The Department of Classics

Latin Secondary Education Emphasis

The Department of Classics introduced the program in Latin Secondary Education, designed to help address the shortage of certified Latin teachers nationwide, in 2004.

Consult the GVSU Catalog for detailed program information:

Classics - Program Description 
Classics, B.A. 
   Classical Languages 
   Classical Tradition 
   Latin Secondary Education 

Classics (minor) 
   Classical Tradition 

"After graduating from Grand Valley [...] I interviewed with five different schools, had on-site interviews with two schools, and got three job offers - two of the schools offered me positions just based on my phone interview."

- Renee Mayes '09

The Latin Secondary Education emphasis offers prospective Latin teachers preparation in Latin comprehension and instruction and in classical civilization at a level consistent with state and national norms. We are excited about the opportunity this gives us to bring new perspectives on the ancient world to new generations of students.

All Classics majors and minors take the Language and Cultural Core, and all majors the senior capstone.

Majors with a Latin Secondary Education emphasis will also complete an additional 18 hours of Latin at the 300 level or above, one of which must be LAT 351.

Students seeking secondary certification in Latin as a teachable major or minor must complete the foreign language methods seminar, Education (FL) 331.

Further reading

"A Dead Language That's Very Much Alive," The New York Times, 6 October 2008:

The number of students in the United States taking the National Latin Exam has risen steadily to more than 134,000 students in each of the past two years, from 124,000 in 2003 and 101,000 in 1998, with large increases in remote parts of the country like New Mexico, Alaska and Vermont. The number of students taking the Advanced Placement test in Latin, meanwhile, has nearly doubled over the past 10 years.

"The role of Latin in American education: A position paper from the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL)" <>:

The quality and survival of the Latin program is directly dependent on the effectiveness of classroom teaching. For this reason, ensuring that teachers are qualified and/or receive appropriate training and staff development activities to acquaint them with all available methods, pedagogical strategies, and materials is essential. Cynthia White from the University of Arizona states that teachers must not only be "skilled Latinists", they "must also be skilled at teaching Latin."

Next:  The Classical Tradition emphasis

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Page last modified September 19, 2010