Ph.D. Requirements

Ph.D. Requirements: Classics

Course Requirements

A minimum of 72 units in classics, history (Greek and Roman) or related subjects in art history, religious studies or philosophy are required.

• Classics 201 (Proseminar)
• Classics 211, 212, 213 (History of Greek and Latin Literature)
• Classics 210 (Latin Prose Composition)
• Classics 240 (Greek Prose Composition)
• 1 Greek or Roman History course (if not fulfilled beforehand) from the following list: Classics 150, Classics 151, Classics 233, Classics 234, History 111ABCEQ, History 112ABCQ, History 211AB, History 213AB.
• 6 seminars

Paper Requirements

Students are asked to submit a copy of each graded paper to the Graduate Advisor as soon as possible after the completion of the course. A paper submitted to satisfy the paper requirement must have received a grade of at least a B+ from the instructor in the course for which it was written.

• 2 short papers (2000 word minimum, excluding quotations)
• 6 seminar papers written while in the Ph.D. program (3000 word minimum, excluding quotations)
 • Significant Paper on a topic or area that will contribute to the dissertation

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Examination Requirements

Author/Genre Exam in language of dissertation
More information…

sample author/genre exam

Greek sight translationsample Greek sight exam
Latin sight translationsample Latin sight exam
• 2 modern language translation exams 1) in German 2) in French or Italian
• Greek and Latin Literature Qualifying Exam with both written and oral components

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sample qualifying exam

Advancement to Candidacy

Student advances to candidacy after completing all the course, paper, and exam requirements. The qualifying examination (oral and written components) will be scheduled only after completion of all other requirements.

Reading Lists

For general information about reading lists, click here.

Greek Reading List

Ph.D. Program Rules and Procedures

The sight translation examinations will be given in the Winter quarter only. Ph.D. Students must attempt in the Winter quarter any sight exam not already passed. If a student’s performance on the Winter examination, although not passing, was sufficiently strong to warrant a second attempt, the faculty may grant permission to attempt the examination again in the Spring quarter.
Passages on the sight translation examinations are not necessarily drawn from the reading list. Examinations must be finished in 4 hours. Each exam consists of 6 passages, 15-25 lines long, 3 in prose and 3 in poetry. All passages on the examination must be attempted or the examination will not be graded. In order for an examination to be judged as of ‘passing’ level, 4 of the 6 passages must have been translated at the ‘passing’ level or higher.
At some point before taking the area examinations, Ph.D students should confer with the Graduate Advisor to select committee members to reflect the student’s likely area of specialization. This committee also serves as the Oral Qualifying Examination committee and so should include both Hellenists and Latinists.

Three courses is the normal load for a graduate student each quarter, but the minimum number of courses each quarter is two courses plus Classics 597 units (Preparation for Comprehensive Exams) to equal 12 units per quarter.
All courses must be taken for letter grade, except Classics 201, 211-212-213.
No student may take a 596 course (Directed Reading and Research) in a language, unless s/he has passed the sight examination in that language. Courses numbered 596, 597, 598, and 599 can only be taken S/U.

On advancing to candidacy, each Ph.D. student has a Dissertation Committee which may or may not be different from the Examination Committee. The Dissertation Committee consists of four members; three must be members of the UC Academic Senate and at least two (including the chair or co-chair) must be members of UCSB’s Classics Department. It has been the practice of the Classics Department to ask a professor from allied UCSB departments or from Classics departments at other universities to serve on the Dissertation Committee. The outside member of this Committee is chosen by the student after previous consultation with the Chair of the Dissertation Committee.
Candidates writing their dissertations, who are in residence and receiving financial support, should submit a report on their progress each year to the Chair of their Dissertation Committee. This report should be submitted before financial award decisions are made (i.e. normally by the middle of Spring quarter).
The Oral Defense of the dissertation is administered by the student’s Dissertation Committee. It is a public event (i.e. the faculty and anyone interested may attend).

Progress toward the Degree
Students are encouraged to complete all coursework and exams within two years of entering post M.A. studies.
The department sets 7 years as the normative time for completion of the Ph.D. from time of entry into a graduate program. Students are required to advance to doctoral candidacy within four years after entry into a graduate program.
Students’ performance in the program is reviewed toward the end of each year by the Graduate Advisor and the Chair of the student’s committee. The student may expect a frank and fair evaluation, with specific recommendations as appropriate.

The UCSB Classics Department also offers two innovative and flexible emphases within the graduate program for those with special interests in ancient history or contemporary methods of literary interpretation.