NOTE: Both Great Books III and Great Books IV will be Offered for 2021-22!


Great Books IV: Foundational Texts of the Renaissance and Modern World

Great Books IV completes the Great Books program and continues in the tradition of reading and discussion of primary sources established in the earlier classes. The course explores major texts from the Renaissance through the modern era.

As in Great Books III, students produce thoughtful, text-based responses to topical and reflective questions each week, as well as 300-word Summae --  essays that expand upon ideas raised in class discussions. . Students also compose longer essays in a variety of formats, from literary analysis to persuasive and creative responses to the texts. Instruction in composition and proper citation continues.

High school students may also take this course for dual enrollment credit through the University of St. Katherine. Upon completion, the University will issue the student a transcript with 3 college credits per semester.  USK credits are transferable to other colleges and universities.

"It’s not just the Great Books, it’s having the Great Books taught with the seriousness that we’ve experienced in this class.  My son has learned much, much more in Mrs. Turscak’s Great Books class at CLRC than he did in his previous classes with another online provider." 
-- Timothy I., Virginia

What students have to say about the importance of reading, discussing, and wrestling deeply with the Great Books:

"Great Books has been, for me, a point to ground myself at, a place that the reader can see that others struggle and have struggled with the same ideas and problems that we have today. 

The whole of the Great Books has shown me how close and connected humanity is, even through pain and trial."

For the complete text of this student's essay, CLICK HERE.

2019-20 Registration for this Course Opens on February 11.


Enrollment for this class is closed for Fall 2021.
Prerequisites:  Great Books I
 and Great Books II, or permission of instructor
Instructor:  Sue Ellen Turscak, M.A.   email
Age Level:  15 - 18 years
Grade Level: 11 - 12
Minimum Enrollment: 4
Maximum Enrollment: 14

Tuition per Semester (Regular):  $425
Tuition per Semester (Dual Enrollment): $625

Class Meets: Wednesdays, 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM Pacific. (PLEASE NOTE: Class begins the week of August 30)

Click Here to see the 2021-22 Class Schedule

Fall enrollment is closed. Students may be able to enroll with the instructor’s permission. Please contact Spring registration opens Oct 18th.

(If you would like to enroll in this class but cannot attend at the posted time, please contact us.  We may be able to open an additional section.)

Problems Registering?    Click here    for help.  

Sue Ellen Turscak, M.A.

sue-ellen-turscak-great-books-clrcSue Ellen Turscak has been a teacher of Great Books, Literature, and Composition at Heritage Classical Academy in northeast Ohio since 2006. Prior to that she taught English for ten years at Western Reserve Academy, an independent college preparatory school, and before that, Russian language and literature at Episcopal High School in Alexandria, Virginia.

She earned her A.B. In History and Literature, magna cum laude, from Harvard University in 1986, and a Master in Humanities, summa cum laude, from Tiffin University in 2009. Her thesis was on the forms of contemporary classical Christian education.

During the summer months, from 2010-2017, she was the director of her own Merely Players Shakespeare Camp, a two-week day camp for 7th grade through early college focused on exploring Shakespeare thematically through performance. In 2013, she was the recipient of the American Shakespeare Center’s Words in Action Award “to deserving teachers to honor their commitment in bringing Shakespeare to life for their students.”

Sue Ellen homeschooled her two children through high school. Her son works as a data scientist for a major consulting firm, and her daughter is a software developer for Microsoft. Sue Ellen resides with her husband and one very grumpy cat in Northeast Ohio, and attends St. Elia the Prophet Orthodox Church. She enjoys reading, cooking, international travel, and all things Russian and Slavic in general.


the specific editions listed are REQUIRED for only four of the texts:

  • Paradise Lost (Norton Critical Edition--older, used texts are acceptable, as long as they are Norton Critical editions)
  • Moby Dick (Norton Critical Edition--older, used texts are acceptable, as long as they are Norton Critical editions)
  • The Brothers Karamazov
  • The Penguin Guide to the United States Constitution

The rest of the texts are widely available for free online or at the library.  The instructor will be providing the poetry to the students for their assignments.

Amazon links for textbooks and materials are provided for the convenience of our parents and students. 
The CLRC is an Amazon Associate.

Paradise Lost


This Edition Required--See Above

Moby Dick


This Edition Required--See Above

Brothers Karamazov


This Edition Required--See Above

Penguin Guide to
US Constitution


This Edition Required--See Above

The New Organon


The Great


Democracy in


The Portable
Edmund Burke


The Social


Second Treatise
of Government


Discourse on


Walden and Civil