"To produce the Gospels required a deep understanding of Judaic literature. The Gospels would not simply replace the literature of the old religion, but would be written in such a way as to demonstrate that Christianity was the fulfillment of the prophecies of Judaism and had therefore grown directly from it. To achieve these effects, the Flavian intellectuals made use of a technique used throughout Judaic literature — typology. In its most basic sense typology is sim- ply the use of prior events to provide form and context for subse- quent ones. If one sits for a painting, for example, he or she is the "type" of the painting, the thing it was based upon. Typology is used throughout Judaic literature as a way of transferring information and meaning from one story to another. For example, the Book of Esther uses type scenes from the story of Joseph in the Book of Gen- esis, so that the alert reader will understand that Esther and Morde- cai are repeating the role of Joseph as an agent of God. "
Yes, they are. Seminaries require courses in hermeneutics (which typology falls under). It will also come up in systematic theology and history classes as various famous theologians have used typology as their method.
At my seminary, we had an elective which I took-Judaic Backgrounds to the New Testament. In that class, taught by Waverly Nunnally, graduate of Hebrew Union where he did his doctoral dissertation on the use of Abba in the Dead Sea Scrolls, we learned a lot about Judaism in that time. The link doesn't lead to my seminary; he was adjunct. For example, they had a thriving missions program. My term paper dealt with the proselytism process that gentiles who wanted to convert had to undergo.
While Dr. Nunnally was at Hebrew Union, he and a friend got tired of the fact that the Dead Sea Scrolls had not been fully released even though most of the work had been done. Using the concordance that had been released, they wrote a computer program to reconstruct the scrolls and released their findings for free. The DSS team was not happy. Marty (the friend who did most of the programming) and their doctor-father got interviewed by Dateline (Nightline, or some show like that). We watched the video in class.
I was later Dr. Nunnally's research assistant for his commentary on the book of Acts. It shows all the signs of being from the mid-first century.
One of Nunnally's areas of study is the historical Jesus. To use his words, "we have a wealth of evidence for his existence from outside the Gospels. To look at this material and deny that is beyond credence."
Here's Nunnally's degrees if you are interested.