Classics - Research

PhD/MLitt Classics
The research programme equips students with the necessary skills in research, academic writing, and the ancient languages, along with any other specialist training required for their particular project. Above all, the Department aims to provide the opportunity for students to pursue their own specific research interests, working independently under the supervision of members of staff who will provide detailed guidance, advice, and feedback on the students' work. The primary objective is the production of a substantial contribution to original scholarship in Classics in the form of a thesis.

Entry requirements

Normally a first-class or high upper-second-class result at the MA level, with an appropriate level of Greek or Latin. Applicants are advised to contact the Department to discuss their research topic and to identify possible academic supervisors before submitting an application. For international students for whom English is not their first language, an English language exam certificate showing IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent) is required.


MHF02 PhD 4 years Full-time
MHF03 PhD 6 years Part-time
MHF04 MLitt 2 years Full-time
MHF05 MLitt 3 years Part-time

Further enquiries

Programme Director Professor David Scourfield
Tel: +353 (0)1 708 3692 / 3316
Email: or


Ancient Classics
Ancient Classics has been taught in Maynooth since the first foundation of a college in the town in 1795. It forms an indispensable background for understanding our European heritage and as such can make us more reflective and independentminded citizens of the world. It equips students with the ability to deal with a variety of material, to read analytically, to think 'outside the box', to conduct independent research, and to write and communicate effectively—these are skills that are valued in many fields, including education, journalism, law, politics, publishing, and business.

Application date

All applications should be made through the PAC system.

Research areas

Research Interests
The Department has special expertise in a range of areas – literary, historical, and philosophical – within the field of classical studies. It is particularly strong in the areas of the ancient novel, ancient philosophy (especially Cynicism and Epicureanism), and late Antiquity/early Christianity, but other areas in which thesis supervision can be offered include death and writing on death in Antiquity, epistolography, Greek epic and drama, Greek social history, Hellenistic history, Latin poetry, Roman republican history, Roman religion, the Second Sophistic, and modern receptions of the classical world.

Course fee

In general, there are two levels of fees payable. EU students from EU countries including Ireland pay a subsidised level of fees for both taught courses and research programmes. Tuition fees for students from outside the EU are not subsidised and are thus somewhat higher than for EU students.

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