Ancient Near Eastern Studies BA Greek New Testament

Program Purpose


Ancient Near Eastern Studies (ANES) deals with the history, literature, religions, and cultures of the ancient Near East from about 3000 B.C. to A.D. 640. It involves study in the humanities, social sciences, and ancient scripture. Geographically, the ancient Near East consists of the region currently designated the Middle East. The ANES major is structured to provide students with a broad understanding of the civilizations of the ancient Near East.

Within the ANES discipline, the Greek New Testament Emphasis also focuses on the study of Koine Greek to enable students to read the Greek New Testament and related literature such as the writings of the early Christian fathers and Jewish writings in Greek such as the Septuagint, apocryphal literature, Josephus, and Philo. It also provides coursework on Judaism and especially early Christianity in the Classical Near East.

Career Opportunities

The Ancient Near Eastern Studies major prepares students to pursue graduate work and an academic career in all areas of biblical and ancient Near Eastern studies. Ancient Near Eastern Studies, with its emphasis on critical reading, thinking, and writing skills, also provides quality training for students entering professional or library science programs. Additionally, an Ancient Near Eastern Studies degree offers relevant preparation for students seeking to teach seminary and institute in the Church Educational System. A growing number of students are also finding that their training in the history and culture of the Middle East, as well as their involvement in the Kennedy Center, are preparing them for Foreign Service.

Learning Outcomes


History and Culture of Ancient Near East

Students will learn and be able to interpret the significant events and developments in the history and cultures of the ancient Near East, including the history and culture of ancient Israel surrounding civilizations, including in the Hellenistic, Roman, and early Christian eras.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 353R ANES 392R ANES 495 ANTHR 351 CL CV 363 CLSCS 430R HIST 238 HIST 239 REL A 211 REL A 212 REL A 301 REL A 302
Linked to BYU Aims: Gospel knowledge, Competence
Ancient Text Interpretation

Students will be able to translate and interpret major ancient Near East texts, especially the Greek New Testament, and analyze them within the contexts of Second Temple Judaism, the Hellenistic World, and the Roman Empire. They will also learn proper hermeneutical skills and practice sound exegesis as well as learn how to do modern readings, including readings from an LDS perspective.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 201 ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 392R ANES 495 CL CV 363 CLSCS 430R GREEK 311
Linked to BYU Aims: Gospel knowledge, Think soundly, Human knowledge, Competence
Language Proficiency

Students will acquire and demonstrate functional capacity in the languages and textual interpretation of the Greek New Testament, being able to read, comprehend, analyze, and interpret these significant religious and historical texts with methodological soundness.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 495 GREEK 311
Linked to BYU Aims: Think soundly, Human knowledge, Competence
Critical Thinking

Students will develop the capacity for informed, independent, critical thinking and be able to perform appropriate library and online scholarly research and utilize these skills in the professional study of the ancient Near East and early Christianity.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 201 ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 353R ANES 392R ANES 495 ANTHR 351 CL CV 363 CLSCS 430R GREEK 311 HIST 238 HIST 239
Linked to BYU Aims: Think soundly, Competence, Lifelong learning
Analytical Writing

Students will be able to write cogent and substantial research papers on a university level that utilize theoretical and methodological approaches from the Social Sciences and Humanities that integrate historical and artifactual analysis with the translation, analysis and interpretation of ancient Near Eastern texts and topics.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 201 ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 353R ANES 392R ANES 495 CL CV 363 CLSCS 430R GREEK 311 HIST 238
Linked to BYU Aims: Think soundly, Communicate effectively, Competence
Academic Integrity

Student participants will be taught the ethical standards adhered to by professionals in the academic fields of textual analysis, archaeology, and historical research and encouraged to follow them.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 201 ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 392R ANES 495 REL A 211 REL A 212 REL A 301 REL A 302
Linked to BYU Aims: Competence, Character, Lifelong service
Academics and Faith

Students will consider the relationship between academics and faith and will be given models of academically sound but also faithful scholarship. They will be encouraged to engage in a spiritually informed, lifelong pursuit of learning, scholarship, and service.

Courses that Contribute: ANES 201 ANES 310 ANES 332 ANES 392R ANES 495 CL CV 363 CLSCS 430R HIST 239 REL A 211 REL A 212 REL A 301 REL A 302
Linked to BYU Aims: Faith and testimony, Gospel knowledge, Lifelong learning, Lifelong service

Evidence of Learning


The inter-departmental nature of BYU's Ancient Near Eastern Studies program dictates that much of course-related assessment of a student's progress is distributed throughout several departments. Program level assessment of student learning includes the Direct and Indirect Measures listed below. Additionally, the ANES Coordinator meets with ANES majors as they declare the major, periodically during their coursework, and a year before they graduate.

Direct Measures

Specific, direct assessments of the Ancient Near Eastern Studies program include:

1. A student's successful completion of the ANES required courses.

2. A serious, in-depth senior paper as part of the ANES 492R capstone course.

3. An electronic portfolio that includes three major papers, one of which is the ANES 495 seminar paper, one an example of the student's translation capability with Hebrew or Greek, and one a historical or other advanced paper from courses such as ANES 363, ClCv 363, ANES 430R, or Clscs 430R.

4. An exit interview, either individually or as part of a focus group, with the ANES Coordinator that includes discussion of each student's electronic portfolio and their future plans.

5. The tracking and assessment of the average overall GPA in ANES core courses.

Indirect Measures

Other assessment tools to measure the success of the Ancient Near Eastern Studies program include:

1. Adding an additional sheet to the Kennedy Center "Graduation Reflection Survey" that contains specific questions regarding each graduate's perceptions of the ANES program.

2. Tracking the graduate programs and professional positions to which ANES graduates gain access.

Learning and Teaching Assessment and Improvement


ANES faculty meet as a Committee of the Whole at least once each year to assess the major and discuss changes that may need to be made. The ANES Executive Committee communicates regularly internally, and as needed with the Committee of the Whole, concerning matters related to the major. ANES faculty are encouraged by the ANES Coordinator to create clearly defined and rigorous learning outcomes and to continue to improve their courses.