Postgraduate study

Classics

Awards: PhD

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding available

Programme website: Classics

Our classics research group is one of the most significant clusters of scholars in the UK, working in all areas of the discipline: Greek and Latin language, literature and thought, Greek and Roman history from classical Greece to late antiquity, and Greek, Roman, and Byzantine literature and history.

Major research interests include: Homer and early Greek poetry; Greek philosophy; Greek drama; Hellenistic and Roman poetry; classical Greek and Hellenistic history; ancient Persia, the Roman republic; Cicero; Roman imperial history; Greek literature of the Roman empire; late Roman literature and history; Christianity in the Roman empire; ancient slavery; ancient law; epigraphy; the city of Rome; gender in antiquity; the reception of classical antiquity; Greek sculpture; mythology in art; Roman and Byzantine archaeology.

Our research culture centres on the weekly research seminar which welcomes distinguished speakers in all fields of classics, one of the most high-profile and best-attended events of its type in the UK. Every year we host major international conferences (including the biennial conference on a Greek topic endowed by the Leventis Foundation, which is organised by an eminent visiting professor), as well as a wide range of one-day events.

You will be assigned two supervisors who will provide expert academic guidance on your chosen research topic. You will meet regularly to discuss your progress and research plans, as well as drafts of your thesis/dissertation chapters, conference papers and potential articles.

In addition to individual supervision, you will also have access to research training and postgraduate seminars.

Our building offers you exceptional, modern facilities, resources and study spaces, in a stunning location.

Our postgraduate students have access to:

  • A dedicated study and computing lab with printing, copying and scanning facilities, overlooking the Meadows, one of the city’s best-loved green spaces.
  • Two research rooms, shared with undergraduates, housing some of our impressive book collections and a small selection of computing facilities.
  • A large common room overlooking the Meadows, shared by students and staff.
  • Our PhD study room. Subject to available desk space, you may apply after semester one of your first year.
  • A number of small-scale teaching rooms, well-equipped with facilities such as data projection and smart boards.
  • Exhibition areas, filled with artefacts and artwork from our collections.

All of our facilities are in addition to the multiple libraries and computer labs provided across the University’s estate. Many of our rooms overlook the Meadows.

Our location, right in the heart of Edinburgh, means you will be based close to the city’s cultural attractions and facilities, including a wealth of libraries, archives, museums and galleries, which provide uniquely rich support for the disciplines we teach.

Recent graduates have used our research programmes as a springboard for careers in postdoctoral research or academia internationally.

(Revised 7 November 2017 to provide more comprehensive information). A UK 2:1 honours degree in a relevant discipline and a relevant masters degree with an overall mark of at least 65%, or US GPA 3.4 or other international equivalent.

We may also consider your application if you have relevant professional experience; please check with your potential supervisor before you apply.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

All applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:

  • an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Degrees taught and assessed in English must be no more than two and a half years old at the beginning of your degree programme. Language tests must be no more than two years old at the beginning of your degree programme.

Find out more about our language requirements:

  • School of History, Classics & Archaeology
  • Graduate School Office, Room 2.29, William Robertson Wing
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

You must submit two references with your application.

You must submit a research proposal demonstrating your knowledge of your field of research, which will be closely scrutinised as part of the decision-making process.

Two supervisors will be appointed to work with you on the project.

If necessary start dates outwith September and January are available. Please begin your application using the closest date and contact the Graduate School to discuss the matter.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of History, Classics & Archaeology
  • Graduate School Office, Room 2.29, William Robertson Wing
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG