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 Study Classics at Otago

 

The basis of western civilisation.

Classics is the study of the civilisations of ancient Greece and Rome. These civilisations had an immense influence on the development of western civilisation. Much of our modern language, literature, art and architecture, drama, philosophy and political system is derived from Greece and Rome.

Classics aims to understand these cultures, and to appreciate what they achieved and how important they have been in historical terms. At the same time Classics students are challenged to confront the major questions which the Greeks and Romans faced and which humanity has faced down the ages – about human behaviour, human society, ethics, war, politics, religion, indeed the whole meaning and purpose of life.

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Why study Classics?

To understand anything properly you need to have an appreciation of its origins. Greece and Rome lie at the root of western civilisation and by studying the Greeks and Romans we are studying the western roots of our own cultures.

Career opportunities

Arts degrees provide valuable generic skills in demand in the workplace. For some jobs you may well need further specialist training. However there are plenty of employers who value a well-rounded education such as Classics provides. The millionaire financier Sir Robert Jones is fond of saying that he would far rather employ a Classics graduate than a Commerce one.

Employers value transferable skills such as the ability to think through a problem, to see both sides of a question, to analyse, to present an argument, and to express yourself clearly and fluently.

Recent Classics graduates have made careers not only in school and university teaching but in university administration, foreign affairs, trade and industry, social welfare, local government, tourism, computing, insurance, law, librarianship, bookselling, publishing, museums and art galleries, fashion and design, broadcasting, journalism, tourism and the theatre. This list emphasises the versatility of Classics graduates.

Studying Greek and Latin language

Learning the languages is an excellent way to appreciate how the Greeks and Romans perceived the world around them and communicated their values and ideas. The textbooks that we use for the teaching of Greek and Latin language are designed for beginner students, and they focus on the reading of continuous texts from the outset.

Papers in Greek and Latin language are available at all levels.

Please note: Learning ancient Greek and Latin is not compulsory at Otago, but if you are considering postgraduate study we strongly encourage you to take papers in Greek and Latin in your degree.

Qualifications

Explore your study options further. Refer to enrolment information found on the following qualification pages.

Programme requirements

Bachelor of Arts (BA) majoring in Classics (including Classical Studies, Greek and Latin)

Level Papers Points
100-level

Any two CLAS, GREK or LATN 100-level papers

ANAT 131* may be substituted for one 100-level CLAS, GREK or LATN paper.

36
200-level

Any three CLAS, GREK or LATN 200-level papers

54
300-level

Any four papers from CLAS, GREK or LATN 300-level papers, PHIL 335

72
Plus

198 further points; must include 54 points at 200-level or above.

Up to 90 points may be taken from outside Arts

198
Total   360

*Further information will be available for this paper in early September.

Bachelor of Arts with Honours (BA(Hons)) in Classics (including Classical Studies, Greek and Latin)

Papers

Postgraduate Diploma in Arts Subjects (PGDipArts) in Classics

The Postgraduate Diploma in Arts Subjects (PGDipArts) programme in Classics is the same as the programme for the degree of Bachelor of Arts with Honours (BA(Hons)).

Master of Arts (Coursework) (MA(Coursework)) in Classics

Papers

Master of Arts (Thesis) (MA(Thesis)) in Classics

Thesis
  • Thesis: CLAS 5

Note: Students who have not completed a Bachelor of Arts (BA(Hons)) in Classics or a Postgraduate Diploma in Arts Subjects (PGDipArts) in Classics must complete the required papers for the BA(Hons) in Classics prior to undertaking the thesis.

Minor subject requirements

Classics as a minor subject for a BA, MusB, BPA, BTheol, BSc, BAppSc, BCom, BHealSc, BACom, BASc or BComSc degree

Available as a minor subject for a Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Music (MusB), Bachelor of Performing Arts (BPA), Bachelor of Theology (BTheol), Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Applied Science (BAppSc), Bachelor of Commerce (BCom), Bachelor of Health Science (BHealSc), Bachelor of Arts and Commerce (BACom), Bachelor of Arts and Science (BASc) or Bachelor of Commerce and Science (BComSc) degree

Papers Points

Five CLAS, GREK or LATN papers, at least three of which must be above 100-level, including at least one above 200-level

ANAT 131* may be substituted for one 100-level CLAS, GREK or LATN paper.

Note: No paper forming part of a minor subject requirement in Greek or Latin may also count for a minor or major subject requirement in Classics.

90

*Further information will be available for this paper in early September.

Papers

Paper code Year Title Points Teaching period
CLAS105 2020 Greek Mythology 18 points Second Semester
CLAS108 2020 Classical Art and Archaeology: Of Heroes, Gods and Men 18 points First Semester
CLAS109 2020 Roman Social History: Slaves, Gladiators, Prostitutes 18 points First Semester
CLAS230 2020 Special Topic 18 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS238 2020 Fantasies, Phobias and Families in Graeco-Roman Myth 18 points First Semester
CLAS240 2020 The Classical World in the Movies 18 points Summer School
CLAS241 2020 Alexander the Great 18 points Second Semester
CLAS242 2020 Living and Dying in Classical Athens 18 points First Semester
CLAS330 2020 Special Topic: Elections in Roman and Modern Times 18 points 1st Non standard period
CLAS337 2020 Murder and Corruption in Ciceronian Rome 18 points Second Semester
CLAS340 2020 Love, Death and the Good Life: Socrates and Plato 18 points First Semester
CLAS341 2020 After Alexander: the Struggle and the Chaos 18 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS342 2020 Ancient Greek Religion: Myth, Ritual and Belief 18 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS343 2020 Archaeology and the Fall of the Roman Empire 18 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS344 2020 From Augustus to Nero: Scandal and Intrigue in Imperial Rome 18 points First Semester
CLAS345 2020 Tales of Troy: From Homer to Hollywood 18 points Second Semester
CLAS380 2020 Directed Study in Ancient Greek or Latin Language 18 points First Semester, Second Semester
CLAS437 2020 Cicero and Roman Oratory 20 points Second Semester
CLAS440 2020 Advanced Studies in Socrates and Plato 20 points First Semester
CLAS441 2020 Advanced Studies in Alexander's Successors 20 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS442 2020 Advanced Studies in Ancient Greek Religion 20 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS443 2020 Archaeology, History and the End of Rome 20 points Not offered in 2020
CLAS444 2020 From Augustus to Nero: Advanced Studies 20 points First Semester
CLAS460 2020 Special Topic 20 points Not offered, expected to be offered in 2023
CLAS480 2020 Research Paper 20 points First Semester, Second Semester
CLAS490 2020 Dissertation 60 points Full Year, 1st Non standard period
CLAS590 2020 Research Dissertation 60 points 1st Non standard period, 2nd Non standard period

Key information for future students

Contact us

Classics Programme
School of Arts
Email classics@otago.ac.nz
Web otago.ac.nz/classics