Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Hello all,

     Since I'm a pretty logical and practical person, I've been trying to come up with backup plans in case I don't get into a program due to my less-than-stellar undergraduate record. In the event that I do not get accepted, I have been knocking around the idea of applying to University of Georgia's Post-Bacc program and wanted to know if anyone has had experience in this program? Not just the application process, but how the program is set up, the difficulty level of the classes, etc. Thanks in advance! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have any experience with the program, but am also backup planning and had mostly just had Penn on my radar... I guess UGA's is much more affordable?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I earned my MA in Classical Philology from UGA in 2016, so I have very recent experiences there. I cannot recommend the faculty more highly -- extremely supportive, both personally and professionally. That being said, I admit I don't know too much about the post-bacc program, as it was in its nascent stages when I was a student. I can say with confidence that the courses I took were challenging but doable; the profs have high expectations for student achievement, but do the work and you'll be fine. I'm not sure how this will differ for online courses, though, since all of my classes were very focused on discussions. The profs assume that you will do the translations for homework, so class time is spent mostly addressing any grammatical issues anybody had as well as discussing the content (rather than simply going over the translations verbatim). Of course, a huge part of every class was scholarship -- on average, I expected to read 2-3 articles per period for each class that met 2/3x per week (more if a seminar course that met only once a week; for these, usually a few book chapters or 5-6 articles). A fairly large component of each class beyond discussing the primary source material was addressing the arguments of the articles we read: how they used the ancient material, their intertext with other modern writing, the perspective of the author, that sort of thing. Your own writing, too, is very much emphasized; the profs loved to have checkpoints for turning in bibs, outlines, drafts, etc. throughout the semester, and they gave excellent and timely feedback about how to develop arguments and produce graduate-level writing.

That all being said: my experiences might be entirely irrelevant given that the post-bacc is online. Looking at the course listings for this semester, the online classes are taught by a professor I haven't had or TA'ed for (Dr. Corrigan, who taught mostly undergraduate courses during my time). I've experienced most of the other professors, though, so if you have questions about people (or the Classics dept in general) I'm happy to answer! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, promethea said:

I don't have any experience with the program, but am also backup planning and had mostly just had Penn on my radar... I guess UGA's is much more affordable?

Most of the reason I was focused on this one was the ability to take it online since where I currently live there is no Classics at the graduate level, and I can't afford to move anywhere else right now. 

4 hours ago, aigilipos said:

I earned my MA in Classical Philology from UGA in 2016, so I have very recent experiences there. I cannot recommend the faculty more highly -- extremely supportive, both personally and professionally. That being said, I admit I don't know too much about the post-bacc program, as it was in its nascent stages when I was a student. I can say with confidence that the courses I took were challenging but doable; the profs have high expectations for student achievement, but do the work and you'll be fine. I'm not sure how this will differ for online courses, though, since all of my classes were very focused on discussions. The profs assume that you will do the translations for homework, so class time is spent mostly addressing any grammatical issues anybody had as well as discussing the content (rather than simply going over the translations verbatim). Of course, a huge part of every class was scholarship -- on average, I expected to read 2-3 articles per period for each class that met 2/3x per week (more if a seminar course that met only once a week; for these, usually a few book chapters or 5-6 articles). A fairly large component of each class beyond discussing the primary source material was addressing the arguments of the articles we read: how they used the ancient material, their intertext with other modern writing, the perspective of the author, that sort of thing. Your own writing, too, is very much emphasized; the profs loved to have checkpoints for turning in bibs, outlines, drafts, etc. throughout the semester, and they gave excellent and timely feedback about how to develop arguments and produce graduate-level writing.

That all being said: my experiences might be entirely irrelevant given that the post-bacc is online. Looking at the course listings for this semester, the online classes are taught by a professor I haven't had or TA'ed for (Dr. Corrigan, who taught mostly undergraduate courses during my time). I've experienced most of the other professors, though, so if you have questions about people (or the Classics dept in general) I'm happy to answer! 

Checkpoints are really great for me because I am a notorious procrastinator, but that sounds doable! Are the articles assigned or did you seek out what was interesting to you? (I've been reading some interesting articles relevant to the field so I could stay current and these are the ones I found particularly interesting - one of my favorites was on "ingesting magic" and another talked about the middle-finger gesture being used in the ancient world.)

The professors seem wonderful especially after your glowing enthusiasm, but I'm just worried about placing into the program at all and whether there are placement tests once you are in the program - I feel I may need to brush up with Greek and Latin because it's been nearly five years since I have taken it but it seems they have intensive options I might look into as well. I'll have to look up the professors for those courses and get back with more specific questions, but I'm glad to know that someone is familiar with the professors at UGA!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The professors listed on the post-bacc site are Professor Charles Platter, Professor Naomi Norman, and Professor Damaris Corrigan. For the professors you do have experience with, how were their classes? What expectations do they have for their students? Are they willing to accommodate students with mental health issues (if you know, that is)? I'm just curious how that would work, especially for someone who would have to consider how their teaching style may differ when studying at a distance. I don't think I have any other questions yet; thank you for answering mine! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/2/2018 at 7:29 PM, ClassicsCandidate said:

I'm just worried about placing into the program at all and whether there are placement tests once you are in the program - I feel I may need to brush up with Greek and Latin

So for the full-time MA, we had placement tests, but the dept uses that term pretty loosely. They were mostly to give the grad coordinator (Naomi Norman at the time) an idea of what language level you should take. It's not a strike against you if you fail -- just a formality, for the most part. My Greek was pretty rusty, and I actually ended up doing an independent study (well, co-dependent, since another cohort member was in it!) with Naomi that was sort of a bridge between undergrad and grad-level Greek.

I'll message you about the profs, since my response is getting lengthy!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/2/2018 at 7:29 PM, ClassicsCandidate said:

Are the articles assigned or did you seek out what was interesting to you?

Sorry to double-post, but I forgot to address this -- yes, the articles are assigned, but you're obviously encouraged to do more research into what interests you particularly. The profs give direction with bibliographies for research papers (they'll name a few noteworthy works in whatever subfield off the top of their heads), but you have a fair amount of leeway in developing your own topics and exploring your own interests within each course.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, aigilipos said:

So for the full-time MA, we had placement tests, but the dept uses that term pretty loosely. They were mostly to give the grad coordinator (Naomi Norman at the time) an idea of what language level you should take. It's not a strike against you if you fail -- just a formality, for the most part. My Greek was pretty rusty, and I actually ended up doing an independent study (well, co-dependent, since another cohort member was in it!) with Naomi that was sort of a bridge between undergrad and grad-level Greek.

I'll message you about the profs, since my response is getting lengthy!

Oh, alright! I know it lists an intensive course option that doesn't count towards the post-bacc but that I could do in case I needed more training before taking the courses for the post-bacc; it's a shame it doesn't count for anything towards the post-bacc, but it's nice to know that that's an option! I may have to take that route first. I can still read the Greek alphabet, and I know some basics, but when someone puts a sentence in front of me, I feel like I don't know what any of it says. But that might just be my anxiety, you know? I'm going to run amok through my Athenaze and try to make flashcards and work through the exercises in it for a refresher.

 

1 hour ago, aigilipos said:

Sorry to double-post, but I forgot to address this -- yes, the articles are assigned, but you're obviously encouraged to do more research into what interests you particularly. The profs give direction with bibliographies for research papers (they'll name a few noteworthy works in whatever subfield off the top of their heads), but you have a fair amount of leeway in developing your own topics and exploring your own interests within each course.

That's okay! And thank you for letting me know. Sounds doable! Do they expect some of the articles to be read in a research language or are they strictly in English? That's not something I see many people asking often, and I was curious if we end up doing that on our own or if we're expected to read articles in German and French/Italian.

Edited by ClassicsCandidate

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At long last I can contribute something useful for this forum! I'm a current student in UGA's online post-bac in classical languages. I'm currently taking a break to get settled into a recent move to Germany, but I've finished 3 out of the 5 required classes and hope to continue this fall. I've been very impressed at the rigor and excellence Dr. Corrigan put into each of her courses. Prior to matriculating in the program, I had a low view on the quality of online learning, but all of that changed when I began her courses and found them much harder than the seminary level Greek and Hebrew I took in a brick and mortar school.  Like any educational experience, the program has its ups and downs. On the positive side, the rigor is intense--this is no degree mill. Dr. Corrigan is excellent at answering emails and producing course materials in a timely fashion. On the negative side, you'll feel detached from a community and the tuition is unbelievably high. There is no financial aid for the program. 

Here is the Facebook group for the program: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1652717068338675/

I was interviewed by U.S. News & World Report about the program: https://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/articles/2016-12-01/finish-graduate-school-requirements-online-after-college

My interview for UGA: https://online.uga.edu/node/5336

Finally, check out this Facebook group I created to help me cope with being detached from a Classics community as an online student, "Nerdy Classics Majors": https://www.facebook.com/groups/1188003901262141/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello, @Talmid!

     I have done a few classes online before I was a graduate student and my current program is online, so I'm no stranger to it, personally. So, the idea of the post-bacc online was pretty enticing since I don't know when I'll be able to move again, with the addition of the fact that UGA is a great school. So, are you not interacting with the classmates at all in the courses?  How are the courses usually conducted? No financial aid is disappointing, but I was expecting because it was only a post-bacc program. 

     Thanks for sharing all the information, and I'm actually a member of both of those Facebook groups!  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi @ClassicsCandidate.

I'll be honest. The lack of interaction with my classmates was a let-down, but that's because I had only 1-2 other students in my Greek classes who weren't very active in the message forums. I would post my comments and questions, and they wouldn't interact with me until the very last week before the class ended. Small classes killed the dynamic of having a vibrant online learning community. Thus I felt all alone going through the course, but thankfully Dr. Corrigan was always there to engage my ideas and offer professional advice about the discipline. 

Over the past 2 years, I've had a couple of opportunities to visit the department at UGA in person and sit in Dr. Platter's classes. The students and faculty really seemed to enjoy their community and have fun learning together. Though I can't be there in person more often, I've had to find ways to overcome the disadvantage of not being on campus. One thing I've done was to have my employer, the U.S. Army, send me to the SCS meeting last year in Toronto. That helped me to hear what ideas were currently being discussed in the discipline as well as make connections with scholars from around the world. Additionally, now that I live in Germany, I'm using this once in a lifetime opportunity to learn conversational and literary German as I'm sure it'll be necessary if I ever go to grad school. I also make it a point to network with any Classicists that I come across where ever the Army sends me for job training or duty stations. Most professors will let you visit their classes if you contact them ahead of time and ask to be an observer. 

I think an advantage older folks in the online program have over most university students is that we have more job and life experiences, which have a positive impact of instilling wisdom. Campus environments become very insular--such as Evergreen State College--leaving students out of touch with the real world and not knowing expectations for entering the work force outside of academia. As an online learner, we have to work two and three times as hard to find answers since we don't encounter peers or mentors on a daily basis to help with questions. Thus we become stronger autodidacts and can learn new disciplines without teachers (that's how I"m currently learning German--to say nothing of being self-taught in Hebrew, Latin, Sanskrit, Mandarin, Spanish, and Euclid).

Anyhow, I highly recommend you pursue UGA's online program. Perhaps I'll have you in class when I resume in the fall with Latin.

If you wish to keep in touch, you can send a FB friend request to Keith Saare.

Vale, amice (or amica?).

Keith

Edited by Talmid

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry for the delay in response, I've been busy with work, an internship, and my current classes! 

That is disappointing, but I suppose it's hard when there aren't many people in the program with you, especially if they have something going on. It was nice that Dr. Corrigan was encouraging and helpful, though! 

It's great that you were able to visit UGA in person! I feel like sitting in on the class in person was very beneficial. Going to the SCS meetings sounds like a great idea! I haven't been able to attend any conferences or anything like that yet, so I wanted to do that sometime soon when I can afford to do so. Living in Germany would be a great experience for an aspiring/emerging Classicist, especially because it's one of the main research languages. It's one of the only languages I didn't take as an undergrad, so I was considering taking courses at the local community college if I can afford it. 

I like both campus and online as options for my programs; I do like hybrid programs, but I like having the freedom of being able to go to work and school and possibly changing jobs and having to move. So, that's my main reason for being more keen on online programs, personally.

I should hear back from the first school I applied to, so I'll know if I have to have the backup plan in motion in the next week or so! 

It's amice :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll offer an idea on how to attend a meeting like SCS or CAMWS. I've gone to these over night meetings at least 3 times, and each time my employers paid for me to go. As long as your employer has money to send you to training, it's easy to make a convincing case to attend. For example, I had the Army send me last year to Toronto for SCS. I explained to my boss that, as a military chaplain, I would learn about military history, ancient religion, and Greek & Latin (the languages of theology). As it turned out, all of these topics were discussed in the various sessions, thus my employer was happy to pay for my attendance as a matter of professional development. So it all depends on how you pitch your proposal to your employer. Since Classics is now largely interdisciplinary, you can find any topic discussed at the meeting which likely will relate to your present job in some manner. Give it a shot!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If my application fails, I'm going to take some advice from my amico italiano at NYU:

"Just join the navy."

I would do a post-bacc programme. I would also look into living language programmes. Some people say they're bollocks, but that's bollocks. Immersion is a fantastic way to learn a language and the best Latinists and Hellenists I know speak the languages fluently.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/29/2018 at 2:28 PM, Talmid said:

I'll offer an idea on how to attend a meeting like SCS or CAMWS. I've gone to these over night meetings at least 3 times, and each time my employers paid for me to go. As long as your employer has money to send you to training, it's easy to make a convincing case to attend. For example, I had the Army send me last year to Toronto for SCS. I explained to my boss that, as a military chaplain, I would learn about military history, ancient religion, and Greek & Latin (the languages of theology). As it turned out, all of these topics were discussed in the various sessions, thus my employer was happy to pay for my attendance as a matter of professional development. So it all depends on how you pitch your proposal to your employer. Since Classics is now largely interdisciplinary, you can find any topic discussed at the meeting which likely will relate to your present job in some manner. Give it a shot!

 

I will keep all of that in mind! I've been working on gearing myself more toward how to "sell" Classics as a relevant thing for where I work, but currently, my employer isn't big on paying for anything intensely related to the area in which we work (our Curator of Manuscripts couldn't get funding to go to a library conference and ended up just taking vacation time to attend it on her own dime). Hopefully, I will find funding for it some other way if my employer won't see the relevance. Thanks for the tip! 

On 1/29/2018 at 2:43 PM, Withnail said:

If my application fails, I'm going to take some advice from my amico italiano at NYU:

"Just join the navy."

I would do a post-bacc programme. I would also look into living language programmes. Some people say they're bollocks, but that's bollocks. Immersion is a fantastic way to learn a language and the best Latinists and Hellenists I know speak the languages fluently.

Living language programs are a good route, I feel. I've found a found a few different programs for the modern languages that are necessary as well as conversational Latin and Greek. I discovered Udemy actually had Latin courses on there with lectures taking you through Wheelock's Latin and since I need to brush up, but my schedule is a little tight, it's cheaper to try and go that route, for now, to re-learn what I know in the back of my head than retaking the classes at $1,000+ each at the undergraduate level when I'm uncertain how often I'm going to be able to check back until I'm done my current program in May. I saw some of the conversational Greek/Latin as an option, but I'm gonna brush up first. Then, for modern languages, I already know French and Italian, pick up German pretty quickly but haven't had a formal college-level course in it- but my local community college offers the lower-level courses online. So I've been considering that too, language-wise. (I can speak some Japanese and Polish, too, but I feel like those won't be as relevant, anyway. I'm learning Bulgarian for the field school program I'm doing this summer, though!) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.