Undergraduate study - 2021 entry

MA Italian and Classics

UCAS code: QR83

Duration: 4 years

Delivery: Full-time

School: Literatures, Languages and Cultures

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Study abroad

Introducing MA Italian and Classics

One of Europe’s most creative and distinctive civilisations, Italy has a fascinating and influential history. Studying Italian and Classics helps us understand the world in which we live now, as well as shedding light on the past.

On this joint programme, you will learn the modern Italian language in the context of Italian culture, past and present, including leading works of literature and cinema. You will also explore the highly influential scholarship and literature of the classical world that gave rise to Western society.

In Years 1 and 2, you will choose option courses drawn from a broad list of disciplines in addition to your core subjects. In your Honours years (Years 3 and 4), you will study research-led courses selected on the basis of your own interests in both Italian and Classics.

You do not need to have studied Italian previously to take our programme, and you can opt to take a Latin, Greek or non-language pathway through Classics study. Intensive language tuition, and a year spent studying or working in Italy, will teach you how to read, write and speak the Italian language to a high standard, including in translation.

One of the most attractive characteristics of this programme is its flexibility. This means that in Years 1 and 2, you will choose option courses drawn from a broad list of disciplines in addition to your core subjects of Italian and Classics.

This may enable you to change the focus of your programme in your honours years (Years 3 and 4).

Year 1

You will study the foundations of the Italian language, both written and spoken. You will also take courses on Italian history, literature and cinema.

You will select two courses from Classics, studying either the Greek and/or Roman World, or Greek, or Latin. These will influence the courses you can take in further years, placing you on a Greek, Latin or non-language pathway for Classics.

You will also choose from a wide range of option courses offered by the University of Edinburgh.

Year 2

You will continue to study the Italian language and Italian literature, history and culture from the Middle Ages to the present day. Some of our Year 2 courses are taught in Italian to help prepare you for your Italian experience on the year abroad.

You will study two Classics courses, following your pathway in Greek or Latin, or choosing from non-language options such as ancient history, classical art and archaeology, and classical literature in translation.

As in Year 1, you will also choose option courses from a wide range offered by the University of Edinburgh. These include a great selection in European languages and cultures, allowing you to study literature, film and theatre in themed and comparative contexts.

Year 3

You will spend Year 3 in Italy, turning classroom learning into living engagement with Italian culture. Whether studying or working (for example, as a teaching assistant in a school), our graduates have told us how much the year abroad has benefitted their broader life experience and skills, as well as their understanding of the Italian language and culture.

During your year abroad, we will aim to ensure your experience is as beneficial as possible to your final year, as well as to your wider language learning, cultural awareness and skills development.

You will complete prescribed work in both Classics and Italian, for example taking an e-learning language course which will count as part of your Year 3 mark and prepare you for your final year Italian courses.

Year 4

You will develop advanced language skills in spoken and written Italian and choose from a wide range of specialist courses in both Italian and Classics. You will also complete your dissertation or long essay.

Programme structure

Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.

To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme structure (2020/21)

Our facilities

Teaching takes place in and around the University of Edinburgh's Central Area in a world-leading festival city.

Twinned with Florence, Edinburgh is bursting with cinemas, theatres, galleries, libraries and collections, including fantastic collections of Italian and classical art in the National Galleries of Scotland, and a large collection of Italian manuscripts and books in the National Library of Scotland.

The University has excellent computing and audiovisual resources, support services and social spaces, including many in the School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures and School of History, Classics and Archaeology.

You can join student societies for both Italian and Classics, and contribute creative writing in Italian to the online magazine, Babble. We also stage an annual Italian play.

Study abroad

You will spend Year 3 (a minimum of 30 weeks) in Italy. This is your chance to immerse yourself in Italian culture, and to develop your broader life experience and skills towards life after university.

What are my options for going abroad?

How will I learn?

Courses are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and computer-assisted learning.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by a combination of exams and coursework, which may include a Year 4 dissertation.

Programme details

Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.

To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme details (2020/21)

With its long and rich history, including the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites of any nation, Italy is a cultural and scientific powerhouse of the Mediterranean. It is a founding member of the European Union, a member of numerous international institutions including the UN, NATO, and the Council of Europe, and is an advanced economy with the eighth largest nominal GDP in the world.

Studying Italian and Classics to degree level, especially when you spend a year abroad as part of your studies, gives you a set of skills and life experiences highly prized by employers.

Our previous graduates have gone into careers as varied as:

  • Publishing
  • Banking
  • Journalism
  • Teaching
  • IT

Some graduates are working for international aid organisations or within the European Commission, the diplomatic service and the United Nations. Others have entered the travel, tourism, arts, cultural and heritage sectors, where training in Classics is especially useful.

There are also opportunities to continue studying, with Year 4 in particular developing the research skills you will need if you choose this path. There are many graduate-level programmes available, particularly in the UK, US and of course Italy itself.

Standard entry requirement

The standard entry requirement is:

  • SQA Highers: AAAB-ABBB by end of S5 or AAAA-AABB/ABBBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: AAB - ABB.
  • IB: 39 points with 666 at HL - 34 points with 655 at HL.

Minimum entry requirement

The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:

  • SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
  • A Levels: ABB.
  • IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.

More information for widening access applicants

Required subjects

The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:

  • SQA: Highers: no specific Higher subjects required. National 5s: a language other than English at B and English at C.
  • A Levels: no specific A Level subjects required. GCSEs: a language other than English at B or 6 and English at C or 4.
  • IB: HL: no specific subjects required. SL: a language other than English at 5 and English at 5.

Additional requirements

Language requirement

For degrees that have a subject requirement of a language other than English, students may not use their own native language to meet this requirement. In these instances, English or an alternative language other than native will be acceptable.

Find out more about entry requirements

International applicants

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.

Entry requirements by country

International Foundation Programme

If you are an international student and your school qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to the University you may be eligible for admission to this degree programme through our International Foundation Programme.

International Foundation Programme

Mature applicants

We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.

Mature applicant qualifications

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

SQA, GCSE and IB

For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:

  • SQA National 5 at C
  • SQA Standard Grade at 3
  • SQA Intermediate 1 at A
  • SQA Intermediate 2 at C
  • GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
  • Level 2 Certificate Grade C
  • IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified*:

  • IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition) 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components.

We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.

English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

English language requirements

*(Revised 27 April 2020 to include TOEFL-iBT Special Home Edition.)

This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.

It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.

Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for MA Italian and Classics

Additional costs

For your compulsory residence abroad in Year 3, we give you a wide range of options. Your costs will depend on where you decide to go, and how you spend your time.

Universities outside the EU may charge you a fee for courses but we will reimburse you for this, provided the course has been approved. You will be informed about the cost implications as you plan your year abroad, during Year 2.

Funding

For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.

Fees and funding