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BA Classics / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

Course description

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Classics and Ancient History

Our BA Classics course will enable you to study Greek and Latin language and literature while also exploring the political, social and intellectual history of the ancient Greek and Roman civilisations.

You can learn either or both languages from beginner level and tailor your course unit options to focus on Greek or Latin language and literature together with Ancient History, depending on where your interests lie.

There are four possible routes through this course:

  • Route 1  - study both Greek and Latin;
  • Route 2 - Greek focus;
  • Route 3  - Latin focus;
  • Route 4  - combine language study with ancient history and literature units. We offer two versions of this course - one for those with traditional qualifications (e.g. A level) in one or both of Latin and Greek, commencing at an appropriately advanced level and another for those with little or no experience of either language, for which we can offer you courses aimed at complete beginners.

Where appropriate, the texts for literary and historical course units are studied in the original language.

Study with us and you'll also have access to exclusive resources such as the Special Collections of The John Rylands Library (home to papyri, medieval manuscripts and early printed books including very early copies of the Homeric poems) and the Manchester Museum (the University's own on-campus holdings), with its world-class Egyptology collections.

You'll be taught by experts in Greek and Roman language, literature, culture and history. You will be able to choose from course units covering topics such as Latin love poetry, Greek myth, ancient epic and the literature of exile. Optional units are also available in a wide range of topics in Ancient History and Archaeology and in areas as diverse as Greek philosophy and Egyptology. 

Depending on your level of language expertise, you will be able to study some of the texts for your literary and historical course units in the original Greek or Latin.

Special features

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals and build your external networks. 

Study abroad

You may apply to spend one semester studying abroad during Year 2. Exchange partners are offered through the Erasmus Exchange scheme (in Sweden) and the Worldwide Exchange scheme (e.g. USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore).

Explore world-class collections

Enjoy unique opportunities to explore special archived material and carry out research in a wide range of archives, libraries, museums and other research institutions in Manchester and beyond.

You will have exclusive access to the special collections of the John Rylands Library, including papyri, medieval manuscripts and early printed books.

Teaching and learning

The core of most literary and historical course units is provided by lectures, which introduce and survey the main issues, and are supported by small-group tutorials and seminars.

Language classes are taught intensively, with group size capped to encourage participation.

You are encouraged to involve yourself, under guidance, in independent study and original research.

Coursework and assessment

Assessment practices in different course units vary, but our basic aim is to achieve a good balance between formal examinations, continuous assessment, and project work.

Written examinations are held at the end of most courses. The third-year dissertation provides 25% of the total marks for your degree.

Course content for year 1

Route 1: Greek and Latin

Study five core units covering Greek language, Greek literature (e.g. The Odyssey), Latin language, Latin literature (e.g. Catullus), and either Greek or Roman history (e.g. Archaic Greece; The Roman Republic). Study a further course unit from Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved units in other disciplines such as Archaeology, History of Art, Middle Eastern Studies, Philosophy and Religions and Theology.

Route 2: Greek-focussed

Study three core units covering Greek language, Greek literature (e.g. the Odyssey) and Greek history (e.g. Archaic Greece). In addition you will study two further course units from Classics and Ancient History. Study one subject from the list of Classics-approved units, such as those listed above for specialisation in Greek and Latin.

Route 3: Latin-focussed

Study three core units covering Latin language, Latin literature (e.g. Catullus) and Roman history (e.g. the Roman Republic). Study two further course units from Classics and Ancient History. Finally, you will study one subject from the list of Classics-approved units, as listed above for specialisation in Greek and Latin.

Route 4: Classics and Ancient History

Study either Latin or Greek at the appropriate level (40 credits if you are beginning the language, 20 credits if you are continuing your language studies), together with 40 credits in Ancient History and 40 credits in Classical Literature. Where sufficient credits remain, you can take a further 20 credits in other Classics and Ancient History or approved course units.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Constructing Archaic Greek History CAHE10011 20 Optional
From Republic to Empire: Introduction to Roman History, Society & Culture 218-31BC CAHE10022 20 Optional
Introduction to Mediterranean & Classical Archaeology CAHE10122 20 Optional
The Making of the Mediterranean CAHE10132 20 Optional
The Story of Britain CAHE10141 20 Optional
Stories and Storytelling in the Ancient Greek and Roman Worlds CAHE10212 20 Optional
Cities and Citizens CAHE10231 20 Optional
Virgil's Aeneid CAHE10422 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 1 CAHE20151 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 1 CAHE20171 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 1 CAHE30110 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 1 CAHE30120 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 2 CAHE30162 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 2 CAHE30182 20 Optional
The Odyssey CLAH10101 20 Optional
Mapping the Medieval ENGL10051 20 Optional
An Introduction to the Medieval World HIST10262 20 Optional
New Testament Greek RELT10120 20 Optional
Bible in Ancient and Modern Worlds RELT10712 20 Optional
Standing on The Shoulders of Giants: Foundations for Study in The Arts SALC10002 20 Optional
Ice Age to Baroque: Artworks in History SALC10041 20 Optional
Living and Dying in the Ancient World SALC10602 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 22 course units for year 1

Course content for year 2

Route 1: Greek and Latin

Continue to study courses in Latin and Greek language and literature. You can also choose additional course units from Classics and Ancient History or from the list of approved units. You can also opt to study a free-choice course unit which can be chosen from a wide range on offer across the University. 

Route 2: Greek-focussed

Study two courses in Greek language and literature. Choose four additional course units - either from available Classics course units or from the list of Classics-approved units. You can also opt to study a free-choice course unit which can be chosen from a wide range on offer across the University

Route 3: Latin-focussed

Study two units in Latin language and literature. Study four additional course units - either from available Classics course units or from the list of Classics-approved units. You can also opt to study a free-choice course unit which can be chosen from a wide range on offer across the University. 

Route 4: Classics and Ancient History

Study either Latin or Greek at the appropriate level (20 credits), together with 60 credits in Ancient History and Classical Literature course units. You will also take another 40 credits in Classics and Ancient History or approved units. This includes the option (worth 20 credits) of writing an extended essay of about 6,000 words on a topic of your choosing in Classics.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
The World of Late Antiquity: Europe and the Med from the Severan Dynasty to the Rise of Islam CAHE20022 20 Optional
Through Cicero's Eyes CAHE20032 20 Optional
The Conquering Hero: The Life, Times and Legacy of Alexander The Great CAHE20041 20 Optional
The Roman Empire 31BC - AD235: Rome's Golden Age CAHE20051 20 Optional
Politics and Society in Classical Greece CAHE20062 20 Optional
Neolithic Britain CAHE20131 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 1 CAHE20151 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 1 CAHE20171 20 Optional
Survive and Thrive: Parties, Politics and Poetry in Horace CAHE20251 20 Optional
Families in the Greek and Roman Worlds (6th c. BCE - 3 c. CE) CAHE20441 20 Optional
Roman Women in 22 Objects CAHE20532 20 Optional
Dealing with the Dead: The Archaeology of Death and Burial CAHE20722 20 Optional
Origins of States: The Archaeology of Urbanism in the Near East CAHE20911 20 Optional
Greek Epic Poetry CAHE21041 20 Optional
Introduction to the History and Culture of Pharaonic Egypt CAHE21441 20 Optional
Nature, Poetry, and Art: Ancient Pastoral and its Reception CAHE24201 20 Optional
Finding Happiness in the Ancient World CAHE24402 20 Optional
Slavery in the Ancient Greek World CAHE24501 20 Optional
Heritage and Reception CAHE24601 20 Optional
Ancient Greek Mythology CAHE24702 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 1 CAHE30110 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 1 CAHE30120 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 2 CAHE30162 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 2 CAHE30182 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 2 CAHE30210 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 2 CAHE30220 20 Optional
Exile CLAH20252 20 Optional
From Catastrophe to Crusade: Europe in the Aftermath of the Vikings HIST21141 20 Optional
The Stuff of History: Objects Across Borders, 1500-1800 HIST21152 20 Optional
Biblical Hebrew RELT20140 20 Optional
New Testament in Greek II RELT20150 20 Optional
Data Analysis and Reasoning in a Digital World SALC20082 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 32 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Route 1: Greek and Latin

Complete your study of Latin and Greek language and literature. Take a course unit from within Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved course units. Write a thesis (10,000-12,000 words) on a subject of your choice - the thesis is your chance to carry out your own independent study of the classical past.

Route 2: Greek-focussed

Complete your study of Greek language with a final course unit. Study four course units either from within Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved course units. Write a thesis (10,000-12,000 words) on a subject of your choice - the thesis is your chance to carry out your own independent study of the classical past.

Route 3: Latin-focussed

Complete your study of Latin language with a final course unit. Study four course units either from within Classics and Ancient History or from the list of Classics-approved course units. Write a thesis (10,000-12,000 words)on a subject of your choice - the thesis is your chance to carry out your own independent study of the classical past.

Route 4: Classics and Ancient History

Study either Latin or Greek at the appropriate level (20 credits), together with 20 credits in Ancient History and 20 credits in Classical Literature course units. Write a dissertation of about 10,000-12,000 words (worth 40 credits). You will also take another 20 credits in Classics and Ancient History or approved course units.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Classics, Ancient History, Archaeology and Egyptology Dissertation CAHE30000 40 Mandatory
Intensive Greek 1 CAHE20151 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 1 CAHE20171 20 Optional
The World of Late Antiquity: Europe and the Med from the Severan Dynasty to the Rise of Islam CAHE30022 20 Optional
Through Cicero's Eyes CAHE30032 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 1 CAHE30110 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 1 CAHE30120 20 Optional
Neolithic Britain CAHE30131 20 Optional
Intensive Greek 2 CAHE30162 20 Optional
Intensive Latin 2 CAHE30182 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 2 CAHE30210 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 2 CAHE30220 20 Optional
Survive and Thrive: Parties, Politics and Poetry in Horace CAHE30251 20 Optional
Advanced Latin Language 3 CAHE30310 20 Optional
Advanced Greek Language 3 CAHE30320 20 Optional
Artefacts and Interpretation CAHE30362 20 Optional
Families in the Greek and Roman Worlds (6th c. BCE - 3 c. CE) CAHE30441 20 Optional
Dealing with the Dead: The Archaeology of Death and Burial CAHE30722 20 Optional
The Roman Army and the North-West Frontiers CAHE30882 20 Optional
Origins of States: The Archaeology of Urbanism in the Near East CAHE30911 20 Optional
Greek Epic Poetry CAHE31041 20 Optional
Egypt in the Graeco-Roman Worl CAHE31401 20 Optional
Nature, Poetry, and Art: Ancient Pastoral and its Reception CAHE34201 20 Optional
Finding Happiness in the Ancient World CAHE34402 20 Optional
Slavery in the Ancient Greek World CAHE34501 20 Optional
Heritage and Reception CAHE34601 20 Optional
Ancient Greek Mythology CAHE34702 20 Optional
Exile CLAH30252 20 Optional
Seaborne State? Venice and the East 1150-1550 HIST31861 20 Optional
Science and Islam RELT30522 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 30 course units for year 3

Facilities

The John Rylands Library

At The John Rylands Library , you'll have exclusive access to our internationally significant collections, including papyri, medieval manuscripts and early printed books such as very early copies of the Homeric poems.

Manchester Museum

The UK's leading university museum has more than four million objects spanning millennia, including one of the largest collections of ancient Egyptian artefacts in the UK. Go behind-the-scenes to handle, analyse and interpret rare artefacts, including exclusive material specific to ancient history.

Visit our facilities page to find out more.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk