This MA programme is unique in the Netherlands in the breadth of its subject matter, the historical periods covered and the multidisciplinary approach of its study. From the beginning of history in Egypt and Mesopotamia up to the Medieval texts in Neo-Latin, Coptic or Hebrew. Characteristic for the MA is its focus on reading ancient texts in their original languages, and discussing the different interpretations that the texts allow.
The Leiden programme distinguishes itself from other similar master’s programmes by offering expertise in the world of the Hebrew Bible, emerging Christianity, ancient Mesopotamia, Anatolia, Egypt (ancient, antique and late-antique) and Greco-Roman Antiquity, all seen from a multidisciplinary perspective.
The programme introduces a wide variety of research methods, all of them well-represented in the research carried out at Leiden University. The combined study of sources of different nature is a particularly exiting research approach, because it may lead to new interpretations of the past. Traditional philology with its intimate knowledge of languages and texts, while still indispensable, is enriched by social history and economic theory, comparative literature, the study of religion in an anthropological perspective and, of course, archaeology and material culture.
If you are interested in a career in teaching, you can apply for the Dutch taught teacher-training MA at the ICLON Graduate School of Education after graduating from the master’s programme. To be admitted, you need to have a degree in both a master’s ánd bachelor’s in this specific discipline or a closely related programme. You have to speak fluent Dutch to follow the course, and there are some additional entry requirements.
You have a wealth of other options besides teaching. The study programme will enable you to use your knowledge of classical antiquity to examine or explain texts and cultural phenomena from both antiquity and later periods. Graduates use their specialist knowledge within museums, libraries, antiquarian bookshops, publishing houses, or booksellers. Other graduates start their career at cultural or governmental organisations or enter into business.
PhD track in Classics
Although we would advise any student serious about a PhD to follow a research master’s programme – which will prepare you directly for PhD research –, it is possible (under certain conditions) to start a PhD research on the basis of this master’s programme.
Positions you could hold after your studies
Press & PR Officer at the National Tourist Board for Wallonia and Brussels
Legal Editor at Lipman & Wolf, LLP, an immigration law firm
Project Assistant Document and Information Management at Breinstein, a secondment agency
Policy Officer on education
Conservator classical antiquity
Education Officer at a museum
Project co-ordinator of exhibitions
Teacher of classical languages
Some figures about graduates of Classics
How successful are they in finding a job?
95 % found a job within six months.
96 % found their first job at professional or university level.
100 % held a position at professional or university level when the study was carried out.
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