"Non-Academic" Original Languages?

Peter Kirk peter.r.kirk at ntlworld.com
Wed Dec 18 19:34:33 EST 2002

Vince, I would like to present to you a challenge. Well, it's probably
not practical, but in principle it is. I will send a group of students,
with a range of backgrounds and abilities, to a six week immersion
course in Hebrew with an inductive approach, e.g. Randall Buth's or John
Dobson's. You send a group with a similar makeup to an "analytical"
course for the same number of class hours. Let's see which group has a
higher level of reading comprehension of the Hebrew Bible at the end.
Having seen the results of both approaches and heard of the results of
studies, I am fairly confident that the inductive approach will win,
with the majority of students though perhaps not with those already
experienced in analytical approaches to other languages.

But I agree that grammatical summaries are useful, not for learning by
rote but for reference when parsing difficult forms.

Peter Kirk
peter.r.kirk at ntlworld.com

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Vincent Medina [mailto:vmedina at cbcag.edu]
> Sent: 19 December 2002 04:39
> To: Biblical Hebrew
> Subject: [b-hebrew] RE: "Non-Academic" Original Languages?
> As far as I am concern inductive approaches to learning dead languages
> highly over-rated. The typical Biblical Hebrew class does not have the
> time or resources for the kind of immersion that is required to learn
> language inductively. The analytical approach utilized in grammars
> Seow, etc. is not perfect but it is the most efficient way to teach a
> language in a short time. I know individuals who have attempted to
> Hebrew inductively and have had the students begging them for the kind
> summaries contained in the traditional grammars. Unless someone comes
> with an inductive method that is clearly superior, the analytical
> will continue to dominate.
> Vince Medina
> Springfield, MO

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