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Classical Studies & Comparative Literature BA

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Overview

The Classical Studies and Comparative Literature BA degree is an opportunity to discover the relationship between the great works of classical antiquity and subsequent works of literature. In addition to studying the ancient world and its legacy, you will receive training in the practices, methodologies and theories of comparative study. Your time will be split equally between the Classics and Comparative Literature departments.

Key benefits

Classics

  • One of the very best Classics departments in the country, renowned for its quality of teaching, student experience and cutting-edge research.
  • King’s Department of Classics is one of the largest in the UK, with unique coverage from the Bronze Age to Modern Greece.
  • Central location offers collaborations with the British Museum and the Museum of London, which are incorporated into undergraduate teaching.
  • Our study programmes combine focus and flexibility, allowing students to pursue their interests.
  • You will acquire analytical and presentational skills valued by employers, leading to careers in heritage-related professions, the media, education, civil service and the performing arts.

Comparative Literature 

  • Our programme of study draws on the teaching and research expertise of some of the highest ranked literature departments in the UK.
  • The Department of Comparative Literature at King’s covers 12 languages and six continents. It spans over 2,500 years and extends beyond the modern works of literature of Europe to the Americas, Australia, China, the Middle East, South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Our flexible study programmes allow you to pursue your interests and choose from a wide variety of courses across a number of departments. 
  • Central location offers students the opportunity to benefit from London’s unique cultural resources.

Key information

UCAS code QQ28

Duration Three years

Study mode Full-time

Course type Joint honours

Further details

Awarding institution King's College London

Faculty Faculty of Arts & Humanities

DepartmentDepartment of Classics,Department of Comparative Literature

Locations

 

Explore campuses


Study Comparative Literature

Step into the world of similarities and differences between texts written in different places and times.

You'll have the chance to discover all the fascinating aspects of their themes, genres and historical settings over the past 2,500 years - you might be studying Chinese novels in one week, and French literature the next!

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Course detail

Description

This inter-departmental study programme looks at the comparative study of global literature, with particular attention to the literature and cultures of the classical world. You will research key areas of the topics, and study them from different viewpoints – you will have the opportunity to compare different approaches as well as literary genres, themes and contexts. The Classical Studies and Comparative Literature BA degree is a three-year study programme that comprises of modules totalling 360 credits. Each year, you will take modules totalling 120 credits. Your first year of study will consist of modules covering conceptions, methods and theoretical foundations of Comparative Literature; providing you with a rounded introduction to the subject; developing your analytical skills and introducing you to advanced historical theory and methodology. You will cover a range of Greek and Latin language modules at a level appropriate to your prior knowledge. In the second and third years, you will study further required and optional modules, giving you the freedom to develop a study pathway that reflects your interests. You will also have the opportunity to study abroad in the second semester of the second year or for the whole of your second year. In your final year, you are required to complete a 10,000-word dissertation on an approved subject of your choice and emphasising selfdirected research. The optional modules you will also study will reflect the current research and expertise of staff in the department, providing you with the opportunity to study specialist subjects in-depth.

Teaching style

We use lectures, seminars and group tutorials to deliver most of the modules on the programme. You will also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study. You will be assigned a personal tutor who will provide support and guidance for your studies

Assessment

The primary methods of assessment for this course are coursework, assessed essays, written examinations and individual and group presentations. 

Location

The majority of learning for this degree takes place at the King’s College London Strand Campus. Please note that locations are determined by where each module is taught and may vary depending on the optional modules you select.

Special notes

Greek Play

The King’s Greek Play has been an annual tradition since 1953 and it is the only production in the country to be performed every year in the original Greek. Students (with all levels of Greek) participate in the direction, production and performance of the play, bringing to the stage playwrights from Aeschylus to Aristophanes.

Rumble Fund

In 2013 the Department of Classics created the Rumble Fund following a generous donation by a former student. This fund is used each year to pay for a group of students to visit classical lands as part of their degree programme.

Classics Society

Students run the Classics Society, which publishes the Satyrica newsletter and organizes regular lectures, theatre outings, themed parties, private tours around museums, nights out and trips abroad – in recent years, group expeditions have been made to Italy and Turkey.

Iris Project

The department also promotes teaching Latin in disadvantaged primary schools through the Iris Project; this offers students a highly unusual experience that is both enriching and will impress future employers.

Study abroad
You also have the opportunity to study abroad for either the second semester of the second year or for the whole of the second year. Partner institutions currently include:

  • University of Auckland
  • University of Melbourne
  • University of Toronto (Full year only)
  • University of California
  • University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (Up to five places exclusively available for Classics students)
  • University of Sydney

Find out more about studying abroad

Our students also have opportunities to attend the annual summer schools at the British Schools in Athens and Rome, and participate in archaeological excavations in Greece and Italy, as well as further afield.

 

Structure

Year 1

King's reviews its optional modules on a regular basis, in order to continue to offer innovative and exciting programmes. Therefore, we cannot guarantee that any particular optional course will run in a given year and the options listed below are subject to change.

Courses are divided into modules. Each year you will normally take modules totalling 120 credits.

Required Modules

Classical Studies

There are no core/compulsory Classics modules in Year 1

Comparative Literature

You are required to take the following 15-credit modules:

  • What is Comparative Literature? Conceptions and Methods
  • Comparative Literature: Theoretical Foundations
Optional Modules

Classical Studies

You will choose 60 credits from a wide range of Classics modules (of which a maximum of 30 credits may be language modules) that may typically include:

  • Greek Language 1 (30 credits)
  • Greek Language 2 (30 credits)
  • Greek Language 3 (30 credits)
  • Latin Language 1 (30 credits)
  • Latin Language 2 (30 credits)
  • Latin Language 3 (30 credits)
  • Art & Archaeology of Greece & Rome (30 credits)
  • Introduction to Ancient History (c. 1200 BC-AD 600) (30 credits)
  • Greek & Latin Literature: An Introduction (30 credits)
  • Introduction to Ancient Philosophy (30 credits)
  • Working with Greek & Latin Literary Texts: An Introduction (30 credits)
  • Introduction to Byzantium and Modern Greece: The Greek-speaking world from 330 AD to today (15 credits)
  • Receptions of the past: The Hellenic world from antiquity to today (15 credits)

Comparative Literature

You will take 30 credits from a range of optional Comparative Literature modules that may typically include:

  • The Writer in the Text (15 credits)
  • Forms of Shorter Narrative (15 credits)
  • Genres of World Literature (15 credits)
  • The Novel in 18th Century Europe (15 credits)
  • Reading Modern Poetry Comparatively: Greek & English (15 credits)

Year 2


You have the opportunity to study abroad for either the second semester of the second year or for the whole of the second year. Partner institutions currently include:

  • University of Auckland
  • University of Melbourne
  • University of Toronto (Full year only)
  • University of California
  • University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • University of Sydney
Required Modules

Classical Studies

There are no core/compulsory Classics modules in Year 2.

Comparative Literature

You are required to take 30 credits from the following selections:

  • Literature and Empire (15 credits) and Ideas of Nation (15 credits)
  • The Book in the Modern World (15 credits) and The Canon (15 credits)
Optional Modules

Classical Studies

You are required to take 60 credits from a range of optional Classics modules that may typically include:

  • Greek Language 1 (30 credits)
  • Greek Language 3A (30 credits)
  • Latin Language 1 (30 credits)
  • Latin Language 3A (30 credits)
  • Roman Britain (30 credits)

Or 15-credit modules, such as:

  • Art & Power in the Age of Alexander (Hellenistic Art I)
  • Introductory Greek Texts: Prose
  • From Sulla to Caesar: the fall of the Roman Republic
  • Early Greece from Troy to Marathon
  • Pompeii: History & Society
  • Introductory Latin Texts: Prose
  • Homer
  • Myth & Literature: ancient stories, modern meanings
  • Death in Greek literature
  • Virgils’s Aeneid
  • The Art of Acquisition: Conquest, Collection and the Rise of Rome (Hellenistic Art II)
  • Building Greece
  • Constantinople: Imperial Capital – Medieval
  • Metropolis
  • Introductory Greek Texts: Verse
  • Democracy, Empire and War: Greece 446-338 BC
  • The Late Roman World, AD 337-425
  • Introductory Latin Texts: Verse
  • Wisdom and the Divine: ancient Greek philosophy and religion
  • Ancient Sexuality I
  • Ancient Sexuality II
  • Latin Lyric Poetry
  • The Novels of Nikos Kazantzakis and the Ancient World

Comparative Literature

You will also take at least 15 credits from a range of optional Comparative Literature modules that may typically include:

  • Literature and Empire (15 credits)
  • Ideas of Nation (15 credits)
  • Travel Writing (15 credits)
  • The Book in the Modern World (15 credits)
  • The Canon (15 credits)
  • Writing Africa: Anglophone, Francophone (15 credits)
  • Socialism and Literature in China and India in the Twentieth Century (15 credits)
  • Palestinian and Israeli Literature (15 credits)
  • The Faust Tradition: Dramatic Transformations (15 credits)
  • The Promise of Poetry: What is Poetic Language? (15 credits)
  • Forms of Discovery: Hardy, Cavafy, and the Modern Short Poem (15 credits)

You may also take up to 30 credits from approved optional modules offered by the Faculty of Arts & Humanities.

Year 3

In Year 3 students take 60 credits of Classics modules and 60 credits of Comparative Literature modules.  All final year students are required to research and write a Comparative Literature dissertation on a topic involving Classics.

Required Modules

Classical Studies

There are no core/compulsory Classics modules in Year 3.

Comparative Literature

  • Dissertation (10,000 words) (30 credits) 
Optional Modules

Classical Studies

You are required to take at least 45 credits from a range of optional Classics modules that may typically include:

  • Minoans and Mycenaeans (30 credits)
  • The Classical Art of the Body: Greek Sculpture (30 credits)
  • The Art of Making: Craft Production from Classical Antiquity to Today (30 credits)
  • Augustus: Power & Propaganda (30 credits)
  • The History & Theory of Ancient Slavery (30 credits)
  • Greek Religion (30 credits)
  • Pagans, Christians and Jews in the Roman Empire (30 credits)
  • Streetwise: narrating the city in classical literature (30 credits)
  • Neronian Literature and Culture (30 credits)
  • Plato's myths: the soul, desire and the Beyond (30 credits)
  • Living for ever: fame and glory from Homeric heroes to Roman emperors (and beyond) (30 credits)
  • An Introduction to Classical Reception Studies in Sixteen Encounters (30 credits)
  • Dissertation (30 credits)

And 15 credit modules such as:

  • Greek Texts: Prose (15 Credits)
  • Persian Kings and their Territory in the Achaemenid Empire (15 Credits)
  • Latin Texts: Prose (15 Credits)
  • Descent to the Underworld: transformations of a myth (15 Credits)
  • Romanticism and Revolution: Byron, the Shelleys and Greece (15 Credits)
  • Origins of Nations and Nationalism: Identity in the Hellenic world (15 Credits)
  • Venice: history and art (15 Credits)
  • Greek Texts: Poetry (15 Credits)
  • Latin Texts: Poetry (15 Credits)

Comparative Literature

You are also required to take at least 15 credits from a range of optional 15-credit Comparative Literature modules that may typically include:

  • Surrealism
  • Imaginary Geographies
  • From Opium to Maximum City: Narrating political economy in India and China
  • The French Revolution Effect
  • Listening Across the Channel: Sound and Literature
  • Modern Arabic Literature
  • Testimony: The Holocaust and Rwanda
  • Literature, Solidarity, and the Humanitarian Turn

You may also take up to 30 credits from approved optional modules offered by the Faculty of Arts & Humanities.

King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis in order to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. The optional modules offered may therefore change. We suggest that you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

Entry requirements

 

Required grades:

AAA

Required grades:

35 points overall and three Higher Level subjects at 666

Required grades:

45 Level 3 credits: 36 must be awarded at Distinction, with the remaining Level 3 credits at Merit

Required grades:

D3 D3 D3

Required grades:

Further information below

Required grades:

Further information below

Required grades:

Further information below

Required grades:

85% overall

Visit our admissions webpages to view our international entry requirements and English language entry requirements.

Required subjects

English Literature, or English Language and Literature (A-level or equivalent). Plus a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent).

Preferred subjects

Modern or Ancient language, Classical civilisation, Ancient History, or History.

 

Further information and other requirements

Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements

General Studies and Critical Thinking - College policy: Please note that AS/A level General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted by King's as one of your A or AS levels. However, if offered the grade achieved may be taken into account when considering whether or not to accept a candidate who has just fallen short of the conditions of their offer.

Access to HE Diploma: Access to HE Diploma (for example, in Humanities) with 45 Level 3 credits: 36 must be from units at Distinction with the remaining Level 3 credits at Merit. Applicants will also need to offer A-level grade A (or equivalent) in English Literature. Additionally, a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent). Preferred other level 3 subjects: Modern or ancient language, Classical civilisation, Ancient History, or History.

Cambridge Pre-U: Three Pre-U Principal subjects at D3 D3 D3 including English Literature at D3. Additionally, a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent). Preferred other subjects: Modern or ancient language, Classical civilisation, Ancient History, or History.
Combinations of Pre-U principal subjects and other qualifications (such as A-levels) considered

BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (QCF from 2010): DDM with eleven Distinctions and two A levels at grades AA, including grade A in A level English Literature or English Language & Literature. Additionally, a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent).

BTEC Level 3 Diploma (QCF from 2010): DM with six Distinctions and two A levels at grades AA, including grade A in A level English Literature or English Language & Literature. Additionally, a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent).

BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma (QCF from 2010): D with four modules at Distinction and two A levels at grades AA, including grade A in A level English Literature or English Language & Literature. Additionally, a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent).

Scottish Highers & Advanced Highers: AAB at Higher in one sitting and AA at Advanced Higher, including grade A in Advanced Higher English Literature / English Language and Literature (we do not count the Higher and Advanced Higher in the same subject). If a modern/ancient language (relevant to the programme) is not offered at Higher Level, this will be required at National 5 (or Standard Grade Credit level/Intermediate 2) grade A. Preferred other subjects: Modern or ancient language, Classical civilisation, Ancient History, or History.

International Baccalaureate: Pass the IB Diploma with a total of at least 35 points, with three Higher Level subjects at 666 including HL6 in English Literature). Additionally, a GCSE in a Modern or Ancient Language at grade A (or equivalent). Preferred subjects: Modern or ancient language, Classical civilisation, Ancient History, or History. Note the total point score of 35 includes TOK/EE.

Selection procedure

Application: Once an application has been submitted to UCAS, forms are sent to the Department for assessment. Members of staff then consider how far the applicant has shown evidence of the qualities of mind we most value in potential Classics, Classical Studies, Ancient History or Classical Archaeology students, and of aptitude for linguistic study. UCAS forms are also assessed on the basis of the information they contain concerning the applicant's actual or predicted performance at A-level and GCSE (or their equivalents), the personal statement, and the references provided.

Application deadline: January 15 2017.

Decision: In most cases, a decision will be reached, and the offer of a place made, on this basis. But where we feel that there are matters that need further discussion, an applicant will be invited to come to the Department for an interview. This may be because we feel we need more information about the applicant's previous academic experience, or because we want to make sure that the degree applied for really is what the applicant is looking for. A decision will then be made on the strength of the combination of the interview and the UCAS form.

Open Days: Applicants who are offered places on the basis of the UCAS form alone will also receive an invitation to a Department Open Day. The Open Day programme includes a welcome and description of the Department from the Admissions Tutor, a short sample 'lecture' from another member of staff, tours of the Strand Campus and Maughan Library, and the chance to talk to some current students and other members of the teaching staff. There will also be a complementary programme for accompanying parents.

Fees and funding

Full time tuition fees UK:

The UK tuition fee for the 2017-2018 academic year is £9,250 per annum.

Please note that the UK tuition fee may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

 

Full time tuition fees EU:

Current regulations allow some students to pay UK tuition fees on the basis of their EU citizenship or residency. Until these eligibility criteria are changed, the EU tuition fee will remain the same as the UK tuition fee.

The UK tuition fee for the 2017-2018 academic year is £9,250 per annum.

Please note that the UK tuition fee may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

 

Full time tuition fees International:

The International tuition fee for the 2017-2018 academic year is £17,050 per annum.

Please note that the International tuition fee is subject to annual increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

All International applicants to Undergraduate programmes are required to pay a deposit of £2,000 against their first year’s tuition fee. This deposit is payable when you firmly accept an unconditional offer to study with us, and will be offset against your tuition fees when you join King’s.

 

For further information, please visit our fees and funding pages.

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.

Career prospects

Our graduates go on to work in a range of professions, including law, banking, the civil service, information technology, librarianship, education, heritage industries, the media, journalism and the performing arts; While others choose to stay and pursue postgraduate qualifications at King’s.

Career destinations

Recent graduates have found employment as:

• Assistant Tax Advisor, Ernst & Young

• Human Resources Administrator, Health Resources International

• Web Administrator, Intrico Products Ltd

• Illustrator, Self Employed Illustrator

• Marketing and Publishing Graduate scheme, The Telegraph Media group

• Research Intern, Environment Agency

• Sales Operations Admin, Associated Press TV news

• Latin Teacher at a university

 

Testimonials

Next steps

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Page last modified on 17 March 2017.