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Ancient History BA (Hons)

Durham University

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Course options

  • Qualification

    Bachelor of Arts (with Honours) - BA (Hons)

  • Location

    Grey College

  • Study mode

    Full time

  • Start date


  • Duration

    3 Years

Course summary

This course focuses on the political, social and cultural history of the Greek and Roman world, and their interactions with neighbouring societies. In your first year, you study core topics in Greek and Roman history, as well as a module focusing on ancient historical writing. These courses prepare you for a wide range of more specifically historical modules about politics and society in the ancient world available in your second and third years. The course includes the option of beginning to learn Greek or Latin language (or continuing, if you have studied the languages already).**Year 1**In the first year, you take an introductory module on ancient historiography: The Craft of the Ancient HistorianYou will also take two interdisciplinary modules that serve to give you grounding in the central periods of Greek and Roman culture:Remembering AthensMonuments and Memory in the Age of AugustusOther previous first-year optional modules included:Beginners’ Latin and GreekIntermediate Latin and Greek (if you have an A level or equivalent)Greek Art and ArchitectureEarly Greek PhilosophySocrates and the Socratics**Year 2**Historical modules in the second year offer deeper and broader surveys of political and social history from the Greek and Roman worlds. You will take at least three ancient history modules in your second year.In addition, you can choose from a range of modules exploring literary, philosophical and cultural topics. If you choose to study Latin or Greek you may continue these courses in your second year. It is also possible to begin the study of Latin or Greek in the second year.Historical offerings have previously included:Athens, Sparta and the Greek WorldThe Hellenistic WorldCrisis of The Roman RepublicEmperors and Dynasties.Literary, cultural & philosophical topics have previously included:Traditions of EpicGreek Literature and The Near EastInterpreting Greek Tragedy TodayCreation and CosmologyAncient Political Thought & ActionStoicismDialogues with AntiquityClassical Receptions & Contemporary CulturesTheatre & Spectacle in Ancient RomeMyths of Transformation in Ovid’s Metamorphoses**Year 3 (Year 4 if taking a Year Abroad)**You will write a Dissertation in your third year. You will choose a topic at the end of your second year in consultation with an adviser, with who you will meet regularly for guidance throughout year three.Third-year modules typically cover specific topics that arise out of the research interests of our members of staff. At least two of your third-year modules must focus on ancient historical subjects; you can also choose from modules which explore cultural, literary and philosophical themes. If you study Latin and Greek you can proceed to the next level, with the texts becoming more difficult or fragmentary.Historical modules have previously included:Greeks & PersiansRoman SyriaWriting AlexanderThe Life & Times of CiceroUrbs RomaThe Later Roman EmpireLiterary, Philosophical & Cultural topics have previously included:The Literature & Language of Ancient BabylonComedy & Tragedy, Laughter & SorrowHellenistic Poetry: Theory and PracticeRoman Law & Latin LiteratureLove and Sex in Ancient PoetryTechnologies of Knowledge in AntiquityKnowledge and Doubt in Hellenistic Philosophy.Classical VictoriansFor this course the study of ancient languages is not required, though it is permitted as an option; and each year at least half of your modules must be on historical topics.We review course structures and core content (in light of e.g. external and student feedback) every year, and will publish finalised core requirements for 2021 entry from September 2020. Please note that the list of optional modules available in any year will vary depending on available teaching staff. The lists above provide an example of

Application deadline

15 January

Tuition fees

Students living in United States
(international fees)

£ 22,100per year

Tuition fees shown are for indicative purposes and may vary. Please check with the institution for most up to date details.

Entry requirements

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A level : AAA

Specific subjects excluded for entry:General Studies and Critical Thinking.Information:Applicants taking Science A-levels that include a practical component will be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This refers only to English A Levels.


University information

Durham University

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  • Campus address

    Durham University, The Palatine Centre, Stockton Road, Durham, Durham, DH1 3LE, England

By inspiring students to do outstanding things at Durham, the university believes they will do outstanding things in the world.
Durham's famous cathedral and castle are at the heart of the city – and the heart of the university – forming a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Beyond studies, Durham offers a student experience and college life that is truly unique.

Subject rankings

  • Subject ranking

    4th out of 25 1

  • Entry standards

    / Max 210
    197 95%


  • Graduate prospects

    / Max 100
    80 80%


  • Student satisfaction

    / Max 5
    4.18 84%



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