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Classical Studies

This fascinating course examines many different aspects of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds – their literature, history, philosophy, archaeology, language and material cultures – through a scholarly tradition that is both fast-moving and long-standing. You will investigate the different disciplinary fields of classical studies, bringing you into direct contact with a wide range of fragmentary evidence from classical antiquity such as surviving texts and artefacts, which you’ll examine from multiple theoretical and methodological perspectives. You will also acquire and develop research skills that will enhance your knowledge of the ancient Graeco-Roman world and prepare you for independent study, culminating in a dissertation.

Key features of the course
• Explores the question of ‘how we know what we know’ about the ancient civilisations of Greece and Rome
• Takes an interdisciplinary approach to the study of ‘the ancient body’, including birth, death, ancient medicine, dress and beauty
• Draws on cutting-edge research by members of the Classical Studies department
• Concludes with a substantial piece of independent research on a topic of your choice.

Entry requirements

You must hold an honours degree to study for our MA in Classical Studies course. Although your degree need not be in classical studies, you must show some knowledge of the subject, together with the study skills expected of a graduate in this field. The part 1 module brings you up to date with the latest ideas and approaches, but it does not offer remedial undergraduate training if your qualifications and/or experience are inappropriate – if you’re in any doubt, please contact us before you enrol.

To study successfully for this MA, you need to be able to:
• write clear, concise, accurate prose
• read large quantities of text quickly, accurately and critically
• classify evidence precisely and assess its value and reliability
• argue logically, consistently and sceptically
• marshal various sorts of evidence to support a logical argument.

Duration

2 - 10 years.

Modules on this MA are studied during a fixed period each year. The minimum overall time in which it is possible to complete the qualification is two years, studying the modules consecutively. If you do not study the modules consecutively, you must have completed them by a maximum of 10 years to qualify for the degree.

Study method
Distance learning

Number of credits

180 credits

Careers or further progression

Career relevance
From an academic point of view, an MA in Classical Studies is the final step towards a PhD and an academic career, but it also has a much wider relevance in terms of employability. As well as giving you the means to continue your study of the ancient world and the opportunity to explore an area of that world which particularly interests you, the MA in Classical Studies can help benefit your career in a number of ways. Classical Studies graduates often go on to careers in museums, journalism and teaching, but other employers recognise the unique qualities of a Classical Studies degree as well: they have long valued the skills and abilities that Classical Studies graduates display because of the high level of critical and independent thinking involved, the close work with sources of evidence and attention to detail, as well as the proven ability graduates have to conduct independent research, evaluate a range of types of evidence, and complete projects to deadlines and within word limits. Above all, an MA in Classical Studies leads to a better understanding of where we come from and who we are today, and employers often recognize the value of such a unique perspective on human culture and society.

There is more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the OU’s Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication OU study and your career and look at our subject pages to find out about career opportunities.

Further enquiries

Tel: (01) 678 5399
Fax: (01) 678 5442
Email: ireland@open.ac.uk

Subjects taught

Modules
To gain this qualification you require 180 credits as follows:

Compulsory modules Credits Next Start:
MA Classical Studies part 1 (A863) 60 07 Oct 2017
MA Classical Studies part 2 (A864) 120 07 Oct 2017

Or from the discontinued modules A860, A861 if you started before 2014.

You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 60 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you.

The modules quoted in this description are currently available for study. However, as we review the curriculum on a regular basis, the exact selection may change over time.

Comment

On completion
On successful completion of the required modules you can be awarded the Master of Arts in Classical Studies, entitling you to use the letters MA (Class Stud) (Open) after your name. You will have the opportunity of being presented at a degree ceremony.

If you leave the programme before you qualify for a degree you can be awarded a Postgraduate Certificate in Humanities after successfully completing MA Classical Studies part 1 (A863).

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!