In an effort to make its programs available to a larger pool of qualified students, Yeshiva University’s Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies has launched a distance learning option, Revel Remote. Jewish philosophy students can begin using this distance learning online platform for the spring semester.

The online platform will allow students from remote areas to enroll and participate in Jewish philosophy degree programs at Revel.

Remote or distance learning, unlike online programs, allows students to participate fully in the classroom in real time. Students using an audio-video configuration on their computers will see the classroom and participate through their web cameras. “All they need is a computer, a microphone, and a camera. Other than that, it’s the same as any other class participant,” said Dr. Daniel Rynhold, professor of Jewish philosophy. Dr. Rynhold will teach two philosophy courses offering the remote option this spring.

Students who cannot commute or relocate to YU’s Manhattan campus will use the remote platform all semester. In special circumstances, students who normally are on campus can receive permission to use the platform if they must be away for a particular class meeting. The program’s goal is to make Revel degree programs accessible to students who otherwise might not have the opportunity to join them. “In part, it was simply motivated by the requests we receive on a fairly regular basis regarding whether we have a distance learning option,” Dr. Rynhold said. He already has led pilot classes with one Philadelphia-area student using Revel Remote.

The school plans to expand Revel Remote to its other degree programs beginning with the 2018-19 academic year. According to Revel’s dean, Dr. David Berger, who is a professor of Jewish history, “This is a pilot program that we hope to extend to other concentrations as well, thus enabling students without access to the YU campus to benefit from real-time participation in class and to pursue degrees in various fields of Jewish studies with a world-class faculty.”

For more information, go to www.yu.edu/revel/revelremote.