2nd Conference on Teaching Humanities in Secondary Schools
On Friday and Saturday, 7-8 February 2014, the UIC Faculty of Humanities and the Official Association of Doctors and Graduates in the Arts and Sciences of Catalonia held the 2nd Conference on Teaching Humanities in Secondary Schools on the UIC's Barcelona campus.
Following a successful first conference, this latest edition aimed to reflect on a key issue in the transition from secondary school to university: finding strategies to improve academic results in humanities subjects. The objective was to bridge the gap between pre-university and university humanities education by providing a space for dialogue among teaching professionals.
During the opening lecture, "Teaching Humanities: From the Secondary-School Classroom to the University", Pilar Gómez Cardó, a professor of Greek Philology at the Universitat de Barcelona and the coordinator of the Catalan university entrance exam since 2005, made some general reflections on the role and presence of the humanities in education today.
After the opening ceremony, attendees could choose from among different workshops being held simultaneously over the course of the two days. The sessions dealt with subjects such as understanding and producing philosophical texts, improving spelling and boosting exam results in history and art history on university entrance exams.
The conference closed with the lecture “Against Soft Humanism”, given by Gregorio Luri Medrano, who has a PhD with honours in Philosophy from the Universitat de Barcelona and a degree with honours in Education Sciences. In his lecture, he discussed a number of topics, including the concept of “soft humanism” as a perversion and trivialization of humanism, the idea of a liberal arts education as an escape from a lack of sophistication, the specificity of human objects, and what should be required of a humanist.