The actual process of conversion that is accepted by the Reform and Conservative movements has three or four parts.

  1. Learning (a period of studies as determined by the officiating rabbi) and growth towards observance of the commandments (Mitzvot).  Many Reform Synagogues offer an Intro to Judaism class yearly.  Sometimes they do it in conjunction with the other movements.  Total study time varies from several months to a year or more.  This depends on you and your Rabbi.

  2. Beit Din ( a Jewish court), this is not as scary as it sounds.  It is usually made up of a Rabbi or Two and a Cantor.  This may include your sponsoring Rabbi.  In cases of more liberal forms of Judaism, if you truly want to convert, they will want you to have a successful outcome.

  3. Immersion in the ritual bath (mikveh).

  4. For the man, the additional requirement of circumcision (Brit Milah) or symbolic circumcision (Hatafat dam brit).   Actually this involves drawing only a drop of blood if you are already circumcised.

Below is a typical Mikveh.  It is a very cleansing and wonderful process.  You immerse yourself completely in the water 3 times and say a few blessings and prayers.  You come out feeling incredible.  Also, see the Forum section to actually view a video of the mikvah process.

For additional perspectives on conversion, I would recommend this site: URJ Conversion Blogs