Re: Teaching Greek

From: Rodney J. Decker (
Date: Wed Mar 01 2000 - 17:57:14 EST

<x-flowed>I thought this had gone out before, but I see that it went only to the
original poster. I'll try again.

At 03:29 PM 3/1/00 +0000, you wrote:
> How much Greek do you need to learn, to adequately teach the language to
>others? One year,Two years, Three years or more?

Probably a lifetime to do it "adequately"! I suspect that Carl is nearly
there. Most of us have to make a living, so we're making do with
less. :) I'm closing in on 30 years studying the language, though only
about 8 of those are "formal study." I wish I had more. I've taught Greek
formally for about 10 years.

Seriously, it all depends on what you want to accomplish and what academic
level you're talking about. Beginners (2 or 3 years) teaching beginners is
liable to result in a lot of mis-teaching. I winch at the thought of most
students with 3 years of Greek teaching Greek at the college level, even
first-year. But if we're talking about "hobbyist"--that's probably another
story. (I don't use that designation to denigrate such study; it's valid so
long as one realizes the limitations that come with that approach.)

It's not the typical opinion, but I think that the more advanced student of
the language ought to be the one teaching first year Greek. Laying the
right foundation is essential to accomplishing much with the language.


Rodney J. Decker, Th.D. Baptist Bible Seminary
Assoc. Prof./NT PO Box 800, Clarks Summit, PA 18411
The *Resources for NT Study* site is accessible at:

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