PhD program

The Department of Greek and Roman Studies is committed to the exploration, elaboration, and preservation of the cultures of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds as the foundation of its doctoral program. The goal of the program is to prepare classicists who will produce new contributions to our discipline and who will be able to bring knowledge of the cultures of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds into a productive dialogue with contemporary issues and concerns. Our students will provide evidence of critical engagement with relevant scholarship, demonstrate proficiency in ancient Greek and Latin and two modern languages other than English, and complete a doctoral dissertation that constitutes an original contribution to the field. Our students will be provided with opportunities to learn the most effective teaching methods and will also begin to establish themselves as professionals by delivering papers at conferences and through travel as necessary for their research.

In addition to the traditional classical sub-disciplines of Classical Archaeology, Ancient History and Classical Languages and Literature, the Department offers four core thematic research areas: 1) Interconnectivity in the Ancient Mediterranean; 2) Technology in the Ancient World; 3) Social and Economic History; and 4) Gender and Identity Studies.

Interconnectivity in the Ancient Mediterranean focuses on the interplay of cultures around the Mediterranean that helped to create the different phases of ancient Greek and Roman culture. Ancient Greece and Rome were influenced by contact with the various other cultures in Asia Minor such as the Phrygians, Lydians, Lycians, Hittites, and Akkadians among others; in Egypt; around the Black Sea; and in Israel, Spain, and northern Africa.

Technology in the Ancient World is a theme that integrates archaeologists and historians in research concerning the development of technological innovations in the ancient world. This theme is currently a topic of high interest in the discipline.

Social and Economic History also unites our Greek and Roman archaeologists and historians. The social and economic history of the ancient Greek and Roman worlds is a crucial element in understanding politics, laws, and trade in ancient Greece and Rome, and as such can provide us with important tools for examining our own similar structures.

Gender and Identity Studies in Ancient Greece and Rome reflects the interests primarily of our literary scholars, all of whom focus on the construction of identity, whether in terms of gender or cultural appropriation. Our department houses two of the very few classical scholars in Canada who work specifically on sex and gender, a topic of considerable current interest. We also have expertise concerning cultural appropriation in both literary and material forms.

Admission Requirements

Applicants are normally required to hold a BA and MA degree in one of the several areas of ancient Greek and Roman Studies, and are expected to have focused experience in the area relevant to their intended topic of research and appropriate command of the ancient languages of Greek and Latin. Students will be evaluated in accordance with these criteria on a case-by-case basis at admission by the Departmental Graduate Committee. Students entering the PhD Program with an MA may, if deficient in some respect, be required to take and pass with at least a B+ (6.0) one or more of the courses prescribed for the University of Victoria MA in Greek and Roman Studies while enrolled in the PhD program.

Normally there will be one entry point in the academic year, in September. Applicants will normally be expected to have achieved a minimum GPA of 7.0 (or equivalent) in their Master’s program, to have strong letters of reference, to present a clear statement of research interests, and to submit an example of scholarly work. All applications will be reviewed by the Departmental Graduate Committee (chaired by the Graduate Advisor) and students will only be accepted into the program if there is at least one faculty member able, interested, and available to supervise the proposed topic of research.

How to Apply for Graduate Admission

Submission of Documents

Program of Study

The program of study leads to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy with a specialization in one of the following areas: Classical Languages and Literature; Ancient History; Classical Archaeology. Courses information.

The PhD program with specialization in Classical Languages and Literature comprises a seminar on Research Methods (GRS 500 - 1.5 units), a course of readings (GRS 601A and GRS 601B – 1.5 + 1.5 units), a seminar (GRS 611, 612 or 613 – 3.0 units), a topical field (GRS 621 – 3.0 units) and the candidacy examination (GRS 693 – 3.0 units), which are normally completed in four semesters of continuous study, followed by the dissertation (GRS 699 – 18.0 units), which is normally completed in six semesters of continuous study. Prior to defending the dissertation prospectus (part of the candidacy exam) students will be required to demonstrate reading knowledge of German and either French or Italian in written examinations. A student who has completed GRS 500 or its equivalent at the MA level will not be required to take GRS 500.

The PhD program with specialization in Ancient History comprises a seminar on Research Methods (GRS 500 - 1.5 units), a course of readings (GRS 602A and GRS 602B – 1.5 + 1.5 units), a seminar (GRS 611, 612 or 613 – 3.0 units), a topical field (GRS 622 – 3.0 units), and the candidacy examination (GRS 693 – 3.0 units), which are normally completed in four semesters of continuous study, followed by the dissertation (GRS 699 – 18.0 units), which is normally completed in six semesters of continuous study. Prior to defending the dissertation prospectus (part of the candidacy exam) students will be required to demonstrate reading knowledge of German and either French or Italian in written examinations. A student who has completed GRS 500 or its equivalent at the MA level will not be required to take GRS 500.

The PhD program with specialization in Classical Archaeology comprises a seminar on Research Methods (GRS 500 - 1.5 units), a course of readings (GRS 603 – 1.5 units), a course in Archaeological Methods and Theory (GRS 605 – 1.5 units), a seminar (GRS 611, 612 or 613 – 3.0 units), a topical field (GRS 623 – 3.0 units) and the candidacy examination (GRS 693 – 3.0 units), which are normally completed in four semesters of continuous study, followed by the dissertation (GRS 699 – 18.0 units), which is normally completed in six semesters of continuous study. Prior to defending the dissertation prospectus (part of the candidacy exam) students will be required to demonstrate reading knowledge of German and either French or Italian in written examinations. A student who has completed GRS 500 or its equivalent at the MA level will not be required to take GRS 500.

Readings in the Greek elements of Classical Literature (GRS 601A) and Ancient History (GRS 602A), Archaeological Methods and Theory (GRS 605) and the seminars GRS 611, 612 and 613 will be regularly scheduled in the fall and students will normally complete these courses at the end of the fall semester of their first year. In the second semester readings in the Latin elements of Classical Literature (GRS 601B) and Ancient History (GRS 602B), readings in Classical Archaeology (GRS 603) and topical field courses (GRS 621, 622 and 623) will be scheduled. In some circumstances the order of 611-3 and 621-3 may be reversed, with students taking the topics courses in the fall and the seminars in the spring: seminars and topical field courses will be offered as required so that a student will have the opportunity to complete the coursework in his/her chosen area of specialization during the first year of study. The exact program of studies will be negotiated among the supervisor, the Department Graduate Committee and the graduate student prior to the beginning of the first year. Students who have satisfied these requirements will proceed to prepare for the candidacy examination (GRS 693), which will normally be examined and completed at the end of the fall semester of the second year of study. Candidacy must be reached by the end of the second year in the program. The dissertation proposal defense and the modern language examinations (which must be passed before the dissertation proposal is defended) will be offered on an on-going basis.

PhD Greek Reading List

PhD Latin Reading List

The Pro-seminar in Research Methods and Practices (GRS 500) will regularly be scheduled in the fall. Students who have not completed it (or an equivalent) either in a previous Master’s degree or in their first semester as PhD students must complete it in the first term of their second year and before registering in the dissertation (GRS 699). Students who have passed the Pro-seminar and the candidacy exam may begin work on their dissertation (GRS 699), which will be defended in a final examination normally at the end of the fall semester of their fourth year of study.

Students can find a useful resource for their theses here: Thesis Writing Starter Kit .

Financial Assistance

The University of Victoria currently offers a series of Fellowships and Awards from a minimum of $10,000 to a maximum of $20,000 at the PhD level, most of which are renewable subject to a minimum grade-point average of 7.0 on a 9.0 scale. The University also offers Academic Income Supplements to a maximum of $6,000 which entail “academically-related employment” such working as a Teaching Assistant. Students with SSHRC scholarshipss receive President’s Research Scholarships at a value of $4,000 per year. Departments may also allocate a UVic Outstanding Graduate Student Entrance Award to an entering full time student at $5,000.

The Department of Greek and Roman Studies also actively encourages graduate students to apply for SSHRC grants. The Department has a successful system in place to advise and support students who apply for SSHRC grants, and any other grants that are appropriate.

The three major scholarships funded by SSHRC for doctoral students are:

  • SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship: $20,000\year for 1 and up to 4 years
  • SSHRC Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship: $35,000/year for 3 years
  • Vanier CGS: $50,000\year for 3 years

Other national scholarships include:

  • Michael Smith CGS Foreign Study Supplement: up to $6,000 for 3-6 months
  • Crake Doctoral Fellowship (Mt Allison): $30,000\year (value in 15-16)
  • Desmond Conacher Fellowship (CAC): $2,500\year 

UVic scholarships awarded in 2016-17 for GRS graduate students include:

  • John O. Dell Graduate Scholarship: $575 (Ancient History or GRS; especially for numismatics)
  • David and Geoffrey Fox: $4,675 (awarded to GRS in even years only)
  • Greek and Roman Studies Scholarship: $2,325
  • Sheila and John Hackett Research Travel Award: $1,325
  • Gordon and Hilda Fitch Graduate Scholarship: $1,300

UVic scholarships appropriate for GRS graduate students include:

  • Howard E. Petch Research Scholarship: $7,500
  • President's Research Scholarship: $4,000 (for SSHRC holders only)
  • Ian H. Stewart: $5,000
  • David F. Strong: $7,500
  • UVic Alumni Association Graduate Award = $2,000

Inquiries

Inquiries about the program should be directed to:


Department of Greek and Roman Studies
University of Victoria
PO Box 1700
Victoria, BC V8W 2Y2