The Department of Classics
Department of Classics Mission Statement and Values
STRATEGIC PLANNING DOCUMENT 6/1/06
(This is an excerpt from a larger document. Click here to see the entire document.)
Classics is more than the study of the history, literature, languages, and material culture of the ancient Mediterranean world. It is also the study of a living tradition that has shaped -- and continues to shape -- the way in which we construct our world today.
|A word cloud showing the relative emphases of the words contained in this document. Courtesy of Wordle.|
|Classics major Ty Ham '06 spent his junior year studying in Rome as a Padnos International Scholar. He is now in the Ph.D. Program in Classics at the University of Pennsylvania.|
To this end, the Department of Classics, founded in 2000, offers high-quality, student-centered courses which allow students to explore Classical antiquity and the Greco-Roman world, including their relation to the world today.
We offer a major with emphases in Greek, Latin, Classical Languages, the Classical Tradition, and in Latin Secondary Education. We have strong inter-programmatic ties with the Honors College, the College of Education, the English Department, the Anthropology Department, Art and Design, and the School of Communication.
We aim to become a regional center for classical studies by continuing to maintain our program of student-centered curricula, rigor, faculty development and research, and connection to the broader community.
Unit Mission Statement
The Department of Classics is a student-centered, inquiry-based program that fosters the continual exploration of and critical inquiry into the living traditions and legacies of the Greco-Roman (Classical) World.
We provide a student centered, high-quality program with a focus upon the classical languages and an emphasis in encountering the classical world through primary sources, both textual and material. Through this work, we will enlarge the state of knowledge in the field by contributing to the broader community as demonstrated through student achievement and placement, faculty development and research, and the creation of a regional center for classical studies in western Michigan.
- We value a student-centered curriculum with a face-to-face learning community of students and faculty.
Classics major Adam Bowers '07 (pictured here with CLAS Dean Fred Antczak at the 2007 Homerathon) is pursuing graduate study at the Princeton Theological Seminary.
Students are drawn to Classics because they know that it is impossible to remain "a face in the crowd": our language courses and advanced seminars expect and empower students to express themselves and to make themselves known to members of the faculty and to one another.
Students have ready access to the departmental office suite, lounge, and seminar room. As a department this is something we encourage: it leads to close relationships between students and teachers, and it promotes cooperation, discussion, and intellectual interaction.
- We value proficiency in at least one classical (ancient Greek or Latin) language.
All of the emphases within the Classics major require an advanced level of proficiency in at least one of the classical languages (e.g. the ability, in a semester, to read a play of Euripides or Sophocles in Greek or a speech of Cicero in Latin).
This training teaches students analytical grammar and rhetoric, makes them close and critical readers, and involves them in a student-centered, inquiry-based program of active learning.
Our recently-implemented Latin Secondary Education emphasis places pedagogy and learning strategies at the heart of our approach to language instruction.
- We believe that Classics lies at the heart of a liberal education.
The courses we offer in classical civilization (history, art and archaeology, cultural studies) enhance and enrich not only our program but the curricula of the College, of the General Education program, and of the Honors College.
- We value a commitment to teaching by highly qualified, full-time, permanent faculty.
Nearly all of the courses offered by the Department of Classics are taught by full-time, tenure-line faculty. Only by remaining fully accountable to our students and to one another can we assure ourselves of the quality and consistency of our program.
|Classics major Jaclyn Binder attended the summer ASCSA program in Athens.|
- We value high standards of evaluation and assessment.
- We emphasize student writing and direct exposure to primary sources.
- We invest in the success of our students by taking a proactive approach in making our students aware of opportunities which equip them to succeed.
- We value the connection of Classics faculty, students, and programs to the wider community.
- We value a sharing of resources and collaborations with interested partners, both within the university community and across the region.
Simply put, there is scant value in doing what we do unless one is prepared to do it as well as one possibly can. We strive to put this principle into practice and to inculcate it in our students. Our program has been designed to offer our students a level of preparation comparable to that of our most distinguished and successful peers within the field.
|Printable Program Brochure (Adobe Acrobat Reader required)|
|Contact the Department of Classics|
Page last modified October 27, 2010