Behind the Scenes: an Inteview with an International MA in Archaeology Student

Posted by on May 27, 2013

Behind the Scenes: an Inteview with an International MA in Archaeology Student

One of the greatest parts of the college experience is the people you meet and the friends you make, and that is even truer when you are studying abroad.

The International Master’s Program is great in that it allows us to meet and work with students from around the world. This month I thought it would be interesting to let you meet someone else from the program.

Meet Sabine, a first year MA student from Germany.


What other schooling have you done before this Master’s Program, Sabine?

Fell in love with Archaeological digs: Sabine in Tel Azekah

I went to Heidelberg University and did my diplom in theology.
A diplom is a combined Bachelors/Masters. Before we had the Bachelor and Master system in Germany, we had the diplom.

Why the change from theology to archaeology?

I found my passion in digging. In 2007 I thought “maybe, let’s try it” and I got addicted.

So what brought you to Tel Aviv then?

Heidelberg and Tel Aviv University have been working together since 2005, I think, and I started digging in 2007 at Ramat Raḥel and dug there for 3 seasons.
Then after Ramat Raḥel finished the new project started at Azekah and I dug there last summer.

Is there a difference between TAU and your school in Germany?

Yeah, maybe because I did a completely different type of track: the system of Bachelor and Master’s is totally different from the diplomsystem. The diplom system is totally free, you don’t have a tight schedule, you can take whatever courses you like. In the end you just have to have specific knowledge to take the final exams, which are huge.

As a native German speaker, has language been an issue?

In the beginning, the first weeks, I think I was more afraid to write my papers in English. I never did this, in theology you don’t have to deal so much with English papers or articles. I had to switch from my German writing style to an English style, it’s really different. Like how you structure a sentence. In the beginning I used the dictionary on my iPhone, but now I’m fine.

What are your favorite aspects of the program? Also which class is your favorite, and why?

Sabine on the right, at her favourite Pottery Typology class

In my first semester the introductory course “Archaeology and History of the Land of Israel” was very helpful to get an overview and a first insight in Archaeology. On the other hand was the seminar “Reconstructing ancient Israel” really interesting, because I didn’t know that so many other scientific fields can enrich our studies. For the second semester I enjoy “Pottery Typology” the most. It’s great to get in touch with the material and discuss its development throughout the time periods.

Any issues with adjusting to Israeli culture?

I’d visited here so many times I knew it would be different than Germany, but I enjoy it.

And would you recommend TAU to others for their MA?

For sure, especially for theology students, like me, who specialize in Old Testament. It’s a really good program and you also have great scholars here. The big names are here and you can go directly to them and talk to them.

What’s next after the M.A. here?

Maybe stay here, I don’t know. Maybe do my Ph.D. here, maybe in Germany, but get my Ph.D. for sure.

Interested in joining the International MA Program in Archaeology and History of the Land of the Bible?

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