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Postgraduate Study - PhD and Research Degrees

Classics and Ancient History - 2025 entry

Degrees

Degree types explained

  • MPhil/PhD Classics and Ancient History
  • MA by Research Classics and Ancient History
Duration

Degree duration details

Start date

September, January or April

Location Streatham Campus
Study modes

Study mode details

Full time and part time
Distance-based research available Study mode details

Overview

  • Vigorous research culture spanning the breadth of the Classical world
  • Wide range of world-leading research expertise, much of which falls within the remit of our three research centres
  • Research degrees are currently available at the level of PhD, MPhil and MA by Research
  • Attentive and supportive expert supervision
  • Access to an extensive research library

View 2024 Entry

How to apply

Apply online

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Classics and Ancient History research

Contact

Web: Enquire online

Phone: +44 (0)1392 72 72 72

Contact

Web: Enquire online
Phone: 0300 555 6060 (UK)
+44 (0)1392 723044 (non-UK)

We are 4th in the UK for world-leading Classics research

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Top 50 worldwide for Classics and Ancient History

QS World University Subject Rankings 2022

Top 10 in all major UK university league tables for the subject

Proactive Classics Society with successful student tutor scheme

Research overview

Our vigorous research culture spans the breadth of the Classical world with methodological strengths literature, language, history, archaeology and philosophy.

We offer a wide range of world-leading research expertise, much of which falls within the remit of our three research centres. We welcome applications for postgraduate research across all our specialisms.

Prospective PhD candidates are encouraged to explore the interests of our academic staff in more detail and should make informal contact with a potential supervisor before submitting a formal application.

Research degrees are currently available at the level of PhD, MPhil and MA by Research. Enrolment for a PhD usually follows after a year of being registered for an MPhil, following a successful upgrade involving the submission of sample work. There are also opportunities for MA by Research students to upgrade to MPhil status if they wish. The MA by Research is suited to dedicated students who are comfortable with independent research with a focused topic already in mind.

Research centres

Our research is characterised by world-leading and internationally excellent research projects over a wide range of sub-disciplinary fields.

Supported by a £1.25 million Leverhulme grant, the Centre for Hellenistic and Romano-Greek Culture and Society is rapidly becoming internationally recognised for the study of the history and culture of the post-classical Greek world.

The Centre for Connectivity in the Roman World examines how connectivity contributed to the shaping of distinctive cultures, economies and societies spanning the breadth of the Roman world and its immediate neighbours, focusing on novel historical, archaeological and digital approaches to human mobility and material culture.

The Centre for Knowledge in Culture in Antiquity and Beyond brings together research in specialised areas including ancient medicine, ancient science and the scientific imagination, metaphysics, philosophy, ethics, sexual knowledge, military strategy and political thought, and on ancient technical writings from across the Classical world.

The Exeter Centre for Classical Reception was established in the summer of 2019 to acknowledge and build on the extraordinary expertise in the field of classical reception across various Humanities disciplines at Exeter.

How to apply

Applying for MPhil/PhD study

Students applying to enter directly into the MPhil/PhD programme would normally be expected to have a Masters degree with Merit or equivalent in Classics and Ancient History, or other relevant qualifications such as a doctorate in another subject. 

Applying for MA by Research

The MA by Research is suited to dedicated students who are comfortable with independent research with a focused topic already in mind. Applicants should have a proven track-record of producing excellent research at undergraduate level, either in the form of an overall first class degree in Classics and Ancient History, or an upper-second class degree with a first-class dissertation (or equivalent). They should also obtain prior approval on a research proposal from their prospective supervisor in the department of Classics and Ancient History before submitting an application. Students should also have an undergraduate degree in Classics and Ancient History, or a cognate discipline e.g. Archaeology.

Requirements for international students

If you are an international student, please visit our international equivalency pages to enable you to see if your existing academic qualifications meet our entry requirements.

English language requirements

International students need to show they have the required level of English language to study this course. The required test scores for this course fall under Profile E: view the required test scores and equivalencies from your country.

PhD and Research Programme application process

The information below applies to self-funded PhD, MPhil and Masters by Research applicants, but if you are applying for a funded PhD studentship, please follow the specific instructions related to that application.

  • Pinpoint your PhD research area
  • Investigate whether this area is available at Exeter
  • Ensure that you meet our English language entry requirements (international students only)
  • Construct and refine your PhD research proposal
  • Approach your potential supervisor(s)
  • Apply online

PhD studentships pages can be accessed in our Funding lists on Finance tabs under each research topic page, and are also available from the Postgraduate Research search results pages on this site, on the PhD projects tab.

Full details of the application process can be found on our Apply now webpage.

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Fees and funding

Tuition fees per year 2024/25

For those studying for more than one year, our fees are expected to increase modestly in line with Consumer Price Inflation measured in December each year. More information can be found on our Student Finance webpages.

Tuition fees per year 2023/24

For those studying for more than one year, our fees are expected to increase modestly in line with Consumer Price Inflation measured in December each year. More information can be found on our Student Finance webpages.

Our Postgraduate Funding webpage provides links to further information. If you are considering a PhD in the future, in addition to University of Exeter funding, we have been successful at securing postgraduate funding for PhD research through our Funded centres.

Current available funding

Supervision

  • Attentive and supportive expert supervision through regular meetings, including the provision of constructive feedback on draft written work.
  • You will be assigned a first supervisor, second supervisor and a pastoral tutor.
  • Co-supervision involving expertise from other departments and colleges at Exeter (and other universities as part of the AHRC SWW DTP) is possible, if relevant to the needs of your project.
  • Supervisory meetings are expected roughly once every month.
  • As well as advising on the content of your thesis, supervision can also help provide further guidance on the upgrade processes, and the preparation of papers for academic conferences and publication (where appropriate).

Find a supervisor

Facilities

Our research is primarily supported an extensive research library, which includes a substantial collection of both physical and digital books, journals and resources.

Two members of the Department with research interests in digital classics are based within the Digital Humanities Lab, a state-of-the-art facility for undertaking digitally-enabled research and teaching. The facility houses two photography labs, an audio-video lab and a 3D makerspace, as well as a seminar room equipped with a nine-screen video wall. The facility offers a programme of events throughout the year including training sessions in digital skills for postgraduate researchers and staff, hackathons, and a seminar series. 

Careers

We are committed to ensuring you receive high quality research supervision to maximise your potential and prepare you for a rewarding career.

Postgraduate students have access to the wide range of support offered by our Career Zone. In addition, postgraduate research students can access our Postgraduate Researchers' Programme, which covers a range of topics to help you to succeed during your research degree and to act as a springboard for your research career.

Graduate destinations

Below are some examples of initial jobs undertaken by Classics and Ancient History postgraduates who studied with us in recent years.

Please note that, due to data protection, the job titles and organisations are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

Graduate destinations

Below are some examples of initial jobs undertaken by Classics and Ancient History postgraduates who studied with us in recent years.

Please note that, due to data protection, the job titles and organisations are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

Job title Organisation

Education Officer
International Public Relations Specialist
Classics Teacher
Lecturer
Adjunct Instructor
Lecturer
Teaching Fellow
International Public Relations Specialist
Lecturer
Academic issues manager

Department of Education
Hokkaido University, Japan
Plymouth College
Seoul National University
Art Institute of Calefornia, LA
Stellenbosch University, South Africa
University of Edinburgh
Hokkaido University, Japan
University of Exeter
University of Exeter Guild of Students

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