[INDOLOGY] New Online Sanskrit Course

Antonia Ruppel rhododaktylos at gmail.com
Sat Jun 16 14:47:18 UTC 2018

 Dear all,

Following the positive reactions to last year’s (and still ongoing) course,
I will again be offering an online Sanskrit course based on my textbook,
The Cambridge Introduction to Sanskrit.

- The course will start October 1.
- It will require about three hours of work per week and will take you
through the book in about two years.
- Participants will receive weekly emails (sent through google groups) that
set a certain amount of work and list the various resources that will take
them through that material: in addition to the relevant pages of the book,
each chapter comes with its own video and online flashcards as well as
freely downloadable supplementary handouts.
- There is no fixed course time; anyone can do the work and access the
materials at whatever time(s) during the week that best suits them.
- Exercises from the textbook will be assigned each week, and the Key to
them provided.
- Each week concludes with a self-graded test; and every six or so
chapters, there will be a more comprehensive exam.

There are no fees, no credits and no certificates; the course’s sole
purpose is to help people learn Sanskrit. The only costs participants incur
are the money for the textbook and the time they spend on their work each

If you are interested (or know someone who might be), please join the
google group for the course:

cis-study-group-2018+subscribe at googlegroups.com

(You can unsubscribe at any time.)

There also is a Facebook group used for asking questions about each week’s
material and anything else relating to the course:


Any questions, please email me at cambridge.sanskrit at gmail.com. Feel free
to forward this email widely. As attachments sometimes don’t make it
through on mailing lists, I have simply added the text of the syllabus for
the first term at the bottom of this email.

All the best,

PS: The ongoing course currently is on Chapter 12 of the textbook; get in
touch with me if you'd like to join that.

*The Cambridge Introduction to Sanskrit: An Online Course*



This document gives you an overview of what material from the *Cambridge
Introduction to Sanskrit *(CIS) will be covered each week.

Starting on September 28, there will be a *new email and Facebook group
update every Friday*. This email will include details on (1) how to
approach the coming week’s material and (2), from the end of the first week
on, a test on the material you have just studied. Each test will come with
a key to the answers and a grade scale, allowing you to check your own
work, see what progress you have made and which material you may want to
look over again.


A.M. Ruppel, *The Cambridge Introduction to Sanskrit *(Cambridge University
Press). ISBN: 978-1107459069 (international edition, paperback);
978-1108439152 (South Asian edition, paperback). (Both have identical

*Other Resources*

For each Chapter, there is an accompanying YouTube video, the direct link
to which will be included in each week’s email. For all new verb and noun
forms, as well as for all Sanskrit characters and *sandhi* forms (relevant
later!), there are flash cards on the CIS Brainscape account. There also
are a variety of downloadable handouts. All of these can be accessed via
the CIS website, *www.cambridge-sanskrit.org

*Study Suggestions*

Don’t try to do too much at once. When you read a new content section, do
that for 30-45 minutes. But when you memorise new material, repeated
sessions of no more than 10-15 minutes are best. (Google *‘Spaced
Repetition’* and read the Wikipedia entry on this topic for some ideas on
how to memorise new material.)

*A Practical Point*

Sanskrit isn’t easy. This course tries to make it easier by suggesting a
pace that should allow you to digest new material before going on to the
next chunk, and by providing a variety of resources that will hopefully
offer something to everyone. Still, the material *is* challenging, so if
you ever find yourself struggling, remind yourself the problem is *not* that
you are not good enough. You’re finding it challenging because it is
challenging. And if you have any specific questions, do post them in the
Facebook group.

*Overview of Assignments*

*Week 0 (now – October 1)*

Read *Chapter 0*. (Yes, it’s just the introduction, but seriously, do
it:-)! You’ll find it useful.)

*Week 1 (Oct 1-7)*

*Chapter 1* p. 9 to middle of p. 12

Test: Reading and writing single *devanāgarī* characters.

*Week 2 (Oct 8-14)*

*Chapter 1* p. 12 to top of p. 14

Test: Combining consonants and vowels, using *anusvāra* and *visarga*.

*Week 3 (Oct 15-21)*

*Chapter 1*: rest of chapter

Test: Reading (not writing) conjunct consonants; reviewing all the material
of Chapter 1 (reading/writing *devanāgarī*).

*Week 4 (Oct 22-28)*

*Chapter 2*

Test: The new concepts from Chapter 2, more reading/writing revision.

*Week 5 (Oct 29-Nov 4)*

*Chapter 2a*, *Chapter 3* pp. 29-30

(Note: Chapter 2a should be read, but will not be tested.)

Test: The new concepts from pp.29-30; more reading/writing revision.

*Week 6 (Nov 5-11)*

*Chapter 3* pp.  31-end

Test: The new concepts in the rest of Chapter 3; the Vocabulary on p. 35 (I
will give you the Sanskrit words and you will need to provide their English

*Week 7 (Nov 12-18)*

*Chapter 4* p. 38-top of p. 40

Test: the present active indicative endings of verbs; how to form the
present stem of Class I, IV and VI verbs; the present active indicative
paradigm of √*bhṛ*.

*Week 8 (Nov 19-25)*

*Chapter 4* p. 40-end.

Test: Chapter 4 vocabulary, present-tense forms of the verbs in Chapter 4

*Week 9 (Nov 26-Dec 2)*

*Chapter 5* pp. 43-48, p. 51

Test: The new concepts from pp. 43-48; the first half of Chapter 5
vocabulary (*nagaram* to *devaḥ*).

*Week 10 (Dec 3-9)*

*Chapter 5* p.48-end

Test: The new concepts from pp. 48-50; the second half of Chapter 5
vocabulary (*naraḥ* to *iva*).

*Week 11 (Dec 10-16)*

*Chapter 6* p. 57, 60

Test: The forms of *deva*-, the first half of Chapter 6 vocabulary (*puruṣa*-
to *yuddha-*).

*Week 12 (Dec 17-23)*

*Chapter 6* pp. 58-end

Test: The forms of *vana*-, the new concepts on pp. 58-59; second half of
Chapter 6 vocabulary.

*Dec 24-Jan 6: Winter Break (Summer Break for Antipodeans!)*

Enjoy some time off! (Or if you prefer, use the time to start reviewing for
the big January test).

*Week 13 (Jan 7-13)*

*Revision week*

Test: Chapter 1-6 material.

Questionnaire: What should stay the same about the course, what would you
like to see changed?

(The week after, the course will continue with Chapter 7. The details for
this will be available from around mid-December on.)

Dr Antonia Ruppel

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