Education

Best Classical Studies Degree Programs of 2022

Learn more about the top Classical Studies programs, what to expect, job prospects, and how to choose the program that’s right for you.

Classical studies is the study of the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome. Classical studies degrees can prepare students for a variety of careers, including teaching, museum work, and research.

Classical studies degrees offer a broad overview of the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome. Students in classical studies degree programs learn about the history, literature, art, and archaeology of the classical world. They also learn about the ways in which the classical world has influenced the modern world.

How to Choose the Right Classical Studies Program

When it comes to choosing the right Classical Studies Bachelors Degree Program, there are many things that prospective students need to take into consideration. The most important factor is what you hope to gain from your degree. If you want to become a teacher, for example, you will want to make sure that the program you choose is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. If you are more interested in working in the field of archaeology, you will want to make sure that the program you choose offers coursework in this area. Other important factors to consider include the cost of the program, the location of the school, and the time it will take to complete the program. By taking all of these factors into consideration, you will be able to find the Classical Studies Bachelors Degree Program that is right for you.

Best Bachelor’s in Classical Studies Programs

The best programs for Classical Studies ranking is based on key statistics and student reviews using data from the U.S. Department of Education. Some of the metrics influencing how the rankings are determined include graduation rate, average salary for graduates, accreditation, retention rate, and cost.

Rank 1
Columbia University
New York, NY

The Bachelor of Arts in Classics from Columbia University is a great choice for students who want to pursue a wide range of careers. The program provides students with the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in fields such as law, medicine, business, and writing. Additionally, the small class sizes and individualized attention from professors ensures that students receive an education tailored to their specific needs and goals.

Rank 2
University of Evansville
Evansville, IN

The Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies from University of Evansville is a 120-hour program that requires students to have a minimum of three years in either Latin or Greek, or two years of both Latin and Greek. Other classes will be selected from archaeology, history, philosophy, and world literature. These courses will provide a broad perspective on Greek and Roman civilization, while the facility that the student develops with the classical languages allows them to use primary source material in their studies.

Rank 3
University of Southern California
Los Angeles, CA

The Bachelor of Arts in Classics from the University of Southern California has three tracks: Classical Languages and Literatures, Classical Humanities, and Ancient Civilizations. The Classical Languages and Literatures track emphasizes advanced reading knowledge of Greek and/or Latin, and the study of Greek and Roman literature in historical and cultural context. The Classical Humanities track focuses on Greek and Roman intellectual, literary, and aesthetic achievements and their impact on later traditions, while also acquiring basic reading knowledge of one classical language. The Ancient Civilizations track emphasizes the study of society, politics, and history of Greece, Rome, and other civilizations of the ancient Mediterranean world in comparative perspective.

Rank 4
Tufts University
Medford, MA

The Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies from Tufts University is a broad, interdisciplinary program that introduces students to the history, literature, and material culture of the Greeks, Romans, and other related civilizations. The courses are taught in English and can be supplemented with Latin, Greek, and Sanskrit language courses. Students in this program can choose to pursue a career in fields such as health professions, law, or business.

Rank 5
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL

The Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies from the University of Florida is an interdisciplinary degree with specializations in ancient language, classical civilization, and teacher certification. The degree offers students instruction in the history, literature, and culture of the ancient Greeks and Romans. The program is flexible, allowing students to tailor their course of study to their specific interests and career goals. Small class sizes and a faculty committed to teaching lower-level undergraduate courses make this an appealing degree for students who want excellent preparation for entry to professional schools.

Rank 6
Brandeis University
Waltham, MA

The Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies from Brandeis University is an interdisciplinary program that focuses on the languages, literatures, history and archaeology of ancient Greece and Rome. Students can choose to focus on Classics, Greek or Latin Literature, or Classical Archeology and Ancient History. The program provides students with the skills necessary to pursue a career in fields such as comparative literature, archaeology, fine arts, linguistics, philosophy and history.

Rank 7
Purdue University
West Lafayette, IN

The Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies from Purdue University is a well-rounded program that explores the interrelated disciplines of the ancient Greeks and Romans. Students in the program will develop a broad understanding of the classics, including literature, linguistics, history, philosophy, art, and archaeology. The program offers three tracks for students to choose from: classical languages, literature and culture, or material culture and history.

Rank 8
University of Washington
Seattle, WA

The Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies from University of Washington is a great choice for students interested in exploring the literature, history, art, archaeology, and philosophy of the ancient Greeks and Romans. The program is flexible, allowing students to complete the degree in two years. Requirements for the degree include taking courses in Greek or Latin, as well as 34 additional credits in topics such as classical art and archaeology, ancient history, and the history of ancient philosophy. Students also have the opportunity to complete a Senior Essay.

Rank 9
University of Colorado Boulder
Boulder, CO

The Bachelor of Arts in Classics from University of Colorado Boulder provides students with a well-rounded education that includes the study of ancient Greek and Roman civilizations. Students in the program will also gain an understanding of the many peoples with whom the Greeks and Romans interacted in Central and Eastern Europe, North Africa, Egypt and the Middle East. Additionally, students in the BA in Classics program will receive an interdisciplinary education, learning from faculty and students in the department who study literature, philosophy, history and religion in the world of antiquity.

Rank 10
The City University of New York
New York, NY

The Bachelor of Arts in Classics from CUNY is a comprehensive program that covers the civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome. Students can choose to focus on one or more aspects of the classical world, including its languages, literature, art, history, and archaeology. The program also offers courses in related fields such as religion, comparative literature, and women and gender studies.

What to Expect From a Bachelor’s in Classical Studies Program

Students in a bachelor’s degree program in classical studies should expect to take a variety of courses on the history, literature, art, and philosophy of ancient Greece and Rome. These programs typically require about 120 credits and take four years to complete.

Most programs begin with a foundation in the liberal arts, including English, math, and science. From there, students take courses specific to classical studies, such as Ancient Greek History, Roman Art and Architecture, and Classical Mythology. In addition to coursework, many programs also require students to complete an internship or a senior thesis.

Classical studies programs often culminate in a capstone course, in which students synthesize all that they have learned in the program. This course may take the form of a research project, an essay, or a presentation.

Prospective students should be aware that a bachelor’s degree in classical studies is not the same as a degree in Classics. A degree in Classics typically focuses more on the language and literature of ancient Greece and Rome, while a degree in classical studies encompasses a wider range of topics, including history, art, and philosophy.

Common Classical Studies Courses

A degree in classical studies will give students a broad overview of the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome. Students will learn about the history, literature, art, and philosophy of these cultures. The following is a list of five courses that are typically taken by students pursuing a degree in classical studies.

Rome: Rise to Power

This course covers the history of Rome from its humble beginnings to its status as a world power. Topics include the founding of Rome, the Etruscan period, the Roman Republic, and the Roman Empire. Students will also study the major political, military, and social events that shaped Rome during this time. Upon completion, students should be able to explain how Rome rose to power and became one of the most influential empires in history.

Greece: From Myth to History

This course covers the rise of ancient Greece from the Bronze Age to the death of Alexander the Great. Emphasis is placed on the major political, social, economic, and cultural developments of the period. Upon completion, students should be able to analyze the major political, social, economic, and cultural developments of the period.

Theatre in the Ancient World

This course covers the development of theatre from its origins in the ancient world through the medieval and Renaissance periods. Topics include the influence of the Greeks on the development of theatre, the Roman theatre, the medieval theatre, and the Renaissance theatre. Emphasis is placed on the social, political, and religious aspects of theatre as they relate to the cultures of the times. Upon completion, students should be able to analyze the development of theatre through the ages and apply the knowledge to modern theatre.

Classical Mythology

This course covers the study of Greek and Roman mythology and its relationship to the cultures of classical antiquity. Topics include an overview of the major gods and goddesses, heroes and heroines, and monsters of classical mythology; an examination of the ways in which myths reflect the values, concerns, and beliefs of the cultures that created them; and an exploration of the enduring influence of classical mythology on Western literature, art, and thought. Upon completion, students should be able to identify and describe the major gods, goddesses, heroes, and heroines of Greek and Roman mythology and explain the ways in which myths reflect the values, concerns, and beliefs of the cultures that created them.

Latin Language & Literature

This course is an introduction to the Latin language and its literature, with an emphasis on the close reading of Latin texts. Students will develop proficiency in Latin grammar and vocabulary, and will learn to read Latin prose and poetry with understanding and enjoyment. The course will also introduce students to the major works of Latin literature, and to the culture of the Roman world. Upon completion, students will be able to read Latin with understanding and enjoyment, and will have a basic knowledge of the major works of Latin literature and the culture of the Roman world.

Career Options for Classical Studies Graduates

Graduates of Classical Studies programs work in a variety of fields and industries, including education, museum curation, and publishing. They may also work in fields such as history, archaeology, and anthropology.

Curator

Curators are responsible for the care and presentation of collections of art, artifacts, or other items of historical or cultural importance. They may work in museums, galleries, libraries, or other institutions, and their duties can include everything from acquiring new items for the collection to researching and writing about the collection, to planning and executing exhibitions. Curators typically specialize in a particular type of art or history, such as modern art, ancient Egyptian artifacts, or rare books.

Archivist

Archivists collect, process, and preserve permanent historical records and artifacts. They work with everything from family papers and corporate records to government documents and ancient manuscripts. Archivists research the provenance of these materials to determine their value and develop plans for their long-term preservation and storage. They also develop policies and procedures for accessing and using the materials in their care. Archivists work in a variety of settings, including libraries, museums, historical societies, archives, and government agencies.

Rare Book Dealer

Rare book dealers buy and sell books that are considered valuable because of their age, condition, scarcity, or importance. They may work with private collectors, libraries, or other institutions, and they may specialize in a particular type of book, such as modern first editions, books with autographs, or manuscripts. Rare book dealers typically have a deep knowledge of the history of the book and the book market. They must be able to authenticate books and understand the conditions that affect a book’s value.

Historian

Historians study the past to better understand the present. They research, write, and teach about people, events, and issues from a particular time period or place. To do this work, historians use a variety of sources, including primary sources (like letters, diaries, and government documents) and secondary sources (like books and articles written by other historians). They also use their own analysis and interpretation to make sense of the past. Historians work in a variety of settings, including colleges and universities, museums, historical societies, archives, and government agencies.

Librarian

Librarians help people find information and conduct research for personal and professional use. They work in public, school, academic, and special libraries. Their duties might include cataloging books and other materials, managing library databases, and giving reference assistance. Some librarians also develop and give educational programs, such as story time for children or classes on using library resources.

Insights From a Classical Studies Graduate

Darian Harrison is a Content Strategist at Google. He has a bachelor’s degree in classical studies from the University of California, Berkeley. Darian has over 7 years of experience in content strategy and management.

ClimbtheLadder: What were the biggest takeaway(s) you got from your Classical Studies program that you may not have gotten otherwise?

Darian Harrison: I think the biggest takeaway from my degree is the ability to think critically and analytically. A lot of the coursework in classical studies is about close reading and analysis of texts, and I think that those skills have been really useful in my career.

I also think that the ability to read Latin and Greek has been helpful in my work. I’ve been able to read primary sources in their original languages, which has been really helpful in my research.

ClimbtheLadder: What type of person is successful and thrives in a Classical Studies career?

Darian Harrison: A successful classical studies career requires a passion for language and culture. You must be able to read, write, and speak Latin and Greek fluently. You should also be able to read and write in English, as well as other languages. You must be able to research and write papers on a variety of topics.

You should also be able to work independently and be self-motivated. Classical studies is not a 9-5 job. You will often have to work odd hours to meet deadlines.

ClimbtheLadder: What misconception(s) do people have about a Classical Studies degree, and what would you tell them?

Darian Harrison: The biggest misconception about a Classical Studies degree is that it’s only useful for people who want to be teachers. In reality, a Classical Studies degree is useful for people who want to pursue any career that involves writing, research, or analysis.

For example, as a Content Strategist at Google, I use the research and writing skills I learned as a Classical Studies student every day. I also use my knowledge of ancient history and culture to inform the content strategy decisions I make.

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