CL3DA-Classics for the 21st Century: Digital approaches

Module Provider: Classics
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2020/1

Module Convenor: Dr John Hanson


Type of module:

Summary module description:

This course will provide an introduction to the digital humanities and practical training in some of the most important approaches being used in classical archaeology and ancient history now. We will cover a range of topics, which will include not only how to get the most out of existing resources, but also how to create maps and plans, how to build architectural models and reconstructions, and how to make virtual copies of objects, using photogrammetry and 3D printing, focusing on a range of textual and archaeological material in the process. In doing so, we will consider not only how digital approaches are transforming our view of the ancient world, but also how they are changing how we think, what we do, and why we are doing it.


This module is delivered at the University of Reading.


This module aims to:

  • Introduce students to some of the key concepts in the digital humanities

  • Offer practical training in a number of methods and approaches associated with classical archaeology and ancient history

  • Give students a greater familiarity with a range of textual and archaeological material

  • Encourage them to think critically about the application of digital approaches to the ancient world

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to:

  • •Think critically about recent developments in the digital humanities

  • Have detailed knowledge of specific resources and programmes

  • Recognize specific textual and archaeological material

  • Engage with wider debates about the role of digital approaches

  • Organize information and articulate coherent and cogent arguments in wri ting

Additional outcomes:

The module also aims to encourage students to:

  • Develop their oral communication skills and ability to collaborate with others through participation in group discussions and activities

  • Develop their ability to interpret both textual and visual material and comment on its wider significance

  • Extend their understanding of ancient life by drawing on a range of theoretical and methodological material from related disciplines

  • Develop their research skills.

Outline content:

The module will begin by exploring the pros and cons of digital approaches, before addressing best practice in searching and retrieving information; offering training in GIS and satellite imagery; building architectural models and making reconstructions; making virtual copies of objects; and how exploring how digital approaches are changing our conception of specific classes of material, such as epigraphy, ceramics, and numismatics. 

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

This module will taught by seminars.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 20
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 50
    Wider reading (directed) 50
    Advance preparation for classes 20
    Preparation for presentations 10
    Group study tasks 10
    Essay preparation 30
    Reflection 10
Total hours by term 0 0
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The module will be assessed by two 2,000 word assignments, which will be due in on the first day of 6th week and the last day of term respectively. The first will ask them to reflect on what they have learnt so far, focusing on key ideas, concepts, and methods. The second will be a case-study driven essay.

Formative assessment methods:

Discussion and participation in group sessions within seminars

Penalties for late submission:

The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day[1] (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:

An overall mark of 40 %.

Reassessment arrangements:

Re-submission of coursework over the summer. An individual piece of coursework will be carried forward if it has a grade of 40 % or more.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Last updated: 4 April 2020


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