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Your learning experience

We believe that learning is a two-way, collaborative process, guided by the experience of the lecturer. All classes are highly interactive, focusing on small-group discussion and presentation. 

A significant proportion of the course consists of independent study, supported by our expert academics. You'll hone your research, writing and analytical skills, which will be particularly relevant if you decide to pursue a career in academia. 

artifacts being cataloged
Postgraduate study teaches you the life skills you wouldn't necessarily have developed on your undergraduate course, and helps you to stand out from the crowd.

Karim Bhaluani

Master's in Classics and Ancient History graduate

Our teaching methods

In individual, group and one-to-one settings, you'll establish a firm grounding in the ancient world, while refining your skills and advancing your knowledge to the next level.

Small-group seminars

In our seminars, you'll engage in stimulating discussion and debate with academics and fellow students. This enables you to engage in the crucial debates of the ancient world, as well as discuss and advance your own theories.

You'll also have opportunities to attend reading groups, and workshops with scholars from around the world.

Departmental Research Seminars

In the weekly Departmental Research Seminar you'll learn from speakers currently engaged in exciting research.

The seminars run throughout the year and are accompanied with extra discussion sessions specifically for master's students. During the seminars you will learn, ask questions, study research presentation techniques, and meet fellow students and lecturers over refreshments.

Independent study

Explore classical civilisations through independent reading, including texts in ancient Greek and Latin, and written assignments. You'll immerse yourself in original texts from the classical era and academic thinking, which will enable you to advance your own theories.

The Dissertation module gives you the opportunity to embark on an original research project on a topic entirely of your choosing, allowing you to pursue your interests.


You'll meet your academic tutor, who will provide one-to-one support, throughout your degree. You'll also be supervised by a specialist in your chosen subject for your dissertation. 

Hands-on learning

You'll be able to gain a material understanding of life in the ancient world with access to unique resources of international importance.

These range from artefacts in our very own Ure Museum to getting involved in the research and creation of digital models or visiting museums and sites abroad.

Develop your research skills

We are a research-led department whose academics are actively researching and contributing to current academic debates, and students are partners in our enquiries into the ancient world. We invest in your growth as a researcher, helping you develop skills that can be applied in a range of careers.

Our Special Option modules introduce you to advanced research in classics through a wide variety of different themes, methodologies, ancient material, geographical areas and time-periods. They allow you to pursue your own interests within the discipline.

The core Approaches to Classics and Ancient History module will introduce you to the techniques and disciplines involved in advanced research in the field.

You'll undertake our Research Methods module as part of MA Classics and Ancient History, which will give you a solid grounding in research tools and skills. As part of this you'll write a research proposal and start work on your dissertation.

These also act as preparation for doctoral study, if you are considering it. On successful completion of your master's degree, you will have all of the knowledge and abilities required to move on to a PhD.


Practical learning to prepare you for the workplace

We offer a number of voluntary and placement opportunities to enable you to enhance your understanding of the world of classics, and prepare for your future. This experience allows you to test your knowledge in real situations, sharpening your understanding of your own subject and providing you with invaluable communication and organisational skills.  


There are opportunities to undertake work placements around your academic studies. 

Past students have completed placements in museums, archives and similar classics-related settings.

Dedicated advice and one-to-one support for non-credit bearing internships and work experience is available from our team of careers consultants in the University's Careers Service.

Work in the Ure Museum

The Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology provides plentiful work experience opportunities if you aspire to a career in the museum or heritage sector. Roles typically involve cataloguing items, improving online databases, cleaning objects and producing temporary displays and texts.

The museum is open daily during term time and is also open to the public, offering opportunities to engage with the local community. The museum regularly hosts ancient Greek, Roman and Egyptian workshops for local primary schools, and our students can assist in the production of materials for these school visits.

Teaching experience

The Students in Schools scheme has been established for over 20 years and continues to thrive. The scheme enables you to volunteer to work alongside teachers in local schools, with the aim of raising the aspirations of school pupils and encouraging them to continue into higher education.

You'll also further develop your own skills and knowledge, a particularly useful opportunity if you aspire to a teaching career.


Study Abroad

We offer an incredible opportunity to enhance your studies with travel and have the experience of a lifetime. The Study Abroad scheme enables you to gain first-hand experience of living and studying in another country, and of academic activity beyond the UK.

You can incorporate an optional period of suitable study abroad into your master's degree which counts as course credit, for example by completing the City of Rome Postgraduate Course of the British School at Rome.

Learn more about Study Abroad


Life in the Department

Join our supportive, inclusive community of staff and students who are passionate in their pursuit of new approaches to classics and ancient history.

Staff photo of Eleanor Dickey, Emma Aston and Christa Gray

Our staff

Our academics have expertise in a wide range of fields within classics which they are passionate about sharing through their teaching and research.


Our research

95% of our research is of international standing. (Research Excellence Framework (REF 2021), combining 4*, 3* and 2* submissions – Classics.)