The Department of Classics offers a rigorous yet flexible BA program, giving students strong grounding in the languages and cultures of ancient Greece and Rome while also accommodating a variety of interests in and approaches to the ancient world. Classes are small and students work closely with their professors and instructors.
The department offers undergraduate courses in ancient Greek and Latin language and literature at all levels, as well as a variety of courses on the history, civilization, religion, art, archaeology, philosophy, law, and mythology of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds.
Classics majors are also encouraged to spend a semester or summer overseas in Italy or Greece, and also have the option of working toward a five-year BA/MA co-terminal degree.
Learning Goals for Classics Majors
Upon graduating with a BA degree in classics at Johns Hopkins, students will:
- Read at least one of the two ancient languages (ancient Greek or Latin) at at least an intermediate level of competence: that is, to understand, and demonstrate that understanding by translating accurately, moderately difficult ancient texts in the relevant language(s); and to identify and effectively use appropriate lexical and grammatical tools as necessary
- Be able to analyze and interpret the products of cultural activity from the ancient Mediterranean world (principally written texts and visual or material objects) in their original contexts
- Express their analyses and interpretations in precise, organized, reasoned, persuasive language, in writing or orally as necessary
- Be able to locate, read, understand, and incorporate into their written or oral analyses modern scholarship, in at least two modern scholarly languages, on whatever question they are addressing. These two modern languages are normally English and either French, German, or Italian
- Have had the opportunity to pursue a substantial independent research project under faculty guidance. Normally this project takes the form of a BA honors thesis; for students enrolled in the concurrent BA/MA program, it takes the form of a master’s thesis.