Learning Goals

The Department of Classics serves the University and society at large by engaging in a broad range of instructional and research endeavors focused on the languages and civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome.

To that end, the Department of Classics

  • offers instruction at the elementary through advanced levels in Latin and Ancient Greek. Study of these languages  within their historical, intellectual and material contexts fosters a broad and critically informed understanding of major ideas, texts and artifacts of ancient Greece and Rome and their subsequent influence.
  • contributes to the general educational mission of the University by offering courses on the literatures, languages, history, philosophy, civilization and material cultures of the ancient Greek and Roman world. 
  • provides courses of study in the field of Classics leading to the BA, MA  and PhD
  • fosters the development of  life-long skills in research, analysis, critical thinking and communication that prepare students for effective participation in a variety of careers and endeavors
  • promotes global awareness through the historically informed study of the cultures of Greece and Rome
  • collaborates closely with other academic units on interdisciplinary instructional and research endeavors
  • prepares future educators for work in a variety of academic institutions and works with current educators in a variety of educational settings
  • expands knowledge through research on the literatures, languages, history, philosophy, civilization and material cultures of the ancient Greek and Roman world.
  • sponsors seminars, lectures and conferences in a variety of settings that bring current research on the ancient Greek and Roman world to the wider community.

Learning Goals for undergraduate majors in the Department of Classics

The Department offers four undergraduate majors. The Bachelor of Arts degrees in Classics, Greek, and Latin emphasize the development of a more advanced expertise in the Classical languages and literatures. A fourth major, the Bachelor of Arts in Classical Studies, requires less study of the Classical languages of Greece and Rome than is required for the other majors and is especially suited to students wishing to explore the literature, history, art, archaeology, and philosophy of Classical antiquity primarily through English translations.

All majors in the Department of Classics will:

  • acquire fundamental language skills in Latin and /or ancient Greek
  • develop an awareness and appreciation of the major elements of ancient Greek and Roman civilization, history, philosophy, literature and material culture 
  • produce critically, culturally and historically informed analysis of Roman and /or ancient Greek ideas, texts and artifacts 
  • use analytical, research and critical thinking skills to communicate effectively in writing
  • acquire a global perspective through in-depth study of ancient cultures in detailed historical contexts as well as through opportunities to study abroad, including but not limited to the department's Classical Seminar in Rome (conducted every spring at the University's Rome Center), and the archaeological field school at Tel Dor, Israel.

Majors in Classics, Latin or Greek will in addition:

  • demonstrate substantial expertise in Latin and/or ancient Greek and engage in advanced analysis of ancient texts in the original language(s).

Outcomes and assessments:

Students at all levels complete assignments that measure linguistic expertise, familiarity with the elements of ancient Greek and Roman civilization and their subsequent influence, and their research, analytical, and writing skills.   Working one-on-one with a faculty advisor, BA students complete a Senior Essay.