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Classics

Postgraduate Courses

Honours, Masters and Doctoral programmes in Classical Studies or Latin or Greek

Convenor: Professor D. Wardle

The Classics Section offers three postgraduate degrees (called ‘graduate’ degrees at American and some British universities) taken in Classical Studies or Latin or Greek:

  • a one-year honour’s degree
  • a two year master’s degree and
  • a doctoral degree

Honours (Hons) Level

In the the English system, undergraduate degrees are differentiated either as ‘pass degrees’ or as ‘honours degrees’, the latter denoted by the appearance of ‘(Hons)’ after the degree abbreviation. In South Afica (like universities in Australia, New Zealand, Scotland, and some in Canada) an Honours degree requires an extra year of study and is a ‘designated’ postgraduate degree.

An Honours degree requires the completion of four taught courses (see the list of electives) and a compulsory research essay (SLL4000H) which should not exceed 15,000 words in length. Each taught course is weighted at 20% and the research essay at 20%. A full-time candidate is expected to complete the requirements for the degree within one year.


Masters (MA) Level

Masters (MA) Applicants can choose to complete either:

  • a coursework Masters or
  • a research Masters degree (MA).

The coursework Masters is structured very much like the Honours degree and requires the completion of four taught courses (at least two courses per year of study, see the list of electives) and a minor dissertation (SLL5000W). Each taught course is weighted at 12.5% and the minor dissertation at 50%.

Applicants for a research Masters must have the required academic background and submit an acceptable research proposal for which supervision is available. Research degrees are encouraged where the field of research is clearly defined, the student wishes to concentrate on a specific research topic and has demonstrated the ability to do so. Examination is by dissertation/thesis alone.

A full-time candidate is expected to complete the requirements for the degree within two years. Unless otherwise specified, the dissertation component of a coursework Masters degree shall be not more than 25,000 words in length, while that of a research Masters degree shall be not more than 50,000 words in length.


Doctoral (PhD) Studies

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is a research degree on an advanced topic taken under supervision. Examination is by thesis alone. A Doctoral thesis should not exceed 80,000 words in length. Candidates must be registered for at least two consecutive years, although registration for a year at another university may be accepted as part of that period. Although no maximum period of time is prescribed for completing a thesis, the university stipulates a “reasonable time”, which is generally taken to be five years.