Aramaic and Arabic.


East Side Area

Walla Walla University

King-Snohomish Area

Northwest University

University of Washington - Seattle

Spokane Area

Gonzaga University

Tacoma Area

Faith International University & Seminary

Western Reformed Seminary