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2018/19 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

CLAS5600M Researching the Ancient World: Literature, History and Culture

30 creditsClass Size: 20

Module manager: Dr Regine May

Taught: Semester 2 View Timetable

Year running 2018/19

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

This module provides an opportunity to undertake a supervised research project in one of three areas of classical studies: literature, history and culture (including art and material culture, and philosophy). The topic will be chosen by the student and confirmed in consultation with their module tutor and supervisor. Taught by a blend of group discussion and one-to-one supervision, students will learn how to undertake research and to present it both orally, to an informed audience of peers, and in extended written form, for assessment.


Working under supervision on an independent research project, students will apply and develop their research skills and their understanding of a chosen and well-defined area of classical studies. Through the analysis of case-studies of methodologically challenging areas of Greek and Roman research, they will learn to apply general principles to their own specific areas of interest. They will present their ongoing research to their peer group and learn to reflect on progress and project-management.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module students are expected to be able to demonstrate:
- knowledge of a major area of classical studies
- an ability to formulate a specific research question
- familiarity with primary and secondary sources relevant to their chosen topic
- an ability to use primary and secondary sources critically, with an understanding of their assumptions and methods and a willingness to challenge those assumptions and methods
- an ability to reach well-argued conclusions, and to articulate them clearly
- an ability to reflect on and explain their developing ideas to a peer group
- the capacity to manage a research project.

Skills outcomes
Skills development in classical research, including compiling bibliographies, writing abstracts and using subject databases


Researching and writing a 6,000-word essay on a topic, chosen by the student in consultation with the module leader and their supervisor, in one of three main areas of classical studies: literature, history and culture (including art and material culture, and philosophy). The module will be introduced with a full-group tutorial (week 1) followed by a full-group seminar (week 2). Students will then meet their supervisor individually to discuss their choice of topic and develop their research (week 3). The module will thereafter be taught through alternating individual supervisions and group tutorials and seminars.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours288.00
Total Contact hours12.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)300.00

Private study

The supervisions and pathway group tutorials provide a supporting framework for the independent learning involved in researching and writing a 6000-word essay.
Compiling an independent bibliography: 10 hours
Developing a 5-minute presentation: 10 hours
Reading for 3 x tutorials: 10 hours.
Researching and writing (formative) short submission: 100 hours
Writing short abstract (reviewing essay structure): 10 hours
Researching and writing (summative) final submission: 150 hours
(The survey lectures do not need any special preparation over and above the work for the essay, since they are designed simply to round out the student’s understanding of the place in the canon of their chosen author(s).)

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Progress will be monitored through:
Independently-researched essay bibliography submitted week 2
Short oral presentation of preliminary ideas in week 2
Discussions at one-to-one supervisions (week 3 onwards)
Mid-term formative submission (week 6)
Short abstract (week 10).

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay6,000 words100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

There is no reading list for this module

Last updated: 16/09/2019


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