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Visual and Material Culture of Ancient Rome (MA) (2021 Entry)

Picture of Classics students

  • Course Code
  • P-V302
  • Course Type
  • Postgraduate Taught
  • Qualification
  • MA
  • Duration
  • Full-time: 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 years
  • Location of Study
  • University of Warwick

Warwick's Classics and Ancient History Department have designed this MA to focus on the history and material culture of Ancient Rome. Students will go to Rome during April and May for a programme of site visits and seminars.

Our Visual and Material Culture of Ancient Rome MA courses provide a thorough preparation in research techniques if you are considering further research in the fields of art, numismatics or epigraphy, or are working on an historical topic that involves the consideration of material evidence. It will also provide a detailed understanding of ancient visual and material culture to prepare you if you are aiming to enter a career in museums and curatorial work, or in education.

For the Visual and Material Culture of Ancient Rome MA, one module is taught by the British School, Rome*, focusing on the history and material culture of Ancient Rome.

*Admission is subject to the discretion of the British Schools and cannot be guaranteed by Warwick.

Core Modules

  • Approaching Ancient Visual and Material Culture
  • Dissertation
  • Module at British School, Rome
  • A language module - either Master's Language Training or Advanced Ancient Language (optional core)

Optional Modules

Previously, a selection of the following options have been offered:

  • Art of the Ancient World
  • Ancient Numismatics
  • Classical Epigraphy


  • 10, two-hour seminars held weekly or fortnightly in terms one and/or two and assessed by a 5,000 word essay on a topic of your choice, decided upon my negotiation with a member of academic staff
  • Most seminars will comprise student-led presentations and discussion; others will take place in museums
  • The BSR course is taught via site and museum visits and lectures, with students carrying out independent research in the BSR library
  • Teaching methods used for language modules vary depending on the level, but run across all three terms

Contact Hours

For this course, the contact hours are 6 hours per week.

This includes face-to-face guidance to direct the students to identify their research topics and do their research. Additional hours are provided during the time in Greece.

Class Sizes

The classes of the taught modules comprise 2-10 students and up to 15-20 for Language classes. This size allows teaching to be tailored according to the students’ interests.


A 5,000 word essay on a topic of your choice, decided upon by negotiation with a member of academic staff. The dissertation will be a piece of work 15,000 - 20,000 words and built on the research carried out whilst on the programme.

Skills from this degree

The degree is designed to introduce students to major issues in the study of ancient material culture, and to key methodologies and approaches. It will help to develop students’ intellectual skills in the following areas:

  • Ability to select and respond to particular methodological approaches when dealing with material culture
  • Understanding of the ways in which material culture has been studied since antiquity
  • Ability to present a structured chain of argument drawing together evidence into a cohesive whole
  • Ability to select and apply appropriate problem-solving methodologies
  • Ability to conduct independent research and analysis

It will also help to develop the following key transferable skills:

  • Written and oral communication skills
  • Organisational Skills
  • Ability to evaluate intellectual progress
  • IT skills – word processing

Minimum requirements Applicants will need to have achieved or be expecting to achieve a high 2:i undergraduate degree in Classics/Ancient History/Archaeology or a relevant subject to be considered for entry

English language requirements Band B
IELTS overall score of 7.0, minimum component scores of two at 6.0/6.5 and the rest at 7.0 or above

International Students
We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications. For more information please visit the international entry requirements page.

For up-to-date information concerning fees, funding and scholarships for Home, EU and Overseas students please visit Warwick's Fees and Funding webpage.

Additional Course Costs

This course may also include additional costs.


The Department runs an annual funding competition which makes fees awards across PGT and PGR courses.

Typical career paths chosen by our graduates include jobs in museums and the heritage sector, education, publishing, the civil service and further research.

Our department has a dedicated professionally qualified Senior Careers Consultant offering impartial advice and guidance together with workshops and events throughout the year. Previous examples of workshops and events include:

  • What can you do with a Classics and Ancient History degree?
  • Careers in the Creative Industries
  • Warwick careers fairs throughout the year
  • Next steps after your classics degree…hear from alumni
  • Networking for Classics students

There are a number of different ways to visit the University of Warwick throughout the year. We host bespoke PG visits, where you can talk directly with your chosen department and explore our campus through a personalised tour. Some departments also host their own events and open days, where you can learn more about your department or course of study. To find out more about all of these opportunities, visit our Postgraduate Visits page.

Every year an open day lunch and/or evening event is organised for anybody interested in applying to do a Master's Course in Classics and Ancient History. We will explain our Taught Master's courses in Ancient Literature and Thought and Ancient Visual and Material Culture, as well as the MA by research. Please email classics@warwick to reserve a space and for further details and to obtain information on bursaries.