Admission Requirements

Masters Degree

Candidates must satisfy the admission requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. For students wishing to pursue traditional Classics degrees, the requirement of both Classical languages at the Honours level may sometimes be relaxed, for example when a student has taken a Combined Honours course involving only one Classical language. In such cases, at least two courses in the second language will be taken in addition to the MA course proper. Students focussing mainly on ancient Philosophy, Greek patristics, Byzantine philosophy and theology, Latin patristics, and Latin medieval philosophy should see the statement above. In certain programs, knowledge of other ancient languages may be required.


Students contemplating studying for a Masters degree should count on spending at least a full year to complete their courses and thesis. It typically takes two full years.

Eighteen credit hours in the general area of interest are required. It may be possible to substitute a reading and research course for a seminar. Candidates are expected to attend graduate seminars related to their thesis throughout their period of full-time study. A thesis, usually between 100 and 150 pages, is required.

Doctor of Philosophy degree

The normal admission requirement is the MA in Classics or equivalent preparation. The minimum residence requirement for such candidates is two years, during which time they must satisfy the general requirements of the Faculty, and, in addition, must demonstrate competence in the languages (ancient and modern) necessary for research in their particular fields of study.


All candidates are expected to have a broad understanding of all aspects of Classical culture. Within the general area of Hellenic-Hellenistic Studies, each candidate is expected to concentrate, with the guidance of a supervising committee, in one of three fields: History, Literature, and Philosophy.

In consultation with their supervising committee, PhD candidates will take such courses as are deemed necessary preparation.

Before submitting a thesis, the candidate must pass a comprehensive examination (written and oral) in his or her special field. This will normally be taken towards the end of the second or beginning of the third year of study.

PhD students should consult the Department's Graduate Studies Handbook, the Graduate Calendar, and obtain a copy of the departmental regulations governing the PhD program for further information.