What is Classical Studies?
Classical Studies is concerned with the civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome in all their manifestations and with their continuing influence on the modern world. It includes history, literature, art and architecture, drama and philosophy. Students who have studied Classical Studies at Junior Certificate level will have received a good introduction to the Graeco-Roman world. However, it is by no means essential for the study of Leaving Certificate Classical Studies.
What type of student might Classical Studies suit?
Classical Studies will appeal to those interested in reading and writing about the ancient world. No previous knowledge of the Greek or Latin languages is required. It can be taken by itself as an Leaving Cert. subject which will broaden the student’s outlook and knowledge, as well as gaining points for University entrance.
The subject is nowadays one of the popular choices in the Arts faculties of our Universities. It is particularly suited to students who have scored highly in the Linguistic and Social areas in their Interest Profile.
Why study it?
The ancient world is one of the foundations on which much of our European civilization is based. This course enables the student to go back to the originals (in translation), and learn the stories and legends which inspired so much in art and literature for the next 2,000 years.
Third Level Entry Requirements
This subject is not an essential requirement for any courses in the CAO system.
THE TOPICS STUDIED ARE:
- 1. Ancient Epic (The Odyssey; Homer and The Aeneid; Virgil)
- 2. Roman Art and Architecture ( Buildings, Sculpture and Paintings from Rome and the Empire)
- 3. Alexander the Great ( based on the accounts of Arrian and Plutarch)
- 4. Greek Drama ( Oedipus the King: Sophocles and Medea; Euripedes
All the textbooks are in English/Irish, so knowledge of Latin or Greek is not necessary and there is no need to have done Classical Studies at Junior Cert.
There is no coursework / project work in this subject and final assessment consists of one essay-based three hour examination. From June 2011, the examination has been changed, with students now required to answer 6 questions, doing at least one question from each of the four sections listed above.
Owing to the nature of the exam, and the material to be studied, it is likely that pupils who are strong in English and History might find themselves best suited to this subject.
The Greek Drama section would be very similar to how pupils might study Shakespeare in English while although the Ancient Epics were originally long poems, they are taught in prose form and are similar to adventure novels.
While the Alexander section is in the main part History, the Art and Architecture is really a mixture of so many of the different things which make Classical Culture so enduring.
Being strong in History and particularly English would be indicative that Classical Studies might be a good choice at Leaving Cert. However, all pupils can prosper in this subject purely because they find the material so interesting and it is this, above all else, which seems to be most important for pupils making a success of choosing Classical Studies.
Data Sources: The information on these pages has been compiled from a variety of sources including the NCCA, Newbridge College / Brian Howard, Dept. of Education & Skills, and student interviews. Information in the 'People who took this subject' section reflects the views of those people interviewed on this website and is offered as informal and potentially useful information only.
While CareersPortal.ie attempts to keep this information as up to date and accurate as possible, we do not accept any responsibility for the accuracy of this information or decisions made on the basis of this information. Students should always discuss subject options with parents / guardians / guidance counsellors..