Classical Civilization


Why study Classical Civilization?

Classical civilization is the study of the culture, history, language and literature of ancient Greece and Rome. Classical civilization majors develop language skills and enrich their lives through an interdisciplinary exploration of the Greek and Roman worlds. They study such things as mythology, philosophy, religion, politics and other areas where the ancient Greeks and Romans made decisive contributions to world civilization.

Admission Requirements

Classical civilization students possess an eye for detail, curiosity about languages -- including their own -- and love of history. Some well-known students, past and recent, are:

  • Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche and Sigmund Freud
  • Theodor Mommsen and Toni Morrison (both recipients of the Nobel Prize for literature)
  • Oscar Wilde, Erich Segal ("Love Story") and J.K. Rowling ("Harry Potter")
  • Garry Wills (Catholic cultural critic) and Archbishop Pilarczyk of Cincinnati
  • David Packard (of Hewlett-Packard) and Charles Geschke (founder of Adobe)
  • James Baker (former secretary of state)

Classical civilization students receive a strong liberal arts education that enables them to pursue a graduate degree in diverse fields of study including law, medicine and the ministry, and that allows them to move into a great variety of careers in industry, business and public service, as shown by our "baker’s dozen" list under success factors. Depending on the actual courses taken, they could also pursue careers in archaeology, historical preservation and museum work. (Those who want to pursue an academic career in Greek or Latin per se should consider our classics major, which focuses more heavily on language and literature.) Classical civilization students develop critical thinking, communication, reading and writing skills to a high level of competence and precision. Such skills are highly valued in the private and public sphere.

Graduates find careers in:

  • law
  • medicine
  • ministry
  • industry
  • business (advertising, public relations, publishing)
  • public services (administration, foreign service, journalism, libraries)
  • archaeology (consultant, researcher, teacher, tourism)
  • historical preservation (archives, historical societies)
  • museum work

The Department of Classics offers a minor in classical civilization as well as a minor in classics for undergraduates enrolled in any college of the university.

The Classics Department, along with the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services (CECH) offers a program that allows students to earn a teaching certificate in Latin and become secondary school teachers of Latin. More information can be found on the department's website.

The department also offers a certificate in ancient Greek. More information can be found the department's website.

Students in UC's College of Arts and Sciences enjoy many benefits afforded through study at a research-intensive institution ranked among the nation's top 25 public research universities. UC's urban, Tristate location offers exciting opportunities for global education, research and service learning, while its student-centered focus includes an 11:1 student-faculty ratio, a nationally recognized Center for Exploratory Studies and a highly successful First Year Experience program that teaches critical skills for first-year students and provides connections with important campus resources.

The Department of Classics at the University of Cincinnati offers a unique and dynamic environment, thanks to the generous patronage of the Semple Classics Fund, a bequest of Louise Taft Semple, established "for promoting the study of classics in an endeavor to make vital and constructive in the civilization of our country the spiritual, intellectual, and esthetic inheritance we have received from Greek and Roman civilizations."

Among other things, the Semple Classics Fund supports:

  • the John Miller Burnam Classical Library, the largest such library in the world
  • a large number of graduate students
  • a world-class faculty

It also awards Semple Scholarships to outstanding undergraduates in classics or classical civilization at the University of Cincinnati and the Semple Traveling Scholarships for a period of undergraduate study abroad, especially in Athens and Rome.

The Department of Classics has an international reputation as a leader in the field of Greek Bronze Age archaeology. It is particularly known for its excavations at Troy and Pylos under the direction of Carl Blegen. This tradition of excellence in archaeology continues today with current field projects at Pylos, Apollonia (Albania), and Episkopi-Bamboula (Cyprus).

To graduate from the UC College of Arts and Sciences, students must:

  • Earn at least 120 credits. This can include transfer credit, AP credit and free electives, but does not include preparatory coursework. Students who have met all other degree requirements must continue earning credit until the total number of their earned hours comes to at least 120.
  • Attain a 2.0 grade point average for all courses taken at the University of Cincinnati.
  • Be in good academic standing, that is, not on either academic probation or disciplinary probation or suspension.
  • Complete the residency requirement by earning at least 30 credits after matriculating into the university  .
  • Complete all of the requirements of at least one major (see major requirements above).
  • Complete the College Core Requirements.
  • Submit an application for graduation to the registrar's office by their posted deadline.

Admission to A&S is generally available for any off-campus student who was admissible directly from high school and has a cumulative 2.0 GPA and a 2.0 in the most recent institution.

Students who were not admissible directly from high school must have:

  • 24 semester (36 quarter) hours earned
  • at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA and a 2.0 at most recent institution

Transfer students should apply using our transfer student online application

University transfer scholarships are available to those who meet specific requirements and ANY admitted A&S transfer student might qualify for an A&S transfer scholarship. Deadlines and eligibility criteria are online via the previous links.

For any inquiries please contact us at

Admission to A&S is generally available for University of Cincinnati students enrolled in other colleges if they were admissible directly from high school, have a cumulative 2.0 GPA and a 2.0 in their most recent UC college.

Application Deadlines

While mid-year admission is possible, fall semester is generally the best time to enter the college, since many course sequences begin in that semester. Applicants to the UC College of Arts and Sciences who are enrolled or who were previously enrolled as degree-seeking students in A&S or in other UC colleges should apply for admission directly to A&S (in French West, 2nd Floor). All other applicants who wish to earn an undergraduate degree from A&S should apply through the Office of Admissions (3rd Floor, University Pavilion).

The University of Cincinnati and all regional campuses are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Contact Information

Susan Prince
410 Blegen Hall
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0026
(513) 556-3050

Find related programs in the following interest areas:

Program Code: 15BAC-CLCV-BA