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Classical Studies BA (International Hons) 2020 entry

The BA (International Hons) in Classical Studies offers two pathways: Greek and Latin, or Ancient History and Archaeology. Both pathways allow you to explore the cultures of the Mediterranean world in great depth, from the Bronze Age through Late Antiquity. You will also have the option to take courses from both pathways, giving you an all-round perspective on the Greek and Roman world. 

The BA (International Hons) is a joint degree delivered by both the University of St Andrews and the College of William & Mary in Virginia, USA. This joint degree allows you to spend two years at each institution. 

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Course type

Bachelor of Arts (International Honours degree)

Course duration

Four years full time

  • Start date: 7 September 2020
  • End date: 30 June 2024

Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in the archive.

Entry requirements

Admissions to the BA (International Honours) is highly competitive. These grades are the overall standards required to consider you for entry.

Find out more about Standard and Minimum entry requirements using academic entry explained and see which entry requirements you need to look at using the entry requirements indicator.

    • Standard entry grades: AAAAB
    • Minimum entry grades: AABB
    • Standard entry grades: AAA
    • Minimum entry grades: ABB
    • Standard entry grades: 38 (HL 6,6,6)
    • Minimum entry grades: 36 (HL 6,5,5)

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry on to our programmes, please see our entry requirements for more information.

International applicants

If English is not your first language you will need an overall IELTS score of 7.0, with a minimum score of 6.5 in each component (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking), or an equivalent English language qualification.

How to apply

You can only apply for the programme through one institution, and each institution will honour the admissions decisions of the other. You must specify which subject area you wish to apply for on your application form.

If you wish to begin your studies at the University of St Andrews, you can apply through the St Andrews direct application form or the Common Application form.

If you wish to begin your studies at the College of William & Mary, you should apply through the William & Mary Common Application form.

Do I need to have studied this subject before?

No previous knowledge of this subject is required.

General entry requirements

All applicants must have attained the following qualifications, or equivalent, in addition to the specific entry requirements for individual programmes.

Other qualifications

More information on how to apply via other entry routes or accreditation of prior learning and experience can be found on the University’s entry requirements web page.


St Andrews students must meet with their Adviser of Studies at the beginning of Semester 1 in September to complete advising – a compulsory part of the matriculation process. After module choices have been decided, a timetable will be allocated indicating the dates and times of classes.

Course information

The BA (International Hons) in Classical Studies is a four-year course run jointly by the School of Classics at St Andrews and the Department of Classical Studies at the College of William & Mary. 

You will study for two years at both St Andrews and William & Mary, spending the first year of the programme at one institution and the second year at the other. You will then be able to choose where you wish to spend your third and fourth years of study and graduate from either university.

You will apply to the university where you intend to spend your first year, and then you will transfer to the other institution for your second year.

What you will study

If you study a BA (International Honours) in Classical Studies, you will choose between two pathways: Greek and Latin, or Ancient History and Archaeology.

If you choose the Greek and Latin pathway, you will be able to take both Greek and Latin at complete beginners' level or at more advanced level if you have substantial previous experience.

If you choose the Ancient History and Archaeology pathway, you will be introduced to, and provided advanced training in, the material culture of the ancient Mediterranean world. 

The BA (International Honours) is a single Honours degree, and other combinations – such as joint Honours degrees – are not available with this programme. However, during the programme you will have opportunities to study a range of other subjects offered by both institutions. Find out more about the St Andrews – William & Mary joint degree.

Find out more about studying Classics at St Andrews.

The coat of arms for the BA (International Honours) programme which features crossed keys, gold diamonds, a rising sun, an open book, a griffin, and a lion rampant
The BA International Honours coat of arms represents each university's unique heraldry and symbols. Find out more about the coat of arms.

About the BA (International Honours) programme

The BA (International Honours) is a four-year undergraduate degree that combines the best of the Scottish and American educational experience.

This programme offers an impressive range of modules that students can take without losing the depth of focus by following either a language or Ancient History and Archaeology pathway.

Working together, the Classics departments from both universities offer a unique range of modules. For example, students are able to pursue coursework in Etruscan archaeology and Egyptology (at William & Mary) as well as modules in Late Antique and Bronze Age Archaeology (at St Andrews): this unusual combination of modules is hard to find in any single department. The programme also provides Greek and Latin language students with a more flexible degree, one which can be tailored to your level of study between the two institutions. 

Students can experience opportunities offered by William & Mary such as conferences and internships. At St Andrews, they will have opportunities to travel to and study the ancient world.

Undertaking a Classics degree in both campuses will also allow students a wider range of postgraduate opportunities in the North American and United Kingdom. As a student on the programme, you will have the unique advantage of knowing the UK and US systems well should you wish to make postgraduate applications.


Students studying the Classical Studies BA (International Hons) will take the required modules at both institutions in their first and second years.

The following modules are those offered at St Andrews. Find out more about module requirements at William & Mary.

At St Andrews, the compulsory modules in first year are:

  • The Greeks in a Wider World: surveys Greek history from the origins of the Greek city-states in the Archaic period (ca. 800 BCE), through the heyday of Athens’ empire and democracy in the fifth century, to Alexander the Great’s conquest of the Persian Empire. Alongside political and military history, the module tackles topics such as religious belief, sexuality, and Greek interactions with other peoples of the ancient Mediterranean world.
  • Roman History from Foundation to Empire: focuses on the rise of Rome to world power from humble beginnings, examining the political, cultural and economic consequences of imperialism.

You must also choose one of the following Latin or Greek module pathways:

  • Elementary Latin 1 and 2: provides an introduction to the Latin language for beginners, concentrating on morphology, vocabulary, and basic syntax.
  • World of Latin 1 and 2 (only available to students who have studied Latin to SQA Higher, GCE A-level or equivalent): enhances understanding of Latin language and literature through study of both verse and prose set texts and regular language classes.
  • Greek Language for Beginners and Greek Literature for Beginners: provides a thorough grounding in the Greek language for beginners or near beginners, and prepares students for the challenge of reading and interpreting Greek literature.
  • Greek Language and Literature 1 and Greek Pastoral and Passion (only available to students who have studied Greek to SQA Higher, GCE A-level or equivalent): involves detailed study of a range of set texts as well as linguistic and translation exercises designed to enhance students' knowledge of Greek and confidence in reading Greek literature in its historical and cultural context.

At St Andrews, you must take two of the following compulsory modules in second year:

  • The Roman Empire: explores the Roman empire with particular reference both to social, religious and economic changes as well as to political and military history.
  • Mediterranean Communities: examines the human settlement and material culture of the entire Mediterranean world throughout classical antiquity.
  • Early Greek Poetry and Philosophy: explores the diversity of early Greek thought at the crossroads of poetry and philosophy, starting with Hesiod’s struggle to reorder the world of gods and humans.
  • Culture and Thought in the Late Roman Republic: sets the main literary texts of the Late Roman Republic against the broader backdrop of Roman art, culture and social life. All prescribed texts will be studied in translation.

You must also choose one of the following Latin or Greek module pathways:

  • Latin in Progress 1 and 2: examine a wide range of texts in both prose and verse from the Republican and imperial periods, and enhance Latin language skills through regular language classes.
  • Latin Language and Literature 1 and 2(only available to students who have studied Latin to SQA Higher, GCE A-level or equivalent): build on World of Latin 1 and 2; examine a wide range of texts in both prose and verse from the Republican period, and enhance Latin language skills through regular language classes.
  • The Landscape of Greek Prose (B) and Poetry (B): examine a wide range of Greek prose texts and ancient poetry, and enhance Greek language skills through regular language classes.
  • The Landscape of Greek Prose (A) and Poetry (A)(only available to students who have studied Greek to SQA Higher, GCE A-level or equivalent): examine a wide range of Greek prose texts and ancient poetry, and enhance Greek language skills through regular language classes.

Students will spend either their third or fourth year in St Andrews. You will be able to choose from a wide variety of advanced options.

Here is a sample of Honours modules which have been offered at St Andrews in previous years:

  • Alexander the Great
  • Art of the Roman Empire
  • Greek Painted Pottery
  • Greek Rhetoric and its Representation
  • Greek Tragedy
  • Latin Oratory
  • Latin Philosophical Writing
  • Persia and the Greeks.

If at St Andrews for fourth year, students will have the opportunity to undertake a 10,000-word dissertation on a topic of their choice. This independent project enables you to develop key research skills which are desired by both prospective employers and by graduate schools offering postgraduate degrees.

The compulsory modules listed here must be taken in order to graduate in this subject. However, most students at St Andrews take additional modules, either in their primary subject or from other subjects they are interested in. For Honours-level, students choose from a range of Honours modules, some of which are listed above. A full list of all modules available for the current academic year can be found in the module catalogue.


Teaching format

Students at St Andrews for their first or second year will be taught through a mixture of lectures, seminars, language classes and set-text reading classes.

In third or fourth year, all teaching is delivered through seminars (10 to 20 students), with a strong emphasis on students’ own contributions in informal class discussion and in group or individual presentations.

In addition to these classes, students at St Andrews are expected to undertake substantial independent, but guided, work outside of the classroom. Typically, this will involve:

  • reading Greek or Latin texts
  • practising language and translation skills
  • reading journal articles and books
  • undertaking research in the library
  • working on individual projects
  • preparing coursework assignments and presentations
  • preparing for examinations.

At St Andrews, you will be taught by an experienced teaching team with expertise and knowledge of Greek, Latin, and Classics. Postgraduate research students who have undertaken teacher training may also contribute to the teaching of classes and seminars under the supervision of the module coordinator. 

You can find contact information for all Classical Studies staff on the School of Classics website.

In addition to your studies in the School, optional academic support is available through practical study skills courses and workshops hosted within the University.

The University’s Student Services team can help students with additional needs resulting from disabilities, long term medical conditions or learning disabilities. More information can be found on the students with disabilities webpage


Modules in Classical Studies at St Andrews are assessed by a mixture of coursework and written exams. Coursework includes:

  • research essays
  • literary criticism and commentary exercises
  • class tests, including unseen translation and grammar exercises
  • source analysis
  • learning diaries
  • oral presentations.

Examinations are held at the end of each semester during a dedicated exam diet with revision time provided beforehand.

The School aims to provide feedback on every assessment within three weeks to help you improve on future assessments.

Undergraduates at the University of St Andrews must achieve at least 7.0 on the St Andrews 20-point grade scale to pass a module. To gain access to Honours-level modules, students must achieve the relevant requisites as specified in the policy on entry to Honours and in the relevant programme requirements. Please note that some Schools offer qualified entry to Honours, and this will be clearly specified in the programme requirements. To find out the classification equivalent of points, please visit the common reporting scale webpage

Online visiting days

If you are interested in studying at St Andrews, join one of our online visiting days to learn about the town, find out about our courses and talk to University staff.


Our undergraduate visiting days for spring 2020 have now passed. Dates and delivery format for autumn 2020 will be announced in late spring.


Tuition fees for 2020 entry

BA International Hons £32,020 ($40,990 USD)

The tuition fee for all students on the BA (International Honours) is the same regardless of domicile, and will always be the pound sterling equivalent of the US dollar amount per year, as converted on 1 June preceding the start of each academic year.

If you commence your studies at the University of St Andrews, you will pay your tuition each year to St Andrews regardless of which institution you are studying at for that year.

Find out more about the cost of attendance.

Accommodation fees

Find out about accommodation fees for University accommodation.

Funding and scholarships

The University of St Andrews offers a number of scholarships and support packages to undergraduate students each year.

The BA International Honours Scholarship is available to students entering first year of the BA International Honours Programme commencing at St Andrews.

Further information regarding scholarships available to students on the BA International Honours can be found in the fees and funding section of the BA International Honours web page.


The Classical Studies BA (International Hons) provides international experience which will make students more competitive in a globalised job market. Students in Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology commonly pursue careers outside of the subject focus, including:

  • cultural resource management
  • foreign service
  • journalism
  • law
  • politics.

A Classics degree is highly valued for the skills that are built in critical thinking, research and broad understanding of the past.

The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students as well as a programme of events to assist students to build their employability skills. 

Student life

Students are fully involved in student life at both universities. Find out more about the student experience at William & Mary.

From the outset, the University of St Andrews offers an array of events and opportunities which result in a truly unique student experience. Students participate in a range of traditions, notably, the red academic gown and the academic family, where older students adopt first year students as ‘children’ and help guide them in a system of mentoring. These traditions and the choice of over 150 sports clubs and student societies to choose from ensures a community feel amongst students from first year onwards.

Students of Classical Studies may be interested in joining the following student societies:

  • The History Society hosts guest speakers on a variety of topics as well as social events including pub nights, garden parties and trips abroad. 
  • The Greek and Cypriot Society welcomes everyone with an interest in Greece, Greek history and culture.

The School of Classics is housed in Swallowgate, an attractive building which overlooks the sea and is close to the University Library and main quadrangle. Students will attend tutorials, seminars and individual meetings with tutors in this building, while lectures are held nearby in St Salvator’s quadrangle.

The Swallowgate building also houses the School of Classics’ Class Library. The Class Library contains books that supplement the extensive holdings in the main Library and closely support the School’s undergraduate programmes.

The town of St Andrews itself has lots to offer. As University buildings are located throughout the town, walking around you encounter ancient and modern buildings and areas of greenery and seaside which provide a rich, beautiful backdrop to learning. If you want a change of scenery, St Andrews' position near surrounding towns and cities such as Anstruther, Dundee and Edinburgh makes it ideal for getting to know more about Scotland.

Find out more about student life at the University of St Andrews.


University of St Andrews
St Katharine's West
The Scores
St Andrews
KY16 9AX

Phone: +44 (0)1334 46 2150

BA International Honours


Admission to the University of St Andrews is governed by our admissions policy.

Curriculum development

As a research intensive institution, the University ensures that its teaching references the research interests of its staff, which may change from time to time. As a result, programmes are regularly reviewed with the aim of enhancing students' learning experience. Our approach to course revision is described online (PDF, 72 KB).

Tuition fees

The University will clarify compulsory fees and charges it requires any student to pay at the time of offer. The offer will also clarify conditions for any variation of fees. The University’s approach to fee setting is described online (PDF, 84 KB).