Teaching Methods & Intensive Greek

From: Gary S. Shogren (gshogren@voicenet.com)
Date: Tue Mar 19 1996 - 10:10:59 EST

I could use some pedagogical advice. Please email me privately.

Our institution may begin to offer an intensive Greek program in the
summers. I am in favor of this in theory, but also concerned about
outcomes. We now have a substantial Greek program for a seminary, with very
good outcomes to date. We have excellent regular teachers for first-year Greek.

Here is our "normal" program for Mdiv and MA New Testament:
        Semester 1 and 2 = 2 hours/2 times a week, for a total of 104 class hours.
Mounce's grammar, Chapman insert for some syntax, with a read-through of
Brooks and Winbery. Biblical has institutional standard that has students
memorizing a number of standard paradigms. Eventually, they memorize vocab
down to 20+ times.

        Semester 1, Second year = 3 semester hours of exegesis skills, introduction
to textual criticism, an exegesis paper.

        Second and third years = three more exegetical courses of 3 semester hours
each (Synoptics, Acts and Pauline, Johannine Lit. & General Epistles. Canon
and background issues are blended in. Each course has an exegetical
element: usually translation and an exegesis paper.

        Homework: we have taken two surveys of students, but results varied from 1
to 4 hours of outside homework for every hour spent in the classroom.

        Summer/Intensive Program = a pair of 2 1/2 week courses has been suggested
for the first year Greek, leading directly into the Second year Greek in the
Fall. Two courses of 5-6 weeks each is another proposal.

If you have taught or taken or witnessed an intensive Greek program, here
are some questions you may help me with:

1. What text(s) do you use?
2. What level of proficiency are you looking for? (Be able to use tools,
independent exegesis, etc)
3. How many classroom hours does your first year Greek entail? Does your
intensive program equal that for hours? What classroom schedule does your
intensive program follow?
4. Are outcomes for intensive students better, worse, comparable?
5. Do you have a proficiency exam, or just normal testing methods?
6. Do you have any advice on the advisibility of intensive language training
for Greek, esp. With regard to retention - what are the pros and cons for
speeding things up?

Thanks very much...Let me know if you want a copy of our results.


Gary S. Shogren
Biblical Theological Seminary
Hatfield, PA
email gshogren@voicenet.com

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