BA Ancient History

About the Course

Alexander Sarcophagus, Sidon

The University can offer its students a broad range of History programmes covering several millenia, from the Pharoahs of Ancient Egypt through to the collapse of the Soviet Union, with an awful lot in-between.

Our History provision spans different regions and continents of the world,  and approaches the past in different ways, be that through the lens of economics, politics, social formations, cultural constructions, literary heritage, religious beliefs or material cultures. Whether your own interest is to study across this broad range of periods, or whether it is to focus upon your particular interest in the Ancient, Medieval, Early Modern or Modern worlds, you will take a programme that combines infinite fascination and relevance to the world around you, with the acquisition of the right set of transferable skills with which to enter the jobs market.

Students at Eleusis, Fieldtrip to Athens (2010)

If you want to know about the history of Ancient Greek and Roman societies, then a degree in Ancient History is for you. The Ancient History scheme allows you to study a wide range of modules covering not only fascinating figures like Alexander the Great, but also basic aspects of everyday life, such as warfare and the economy.

In the first year, modules can be taken on a wide range of periods and themes; in the second and third years, the School offers specialised modules on all aspects of Greco-Roman history so that you can gain in-depth knowledge in areas of particular interest to you. Options are also available to study select modules in the wider Faculty of Humanities, for example in Egyptology, Chinese History or Theology. The culmination of the degree is the dissertation, where you are free to pursue a topic of your choice in line with our range of research and publication specialisms.


The School is proud of the wide range of assessment methods used on the course, such as essays, presentations, wikis, web pages and reflective reports, so that the assessment reflects the student’s performance as a whole. Students are also given the opportunity to participate in the wider research community and are always welcome at our monthly research seminar series, which feature speakers from around the world.

We are one of the largest Schools on campus but this does not mean that you will get lost in the crowd - there is a strong sense of community amongst our students and staff. The ratio of staff to students means that we can offer an excellent student support network. Every student has a personal tutor, and the School’s dedicated Support Liaison Officer and First Year Tutor are always on hand should extra support be needed.

Alexander Sarcophagus, Sidon


BA (Single Honours)


Course Length
3 years full-time; part-time study available

Entry Requirements

Whilst our general offer ranges from 240-260 UCAS points, usually over 3 A levels, each individual case is taken on merit. Of greater importance are your personal statements, references and your potential. You may be invited to interview to help us better assess this.

Career Opportunities

  • Media and Publishing
  • Business and Commerce
  • Teaching
  • Library and Information Services
  • Further Study

There is no one path for our Ancient History graduates. The traditional routes of teaching, museum and heritage, the civil service and research – governmental, academic and media – are still pursued by our graduating cohort.Ancient Ephesus

However, the programme of embedded employability offered by the School of Classics at Trinity Saint David ensures that our Ancient History graduates have the skills set and confidence to explore a wide variety of career paths.

Indeed, our graduating students have explored options from outdoors sports instructors to prison superintendents, from the Armed Forces to careers in the medical environment, with a good selection of entrepreneurial spirits applying what they have learnt to the creation of their own companies.

Taking all that they have gained from studying Ancient History with us and combining it with a dedicated Careers Service, Ancient History graduates from Trinity Saint David are equipped to follow their passions wherever they may lead.


School of Classics


Lampeter Campus

Typical modules

  • Defenders, Conquerors, Vanquished; Greek and Hellenistic History
  • Sparta: an Extraordinary City
  • Armies and Navies: Studies in Ancient Warfare
  • From Village to Empire: an Introduction to the History of Rome
  • The Rise of Rome: Studies in Roman Imperialism
  • Religions in Antiquity

Key Features

  • Opportunity to study the political, military, social and cultural history of the ancient world
  • Modules ranging from archaic Greece to Late Antiquity
  • Local and international fieldtrips, as well as study abroad opportunities with our partners at Bologna (Italy), Tarragona (Spain) and Hobart and William Smith (USA)
  • Innovative teaching methods
  • The opportunity to develop your own research project
  • Excellent support network

Programme Specification

Educational aims

On graduating with a Single or Joint Honours degree in Ancient History, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate an awareness of the main problems and issues bearing upon the history of the ancient world, and awareness of and critical engagement with aspects of ancient society, religion and philosophy; be able to analyse them critically and creatively and be able to evaluate the similarities and differences with our own culture;
  • demonstrate familiarity with the major ancient historians sufficient to be able to offer comment and reasoned analysis of their respective historiographical aims, methods, use of sources and their position within the historiographical tradition, and analyse in general terms the complex interrelationship between history, literature, philosophy and ideology in the context of one or more ancient societies;
  • evaluate, analyse and synthesise a wide range of viewpoints on problems of interpretation and evaluation, and adopt a variety of critical approaches to the subject drawn from different disciplines within the subject area;
  • synthesise complex and diverse arguments and ideas lucidly and coherently, both orally and in writing.

Programme Outcomes

The Learning Outcomes of the modules in the Single and Joint Honours programmes in Ancient History will enable students to:

Subject-specific abilities and forms of knowledge

  • have acquired an understanding of another culture, focused on its history and political and social organisation; demonstrated a critical engagement with it; and developed an informed sense of the similarities and differences between it and our own culture;
  • be familiar with an appropriate and diverse range of primary materials, e.g. literary, philosophical and historical texts, art objects, archaeological evidence, inscriptions, newspapers, sound recordings, films and television;
  • understand a range of viewpoints on problems of interpretation and evaluation, and be able to adopt a variety of critical approaches to them drawn from different disciplines within the subject area;
  • have acquired, through an intellectually disciplined process, an analytical knowledge of Greek and Latin, appropriate to the level attained.

General abilities, qualities of mind, transferable skills and intellectual virtues: predominantly cognitive

  • a significant degree of autonomy, manifested in self-direction, self-discipline and intellectual initiative, both in learning and study and in management of the time devoted to them;
  • to engage in analytical and evaluative thinking about texts, sources, arguments and interpretations, independently estimating their relevance to the issue in question, discriminating between opposing theories, and forming judgments on the basis of evidence and argument;
  • to marshal arguments lucidly, coherently and concisely both orally and in writing.

General abilities, qualities of mind and transferable skills: predominantly practical

  • to present material orally in a clear and effective manner, using audiovisual aids when appropriate, and relating it to the concerns of the audience;
  • to present material in written form, with discrimination and lucidity in use of language, professional referencing, and clear and effective layout, including as appropriate tabular, diagrammatic or photographic presentation;
  • to work creatively, flexibly and adaptably with others;
  • to write and think under pressure and to meet deadlines;
  • to deploy a range of basic information technology (IT) resources effectively, such as word-processing the text of an essay with footnotes and basic formatting, using email, using Microsoft PowerPoint to make presentations, searching databases and text-files, and locating and exploiting websites.

Further Information

Amphorae at Roman villa in Oplontis

Joint Routes Available:

  • BA Ancient History and Anthropology - LV61
  • BA Ancient History and Classical Studies - QVW1
  • BA Ancient History and Greek - QVT1
  • BA Ancient History and History - V112
  • BA Ancient History and Latin - QVQ1

Major/Minor Honours

Combined Honours

  • BA Ancient History, Anthropology, Education Studies - VLL1
  • BA Ancient History, Archaeology, Education Studies - VVL3
  • BA Ancient History, Classical Studies, Education Studies - VQL1
  • BA Ancient History, History, Education Studies - VVL1
  • BA Ancient History, Religious Studies, Education Studies - VVL2
  • BA English, Ancient History, Education Studies - QVL3
  • BA Philosophy, Ancient History, Education Studies - VVL5

Assessment methods

A degree in Ancient History involves a wide range of assessment methods. In addition to traditional gobbet work, essays and exams, you will be assessed through bibliographic exercises, presentations – oral and powerpoint based, at both individual and group level – creation of abstracts, reflective reports, in-house conference papers, article reviews, take home exams, group wikis, creation of project plans and, of course, the dissertation.

This breadth of assessment type creates variety in the student experience, allowing you to explore the subject in different ways, and also embeds within the Ancient History programme the specific employability skills desired, indeed required, by employers today.

Learning and Teaching methods

Providing our students with a range of learning opportunities and excellent teaching is the primary aim of the School of Classics. We employ innovative methods and approaches that enhance our students’ learning throughout their studies.

All our degrees are modular. Full-time students are required to take 120 credits at each level of study. A full-time student will normally take 6 modules a year, each worth 20 credits – 3 per semester. Part-time students are required to take between 40 and 60 credits a year.

All our undergraduate modules are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and workshops. Lectures offer students the opportunity to be introduced to specific aspects of a module. Seminars are opportunities for group-discussion and debate. Workshops allow students to explore aspects of a module in an autonomous fashion, often in a practical manner, under the lecturer’s supervision.

On average undergraduate students spend about 12 hours per week in class and about 30 hours per week in class and assignment preparation.

 Our students enjoy the use of an excellent suite of subject-specific resources, both electronic and hard-copy at the Learning Resources Centre. All our modules are taught with the support of innovative e-learning techniques via our Virtual Learning Environment.

The School of Classics makes great use of its VLE: we podcast and/or vidcast every lecture, post all powerpoints and handouts, and utilise the space for links, discussions and group work.

Our VLE is a live forum through which students and staff can interact, through which students are able better to revise and explore difficult topics and through which students are better able to access the electronic resources available in the virtual world.Etruscan stone sculptures at Chiusi

All our modules are taught by specialists and active researchers. The influence of our research on our teaching offers our students the opportunity to learn from the best in the subject and follow the latest scholarly trends and discoveries, whilst our independent study modules allow you to explore your passion in its entirety.

There are also opportunities for study abroad.

Studying Ancient History with us here at Trinity Saint David means research-led teaching and research-active learning in an environment that allows for both full use of the virtual world and the personal approach of expert tuition.