Concentrations

A concentration is the principal field of study in an undergraduate career (equivalent to a "major" at other institutions).

The Department of the Classics offers two concentration tracks:

  • Classical Civilizations
  • Classical Languages and Literatures

The basic requirements for each track are 12 courses. The two differ primarily in the distribution between courses in Greek and/or Latin and courses requiring only English. No prior knowledge of a classical language is necessary to pursue a Classics concentration, but students will acquire some language proficiency in each track. Both tracks allow students a great deal of choice in shaping their own plan of study.

The following table is a simplified version of the requirements; interested students should also peruse Sample Plans of Study. For complete details, please see Classics in "Fields of Concentration."

Classical Civilizations

  • Basic requirements: 12 courses.
  • Two courses providing a broad introduction to Classical civilization, normally Classical Studies 97a and 97b.
  • Four courses in Greek and/or Latin.
  • Classical Studies 112 Regional Studya multi-disciplinary and problem-based in-depth survey of a region of the ancient Mediterranean world, to be taken at any stage in the Concentration, provided that both 97a and 97b have been completed or the second of these is being taken concurrently.
  • Three additional courses from among those with the prefix BYZGRK, CLASSIC, CLASARCH, CLASPHIL, CLS-STDY, GREEK, LATIN, MEDLATIN, or MODGRK on courses.my.harvard.edu, or from the approved list of cross-listed courses. Further courses may be considered for cross-listing by petition to the DUS.
  • One semester of Classics 98, a small-group tutorial emphasizing the development of research skills (must be taken for a letter-grade).

Note: Two courses counted for concentration may be taken Pass/Fail or, in the case of approved Freshman Seminars, SAT/UNS.

Additional requirements for Honors eligibility

  • A senior thesis, together with two semesters of the senior tutorial, Classics 99.

Classical Languages and Literatures

  • Basic requirements: 12 courses.
  • Two courses providing a broad introduction to Classical civilization, normally Classical Studies 97a and 97b.
  • Six courses in Greek and/or Latin, at least two of which must be numbered 100 or above (H and K are considered 100-level), and at least one of which must be a course in the history of Greek or Latin literature, numbered 112a or 112b (or equivalent in the case of Byzantine/Modern Greek and Medieval Latin).
  • Two additional courses from among those with the prefix BYZGRK, CLASSIC, CLASARCH, CLASPHIL, CLS-STDY, GREEK, LATIN, MEDLATIN, or MODGRK on courses.my.harvard.edu, or from the approved list of cross-listed courses. Further courses may be considered for cross-listing by petition to the DUS.
  • One semester of Classics 98, a small-group tutorial emphasizing the development of research skills (must be taken for a letter-grade).

Note: Two courses counted for concentration may be taken Pass/Fail or, in the case of approved Freshman Seminars, SAT/UNS.

Additional requirements for Honors eligibility

Either a senior thesis, together with two semesters of the senior tutorial, Classics 99 or two additional courses in Greek or Latin, both of which must normally be letter-graded with a grade of A- or better:

  • Candidates for Honors: Any 100-level course in Greek or Latin, plus one of the following courses: Latin H, K; Greek H, K.
  • Candidates for High Honors: Two of the following courses: Latin H, K; Greek H, K.
  • Candidates for Highest Honors: Both Latin K and Greek K.