Call us free on : 0800 772 3464

0800 772 3464


Price: £325

The ancient societies of Greece and Rome have fascinated subsequent ages for thousands of years. This course will explore the ancient world and show you how it has shaped and contributed to the world of today.


A Level Classical Civilisation

Course code: H408

Delivery method: Online

Course duration: 24 Months

Entry requirements: No prior qualification needed

Award achieved: OCR A Level Classical Civilisation

Awarding body: OCR

The ancient societies of Greece and Rome have fascinated subsequent ages for thousands of years. This course will explore the ancient world and show you how it has shaped and contributed to the world of today.

It’s rare to find this subject on the standard school syllabus and this course is a fantastic way to fulfil a passion, or build a grounding for exploring classics, history or archaeology at university level. You will study classical sources learning to understand the world from primary texts first hand.


This A Level in Classical Civilisation explores the Homeric odyssey as well as the Greek tragedy; you will also get the opportunity to study art and architecture as well as Virgil. This A Level is an excellent companion A Level to subjects like Art, Drama, Theatre Studies, English literature, Government and Politics, History of Art and Philosophy.

Upon successful completion of the exams (as administered by OCR), you will have achieved an internationally recognised OCR A Level Classical Civilisation qualification.

Skills gained

  • The development of critical and evaluative skills useful to higher education.
  • Creating a meaningful foundation for the study of classical culture beyond A Level.
  • Deepened enjoyment of the study with a good deal of choice.
  • Understanding classical civilisations in a wider context and it’s interaction with other subjects.

Course outline

This course is divided into the following units:

The World of the Hero (H408/11)
This is a compulsory component consisting of an in-depth study of:

Homer’s  Odyssey

• concept, values and behaviour of a hero, including the ideas of timē (honour) and kleos (reputation)
• how the different societies depicted in the Odyssey are characterised and portrayed
• characterisation of major and minor characters
• nostos (homecoming)
• disguise
• recognition
• fantasy and the supernatural
The social, cultural and religious context
• power of fate
• role of the immortals
• relationship between immortals and mortals
• justice and revenge
• hospitality and guest friendship (xenia)
• family
• relationships between men and women, parents and children
• part played by women in the epic and their position in society
• role of slaves

and Virgil’s Aeneid

The heroic world:
characterisation and themes
• concepts, values and behaviour of a Greek and Roman hero
• characterisation of major and minor characters
• role of Aeneas in Rome’s Imperial destiny
• portrayal of war
• the portrayal of different nations; Trojans, Greeks, Carthaginians,

This component is solely focused on the study of literature in translation.


Culture and the Arts

  • Greek Art (H408/24)

• functions of free-standing sculpture including:
• cult statue, votive, grave marker, memorial
• purpose and positioning of different types of architectural sculpture
• metopes, Ionic friezes and pediments
• shapes and uses of pots, including:
• storage vessels, mixing pots, water pots, jugs and drinking cups,
cosmetic and athletic equipment

Components in this group involve the study of visual and material culture. In all except
Greek Art this is combined with the study of literature in translation.

Beliefs and Ideas

  • Greek Religion (H408/31)

The nature of the Olympian gods

• The Olympian deities and the traditional understanding of their nature:
• anthropomorphism and the scope of their power
• the reciprocal relationship between gods and mortals
• the significance of Homer and Hesiod for Greek ideas about the
• The different roles, contexts and functions of the Olympians as reflected in their common epithets (e.g. Zeus Agoraios, Zeus Phratrios, Zeus Philios and Zeus Herkeios) and the extent to which these were thought of as separate, distinct entities
• the role and nature of hero cults
• the extent to which worship of the gods and heroes were Panhellenic, localised or personal

Components in this group involve of an area of classical thought, in combination with either the study of literature in translation or visual/material culture.

Oxford History to the Classical World

J. Boardman, J. Griffin, & O. Murray, Oxford University Press

ISBN: 978-0198721123

The Art of Odyssey

H W Clarke, Bristol Classical Paperbacks

ISBN: 978-1853990626


The OCR A Level Classical Civilisation qualification is gained once all 4 exam papers are successfully completed. The first two exams make up the AS Level, the second two comprise the A2 Level and together they form the A Level. These exams are administered by the OCR and assessment centre details will be included with your course, as well as practice papers so that you are more than prepared for your assessments.

In addition, there will be a number of tutor marked assessments (TMAs) to ensure that you have a thorough understanding of the course materials, with the tutor sending comments to guide you through any areas of potential difficulty, as well as a range of self-assessments that are indicators that you understand the materials as you work through them. These are for your own information, and do not need to be shown to your course tutor.

Method of study

Online and Paper Based

The course is primarily an online course using a Learning Management System (LMS).

You can also choose to have a paper version of the course sent to you.

The online course has many features that cannot be printed such as embedded videos, forums and interactive tests.

The course includes Tutor Marked Assessments which you access and submit through the online system.

Tutor support

Our A Level courses come with tutor feedback and support by email for 24 months. They will mark your TMAs and provide valuable guidance through any trickier parts of the course whenever you need it. You will also receive a study guide to help you with all aspects of studying, essay writing and general student skills.

If you have any questions call us on 0800 772 3464 or Text us on 0777 121 2929