Studies & Degrees in Classical Philology
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Classical philology is an excellent choice for those with a high interest in language, especially regarding Greek or Latin. Unlike philology, classical philology studies the linguistic aspects of Greek or Latin, and observes how these languages have survived and attempts to understand the historical and cultural aspects of the Greek and Roman worlds – mainly through literature. It is possible to take classical philology courses in other languages (such as Chinese) but the most commonly pursued course is in Greek and Latin.
College and universities provide the most well developed classical philology programs, at an associate, bachelor, master or doctorate degree level. Study abroad programs are also available through higher education institutions, and typically last several months – while few independent study abroad programs provide courses in classical philology.
It is extremely unlikely to find a competent course of study in classical philology anywhere aside from higher educational institutions. Workshops are rare, and only available through specific organizations and facilities.
If a student wishes to study classical philology and has the option to study at universities in Europe, then these locations are highly recommended. European universities may have closer access to original Latin or Greek texts, and provide the added benefit of often running programs in a Latin-based romance language.
Skills, Qualifications, and Prerequisites for Studies in Classical Philology
Colleges and universities will require any individual seeking to study classical philology to meet admission requirements to the institution. This usually includes earning a secondary school completion certificate or a passing score on an aptitude test or entrance exam. There are few other study options for classical philology – even workshops may be exclusive to graduates or employees.
It is preferred, though not necessary, that applying students speak a second language or multiple languages. It is often required, in the course of classical philology study, to take certain language requirements regardless. Students should also be able to work in a variety of environments, whether individually or on a team, and pay close attention to linguistic detail. A high ability to understand, interpret, and analyze information gleaned from language is essential.
Skills and Qualifications Acquired from Studies in Classical Philology
Many students pursuing classical philology studies will also take courses in second language, literature, communication or other linguistics studies. A course based solely in classical philology, however, will offer expertise in these basic areas:
- Greek and Roman history.
- Greek and Roman art and culture.
- Greek and Roman mythology, religion and philosophy.
- Greek and Latin literature.
- Latin language (from beginner to advanced).
- Greek Language (from beginner to advanced).
- Second language requirement (such as Spanish, Catalan, etc.).
- Linguistics (mainly in Greek and Latin).
- Language and research technology.
- Data interpretation, analysis and synthesis.
It is important to note that a basic study in classical philology does not typically include studies in archaeology.
Careers for Studies in Classical Philology
A vast majority of graduates in classical philology will pursue careers as educators or professors. They may also find employment in museums, research facilities or educational programs. Depending on their accompanying studies, classical philology students can become archaeologists, historians, translators, journalists, consultants, librarians or even (with enough study) leading experts in classical language fields.