Classics Major

Program Requirements

  • Total units required: 24

Classics follows the Arts & Sciences minimum grade requirement of C- or better for courses that apply to the major. Students may apply up to a maximum number of 9 credits to their major earned through study abroad and/or transfer credits.

Required Courses

Students must complete 24 units; at least 18 of these units must be at the 300 level or above, and at least 6 of these 18 units must be in Greek or Latin at the 400 level or above. An additional 6 units must be in Greek or Latin at the 300 level or above.

The specific program will be determined by the student and the advisor, in accordance with the student's interests. Those who are able to enter the program at the advanced level because of previous language study will normally take 15 or more advanced units in language. Competence in both Greek and Latin — although strongly encouraged and necessary for those planning to go on to graduate study in Classics — is not required. Majors, especially those planning graduate work, should enter the Honors Program if time permits.

Please consult the sections below regarding the required capstone experience and additional information.

Required Capstone Experience

All Classics and Ancient Studies majors are required to complete a capstone experience in which they can synthesize what they have learned in their Classics courses. Except in unusual cases (e.g., a junior year abroad experience), the capstone experience should occur during the student's senior year. Among the most common capstone experiences are the following:

  • A senior honors thesis (two semesters of research and writing concluding in a long paper)
  • A one-semester research project
  • A Classics study abroad experience
  • Special work within a 400-level seminar

Students should consult with their advisor to see what kind of capstone experience will work best for them.

Additional Information

Study Abroad

Study abroad for a semester in Rome or Athens is an option many Classics and Ancient Studies majors select. Washington University is a member of the Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies (ICCS) consortium. Majors and minors regularly attend the one-semester ICCS "Centro" program in Rome. Others choose to attend a semester at the College Year in Athens (CYA) program. Students interested in these programs should consult Professor Luis SalasSome other study abroad programs will also allow students to earn major credit in Classics or Ancient Studies.

Senior Honors

Students who are planning to pursue graduate work should enter the honors program, and other students are encouraged to consider this program as well. To apply, a student must have junior standing, an average of an A- or better in Greek and/or Latin courses (for Classics majors) or in Classics courses (for Ancient Studies majors) numbered 300 or higher, an overall grade point average of 3.65 or higher, and permission of the chair. A formal application should be submitted in April of the junior year. A thesis of substantial nature and length is prepared and written under the direction of a member of the department, beginning during the fall semester of the senior year. A final draft is submitted to the director no later than February 1 of the senior year, and a final copy is submitted to the full thesis committee before Spring Break of the senior year. Credit of 6 units is awarded upon presentation of an acceptable thesis. These credits will be in addition to the 24 credits of the major; those students who complete senior honors will, therefore, graduate with a total of 30 credits in the major.

Contact Info

Contact:Luis Alejandro Salas