Classical Studies

Take your love for Homer beyond the Simpsons

Delve into the roots of Western civilization and gain a deep understanding of ancient Greece and Rome — cultures that continue to shape our thinking and our society today.

Discover the enduring ideas of greats like Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. Master enough ancient Greek and Latin to study classic texts in their original language. Explore the many facets of antiquity: from history, religion, and philosophy to art, science, and technology.

Meanwhile, you’ll have lots of room to round out your education with courses from other departments or faculties and with work experience through co-op. Once you’ve graduated, the broad thinking demanded by the program will serve you well in a range of careers, including law, policy, culture, education, and more.

Study overseas

The Acropolis is calling! Take advantage of study-abroad opportunities in the Mediterranean, or do an internship with the Canadian Institute in Greece.

Enjoy great discussions

Do more than just take notes. In our small classes, you’ll have lots of opportunity for debate and discussion.


icon of the globeInternational exchanges in 25 countries

briefcaseAvailable as a co-op and regular program

icon of open bookAvailable as a major and minor



Apply to Honours Arts or Honours Arts and Business and choose Classical Studies as your major at the end of first year.

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First-year courses

September to December

  • CLAS 100 - An Introduction to Classical Studies
  • Arts First requirement 1*
  • Three additional courses

January to April

  • CLAS 104 - Classical Mythology and/or CLAS 105 - Introduction to Medieval Studies
  • Arts First requirement 2*
  • Two to three additional courses

*The Arts First requirement consists of two first-year courses that are capped at 25 students: ARTS 130 - Inquiry and Communication and ARTS 140 - Information and Analysis. Instead of listening to a lecture and trying to capture notes, Arts First courses will have you and your classmates working together to respond to a challenge posed by the instructor.

After first year

40% of the classes you’ll take will be Classical Studies courses. With your remaining classes, you can choose electives from many of the 100 subject areas at Waterloo or fulfil additional requirements for your chosen entry program.

Sample upper-year courses 

CLAS 220 – Philosophy of Friendship
CLAS 325 – Greek and Roman Religion
CLAS 327 – Astrology and Magic
CLAS 384 – Science and Technology of Ancient Greece and Rome


icon of network of peopleOffered by the Faculty of Arts

Graduation capEarn a Bachelor of Arts degree


Co-op = relevant paid work experience

By alternating school terms and paid co-op work terms throughout your degree, you can explore new career areas and types of employers as your career interests evolve.

Sample co-op job titles

  • Development assistant
  • Technical writer
  • Marketing and development intern
  • Media relations assistant
  • Web design and maintenance

Customize your Bachelors of Arts degree

You can add additional areas of expertise by including one or more of the minors available to all Waterloo students. Popular choices include History and Peace and Conflict Studies.

What can you do with a degree in Classical Studies?

Graduates typically pursue careers in education, art, writing, law, and culture working in schools, museums, libraries, and publishing companies.

Recent graduates

  • Systems Librarian - Wentworth Libraries
  • Technical Writer – Optech 
  • Teacher – Blessed Mother Teresa S.S.
  • Minister – Bethesda Baptist Church

Learn about the future of careers in arts, humanities, social sciences, languages, and creative arts.

Ready to learn more?