Classical Studies is an interdisciplinary minor designed to provide a coherent framework for undergraduate studies in literatures and cultures from earliest known history to the 5th century AD. The minor will expose students to different aspects of ancient civilizations, particularly those of ancient Greece, Rome, and early Christianity, and will help students to draw connections between skills and knowledge learned in a range of disciplines. Classes included in the minor are drawn from six departments throughout the university including English, Foreign Languages, History, Philosophy and Religion, and Political Science.
Besides introducing students to specific areas of inquiry into the ancient world, the minor is meant to hone three important transferable skills that students can bring to other areas of study and to their future careers. These are: (1) analysis (2) comparison and (3) debate.
- Analysis: By researching the history and cultures of antiquity, students will learn to draw conclusions from disparate sources of information. They will learn about the problems of translation and interpretation when it comes to the written records of antique cultures and languages. They will also learn how to weigh written records against other kinds of artifacts such as archaeological remains.
- Comparison: By delving into multiple cultures, students will learn about the complexities and challenges that come with cultural difference.
- Debate: One of the most valuable aspects of studying the ancient world is the insight it can give a modern student about the history of ideas. With more knowledge about the distant past, students will understand where certain concepts originated and ultimately become more confident and effectve in debating issues that effect their own lives.