Interviewing - Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion
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Interview and Psychological Evaluation

A personal interview and audition with the Admissions Committee is required as part of our evaluation of your candidacy. This on-campus interview provides the Committee the opportunity to get to know you better and allows you to expand upon the information you have provided in your application. For your audition, you will be asked to sing three pieces of music showing your ability to perform the classical repertoire, a contemporary liturgical selection, and one additional piece that will showcase any other styles that you might like the committee to hear (i.e. Musical Theatre, Opera, etc) . 

The audition/interview will also include chanting from Torah (verses assigned in advance), sight-singing from a Tikkun (both Torah and Haftarah), and some additional elementary sight-singing from music.

There will be a music theory exam administered separately (musical analysis, writing scales, recognizing chords, and notating a simple melody line).

We reserve the right to deny an interview to applicants who do not meet the admissions standards. Please do not make travel arrangements to a campus until you receive confirmation from HUC-JIR that you have been granted an interview.

Participation in HUC-JIR’s Cantorial program can be highly stressful, and both physically and mentally demanding. Participants must have the interpersonal skills needed to interface with people in diverse situations and the capacity to meet the intellectual, ethical, and emotional demands of graduate school. Being able to complete academic studies in such an environment is an essential aspect of participating in the program.

To help ensure that applicants can meet the essential requirements of participating in the program and their career upon graduation, all interviewed applicants are required to complete a psychological evaluation, which includes an interview with a psychologist and psychometric testing. The psychological interview and testing is paid for by HUC-JIR.

Testing will be scheduled to take place at the time you are scheduled for your on-campus admissions interview. At that time, you will be asked to sign a release form authorizing the release of the psychological evaluation report to HUC-JIR.

The Hebrew Proficiency Requirement:

The Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music requires a Hebrew language proficiency equivalent to two years of college-level Modern Hebrew, as demonstrated by performance on the Hebrew Proficiency Examination.

Admissions decisions are reached independently of the results of this exam. Admitted applicants who do not demonstrate sufficient proficiency in Modern Hebrew may be required retake the exam, or defer enrollment to improve their language skill. Learn more