Ancient History (BA)
This course aims to promote critical understanding of the political, social and economic and cultural structures of Greek and Roman societies, and their significant achievements.
The BA in Ancient History is concerned with the Greco-Roman world from the Aegean Bronze Age to the fall of the Roman Empire in the west and its survival in the east as the Byzantine Empire.
It aims to develop students’ knowledge and critical understanding of the political, social, economic and cultural structures of Greek and Roman societies, which were significantly different from modern industrialised societies, but have exercised a profound and continuous influence on the subsequent development of European and many other societies and cultures.
Ancient History offers a balance between modules covering specific historical periods and thematic modules that examine broad social and cultural topics, such as warfare, gender, religion, art, medicine and science.
It is designed to cultivate the skills of the historian, namely, the ability to assess evidence critically, to evaluate different interpretations of the evidence, to construct arguments on the basis of evidence, and to express opinions cogently in speech and in writing. The programme provides the training necessary for students who wish to study Ancient History at postgraduate level, and a valuable range of intellectual and transferable skills for students who enter other professions.
|Typical places available||The School of History, Archaeology and Religion typically has 320 places available.|
|Typical applications received||The School of History, Archaeology and Religion typically receives 1800 applications.|
|Scholarships and bursaries||http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/scholarships|
|Typical A level offer||ABB / BBB|
|Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offer||Grade A in the Core, with AB at A-level|
|Typical International Baccalaureate offer||32 points, including scores of 5/4 at Higher Level|
|Other qualifications||Applications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome.|
Please see detailed information about alternative entry requirements here.
|QAA subject benchmark|
Classics and Ancient History
Dr Shaun Tougher , Course Administrator
This is a three-year degree programme comprising of some core modules that provide essential skills and training as well as a wide variety of optional modules for you to select from in order to tailor your degree to meet your interests. You can also take further modules in the humanities and social sciences, thereby extending your range of skills and knowledge.
The first year provides you with a focused introduction to the study of Greek and Roman history at University which fosters your critical and analytical skills through close engagement with the ancient sources and modern interpretations. You take two 20-credit Ancient History modules, one Greek, one Roman and a historical study skills module. In addition you take 80 credits in other Humanities subjects.
Students studying this course will be able to study modules outside of their allocated School(s) Core and Optional modules from another participating Academic School. An overview of the module collections available can be found here.
In Year 2, you take two 20-credit core modules, an introduction to historical methods and an independent study on a topic of your choice, plus 80 credits of optional modules, chosen from a range of 10-, 20- and 30-credit modules.
Students studying this course may take one or two modules from another Academic School, selected from the University’s Free Standing Module Collection.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Independent 2nd Year Study||HS4334||20 credits|
|Pots, Poems and Pictures: Using Evidence for Ancient History||HS4336||20 credits|
In Year 3, all students write a dissertation on a topic of their choice (40 credits) and take 80 credits of optional modules.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Researching the Ancient World: Final Year Dissertation||HS4335||40 credits|
The School of History, Archaeology and Religion enables you to develop in a high-quality learning environment, supported by a student-orientated approach to the acquisition of knowledge and skills.
You will develop a range of intellectual skills: critical thinking, evaluating evidence, constructing evidence-based arguments, and presenting opinions effectively in writing and in debate. Additionally, you will gain practical skills such as team-working, independent research, and time management. Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, practicals, field trips, and one-to-one tutorials. You will also undertake independent study and research, with guidance from tutors. Assessment, including coursework, exams, practical work, and oral presentations, will test the different skills you have learned.
School of History, Archaeology and Religion
In 2013/14, 92% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.
The School believes in giving its graduates the best opportunities to find employment. We organise interactive workshops with the Careers Service to help students identify their skills and attributes. Some of our graduates enter professions which make direct use of their academic expertise such as work in archives or museums. The majority however compete very successfully in a wide range of other fields.
QAA subject benchmark
|QAA subject benchmark|
Classics and Ancient History
What are the aims of this Programme?
The BA in Ancient History is concerned with the Greco-Roman world from the Aegean Bronze Ageto the fall of the Roman Empire in the west and its survival in the east as the Byzantine Empire. It aims to develop students’ knowledge and critical understanding of the political, social, economic, and cultural structures of Greek and Roman societies, which were significantly different from modern industrialised societies, but have exercised a profound and continuous influence on the subsequent development of European and many other societies and cultures. The programme offers a balance between modules covering specific historical periods and thematic modules that examine broad social and cultural topics, such as warfare, gender, religion, art, medicine, and science. It is designed to cultivate the skills of the historian, namely, the ability to assess evidence critically, to evaluate different interpretations of the evidence, to construct arguments on the basis of evidence, and to express their opinions cogently in speech and in writing. The programme provides the training necessary for students who wish to study Ancient History at postgraduate level, and a valuable range of transferable skills for students who enter other professions.
What is expected of me?
Students are expected to attend all scheduled teaching, including lectures, seminars, classes, workshops and tutorials, and to engage in independent study outside scheduled teaching hours in order to familiarise themselves with a good range of primary evidence and modern approaches to the subject. Each 10-credit module should involve a minimum of 100 hours’ work.
Full expectations for students are outlined in the University’s Student Charter.
How is this Programme Structured?
The programme can be studied full-time over three years or part-time over six years. Students take 120 credits in each year, progressing from more general modules in the first year to more specialised modules in the second and third years. In Year 1, students take two 20-credit Ancient History modules, one Greek and one Roman, and 40 credits in each of two other Humanities subjects. In Year 2, they take two 20-credit core modules, a practical course on using different types of historical evidence and an independent study on a topic of their choice, plus 80 credits of optional modules, chosen from a range of 10-, 20- and 30-credit modules. In Year 3, all students write a dissertation on a topic of their choice (40 credits) and take 80 credits of optional modules.
Will I need any specific equipment to study this Programme?
What skills will I practise and develop?
Students will acquire and develop a range of essential transferable and discipline-specific skills, including:
- intellectual skills,such as critical thinking, reasoning, assimilating and summarising complex information and ideas, analysing and evaluating evidence, critiquing interpretations or arguments, coping with uncertainty or incomplete data, constructing arguments based on evidence, and presenting them effectively in writing and in debate;
- employability skills,such as effective communication through written reports and oral presentations, contributing to group discussions, working independently and in teams, using IT resources effectively, and time management;
- enterprise skills,such as creativity (practised especially in the Independent Study project), problem-solving, initiative, and independent thinking;
- research skills(developed especially in the Independent Study and Dissertation): defining a project, formulating research questions, locating relevant information, and presenting the results in an oral presentation and an extended written report;
- discipline-specific skills:analysing historical problems, locating and using appropriate evidence and bibliographic resources, handling literary and archaeological material, analysing images, reading inscriptions, papyri and coins, and understanding the scholarly conventions used in relation to these types of evidence;
- language skills:the programme offers an opportunity for students to study Latin and Greek at beginner’s and intermediate level, and to read texts in the original languages.
How will I be taught?
Teaching is delivered through a mixture of lectures, seminars, classes, practical workshops, field trips, and individual tutorials. Students also undertake independent study and research, under the guidance of a supervisor.
How will I be assessed?
Modules are assessed by various methods, including coursework essays, written reports, source criticisms, examinations, class tests, and oral presentations. The format of the assessed work for the second-year Independent Study is chosen by the student; possible formats include an extended essay, a piece of creative writing, sample pages from a book or magazine, a teachers’ pack, a film, or a reconstruction drawing or model. All students write a final-year dissertation of up to 10,000 words.
Students receive written feedback and a one-to-one tutorial on all their coursework assessments, and oral feedback on assessed presentations and seminar work. They also receive oral and written feedback from their supervisor on preparatory work and drafts for the Independent Study and Dissertation. Individual written feedback is provided for exams, as well as a general report on the performance of the class as a whole.
How will I be supported?
All modules make extensive use of Cardiff University’s Virtual Learning Environment, Learning Central, where students can access course materials and links to related reading and online resources. In addition to the main University libraries, Ancient History students have access to the Sheila White Library, which contains additional copies of books on Greek and Roman history and culture. All students are assigned a Personal Tutor, who is able to advise on academic and pastoral matters in a confidential and informal manner. Personal Tutors meet students regularly to discuss progress and provide advice and guidance, and are available for consultation at other times as needed. Opportunities for students to reflect on their abilities and performance are made available through a structured programme of Personal Development Planning and through scheduled meetings with Personal Tutors.
What are the Learning Outcomes of this Programme?
Upon completion of the programme, a typical graduate will demonstrate:
- a knowledge and critical understanding of a broad range of Greek and Roman political, social, and cultural history;
- a knowledge and critical understanding of a wide variety of primary source material, including literary, documentary, epigraphic, visual, and archaeological evidence;
- an understanding of different modern approaches to the study of ancient history, and an ability to evaluate and employ a range of approaches and methods;
- an awareness of different modern interpretations of ancient history, and an ability to evaluate and critique them;
- an ability to construct arguments and solve problems through critical use of primary evidence, with reference to appropriate modern approaches;
- an ability to appreciate and understand different cultures;
- an ability to formulate research questions and to conduct independent research;
- an ability to present ideas and arguments effectively and coherently in written and oral form.
Students have the opportunity to study abroad during their second or third year through the Erasmus programme and other exchange agreements with universities overseas. The University-wide ‘Languages for All’ programme allows students to study a foreign language free of charge alongside their degree programme.
Dr Shaun Tougher , Course Administrator
Key Information Sets (KIS) make it easy for prospective students to compare information about full or part time undergraduate courses, and are available on the Unistats website.