Cover Photo Image


Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Ramallah, Palestine Territory

Program Description

This objective of this three-week, three-credit study abroad program is to examine the current state of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with a particular focus on how individuals, groups, and communities, both Palestinian and Israeli, are working to end Israel’s military occupation and ongoing colonial settlement.

This course will provide an overview of the daily challenges and most pressing dimensions of the conflict. Students will travel throughout the territory, and divide their accommodations between Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Ramallah, and Nazareth in order to better understand how Israel’s policies impact different communities- the Palestinians in different parts of the West Bank, including Jerusalem and in the Jordan Valley, Bedouin communities in the recognized and unrecognized villages of the Negev, Palestinians in Israel, and Arabs in the Golan Heights.

The course will also address different diplomatic initiatives to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, as well as how different stakeholders, both local and international, have helped, hindered, and/or exacerbated current conditions.

Course highlights include organizational visits, meetings with different constituencies, visits to villages and refugee camps, museum tours, volunteer work, some cultural activities, and a few hikes and swims to help better appreciate the geographic terrain and landscape of Palestine/Israel.


Manal A. Jamal | | Political Science


Students will share double or triple rooms in different hotels and guest houses. Our accommodations will be centrally location and close to public transportation. Depending on student interest, students will have the option to spend two days with a host family.

Most meals will be provided by the program- breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Students will have two free days, however, and on these days, they will be responsible for their lunch.

Additional Items to Consider

One credit of course work will be completed prior to departure. Students will meet for three course sessions on Wednesday afternoons, and students will complete a few preparatory assignments. Students will need to enroll in this preparatory one-credit class during the spring 2024 semester.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.0

During the Spring, students will take the 1-credit hour POSC 371 class

Open to all class levels, including graduate students

Arabic is recommended but not required

Previous coursework on the Middle East is recommended but not required

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($40 fee)
  • Short Essay
  • Resume
  • List of Academic References
  • Interview with Program Director may be required
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU students; unofficial transcript required for JMU students

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in.

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


POSC 371: Topics in Comparative Politics: Palestine/Israel - Surmounting Adversity (3 credits)

POSC 498: Research in Political Science: Palestine/Israel - Surmounting Adversity prep (1 credit)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


Back to Top