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Education—February 2012

The Education Division continues to be active on a number of fronts, from discussing plans for a web-based classics informational page, to continuing efforts at increasing the number of (much needed) certified Latin teachers, to preparing panels, to giving awards related to teaching, travel, and professional study, to supervising the production of publications related to the Division’s mission. The Division’s committees and committee chairs continue their much-valued work, providing excellent service to APA.

With the help of Sam Huskey, the Education page of the APA website has been further revised and updated. New information on Education Division Committee-sponsored panels has been posted. This includes material from the Committee on Ancient History and the Education Committee. The Education page continues to be the place to go to find the recent APA-ACL Standards for Latin Teacher Preparation: https://classicalstudies.org/education/standards-latin-teacher-preparation.

and the Report on State Certification Requirements in Latin: https://classicalstudies.org/state-certification-requirements-latin . Please pass the word to your colleagues about these two important documents.

Talk continues about a web-basedinformation page for classics. This past spring Professor Kitchell came up with an idea for such a page and reached out to many members of the profession to see where it might be housed. After some discussion that included from APA, Adam Blistein, Sam Huskey, and me, and from ACL, President Peter Howard, it was decided that both APA and ACL would be part of this project.  Such a hub is intended to be broadly informational, but also to be a source of details, such as enrollment figures in classics, that could be useful for departments in jeopardy or ones looking for information to contextualize and/or justify their programs. Much of this information is already available. The plan is to get it all in one easy-to-reach spot. For the Joint APA-ACL Committee on Classics in American Education’s (JCCAE’s) meeting at the ACL Institute in 2011, Dr. Blistein drew up a summary of the list of terms that might appear on such a webpage. At this point the regional classics organizations have been brought into the conversation. How and where this page will be implemented is still under discussion. 

Development of an electronic network of people involved in Latin teacher training is something JCCAE is pursuing. In addition, an effort is being made to gain further information on who is training Latin teachers and where, how many new teachers are in the pipeline etc., state by state. This added information and communication will help to strengthen efforts to support current and future Latin teacher training.

Assessment is an issue that has been the subject of ongoing discussion by the Education Committee and JCCAE. One recent development is that APA will be linking to a site developed by Kenny Morrell for Sunoikisis at the Center for Hellenic Studies, which will be posting examples of classics assessment plans.

ACTFL (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) is currently developing a Latin reading comprehension exam that can be given to individuals at various levels of competence. This will be an exciting new assessment tool for our field.

For the first time, APA offered CEUs (continuing education units) for attendance at the APA Annual Meeting. Many pre-collegiate level teachers need to acquire such units. While the response to this new opportunity was small this year, the Education Division considers this a valuable way of encouraging pre-collegiate teachers to attend the Annual Meeting while providing a concrete reward for such attendance that is recognized by their school districts. Thanks to Chris Francese, Valentina  DeNardis, and Sherwin Little for help with thinking this through and/or arranging it.       

There continues to be a need for certified teachers of Latin at the pre-collegiate level. JCCAE continues to discuss ways to fast-track potential secondary-level teachers to certification. The Standards for Latin Teacher Preparation has been distributed to foreign-language supervisors in state departments of education and will shortly be sent to Deans of Education in schools with classics programs.  In addition, JCCAE continues to discuss the possibility of and logistics for sponsoring a Latin teaching methods course, to be taught by a master teacher, for which some financial assistance would hopefully be provided to participants. This could help to speed up the path to certification for some and could provide a Latin-specific methods course to potential teachers who might not otherwise have such a course available to them. We hope that the Standards for Latin Teacher Preparation will be an aid to all who are involved in preparing Latin teachers, as well as to future (and current) Latin teachers themselves.

The APA publication, Careers for Classicists, which has not been revised for about a decade, is currently being rewritten by its author, Ken Kitchell, in conjunction with the members of the Education Committee. The Committee has now seen a draft of the new version and has offered its comments to Professor Kitchell. We hope to have the final draft by late spring and to have it published before too long after that time. It will appear online for the first time and will have a print run as well.   

The next APA Guide to Graduate Education is currently being produced and should appear by sometime this spring. This version will have a small print run, but will also be available online for the first time. This is a very important change, which reflects how those of us already in the profession and students investigating graduate schools typically seek information. The Guide will now include information about Post-Baccalaureate programs as well as Ph.D. and M.A. programs. In the future, we hope to encourage departments to include even more information. This might include number of degrees awarded, job placement records/information, teaching experience available, time to degree etc. Self-reporting via departmental websites would have the advantage of providing a context for this information, e.g., a lot of teaching experience can lead to a longer time to degree etc. The APA Education Committee is very strongly in favor of having departments provide as much material as is necessary for graduate school applicants to make informed choices about where to apply and what program to attend, if admitted. There is some discussion about devising a statement for APA Board consideration and possible adoption about what it would recommend departments include in the future. Discussion about future information to be included in the Guide, if desirable, could begin any time after the publication of the forthcoming Guide.

The Education Committee sponsored a panel at the 2012 APA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia entitled, “Teaching about Classics Pedagogy in the 21st Century,” organized by Eric Dugdale (Gustavus Adolphus College) and Ronnie Ancona (Hunter College and CUNY Graduate Center). Speakers included the two organizers plus Michael Goyette (CUNY Graduate Center), Andrew Reinhard (American School of Classical Studies at Athens), Laurie Haight Keenan (Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers), and William Batstone and Anna McCullough (both from Ohio State University). There was a large audience (about 100 people in the room for at least part of the panel and most there for the entire time), which confirmed the sense that this was an important topic. The speakers addressed various aspects of what future classics professors should know about pedagogy when embarking upon teaching and how and when that knowledge can or should be acquired. The needs of the beginning teacher, technology, textbooks, teaching at small vs. large schools, and what Ph.D. programs can contribute to the pedagogical development of their graduate students are some of the issues that were addressed. Abstracts for the panel can be seen on the APA Education page: https://classicalstudies.org/2012-education-committee-panel-and-abstracts. A classics journal has asked the panel organizers to submit the papers for publication, which they have agreed to do. Plans are already underway for the Education Committee’s proposed panel for the 2013 Annual Meeting in Seattle, to be organized by Nigel Nicholson. The topic will be Teaching Literary Theory. The focus will be not on theory per se, but on how literary theory can be incorporated into undergraduate and graduate level education.

The APA Committee on Scholarships for Minority Students met at the APA Annual Meeting and decided on two winners.  $3500 will be awarded to Mahmoud Samori of Columbia University and $2600 to Nicole Gonzalez of the University of Kansas.  Raffle tickets continued to be sold on site at the Meeting. This allowed the Committee to raise a couple of hundred dollars selling tickets all day Friday and Saturday. The book raffle was a great success.  A record number of presses contributed, which allowed for eleven winners. The number of APA committee appointees has been enlarged to compensate for the departure of AIA-appointed committee members, now that AIA has withdrawn from the Committee. The newly constituted group is energetic and ready to take on the task of accomplishing its work.



The Committee on Ancient History has been active in reaching out to make contacts with other relevant organizations. The Committee is currently pursuing contacts with the American Historical Association, the Association of Ancient Historians, and the Economic History Group of the World History Association. The panel “Law in the Undergraduate Curriculum” was the committee’s very successful panel at the 2012 APA Annual Meeting. Organized by Celia Schultz and Serena Connolly, it featured an excellent group of speakers: Bruce Frier (University of Michigan), Victor Bers (Yale University), Leanne Bablitz (University of British Columbia), and Kevin Crotty (Washington & Lee University), with Adriaan Lanni (Harvard University) as respondent. The respondent unfortunately could not attend, but provided a response that was read. The panel was dedicated to the late Ernst Badian.  The abstracts are available on the APA Education page: https://classicalstudies.org/2012-committee-ancient-history-panel. A panel on "Teaching History and Classics with Inscriptions" for APA 2013 is being organized with speakers including a number of distinguished scholars. Topics to be included are:  teaching with inscriptions, inscriptions and new technologies, and epigram and inscriptions. 

Making awards to teachers continues to be a very important part of the work of the Education Division. The 2011 APA Award for Teaching Excellence at the Collegiate Level went to William C. Stull, Colgate University. The 2011 APA Awards for Excellence in Pre-Collegiate Teaching went to Anna Andresian, Regis Jesuit High School, Aurora, Colorado, and Sherwin Little, Indian Hill Exempted Village School District, Cincinnati, Ohio. These winners were recognized at the Plenary Session of the APA Annual Meeting. Complete citations recognizing them can be read at: https://classicalstudies.org/2011-collegiate-teaching-award-citation and https://classicalstudies.org/2011-precollegiate-teaching-award-citations.

The following individuals served on these awards committees: Collegiate, Elizabeth Vandiver, chair, Gregory Aldrete, and Mary English; Pre-Collegiate (subcommittee of JCCAE), Ronnie Ancona, Peter Howard, Mark Pearsall, and Stanley Burstein.  For former APA President Kathleen Coleman’s excellent interviews with last year’s winners, go to: http://apaclassics.org/index.php/apa_blog/P50/

With the new funding available from the gift of Daniel and Joanna Rose, the Teaching Award amounts (for both college level and pre-collegiate) were raised in 2011 to $500 per award, with an additional $200 for the winner’s institution for materials to be chosen by the winner. This is a considerable jump from the previous level of $300 per winner with no added institution funding. The Committee is very grateful to the Roses for their generous support.

Funding from the ongoing Capital Campaign will allow for some “Next Generation” scholarships starting in fiscal year 2012 to be given for professional development in line with last year’s recommendations from the Education Committee as reported in the APA Board minutes for Jan. 9, 2011. In addition to the increase in the teaching awards, the Committee suggested a new award category of funding be set up for pedagogy development, open to both college and pre-collegiate teachers. Funding would ideally be a minimum of $500 and a maximum of $2500, depending on the nature of the project to be funded.  A second new award category proposed would be used for Latin teacher training leading towards certification.  A possible funding level of up to $1500 was discussed. Details about these new awards should be available in winter 2013.

I would like to thank the following individuals rotating off committees and committee chair positions for their service to the Education Division: Carlin Barton and Serena Connolly, Committee on Ancient History; Eric Dugdale, chair, Coffin Traveling Fellowship Committee; Sanjaya Thakur (rotating off as chair, but reappointed as member), Committee on Scholarships for Minority Students; and Elizabeth Vandiver, chair, Committee on the Awards for Excellence in the Teaching of Classics.  I look forward to working with the following new committee members and chairs: Denise Demetriou and Saundra Schwartz, Committee on Ancient History; Nigel Nicolson and Greta Ham, incoming chair, Coffin Traveling Fellowship Committee; Ricardo Apostol, Emily Greenwood, James Ker, Victoria Pagán, Sanjaya Thakur, and Mira Seo, incoming chair, Committee on Scholarships for Minority Students.

Respectfully submitted,

Ronnie Ancona

APA VP for Education

Division 
Year 

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