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Brief Guide to Biblical Greek Online: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the goal of the course? The goal of this course is to provide an intensive introduction to Biblical Greek, the language of the New Testament and the Septuagint. This course also provides an excellent introduction to the study of classical Greek. By the end of the semester, you will be able to read Biblical Greek on your own with the help of a dictionary. (The narrative portions of the Gospels and Acts, along with narrative portions of the Septuagint, are usually the easiest for beginners.)

What will the readings for class consist of? The readings for this class will come from four different sources:

What are the prerequisites? There are no prerequisites for this course, although students who have studied an inflected foreign language (Latin, Russian, German, etc.) will have an easier time with the Greek. This course can also serve as a review / refresher course if you have had some Greek previously but do not feel confident with your skill level.

Who will benefit from this class? There are lots of different reasons people might choose to take this Biblical Greek class. Here are some of the folks that I would like to be able to serve with this class:

What are the course requirements? This is a 5-credit-hour course which means that you are required to put in a solid 10-12 hours per week doing work for this class. Because there are no scheduled class meetings, you can arrange the schedule based on your other commitments, but you must be prepared to spend at least 10 hours per week, each week, without fail - preferably working on Greek for a specific period of time every day. You can compare this to a regular classroom-based class, where you would have one hour in class plus one hour of homework (sometimes more) per night. Take a look at the Suggested Study Schedule to get a sense of what a typical week would look like.

What textbook will we use? You will need to buy a copy of A Primer of New Testament Greek by Clayton Croy. This is a widely used Biblical Greek textbook and you should not have trouble finding a copy new or used. There will be copies available in the OU Bookstore as well.

How hard is Greek to learn? Greek is hard. You will have a new alphabet to learn and - unlike English - each word in Greek has many different forms in which it appears (this is called "morphology," the rules for the forms of the words). At the same time, Biblical Greek involves a very specific set of vocabulary and a very specific set of grammar rules. The textbook has been designed to help you learn Biblical Greek quickly and efficiently, and the online materials will make that process even easier, since you can get all the practice you need, focusing on your personal strengths and weaknesses. Here is what you will have learned by the end of the semester:

Does this course count for the General Education Foreign Language Requirement? No, this course does not count for the General Education Foreign Language Requirement. You will definitely be learning Greek (no doubt about that!), but the Religious Studies program is not able to sponsor this course for Foreign Language credit. You must take some other language course(s) to satisfy the General Education Foreign Language requirement. So, let me repeat: this Greek course does not count for Gen. Ed. Foreign Language.

What are the computer requirements? Obviously, you will need a reliable computer! No special software is required, but you will need:

How can language be taught online? Unlike a traditional classroom, the online classroom lets you zoom in on your specific strengths and weakness as a language student, helping you to focus on the areas that you need help with and providing you with continuous, immediate feedback about your progress:

How will students interact with the instructor and other students? There are two main ways we will be communicating together online:

How will I type Greek? Thanks to a very simple and effective transliteration system called Beta code, you will have no trouble typing Greek with your regular computer keyboard. You will not have to buy any software or any special equipment, because there are free Greek fonts and free Greek word processors available to you.

How will I record the Greek audio? There are a variety of methods for recording the Greek audio, all using free software. No special software or special skills are required. As long as you have a microphone you can attach to your computer, you are ready to go!

Who is the instructor? You can read some information about me online, and please feel free to contact me with any other questions that you have about the course! My email address is laura-gibbs@ou.edu.

Biblical Greek Online. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one. Page last updated: April 9, 2005 8:06 PM

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