Triangle Skip to content
Exit nav

Course overview

You will already have a love of history; now you can specialise in the ancient worlds of Greece and Rome.  

Uncover the significance and excitement of historical facts and events. Look at progress and decline, labour and leisure, revolution and reconciliation, and much more. You will use a range of resources and techniques in your investigations. We will guide you to intellectual confidence and independence. 

You will take modules integrating history, art, archaeology, literature and culture. You will also see how the ancient world influences popular culture. The study of either Greek or Latin is optional - you do not need previous knowledge. Apart from in designated language modules, you will read all texts in translation.

More information

For more information on our teaching, research and what it's like to study with us see the Department of Classics and Archaeology website.

Why choose this course?

  • Specialise in the methods and skills of history to study the ancient world 
  • Learn a broad range of professional skills. 
  • Try out Latin or Ancient Greek, or develop existing language skills
  • Gain valuable practical and professional experience in our on-campus museum
  • Communicate your knowledge to schools via our Nottingham Classics Out-and-About  programme
  • Study abroad opportunities

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.

UK entry requirements
A level offer AAB-ABB
IB score 34-32

Extended Project Qualification 

If you have already achieved your EPQ at Grade A you will automatically be offered one grade lower in a non-mandatory A level subject.

If you are still studying for your EPQ you will receive the standard course offer, with a condition of one grade lower in a non-mandatory A level subject if you achieve an A grade in your EPQ.

Foundation progression options

You can also access this course through our Foundation Year. This may be suitable if you have faced educational barriers and are predicted BCC at A level.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

Teaching methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops
  • Field trips

How you will be assessed

Assessment methods

  • Essay
  • Examinations
  • Group coursework
  • Portfolio (written/digital)
  • Poster presentation
  • Reflective review

Contact time and study hours

You’ll have at least the following  hours of timetabled contact a week through lectures, seminars and workshops, tutorials and supervisions. 

  • Year one: minimum of 12 hours
  • Year two: minimum of 10 hours
  • Final year: minimum of 8 hours

Your tutors will also be available outside these times to discuss issues and develop your understanding.

Your tutors will all be qualified academics with PhDs. Some of our postgraduate research students also support teaching after suitable training.

Our largest lectures, Studying the Greek World and Studying the Roman World are typically attended by up to 150 students, whereas the corresponding seminars are typically no bigger than 15. Other popular optional module lectures may be attended by up to 100 students, with up to 25 in each seminar group. 

As well as scheduled teaching you’ll carry out extensive self-study such as:

  • reading
  • locating and analysing primary sources
  • planning and writing essays and other assessed work
  • collaborating with fellow students.

As a guide, 20 credits (a typical module) is approximately 200 hours of work (combined teaching and self-study). 

Study abroad

 Explore the world, experience different cultures and gain valuable life skills by studying abroad.

  • Options range from short summer schools, a single semester to a whole year abroad
  • Language support is available through our Language Centre  
  • Students studying abroad for a semester pay reduced fees (Home/EU students - £6,480, International - 75% of the relevant international fee)
  • Boost your CV for prospective employers

See our study abroad pages for full information

Placements

Work experience gives you the skills and experience that will allow you to stand out to potential employers and is a crucial part of becoming 'workplace-ready'.

Our second-year School of Humanities work placement module involves a professional placement (one day a week for six weeks or equivalent) in an external organisation. You will gain employability skills in a workplace relevant to Arts/Humanities graduates.

By participating in our voluntary Nottingham Classics Out-and-about (NoCout) scheme, you will be able to practice communicating your knowledge to our local primary and secondary schools. 

You also have access to a wide range of work experience and volunteering schemes through the:

Modules

You will take 120 credits of modules split as follows:

  • Compulsory core modules (80 credits) – you will focus on thinking about the nature of ancient history as a discipline and developing the skills required for the researching, writing and debating
  • Optional modules (40 credits) – these may be in ancient history, or in other subjects such as archaeology or history of art

You’ll have at least 12 hours of timetabled contact a week through lectures, seminars and tutorials.

You must pass year one but it does not count towards your final degree classification. 

Core modules

Studying the Greek World
This module provides a wide ranging interdisciplinary introduction to the history, literature and art of the Greek World from c.1600-31 BC; that is from the Bronze Age to becoming part of the Roman Empire. As well as examining all the major chapters of Greece's history from the Mycenaean Period and the Dark Ages, to the rise of the polis in the Archaic period, to the height of Greek civilisation in the Classical and Hellenistic periods, and finally its conquest and absorption into the Roman Empire, it also explores synchronous developments in Greek literary and artistic culture, and considers aspects of the reception of ancient Greece in modern western culture. This module will also examine the relationship of the Greek world to the Roman World, and will be complemented by the Spring semester module Studying the Roman World. No prior knowledge of the Greek world is assumed.
Studying the Roman World
This module provides a wide-ranging interdisciplinary introduction to the history, literature and art of the Roman world from the beginnings of the city of Rome to the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. As well as examining all the major chapters of Rome's history such as the Roman Republic, the rise of the empire, the establishment of the Principate, and the fall of Rome, it also explores synchronous developments in Roman literary and artistic culture, and considers aspects of the reception of ancient Rome in modern western culture. This module will also examine the relationship of the Roman world to the Greek world, and will complement the Autumn semester module Studying the Greek World by continuing training in a number of basic study skills. No prior knowledge of the Roman world is assumed. 
Interpreting Ancient History
This full-year module is devoted specifically to the history of the ancient world, and investigates some of its major themes and approaches through a series of historical case studies. The range of topics introduces students to important historical issues from the major periods of Greek and Roman history, with an emphasis on the methodological questions raised by the relevant ancient source material and on the modern debates about those issues. As a result, students should gain a more detailed knowledge of important topics in ancient history, a clearer understanding of the evidential basis on which ancient historians rely, and some appreciation of how contemporary preoccupations can influence the perspectives of modern practitioners of the discipline and generate vigorous debate between them.
Interpreting Ancient Literature
This module will introduce students to the interpretation of ancient literary texts (in translation) as sources for ancient culture, by focusing on a representative range of texts and themes. The module will address issues such as ancient performance-contexts and audiences, the workings of genres, analysis of rhetoric and literary style, representations of gender and sexuality, study of classical reception, and how to compare translations. The focus will be on Greek texts in autumn and Latin texts in spring.
Interpreting Ancient Art
This module explores Greek and Roman art in detail and it aims is to give students a broad overview of visual material from classical antiquity, whilst concentrating on a cross-section of the most famous and talked about objects and monuments of Greek and Roman culture. More specifically, it offers an introduction to sculpture in the public and private sphere, vase-painting, numismatics, architecture and urban structures from 8th century BC Greece to the 4th century AD Rome. The module covers the Greek world in Autumn and the Roman world in Spring. Rather than proceeding chronologically, the material is organised by themes and media, starting with topography, then sculpture, vase painting etc. This is meant to give students a grasp of formal and stylistic developments within each of these media through the centuries, along with the meanings attached to them.

Ancient history optional modules:

Choose up to 40 credits from a range which may include:

Great Discoveries in Archaeology

In this module the staff of the archaeology department will examine the sites and discoveries that have formed major benchmarks in the history of the discipline.

Taking a broadly chronological approach the course will touch upon discoveries relating to periods from the earliest phases of human evolution until the Middle Ages. Each lecture will focus on a major site scientific discovery or excavation that has fundamentally altered previously held interpretations of the past.

The course will also examine the personalities and ideologies that have shaped the discipline of archaeology, noting how changing perspectives on gender, ethnicity and class have in turn shaped ideas about the past and its material remains.

The module will be team taught and will encourage students to consider wider ethical issues relating to our approaches to the past.

You will usually spend two hours per week in lectures on this module.

Greek and Roman Mythology
This module will introduce students to the interpretation of ancient Greek and Roman myth by focusing on a representative range of texts and themes. The module will be team-taught exposing students to a wide range of material and approaches to the use of myth in the ancient world. The module will consider how mythology is used not only in ancient literature such as epic and drama, but also in historical texts, in religious contexts and in the material culture of the ancient world such as statuary, paintings and sarcophagi. It will also introduce students to the variety of methodologies that scholars have used over the years to help interpret and understand these myths and their usages.
From Forests to Farmers: Prehistoric Archaeology of Britain

You will gain an overview of the archaeology of the British Isles from the earliest humans until the eve of the Roman conquest. Many of the key developments in human history occur during this long period of prehistory. Teaching will concentrate on these episodes, using important sites and discoveries.

You will cover:

  • the Palaeolithic including the earliest colonisation of the British Isles,
  • Neanderthals and the impact of the Ice Ages,
  • the arrival of fully modern humans,
  • the transition from hunting and gathering to farming (Mesolithic to earlier Neolithic),
  • the development of increased complexity in society and ritual life during the later Neolithic and Early Bronze Age,
  • the emergence of new social and settlement forms from the Middle Bronze Age to the Iron Age.
Understanding the Past - Introduction to Archaeology
Archaeologists are interested in all aspects of the human past, from ancient landscapes and changing environments, buried settlements and standing monuments and structures, to material objects and evidence for diet, trade, ritual and social life. This module provides a basic introduction to the discipline of archaeology, the process by which the material remains of the past are discovered, analysed and used to provide evidence for human societies from prehistory to the present day. The autumn semester introduces the historical development of the subject, followed by a presentation of current theory and practice in the areas of archaeological prospection and survey, excavation and post-excavation analysis, relative and absolute dating, the study of archaeological artefacts, and frameworks of social interpretation. In the spring semester, you will be taken into the field to gain practical experience of core archaeological methods in field survey and buildings archaeology. By the end of the module, we hope that you will have developed a good understanding of the concepts used in archaeology, the questions asked and methods applied in investigating the evidence
Understanding the Past II
Rome to Revolution: Historical Archaeology of Britain.

You will gain an overview of the archaeology of the British Isles from the Roman invasion until the industrial revolution. This was a period of dramatic change in Britain, and using key sites and discoveries you will be introduced to the challenges of understanding the archaeology of periods partially documented in textual sources.

The module covers:

  • the Roman invasion and military and civilian life in the Roman province of Britannia;
  • Anglo-Saxon and Viking incursions and settlement;
  • medieval castles, towns and monasteries;
  • the impact of the Reformation and the growth of the Tudor state;
  • the role of industry and urbanisation in the making of modern Britain.

The teaching is delivered in a mix of lectures, seminars and a museum session, on average taking up 2 hours per week across the spring semester. 

Ancient Greek options

You may start or continue with Ancient Greek. You will take paired language modules at the appropriate level of your prior learning. 

  • Beginners' Greek 1 and Beginners' Greek 2
  • Intermdiate Greek 1 and Intermediate Greek 2
  • Advanced Greek 1 and Advanced Greek 2

See BA Classical Civilisation for more details. 

Latin language options

You may start or continue with Latin. You will take paired language modules at the appropriate level of your prior learning.

  • Beginners' Latin 1 and Beginners' Latin 2
  • Intermediate Latin 1 and Intermediate Latin 2
  • Advanced Latin 1 and Advanced Latin 2

See BA Classical Civilisation for more details. 

Optional module from other departments

Choose up to 40 credits from a range that may include, but is not limited to:

Modern language modules

Our Language Centre offers a range of modern language options to complement your degree. You may study from Stage 1a (complete beginners) to Stage 6 (near native speaker competence), dependent on your existing skills. Languages include:

  • Arabic
  • French 
  • German
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Mandarin Chinese 
  • Russian
  • Spanish

You may also choose from non-language modules: 

  • Language and Language Learning
  • Culture of Arabic Language Learning
  • Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages 
Producing Film and Television

This module engages with the narrative histories of film and television, from their origins to the present day, a period involving many significant transitional moments in production histories. The module looks at the coming of sound, the rise and demise of the Hollywood studio system, and the emergence of the TV network system. It asks what transition means at different historical moments by raising questions such as: what are the industries producing at these moments, and how are cultural products marketed and distributed? The module also introduces historical method and the idea of historiography. It provides examples of different critical approaches to film and television history and interrogates the key debates around the periodisation of that history.

History of Art: Renaissance to Revolution

Explore art and architecture from the Renaissance to the Age of Revolutions (c.1789).

  • Discuss individual artists and works and set them within their historical contexts.
  • Question how changing forms of art relate to their social, political and philosophical contexts.
  • Examine the interplay of individual and collective ideas, practices, and institutions.
  • Think about how contextual study can be married to visual analysis.
Immigration and Ethnicity in the United States

This module examines the history of immigration to the United States from Europe, Asia, and Latin America. We trace the making and remaking of immigrant communities, cultures, and identities from the nineteenth century to the present day. You will analyse models of race, ethnicity, culture, and nation by focusing on the perception and reception of immigrant groups and their adjustment to US society. We will ask questions such as: How have institutions and ideologies shaped the changing place of immigrants within the United States over time? How have immigrants forged new identities within and beyond the framework of the nation state? And how has immigration transformed US society?

History of Philosophy

Through considering some of the greatest thinkers who have ever lived, students on this module will become familiar with some of the main philosophical ideas which have shaped philosophy. You will understand how and why these ideas arose and developed across the history of philosophy in response to wider contexts and movements. The historical scope runs from the ancient to the modern period.

Typical figures might include: Plato, Aristotle, Ibn-Tufayl, Ibn-Rushd, Montaigne, Locke, Wollstonecraft, Marx, Gandhi, Fanon, Sartre, de Beauvoir, and Murdoch. Typical topics might include: ancient Greek conceptions of the good life, reason and tradition in classical Islamic philosophy, medieval philosophy, existentialism, and Afro-Caribbean philosophy.

The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer at the date of publication but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. This prospectus may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.

You will take 120 credits of modules split as follows:

  • Compulsory core modules (40 credits) – you will take Extended Source Study and Studying Classical Scholarship, to prepare you for third-year dissertation work
  • Optional modules (80 credits) – your optional modules also include a changing selection of topics in Greek and Roman history and civilisation, and the opportunity to continue or start learning Greek or Latin

You’ll have at least 10 hours of timetabled contact a week through lectures, seminars and tutorials.

You must pass year 2 which counts 33% towards your final degree classification. 

Core modules

Extended Source Study
This module is designed to develop your skills of research, analysis and written presentation as preparation for a third year dissertation in classical civilisation. You will write a 5,000 word essay chosen from a range of topics, each focusing on a single piece of ancient source material. You will be provided with a topic for investigation, starter bibliography and tips on how to approach the question. The questions will suggest a range of possible approaches, from evaluation of historical source material to exploration of literary effects, relationships with other material, discussion of context or reception. For this module you will have a mixture of lectures and four 2-hour seminars over a period of 10 weeks.
Studying Classical Scholarship

This module focuses on the history and development of the scholarship on ancient Greece and Rome and on specific theories, approaches and methods used by modern scholarship. The aim is to sharpen your engagement with and understanding of scholarship, and to give a deeper appreciation of the ways the ancient world has been appropriated. Studying the history of scholarship in its socio-political context will show you how the questions we ask depend on the situations we live in; it will also allow you to judge the merits and limitations of scholarly approaches and will develop your skills of research and analysis, as preparation for your third-year dissertation. As with the Extended Source Study, you will choose a work-sheet relating to an area of the ancient world which particularly interests you; the module is assessed by an oral presentation and a 4,500-5,000 word essay.

Optional modules

Choose 80 credits from a range which may include:

School of Humanities Work Placement

This module embeds employability into the curriculum, giving students direct experience of a workplace, developing hard and soft skills (both subject-specific and beyond).

The module involves part-time professional placement (1 day a week for 6 weeks or equivalent) in an external organisation. It is aimed at developing hands-on work experience and employability skills in a workplace relevant to Arts/Humanities graduates.

Lectures, seminars and workshops will be organised across the School, with input by the Careers team to provide learning support/‘scaffolding’.

Communicating the Past

This module is your opportunity to expand your knowledge of an aspect of Classics or Archaeology which interests you, and to experiment with methods of communicating that knowledge which take you beyond the usual assessment practices of essays and exams. You might undertake research that leads to (for example) the creation of a museum exhibition, the reconstruction of an ancient artefact, or the design of a new public engagement strategy for a historic site. You might acquire experience of a communication method which could be of use to you in a future career, e.g. by constructing an education pack, writing in a journalistic style, or creating an archaeological site management plan. You might choose to experiment with a different medium of communication such as video, website or phone app. The topic and form of the project chosen must both be approved by the module convener. This module is ideal for any student who is interested in pursuing a career in heritage, museums or education, while developing skills in research, project design and communication are essential for a wide range of career choices as well as being excellent preparation for your third-year dissertation.

Classics and Comics
Animals in the Ancient World
The Peloponnesian War

The Peloponnesian war lasted for more than 25 years, and came to involve much of the Greek world, as diverse states and peoples felt compelled to become allies of either Sparta or Athens – the central protagonists. The scale of this struggle, and its repercussions, make this a highly significant period of Greek history. You will consider this conflict in detail - its causes and background, protagonists, character and consequences.

You will also consider the disproportionate role that one man, the Athenian historian Thucydides, plays in shaping our knowledge and understanding of this conflict. You will seek to look beyond this major (but imperfect) source using other ancient authors and other types of evidence.

The Archaeology of Early Sparta and Laconia

Archaeologists, historians and the wider public have always been fascinated by the so-called ‘Spartan mirage’ of classical Greece. However, much less focus has been placed on the prehistory of the region and on the significant developments that led to the establishment of the powerful Spartan state and its territory in archaic and classical times.

Based on a combination of lectures and workshops, this module introduces students you to the art and archaeology of early Sparta and Laconia, and gives you familiarity with the achievements and the material culture of one of the most important regions of prehistoric and Early Iron Age Greece.

You will gain an overview of developments in the region from the late Middle Pleistocene (more than 210 thousand years BP) to the end of the Early Iron Age (c. 700 BC) through the examination of a range of case studies. These include:

  • the earliest evidence of Homo sapiens in Eurasia excavated in the Apidima Cave,
  • skull cults in the Neolithic Alepotrypa Cave,
  • the important Bronze Age harbour towns at Pavlopetri, Epidavros Limera and Agios Stephanos and their regional and ‘international’ connections,
  • the evolution and development of Mycenaean chiefdoms and kingdoms in the Sparta Vale (the Menelaion, Agios Vasileios, Vapheio, Pellana, Amyklai),
  • the post-collapse achievements,
  • the evolution and development of the Early Iron Age in the region (production and materiality, cults and sanctuaries, burials, etc.)
  • the ‘birth’ of Sparta in the 8th c. BC.

Teaching will be informed by the findings of research undertaken in the region by the module convenor and other members of the University’s Centre for Spartan & Peloponnesian Studies (the Laconia Survey, the Laconia Rural Sites Project, Kouphovouno, Pavlopetri, Epidavros Limera, and the Spartan Sanctuaries Project).

This module also sets the ideal foundation for the Yr3 Special Subject on ‘Sparta’.

Religions and the Romans
Oedipus Through the Ages

You will explore the ancient evidence for the myth of Oedipus and selected representations of the myth in the post-Classical world. In terms of evidence, you will have the opportunity to explore ancient drama and other poetry as well as visual culture and mythographic writings. In terms of post-Classical representations, there will be a particular focus on performance and on modern popular culture, including (but not necessarily limited to)

  • film
  • popular mythology books,
  • material aimed at children,
  • on-line representations,
  • humour
The Silk Road
Late Roman Britain
The World of the Etruscans

When Rome was still a small town and before Athens became a city of international significance the Etruscan civilisation flourished in Italy and rapidly gained control of the Mediterranean. Who were the Etruscans?

The Greeks and the Romans regarded them as wealthy pirates renowned for their luxurious and extravagant lifestyle and for the freedom of their women. Archaeology, however, tells us much more, about their daily life and funerary customs, their religious beliefs, their economy, their language, and their technical abilities and artistic tastes.

In this module, you will examine visual and material culture, as well as epigraphic and literary sources, in order to lift the shroud of mystery that often surrounds the Etruscans. You will also place them in the context of the wider Mediterranean world in the 1st millennium BC, examining their exchanges with the Near Eastern kingdoms, their cultural interactions with Greece and the Greek colonial world, and their role in the early history of Rome.

By exploring Etruscan cities and cemeteries from the 9th to the 3rd centuries BC, with their complex infrastructures and technologies, lavish paintings, sculptures and metalwork, you will discover a most advanced civilisation that shared much with the classical cultures and yet was very different from them.

Senecan Tragedy

This module is an introduction to the tragedies of the Roman philosopher Seneca. These are the only complete Roman tragedies from the ancient world and they have played an important part in the reception of ancient drama since the Renaissance. Dramas such as Seneca’s Medea, Thyestes, Phaedra and Oedipus will be studied as well as the pseudo-Senecan Octavia.Themes covered will include the relationship between Senecan and Greek tragedy, the question of performance of the tragedies, whether they were they intended to be propaganda for Stoicism as well as their reception in the Renaissance and modern world, especially by the Theatre of Cruelty.

Ancient Greek options

You may start or continue with Ancient Greek. You will take paired language modules at the appropriate level of your prior learning. 

  • Beginners' Greek 1 and Beginners' Greek 2
  • Intermdiate Greek 1 and Intermediate Greek 2
  • Advanced Greek 1 and Advanced Greek 2

See BA Classical Civilisation for more details. 

Latin language options

You may start or continue with Latin. You will take paired language modules at the appropriate level of your prior learning.

  • Beginners' Latin 1 and Beginners' Latin 2
  • Intermediate Latin 1 and Intermediate Latin 2
  • Advanced Latin 1 and Advanced Latin 2

See BA Classical Civilisation for more details. 

The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer at the date of publication but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. This prospectus may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.

You will take 120 credits of modules split as follows:

  • Compulsory core modules (80-120 credits) – you will take a minimum of two modules, but may take three
  • Optional modules (0-40 credits) – you can also choose further option module topics or to continue or start Greek or Latin

You’ll have at least eight hours of timetabled contact a week through lectures, seminars and tutorials.

You must pass year 3 which counts 67% towards your final degree classification.

Special Subject/Dissertation modules

Choose 80-120 credits from a range which may include:

Dissertation in Ancient History

In this module you’ll have the opportunity to engage in intensive study of a topic in Ancient History which you have chosen for yourself. This module, built on skills acquired and/or developed in your first and second years, notably, in the Extended Source Study and Studying Classical Scholarship, is primarily dependent on your personal research, supported by workshops and one-to-one supervision to guide you through the process and comment on draft chapters. 

Augustus

The year-long Special Subject module involves 3 hours of seminars per week, and provides an opportunity for intensive study of one of the most influential figures in Roman history. The module examines the ways in which, after his victory in the civil wars, Augustus established his rule over the Roman world on a secure and generally acceptable basis. Attention is paid to the ancient sources (studied in translation): these include not only historical and literary texts, but inscriptions, coins, art and architecture. This module covers not only political aspects of the theme but also Augustus' impact on society, religion, culture, and ideology. It is assessed through a combination of coursework essays, formal presentation and exam.

Greek Work, Class and the Economy
From Petra to Palmyra: Art and Culture in the Roman Near East
Jason and the Golden Fleece

Jason and Medea, the quest for the golden fleece, the journey of the first ship, Greek civilisation meets Colchian barbarism: the myth that pre-dates Homer and brings together the famous fathers of Homeric heroes (Peleus, Telamon); the gathering of the marvellous, the semi-divine and the ultra-heroic; a quest that replaces war with love. The central texts will be the Hellenistic Argonautica of Apollonius Rhodius and the Roman epic version of Valerius Flaccus, both read in translation, but a wide range of texts, images and films, Greek, Roman and beyond will be part of the module. Things to think about: how does myth work in the ancient world? How do representations in different media interact? When does myth-making become reception? How do the Greeks represent Greek culture and the barbarian other? How does Roman literature re-appropriate and re-work Greek myth? How do modern versions reflect on and construct the ancient world? Themes include: the Greeks and the other; civilisation and colonisation; Jason and Medea; gender and sexuality (the Lemnian women, Hercules and Hylas); the nature of heroism (Cyzicus and friendly fire); monsters, marvels and magic

Ancient history optional modules

Choose 0-40 credits from a range which may include the following:

Classics and Comics
Animals in the Ancient World
The Peloponnesian War

The Peloponnesian war lasted for more than 25 years, and came to involve much of the Greek world, as diverse states and peoples felt compelled to become allies of either Sparta or Athens – the central protagonists. The scale of this struggle, and its repercussions, make this a highly significant period of Greek history. You will consider this conflict in detail - its causes and background, protagonists, character and consequences.

You will also consider the disproportionate role that one man, the Athenian historian Thucydides, plays in shaping our knowledge and understanding of this conflict. You will seek to look beyond this major (but imperfect) source using other ancient authors and other types of evidence.

The Archaeology of Early Sparta and Laconia

Archaeologists, historians and the wider public have always been fascinated by the so-called ‘Spartan mirage’ of classical Greece. However, much less focus has been placed on the prehistory of the region and on the significant developments that led to the establishment of the powerful Spartan state and its territory in archaic and classical times.

Based on a combination of lectures and workshops, this module introduces students you to the art and archaeology of early Sparta and Laconia, and gives you familiarity with the achievements and the material culture of one of the most important regions of prehistoric and Early Iron Age Greece.

You will gain an overview of developments in the region from the late Middle Pleistocene (more than 210 thousand years BP) to the end of the Early Iron Age (c. 700 BC) through the examination of a range of case studies. These include:

  • the earliest evidence of Homo sapiens in Eurasia excavated in the Apidima Cave,
  • skull cults in the Neolithic Alepotrypa Cave,
  • the important Bronze Age harbour towns at Pavlopetri, Epidavros Limera and Agios Stephanos and their regional and ‘international’ connections,
  • the evolution and development of Mycenaean chiefdoms and kingdoms in the Sparta Vale (the Menelaion, Agios Vasileios, Vapheio, Pellana, Amyklai),
  • the post-collapse achievements,
  • the evolution and development of the Early Iron Age in the region (production and materiality, cults and sanctuaries, burials, etc.)
  • the ‘birth’ of Sparta in the 8th c. BC.

Teaching will be informed by the findings of research undertaken in the region by the module convenor and other members of the University’s Centre for Spartan & Peloponnesian Studies (the Laconia Survey, the Laconia Rural Sites Project, Kouphovouno, Pavlopetri, Epidavros Limera, and the Spartan Sanctuaries Project).

This module also sets the ideal foundation for the Yr3 Special Subject on ‘Sparta’.

Religions and the Romans
Oedipus Through the Ages

You will explore the ancient evidence for the myth of Oedipus and selected representations of the myth in the post-Classical world. In terms of evidence, you will have the opportunity to explore ancient drama and other poetry as well as visual culture and mythographic writings. In terms of post-Classical representations, there will be a particular focus on performance and on modern popular culture, including (but not necessarily limited to)

  • film
  • popular mythology books,
  • material aimed at children,
  • on-line representations,
  • humour
The Silk Road
Late Roman Britain
The World of the Etruscans

When Rome was still a small town and before Athens became a city of international significance the Etruscan civilisation flourished in Italy and rapidly gained control of the Mediterranean. Who were the Etruscans?

The Greeks and the Romans regarded them as wealthy pirates renowned for their luxurious and extravagant lifestyle and for the freedom of their women. Archaeology, however, tells us much more, about their daily life and funerary customs, their religious beliefs, their economy, their language, and their technical abilities and artistic tastes.

In this module, you will examine visual and material culture, as well as epigraphic and literary sources, in order to lift the shroud of mystery that often surrounds the Etruscans. You will also place them in the context of the wider Mediterranean world in the 1st millennium BC, examining their exchanges with the Near Eastern kingdoms, their cultural interactions with Greece and the Greek colonial world, and their role in the early history of Rome.

By exploring Etruscan cities and cemeteries from the 9th to the 3rd centuries BC, with their complex infrastructures and technologies, lavish paintings, sculptures and metalwork, you will discover a most advanced civilisation that shared much with the classical cultures and yet was very different from them.

Senecan Tragedy

This module is an introduction to the tragedies of the Roman philosopher Seneca. These are the only complete Roman tragedies from the ancient world and they have played an important part in the reception of ancient drama since the Renaissance. Dramas such as Seneca’s Medea, Thyestes, Phaedra and Oedipus will be studied as well as the pseudo-Senecan Octavia.Themes covered will include the relationship between Senecan and Greek tragedy, the question of performance of the tragedies, whether they were they intended to be propaganda for Stoicism as well as their reception in the Renaissance and modern world, especially by the Theatre of Cruelty.

Ancient Greek options

You may start or continue with Ancient Greek. You will take paired language modules at the appropriate level of your prior learning. 

  • Beginners' Greek 1 and Beginners' Greek 2
  • Intermdiate Greek 1 and Intermediate Greek 2
  • Advanced Greek 1 and Advanced Greek 2

See BA Classical Civilisation for more details. 

Latin language options

You may start or continue with Latin. You will take paired language modules at the appropriate level of your prior learning.

  • Beginners' Latin 1 and Beginners' Latin 2
  • Intermediate Latin 1 and Intermediate Latin 2
  • Advanced Latin 1 and Advanced Latin 2

See BA Classical Civilisation for more details. 

The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer at the date of publication but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. This prospectus may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.

Fees and funding

UK students

£9,250
Per year

International students

Confirmed July 2020*
Keep checking back for more information
*For full details including fees for part-time students and reduced fees during your time studying abroad or on placement (where applicable), see our fees page.

EU tuition fees and funding options for courses starting in 2021/22 have not yet been confirmed by the UK government. For further guidance, check our Brexit information for future students.

Additional costs

Essential course materials are supplied and recommended reading is available from our libraries.

For optional field trips we usually provide travel costs and entry fees but you will need to pay for meals.

Students studying for a semester abroad pay reduced fees:

  • Home/EU students: £6,480
  • International: 75% of the relevant international fee

Scholarships and bursaries

The University of Nottingham offers a wide range of bursaries and scholarships. These funds can provide you with an additional source of non-repayable financial help. For up to date information regarding tuition fees, visit our fees and finance pages.

Home students*

Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £2,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.

* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.

International/EU students

We offer a range of Undergraduate Excellence Awards for high-achieving international and EU scholars from countries around the world, who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers. This includes our European Union Undergraduate Excellence Award for EU students and our UK International Undergraduate Excellence Award for international students based in the UK.

These scholarships cover a contribution towards tuition fees in the first year of your course. Candidates must apply for an undergraduate degree course and receive an offer before applying for scholarships. Check the links above for full scholarship details, application deadlines and how to apply.

Careers

Classics is a broad interdisciplinary subject that allows you to develop a broad range of professional skills. Our graduates enter a wide variety of careers, including in the heritage, museum and archaeology sectors, central and local government, publishing and journalism, law, and finance. Often graduates stay with us to undertake postgraduate studies.

A degree in classics equips you with a broad array of important skills, including:

  • ability to process and critically evaluate data and apply theoretical and scientific principles to problems
  • critical analysis and argument
  • experience of fieldwork, post-excavation and laboratory techniques
  • ability to interpret spatial data numerical, statistical, IT and analytical skills
  • strong team working
  • written, oral and visual communication
  • awareness of other linguistic cultures

More information about subject-related careers opportunities from our Careers and Employability Services.

Average starting salary and career progression

95% of undergraduates from the School of Humanities secured work or further study within six months of graduation. £20,000 was the average starting salary, with the highest being £32,000.*

* Known destinations of full-time home undergraduates who were available for employment, 2016/17. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

Dummy placeholder image

Related courses

The University has been awarded Gold for outstanding teaching and learning

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) 2017-18

Disclaimer

This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.