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The Ancient Greek and Roman worlds offer a wealth of fascinating areas of study, including history, literature, archaeology and philosophy. The BA Classics enables you to develop a high level of competence in Ancient Greek and/or Latin, which you can make the main focus of your degree or use to enrich your study of a wide range of complementary option modules across these different Classical disciplines. Full-time Classics students must have at least introductory-level knowledge of either Greek or Latin, which can be acquired (for example) at a summer school immediately before starting the programme; without this level of preparation, absolute beginners are encouraged to take the four-year part-time version of this course. On the programme, you will develop your skills in one or both languages at a range of levels; you will also have the chance to read ancient texts in depth in the original. The modules which you can select to complement your language learning cover the culture or history of Greek and Roman societies across the Mediterranean and Near East, from the archaic period to the Roman imperial period and Late Antiquity, and the reception of Classical culture in later periods of history. Like the language modules, these are taught by international experts in the relevant fields of Classics. The BA Classics is a structured programme of taught modules, designed to develop understanding and critical skills and a deep knowledge of Classical language, literature and culture. It involves examining the nature of our understanding of the Classical past and its literature. We encourage you to engage with textual material and to question accepted traditions about the past, so that you will develop the ability to construct and present a convincing argument. This course is also available for part-time evening study over four years.
Arts and humanities at Birkbeck are ranked fifth best in London, 18th in the UK and 87th globally in the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject. Our Department of History, Classics and Archaeology is a world-renowned centre of original, influential research. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), History at Birkbeck was ranked sixth in the UK for the percentage of our research deemed world-leading or internationally excellent. 94% of our eligible staff submitted research and we achieved 100% for a research environment supporting world-leading and internationally excellent research. In the department as a whole, our wide-ranging programmes encompass fascinating periods and areas of study, from human prehistory through to Classical civilisation, the medieval and early modern periods, and on to twenty-first-century history, politics and international relations. You can expect stimulating teaching from a team of international experts in Greek and Roman history and culture, including Professor Jennifer Baird, Professor Christy Constantakopoulou, Professor Catharine Edwards and Dr Benjamin Gray. The Department is home to thriving student societies and a number of affiliated research centres that actively run seminars, conferences and other events where some of the world’s best scholars present their latest research. We are also neighbours of, and active participants in, the Institute of Classical Studies at the University of London’s Senate House, which has a rich library and programme of events, including many for students.
CAREERS AND EMPLOYABILITY
Graduates can pursue careers in museums and galleries, research and archiving, or education. This degree may also be useful in becoming an archivist, editorial assistant, higher education lecturer or museum/gallery curator. We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.