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Back to The Talmud: A Methodological Introduction

Learner Reviews & Feedback for The Talmud: A Methodological Introduction by Northwestern University

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About the Course

The Talmud is one of the richest and most complicated works of literature the world has ever known. Since being composed around 1500 years ago it has inspired not only religious reverence but significant intellectual engagement. In this course learners will be introduced to the unique characteristics of this text and the challenges that inhere in studying it while studying a chapter of the Talmud. Students of the course can expect to develop an appreciation for how the Talmud works and why it continues to inspire religious and intellectual devotion. They will be challenged to employ critical reading skills and to analyze legal and historical concepts....

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An outstanding look into the complexities and nuances of the the Talmud. Well-taught, thought-provoking, interesting...


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I learned a lot. The course was well thought out, the presenters were knowledgeable and their material was well articulated, useful and interesting. Thank you!

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1 - 25 of 100 Reviews for The Talmud: A Methodological Introduction

By Kelly R

Jan 20, 2017

Best course I've experienced on Coursera so far! Really engaging and not 'dumbed down'. Fantastic and charismatic professor and assistant. Already recommended the course to many friends.

By Barry L

Jan 8, 2017

This course is both a traditional and non-traditional Talmud course. The non-traditional gives a historic prospective of the basis of Talmud with a modern view of its derivation.


Nov 1, 2020

The course was incredible! It is extremely informative, yet just the right length for a beginner in the study of Jewish History. I have learned so much through this course, I am deeply grateful for this rare opportunity. The material provided is ideal for studying and further research on your own. The Professor as well as the incredible PhD Candidate ( I assume now a Dr) had a wonderful way of teaching and were very knowledgeable on the subject. Thank you again for the work you have put into this course. Five stars from me!

By Amy F

Mar 4, 2021

This course really stretched the limits of my intellect while being totally accessible, well organized, and interesting. As a secular Jew who knows next to nothing about Jewish thought and history, I'm grateful to now have enough knowledge to give an "elevator speech" about the Talmud: its origins, structure, content, and place in the faith and history. Thank you to Barry and Sarah for a wonderful, doable MOOC!

By Sven S

Mar 28, 2018

This was a great course! I hope there will come a continuation to this. I certainly will join in. I am inspired to do more study of Talmud myself and can recommend to everybody interested in Talmud to take this course. It is best way to spend your time! Big compliments to the makers of it.

By Karen W

May 27, 2018

Exactly what I was hoping for in this class - a thorough introduction to Talmud and its associated literature, and a peek at how the material is parsed and has been understood by its readers and editors. Thanks so much!

By Akhilesh P

Feb 18, 2019

Great way of introducing a topic as complex as the Talmud. It was surely amazing to have such course instructors who can rarely be matched both in eloquence and erudition. Overall it was fun!

By Francis E F

Apr 19, 2020

Thank you Professor Wimpfheimer for offering this course. Though I am a Catholic, the course gave me a clearer perspective on how to understand the Sacred Scriptures. Thank you! Shalom!

By Faye D

Jan 10, 2021

The choice of material was excellent as was the presentations by both knowledgable instructors.

Would be happy to take additional advanced courses in Talmud skills from them as well.

By Judith C

Feb 10, 2022

Excellent course. It is building up gradually an understanding of what is the Talmud and how it works. Clear, short lecture videos, repeated glossary terms which help to memorize and understand the terminology which is foreign for those who are not well versed in Jewish studies. Some of the quizes were a bit difficult (ex. Kal vehomer), especially those with the multiple choices as answers. The little graphic representations ease the solemnity of the topic.

Overall excellent course, I would recommend to anyone who would like to be intelectually stimulated. Kol Hakavod Sarah, the clarity with which you explain complex concepts is remarkable. Professor Wimpfheimer, please do continue your teaching through this medium, it can reach and teach many people and it is very much appreciated.

Thank you all.


By yuki

Jun 11, 2019

I recently read a book about Talmudic Advises translated in Japanese. I liked it very much and it lead me to exploring Jewish further. I ended up taking this course.

This course was more academic than I had imagined, but I enjoyed a lot. I realized that inside, there was tons of information and studies that I can't even find on internet. So I think the time I spent on this course worth it. I will use this knowledge for further studies as a foundation. One day I hope I'll have a nice discussion time with a real Rabbi. Thank you.

By Lakatos A

Jul 8, 2021

I can only give high five, because of the involvement of the teachers. Even thought I am a proud Christian, I am very interested in Jewish culture and tradition, and I learned a lot from your course. I learned however one important thing : that I might know mroe about the Talmud that most of the people on this globe, but I know almost nothing, and there is still much place to learn about.

By Russell L M

Aug 21, 2020

This course really meant a lot to me. All my life, I wondered about the Talmud's content and what studying it would entail. Yet, not being Jewish, I thought I had no way to explore my curiosity. The course provides the tools to analyze and appreciate the Talmud; it also provides a clear path for continued study. I wish this professor offered other MOOCs whatever the subject.

By jia q c f k (

Apr 20, 2023

When I joined this course; I had no idea what I was getting into, after all, it seemed eccentric that a 20-year old agnostic ethnically Chinese boy from Singapore would take interest in a religion that is a very small minority in his home country; but I found much of the course content interesting and appealing, and certainly a new entry into a new world! Thank you so much!

By Jorge L G

Dec 21, 2019

As a Seventh Day Adventist Christian that I am, I recommended strongly. We can learn new views to understand, to make interpretations, tools to study the scriptures, and a way to improve the understanding of Jesus as a Jew, as a Torah´s student and master that he was, independient of your believings on his divine character. Great to do better exegesis and hermeneutics!!

By Norma J

Apr 16, 2017

This course is awesome. Seriously! I'm not Jewish. I have been studying the Torah with a Jewish friend, and I am learning Hebrew. This course went beyond expectations in providing a frame of reference for understanding not only what the Talmud is, but understanding that it is accessible to any who study it! Grateful to the presenters for their energy and presence.

By Simon E C

May 19, 2020

Very interesting course and well presented, yet I would have used examples from other sections of the Talmud.But all in all a SUPRB course.

The narrative at the bottom of the videos contains numerous mistakes and it needs to be proofread.

The biggest HOWLER was when then the Professor used the word " flippancy ; which was written as FLIP and SEA

By Álvaro P

Sep 24, 2019

Excelente disciplina, ótima exposição, materiais muito relevantes e ofereceram elementos para que eu possa continuar com o estudo. Parabéns e obrigado!! Alvaro C. Pestana

Excellent discipline, great exposure, very relevant materials and offered elements for me to continue with the study. Congratulations and thanks !! Alvaro C. Pestana

By Dustin K

Sep 14, 2020

This was an extremely interesting and satisfying experience. For someone who has had an interest in Rabbinic literature for a long time but never the opportunity to truly “learn”, this course was an organized, foundational starting point. Really enjoyable!

By David H

Dec 9, 2017

I found this course very well presented and even though somewhat difficult to understand at one time the Professors made me listen and research more then once per lesson. I really enjoyed this course and look forward to furthering my studies in this field.

By Albert t H

Sep 6, 2022

It was very interesting to learn about the Talmud. Some reasonings were so complex that it was hard to follow hearing it. I then had to listen again.

It was good to hear what the Talmud is, how is was 'made', how rabbis think and talk about Jewish Law.

By Ellins f

Apr 24, 2018

Great introduction to Talmudic understanding. I enjoyed learning from both a man and a woman, where traditionally and sadly only men were teaching Talmud. Regardless if you are Jewish or not, this course teaches the origin of "practical religion".

By Kenneth B

Jan 11, 2022

Excellent introduction to Talmud. More challenging than I expected for an introductory course. The presenters critically analyze the ancient material using modern scholarly methods with awareness of contemporary ethical sensibilities.

By Jorge E M A

Dec 25, 2016

In MOOC, I have been taking course regarding 'Israel', even though, I did not think to find something as special as it is. The Talmud: For give a clear review, It will take me long time to express certainly its deepest way

By Sue L

Jan 12, 2021

This was a really fascinating course. I enjoyed the broad and intelligent approach to an unusual topic.

I have never felt that the the Talmud was an approachable text and this course managed to demystify it for me.