Interpreting the Ancient World

Subject ANCW30017 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

On campus

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 1.5-hour lecture per week and a 1-hour tutorial for 11 weeks.
Total Time Commitment:

8.5 hours per week: Total time commitment 102 hours


This subject is only available to students completing the final year of a major in ancient world studies, or those in the Graduate Diploma in Arts (Classical Studies and Archaeology). Completion of 37.5 points of level 2 subjects in ancient world studies and enrolment in the Bachelor of Arts or Graduate Diploma in Arts.



Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:

Students who have passed 'Palaces and Priest Kings' or 'Age of Heroes: The Aegean Bronze Age' under the code 107-004 are not permitted to enrol in this subject.

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Assoc Prof Louise Hitchcock, Dr James Chong-Gossard


A/Prof Louise Hitchcock

Dr James Chong-Gossard

Subject Overview:

Ancient World Studies encourages a broad approach to the interpretation of the past, integrating both texts and material remains to understand past cultures, thinking, and behavior. These remains consist of fragmentary archaeological remains, including the ordinary debris of daily life, luxury items, art, architecture, and texts. Texts, which are also sometimes fragmentary, include the literary, historical, political, and religious documents of the Classical world and the ancient Near East in translation. This subject will draw on students’ previous academic experience of these diverse categories of data in teaching them appropriate methods and theories drawn from literary studies, anthropology, archaeology, and art history required to promote an integrated and balanced approach to the combined interpretation of textual, symbolic, and archaeological evidence in both historic and in prehistoric periods. Students will also be given practical advice in preparing for the future, whether they are planning a non-academic career, or for honours and post-graduate study.


Students who successfully complete this subject will:

  • Have a unified knowledge of and experience of classical studies, art, and archaeology.
  • Gain knowledge of methods and approaches for studying literary and historical texts, archaeological remains, and ancient art.
  • Gain a practical foundation in critical thinking, writing, and communication for undertaking employment, research or graduate study pathways.


A journal assignment of 250 words 10% (due Week 4 of semester), a class paper/essay of 2000 words (including a 7-10 minute presentation) 45% (presentations during semester, and papers due at end of semester), a take-home examination of 1750 words 35% (due during the examination period).

Hurdle requirement: students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials in order to pass this subject. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day; after five working days, no late assessment will be marked. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

Hitchcock, L.A. (2008) Theory for Classics. London: Routledge.

A subjects reader will also be avaialble.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be skilled in critical thinking and analysis.

  • possess effective written communication skills.

  • have an understanding of social, ethical and cultural context.

Links to further information:

Interpreting the Ancient World is the capstone subject for students taking the major in ancient world studies

Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Ancient World Studies
Classical Studies and Archaeology Major

Download PDF version.