LOUISVILLE—With classical education on the rise, Boyce College, the undergraduate arm of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, will offer a minor in classical education starting in this academic year.
The classical education initiative will be led by Melissa Tucker, chair of Boyce’s teacher education program; Tyler Flatt, assistant professor of humanities; and Kevin Jones, assistant professor of teacher education. The minor will be an emphasis within the teacher education program and also will be open to other Boyce students.
“The resurgence of classical education is one of the most promising developments on the broader American education landscape in quite some time,” said Matthew Hall, dean of Boyce College. “Christian institutions are rightly at the forefront of this recovery of ancient wisdom, answering basic questions about what it means to be human, what it means to truly learn, and the very essence of education itself. However, few Christian colleges have taken on the task of preparing graduates to teach this way.”
The minor, Tucker said, will equip students to teach the classes and thus have “a step up” on teachers who have not been trained classically, “so that wherever they go, they are able to walk into a classroom—public, Christian and, now, classical and ESL schools—and teach with no difficulty from a biblical worldview.”
Among its bachelor of science degrees, Boyce College offers a teacher education major in which students take a general studies class load and classes in biblical studies in addition to their professional education studies. But each student also has approximately 15 to 18 extra hours and may apply those to a classics emphasis. Classics is the second emphasis within the education program, after an ESL emphasis was instituted two years ago.
Because students hoping to teach classically should be prepared to teach the ancient languages of Greek and Latin, Flatt, a classicist by training and Ph.D. graduate of Harvard University, will handle the classical programming for students enrolled in the program. Currently, two semesters of classical Latin are required, with the aim to add classical Greek and more advanced language courses.
Flatt currently is preparing an edition and translation of Erasmus’ “Annotations on the Gospel of John” for the Collected Works of Erasmus. His articles have appeared or are forthcoming in The Classical Journal, Classical World, The Journal of English and Germanic Philology, and Vigiliae Christianae. Before studying at Harvard, he had earned a master’s degree at the University of Toronto and a bachelor’s degree at the University of Waterloo. (BP)