A good degree in an arts subject. No previous knowledge of Greek or Latin is required. We will also normally consider social science and science graduates, and applicants with other qualifications. We also offer a 1-year Graduate Certificate in History, which can be used as a conversion course if you want to study at postgraduate level, but have a degree in a significantly different discipline.
Months of entry
This Master’s degree in classical civilisation is a unique, interdisciplinary programme that offers graduates of subjects other than classics the opportunity to study the classical world at postgraduate level without prior knowledge or study of Latin or Greek. You can focus on multiple aspects of ancient Greek and Roman archaeology, history and culture from the archaic period through the classical era to late antiquity, including literary and material evidence. A particular focus of the programme is contemporary debate about the reception and interpretation of classical history and culture, particularly the meanings that have been attached to the classical past, including archaeological objects, architectural remains and literary works.
The course starts with a broad introduction to postgraduate study of the classical world, with sessions proceeding in broadly chronological order from the archaic Mediterranean to the early Christian empire. Themes considered will include politics and culture, religion, sex and sexuality, the writing of history, and the reception of classical culture in the modern world. You will also have the opportunity to study Greek or Latin from beginners’ to advanced level, while a wide range of option modules allow you to explore and expand your interests more fully. You will receive training in research methods and techniques that will give you the confidence and skills to research and write a dissertation on a subject of particular interest to you.
Information for international students
If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.
Fees and funding
The government's new postgraduate loan scheme allows you to borrow up to £10,000 to cover the cost of your tuition fees, living costs or other study expenses – and you don't have to start repaying until 2019.
Named in memory of Birkbeck’s former President, and one of the greatest historians of the twentieth century, the Eric Hobsbawm Postgraduate Scholarship fund offers a full fee-waiver for Home, EU and Overseas Master’s students in the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology (part-time awards are pro-rata).
Part-time students who are experiencing financial need may apply for assistance from the Birkbeck Alumni Fund Postgraduate Opportunity Bursary.
Qualification and course duration
Course contact details
- School of History, Classics and Archaeology
- + 44 (0)20 7631 6268
- + 44 (0)20 7631 6552