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How far will Cambridge Latin take me?

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How far will Cambridge Latin take me?

Postby XvX » Fri May 21, 2010 10:25 am

How far will Cambridge Latin take me?

I was able to do a steal on Amazon and order the complete North American set (4 books) for like 20 dollars. So, I intend to go through all four books.

I have been working very hard reading and learning. I am already on Book 2, chapter 16 (out of 40 total).

How far will those 40 chapters take me, as far as an equivalent of COllege classes (EG: 101, 102, 201, 202).

Is each book like a semester? Or are all four book only equivalent to 1 year of classes in College?

Sorry for my ignorance, there are no Latin classes at my colleges around me, and I am self taught.
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Re: How far will Cambridge Latin take me?

Postby ptolemyauletes » Sun May 23, 2010 10:26 am

This question cannot really be answered. Each college, University, etc. has different expectations. Many modern Universities have no expectations at all for people coming in to do a degree in Latin or Classics. They start teaching from the ground up. Oxford expects a very solid A grade at A levels, which is a substantial understanding of Latin. Many Universities will have covered a fairly narrow survey of Latin at the end of the degree, with an equally narrow understanding of the language, but a good basis nevetheless. Oxford will have covered an extensive amount of literature, and expect a very complete understanding of the Language.
The Cambridge Latin series (which is what I teach) Will take you fairly far in terms of the language, but does almost no literature. You will be able to start reading literature, but only if you thoroughly learn what the Cambridge books have to teach. I teach up to Stage 40, then we begin to look at real Latin literature. The students find the transition difficult, but not impossible.
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Re: How far will Cambridge Latin take me?

Postby XvX » Thu May 27, 2010 1:11 am

Thank you for your reply.

As a college student, and if I study these books everyday, how long would you expect me to take for me to arrive at Chapter 40?
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Re: How far will Cambridge Latin take me?

Postby Ricky » Sun Jun 13, 2010 10:07 pm

From a US perspective, the first three books of the North American edition are about equivalent to a Latin I high school course (a demanding Latin I class) plus maybe one quarter or semester of high school Latin II. All four books probably equals two years of high school Latin or two semesters of college Latin. This is a very rough approximation.

The Cambridge series is a good basic series which incorporates cultural and historical information. It is also good for an independent learner - there are lots of resources online and supplemental written materials. It takes things slowly, particularly at the beginning. At some point, you will want to also use another text which teaches more authentic Latin literature, like Caesar, Sallust, Cicero, Vergil, and Ovid. Book 4 of the North American edition has some ancient authors, but not a huge amount. One good series which is much more grammar-based and also which incorporates more original texts is the Using Latin series of high school textbooks from the 1960's (authors Horn and Gummere). It is sometimes available from online used book sellers. The second and third books in the series in particular use adapted historical texts which are heavily footnoted with translation help.
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