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“Reconvening the Senate: Learning Outcomes after Using Reacting to the Past in the Intermediate Latin Course”

Christine Loren Albright

During fall semester, 2012, in an attempt to help students learn more about the Latin texts they were translating, the author incorporated the Reacting to the Past game Beware the Ides of March:  Rome in 44 B.C.E. by Carl A. Anderson and T. Keith Dix into an intermediate Latin class, requiring students to compose and deliver speeches in Latin during the game. Students in that class reported that the game was their favorite activity of the semester, that they learned a significant amount about Roman history, that they became more engaged with Latin texts, and that their Latin skills improved during the semester despite the time spent away from the traditional routine of in-class translation and parsing. 

Because that endeavor was so successful, the author since has structured her intermediate Latin course around the game itself, making it the focal point of the semester. This paper will present recent results of an ongoing study that measures both qualitative and quantitative learning outcomes after playing the game. The study focuses not only on students’ general responses to the game but also on the specific effects of the game on students’ understanding of Roman history and on students’ skills in Latin. 

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Interactive Pedagogy and the Teaching of Ancient History

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