Elementary Latin
Monmouth College

Course Description / Texts / Instructor / Class Goals and Format / Grading Summary / Grading Scale / Requirements / Useful Websites / Class Photo

About the Instructor
Virginia Hellenga, Lecturer in Classics,
Department of Classics, Monmouth College
Office phone     309  457-2332
Home in the woods     309  734-8758
E-mail  virginia@monm.edu

Honesty and Plagiarism:
Students are encouraged to do their homework together. All other classwork, especially quizzes and exams, must be the student's own work. Plagiarism, i.e., copying someone else's work without giving credit, is to be avoided. Such copying--from a book, another classmate's paper, or any other source--is dishonest. Any student submitting plagiarized work will receive a failing grade for that assignment. If two papers with identical or nearly identical work are submitted by different students, both papers will receive a failing grade.

This syllabus is subject to revision by the instructor, provided that written or verbal notice is given in class.

Course Description
This course is primarily directed towards students desiring to meet the freshman requirements for graduation under the foreign language component of the Language rubric. Elementary Latin can also fulfill partial requirements for a major in Latin or Classics.

The Monmouth College catalogue gives the following description of courses that meet the Language requirement:

The creation and use of language is the most significant achievement of human beings, for our ability to organize our understanding in verbal symbols and to communicate sets us apart from all other life forms. The symbols of our language make communication possible at many different levels of meaning and allow us to translate our private experience into universal terms.... A sure understanding of language is the foundation of all knowledge, and the ability to use verbal symbols effectively is the most important of all skills.

This component provides that every student have experience with a second language. The study of a foreign language allows students to see that their native language often reflects cultural needs and interests at the same time that it shares many basic patterns with other languages.

The aim of these courses is to learn basic reading and writing skills in Latin as quickly and as thoroughly as possible. At the end of two terms of Elementary Latin a student should know the fundamentals of Latin grammar, have a basic Latin vocabulary, and be able to read any Latin text with the help of a dictionary. Speaking and listening skills in Latin will be encouraged only in order to assist the development of reading and writing Latin. Reading Latin is much more important than speaking or writing it.

Texts for Latin 101/102

Wheelock, Frederic, and Richard LaFleur.  LATIN.
Sixth Edition, Harper Collins 2000. Paperback. 0060956410
[photo not availvable] Traupman, John
Groton, Anne, and James May.
38 Latin Stories Designed to Accompany Frederic M. Wheelock's Latin

Third Edition, Revised. Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 1989. 0865162336
Goldman, Norma, and Ladislas Szymanski
glish Grammar for Students of Latin:
The Study Guide for Those Learning Latin
Second Edition. The Olivia and Hill Press, 1996.

Standing offer for extra credit: If you submit a 250-word review of one of these books to http://www.barnesandnoble.com/ or http://www.amazon.com/ and send the link to the instructor, you will get extra credit in this course. This offer two weeks before the end of the semester.

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Class Goals and Format:
Class usually meets on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. until 9:50 a.m. in room 423 Haldeman-Thiessen Science Center. Occasionally Thursday meetings may replace other regular meetings. There will be daily assignments from the textbook. In addition, there may be a number supplementary readings in Latin and map work.

Summary of Grading:
The goal is for all students to earn the best possible grade. The grading system is designed to give each student maximum control of the final grade earned. The focus of all assignments, quizzes and tests is not grading but learning.

The starting point for the final course grade is the average of all the exams. Students will be encouraged to correct their exams for half credit on points lost. 

A low exam average can be raised by successful completion of homework assignments and "essential idea" exercises which are administered in class on a daily basis. Students can correct and resubmit homework assignments for a higher grade and can improve their performance on these essential ideas by retaking the exercises before or after class. If the average of the grades on these homework assignments and "essential idea" exercises is higher than the exam grade average, the final grade will be adjusted up accordingly. A student with a passing average for homework and "essential idea" exercises is guaranteed a passing grade in the course (no matter the exam grade average).

Workbook assignments are optional. Each workbook assignment submitted on time (and then returned with corrections) will earn two extra points on the next exam.

Each student is permitted three unexcused absences during the semester. Any additional unexcused absence from class will result in the loss of one point on the final grade for each absence. ("Sleeping in" or the alarm not going off are not excuses.) 

This webpage was prepared by Professor Thomas J. Sienkewicz of Monmouth College. If you have any questions, you can contact him at toms@monm.edu.

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