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Five Years with the Rassias Method in German: a Follow-Up Report from the University of Florida


  • Otto W. Johnston PH.D

    1. University of Florida
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      Otto W. Johnston(Ph.D., Princeton University) is Associate Professor of German in the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages at the University of Florida, Gainesville


ABSTRACTThe 1982–83 academic year marked the fifth anniversary of the implementation of the Dartmouth Intensive Language Model (DILM) in German at the University of Florida. Since the publication of a report describing our procedure in the April, 1980 issue of FLA, the German Department at the university has experimented with various textbooks and developed some new material for use in German with the DILM. We have also worked with different class sizes and at both slow and fast paces. Revising our test strategy and adding a business component resulted in a sharp increase in our retention rate. We have attracted a number of new majors and built upper division enrollments. There have also been some setbacks with funding and with the attitude of junior faculty. This follow-up report discusses the pros and cons of the DILM, offers some advice on introducing such a program in any language, and concludes that DILM-trained students do learn to communicate more effectively than traditionallytaught beginners.

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