The department of Classical Studies is small and congenial, with a faculty that enjoys teaching while at the same time being active in research and publication. It has the feel of a small college department in the midst of a major university. The Department has five regular faculty members, plus two part-time lecturers; as many as nine faculty members in other departments have teaching and research interests in the ancient world. The department supports a Classics major and an interdisciplinary minor in Ancient Civilization at the undergraduate level, and a small Master of Arts program at the graduate level.
The range of courses offered includes elementary and intermediate languages (Latin, Greek, and Modern Greek), upper-level reading courses in ancient authors and genres in their original languages (basis of the major), and broad gauge courses in ancient culture in which the reading is in English (basis of the minor). Some of these latter courses carry credit for the Core curriculum requirement in literature. Elementary and intermediate language courses satisfy the University's language requirement.
Course sizes vary widely. At the one end is Classical Mythology, a lecture and discussion course enrolling 60-70 students, sometimes more. At the other end are advanced reading courses in Greek, which may have as few as five to seven students enrolled. Advanced Latin courses tend to be in the range of 12-15. Courses in the area of ancient civilization, whose reading is entirely in English, range from 20-40. On the whole, classes are small enough to allow for a good deal of individual attention.
Classics majors are expected to develop mastery in three broad areas:
- Linguistic knowledge and skills: Students will possess advanced proficiency in at least one ancient language (Greek or Latin) and, preferably, intermediate proficiency in the other.
- Critical and interpretative skills: Students will be able to analyze critical or interpretative paper and compose interpretative arguments that pursue a thesis and engage with both primary and secondary materials.
- Knowledge of the ancient world: Students will exhibit competence in at least two major content areas: a) techniques of literary analysis; b) techniques of artistic analysis; c) the broad outlines of ancient political history, Greek or Roman; d) special problems in ancient social and/or cultural history, e.g. law, religion, philosophy, economy, gender studies.
Upon completion of the M.A. graduates should be able to:
- Translate without any dictionary as aid passages in Greek and Latin from a comprehensive reading list.
- Describe the significance of an ancient text to other works by the same author.
- Demonstrate knowledge of the importance of ancient texts or passages to broader developments in the literature and history of Greece and Rome.
- Incorporate research written in one modern foreign language into analysis and interpretation of ancient texts.
- Prepare seminar research papers using relevant literature (ancient and modern) and appropriate research methods.
- Present seminar and other research papers in classroom or conference settings.
- Teach ancient languages in secondary schools.
Apply for admission to Ph.D. programs in Classical Philology or Ancient History.