Graduate Programs

The University of Western Ontario offers graduate programs in Classical Studies leading to both M.A. and Ph.D. degrees, with opportunities to specialize in philology/literature, archaeology/art, or ancient history.

M.A. Program Overview

M.A. students enroll in a two-year program that covers five terms (including the writing of a research paper in the summer between their first and second years). The first year is course-based, while the second year may be course-based or thesis-based, on consultation with the graduate chair. M.A. students typically receive Teaching Assistant positions, benefit from a student-professor mentorship program, and thrive in a close-knit community.

Ph.D. Program Overview

The Ph.D program offers students greater opportinity for advanced study, generally after a successful M.A. It is structured by a student's progression through a series of Milestones: for the first two years, Ph.D candidates enroll in graduate courses, with time in the second year to prepare for comprehensive exams. Following these exams, students tackle the special field exam, thesis prospectus, and the research and writing of their dissertation during years 3 and 4. Ph.D students typically receive Teaching Assistant positions during their first four years of study, benefit from a student-professor mentorship program, and thrive in a close-knit community. 

Dedicated Resources

The relatively small size of our program allows for a high degree of faculty/student interaction and offers our students the opportunity to work closely with internationally renowned scholars, especially in the areas of Greek and Latin literature, Roman social and cultural history, and Roman archaeology. The library resources at Western are also outstanding, with over 200 periodicals in Classics (print and online) and a first-rate collection of Classical texts and research resources. Students and faculty at Western regularly participate in colloquia and conferences both locally and internationally, and our yearly Speaker's Series hosts visiting speakers from across Canada, the U.S., and abroad. 

Comprehensive Course Offerings

Western regularly offers graduate courses in the major authors of Greek and Latin literature, Greek and Roman Art and Archaeology, and Greek and Roman society and culture. A list of past courses is available online. Both M.A. and Ph.D. students also enroll in our “Core Course” during their first year: a survey course that aims to introduce major scholarly approaches and questions of the discipline of Classics through the examination of selected texts and evidence from archaeology and material culture. Students are exposed to the standard scholarly literature for and critical approaches to three major genres: History and Historiography; Archaeology and Material Culture; and Literature, in a broad sense.

For more information on Western’s M.A. or Ph.D. program, please continue to browse our website, or contact the Graduate Chair.