This research-focused programme is designed to enhance the abilities of classics and ancient history students to conduct research at a high intellectual, methodological and theoretical level. You will receive training and guidance on conducting a piece of original research and its written presentation from a specialist in your area of interest on the programme team. The course will offer focused preparation for doctoral research. It will also present specific preparation for a range of professional careers that require highly-developed research and writing skills. You will also gain experience in how to present and discuss papers and posters at conferences.
As part of the intensive research training on offer, you will engage critically and creatively with classical texts, objects and images, and with their reception in later periods of history. The knowledge and experience of working with a variety of media will underlie your own original and innovative studies of the classical past. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to receive focused instruction in relevant subject areas for example epigraphy, numismatics and material culture. To further bolster your classical research skills, we offer tuition in both Latin and Ancient Greek, knowledge of which underpins a successful career in classical academia. As well as developing your practical research skills, the course will provide a deep understanding of the theoretical concepts that inform academic enquiry in classics and ancient history. Using your improved knowledge, understanding and critical awareness of the research methods, you will be in a position to contribute to the national and international research profile of classical studies at Roehampton and to take advantage of opportunities for co-operation and collaboration in the UK and beyond.
You will be introduced to some of the most important theoretical positions and methodologies in classical scholarship. Whilst some of the theories have arisen from the work of classicists and ancient historians themselves, others have been imported from other disciplines. All of them seek to address the agenda of classical scholars not merely to describe the ancient world, but to explain it. Relevant scholarly texts and sources related to this interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary nature will be studied, introducing you to the specialised skills you will need as a researcher.
With your grounding in the theoretical premises of classical research, you will begin your dissertation research project. This represents substantial independent research into a topic in classical studies or ancient history, and can be undertaken in a broad range of areas. The research project provides an opportunity for you to explore and train your research skills, pursuing a specific problem or topic in considerable depth. This project is a great opportunity to prepare for a three- to four-year PhD programme before committing to it.
A third important aspect of the course is the delivery of language and commentary skills in Latin and Ancient Greek. Students can take modules in one or both of the ancient languages which are prerequisites for successful study of original ancient documents. The languages are offered from beginner level to the study of an ancient author in depth.