The Catholic University of America

Undergraduate Programs: Introduction to Majors

Welcome to the undergraduate section of the Department of Greek and Latin! Our department has three different undergraduate majors available. Each engages deeply in the study of the ancient world, but does so with a different level of involvement in the ancient languages, ranging from learning both Greek and Latin to needing no Greek or Latin at all.

  'Tower of the Winds,' Roman Agora, Athens
  'Tower of the Winds,' Roman Agora, Athens

The major in Classics consists of six or seven courses in Greek beyond the 102 level, six or seven courses in Latin beyond the 102 level, four courses in ancient history and art history, and the senior project courses. This is the degree program that the department recommends for students who already know that they are planning professional careers in classics, whether in the university world, in archaeology, or in museum work.

The major in Classical Humanities allows two options: Greek or Latin. Each of these requires competence in one ancient language and in selected areas of classical civilization, as well as the senior project courses. Both options allow for the possibility of studying the other language through at least the intermediate level, if desired. For students who wish to pursue careers as high school Latin teachers, the program in Classical Humanities (Latin option) provides the necessary language and cultural preparation, and may be combined with a minor in Secondary Education offered by CUA's Department of Education.

The major in Classical Civilization consists of 12 courses in Classics and related fields. Required courses include classical mythology, Greek art and architecture, Roman art and architecture, two courses in ancient history, Greek literature in translation, Latin literature in translation, and the senior project courses. Elective courses can be taken in classics or in Greek or Latin beyond the 102 level, but students need not study either ancient language. Selected courses from other departments including courses in ancient philosophy, early Christianity, art history and anthropology may also be counted as electives in the program.

To be formally accepted as a major in Classics, a prospective junior must have completed at least GR 101-104 and LAT 101-104 or the equivalent. To be accepted as a major in Classical Humanities, a prospective junior must have completed at least 101-104 or the equivalent in the major language. To be accepted as a major in Classical Civilization, a prospective junior must have completed at least CLAS 211 and two of the following courses: CLAS 205, 206, 312, 313, 317, 318.

In all three programs, students are required to have a 2.5 GPA in all department courses and a 2.0 GPA in their other courses. All departmental majors must also in their senior year complete an independent project.

The departmental undergraduate handbook provides a convenient collection of requirements and opportunities for our majors, and is updated every academic year.