Thank you. Now I understand the point you were making.RandallButh wrote:The "field" referred to Koine Greek classes and programs, the fruit is a metaphor referring to the outcome of those programs, for example the ability of a "student"/PhD to express themselves after 8 years of working with the language. Hunky dory is an idiom that means 'just fine', 'things are going smoothly and well.'
Most people who learn languages have goals that come short of total language mastery (i.e. native speaker or near-native speaker competency). In that way, failure cannot so easily be measured in terms of absolutes. Each student has their own goals and therefore - to some extent - their own standard by which they pass or fail. For students who do compulsary language learning programmes during the course of their stuudies, passing exams is the primary goal that they are working towards. Students need to have a need for expressing themselves in a language, such as travel, trade, immigration or work as an interpreter, before perhaps we could say a programme has failed them by not giving them near-native speaker competency in speaking.
PhD programmes are not usually concerned with teaching spoken language. Most students achieve oral competency in the first year or two of their study, from what I know. An oral defence is usually in the language of the country in which the University in located, or (optionally) in the language being studied. It would be assumed that a bachelors level student could express themselves, a masters level one could teach and a doctoral level one would have research skills. A defence is much more than a second year oral competency test. Those are my views anyway.