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Study for a PhD in Classics

Classics and Ancient History is proud to have been awarded a Bronze Award on the Gender Equality Charter Mark (GEM) trial run conducted by the Equality Challenge Unit.

Postgraduate research

Exeter has one of the largest and most successful departments of Classics and Ancient History in the country, making it an ideal place to undertake an MPhil/PhD in Classics and Ancient History. The department has over 20 members of staff and three research centres (Centre for Connectivity in the Roman World; Centre for Knowledge in Culture in the Ancient World and Beyond; Centre for Hellenistic and Romano-Greek Culture and Society).

Get to know a few of our PhD students;

Classics at Exeter takes an interdisciplinary perspective and the department has close links to related fields including history, archaeology, philosophy, visual arts and linguistics. This unusually wide range means that there is very considerable scope for postgraduate supervision.

The department offers exceptionally broad expertise across the full range of the traditional fields of classics. There is a vigorous research culture, and the department is rated 6th in the UK for research power in Classics (REF 2014). Our excellent research enhances the experience of our students, and provides a stimulating environment for staff, postgraduates and undergraduate students alike.

Our academics are all active researchers who consistently attract funding from external sources including Leventis, Leverhulme, the Wellcome Trust and the Arts and Humanities Research Council. The department also holds an international conference at least once a year and hosts a wide range of research events, workshops and seminars.

Our wide range of expertise offers postgraduates the possibility of preparing for research degrees in one or more areas. We attach particular importance to the quality of research supervision and training in research methodology and to the integration of our postgraduates into the Department’s academic and research community. Scholars of international repute are frequent visitors.

Our research areas include;

  • Ancient and modern philosophy, especially ethics
  • Classical art and archaeology
  • Classics in the history of sexuality
  • Comparative philology and linguistics
  • Food in the ancient world
  • Greek and Roman epic, tragedy and comedy
  • Greek and Roman mythology, religion and magic
  • Greek and Roman social history, especially sexuality
  • Hellenistic history, especially the barbarian interface and the Greek culture of Asia Minor and dynastic studies
  • History of medicine in antiquity, especially Galen
  • Later Greek literature, including Lucian, Athenaeus, ecphrasis
  • Latin literature
  • Palaeography

Explore our research centres and research projects to find out more about our current research topics.

Visit our staff profiles for details on individual staff research interests and publications.

Our current PGRs

We're proud of the research carried out by our PhD students. There are currently around 15 PhD students in the Department, many of whom maintain an online personal profile detailing their research activities. Follow the links below to find out more about them and their research projects.

Student Research title Lead supervisor
Andrea Argenti Aristotle's Metaphysics Z from the Standpoint of his Theory of Definition Dr Gabriele Galluzzo
Luigi Barzini Frogs and Bacchae: civil violence, mystery rituals and theatre in the last year of the polis. Professor Lynette Mitchell
Paul Dean The parode less travelled: Parôidia and the discourse of Homeric reception Professor Matthew Wright
Taylor Fitzgerald The Use of Dynastic Connections in Representations of Imperial Legitimacy, AD 284-366 Dr Richard Flower
Maria Gisella Giannone Democracy in Fourth Century Oratory Professor Lynette Mitchell
Marcelina Gilka A Study of Colluthus, The Abduction of Helen Professor Daniel Ogden
Elisa Groff"> Sexual and Reproductive Health in the changing world of Christianity (300-700 CE) Professor Rebecca Langlands
Sam Hayes What's in a Libellus? Martial Book VII. Professor Rebecca Langlands
Maria Kneafsey Boundaries in Late Antique Rome. Professor Barbara Borg
Antonio Leonardis Professor Elena Isayev
Giulia Zulian Embodying Empire. Rulership, Ceremonial Life and Symbolic Agency – Augustus to Commodus (31 BCE-193CE) Professor Barbara Borg

Supervisors - all students have a primary and a secondary supervisor who provide regular, high quality advice, support and direction in their academic endeavours. You will work closely with your supervisors over three to four years (full time PhD) or six to seven (part-time PhD) to develop, investigate and write-up a project at the cutting edge of theological research.

Visit our staff profiles for more information about individual research interests or use the search box on the right of this page to find a supervisor.

Mentor - each student will also be assigned a mentor who will take on a pastoral role and mediate on any problems that arise during the period of study. Your mentor will keep in regular contact and will provide background stability and support.

Graduate School Office - the College of Humanities has a dedicated Graduate School Office that supports our postgraduate research students during their study with us. The Office promotes intellectual and social contact between research students in all our disciplines to foster a vibrant research community within the College.

Funding opportunities available to students on our research degree programmes in English and Film:*

More information on the funding process.

AwardValueApplication deadlineDescription
Becas Chile (Conicyt) Fully funded Thu 10th May 2018 Scholarships offered for studies in the UK, available for Chilean nationals (and others with permanent residence in Chile) in all areas except Management/MBA/Commercial Law and where the recipient will be expected to return to Chile on completion of their studies.
Causes and Effects of Abrupt Climate Change on Tropical Biodiversity - Geography - NERC GW4+ DTP PhD Studentship £14,553 per annum for 2017-18 Fri 11th May 2018 NERC GW4+ funded studentship available for September 2018 entry. For eligible students the award will provide funding of fees and a stipend which is currently £14,553 per annum (2017/2018).
Sanctuary Scholarship Full tuition fee waiver plus annual living cost grant Tue 15th May 2018 The Sanctuary Scholarship scheme enables individuals seeking asylum and refugees who are not able access student finance to study at the University of Exeter.
Using caffeine and nitrate supplementation to augment adaptation to high intensity exercise training. Sport & Health Science PhD Studentship (Funded) Full tuition fees, stipend of £15,000 p.a, travel funds of up to £15,000, and RTSG of £15,000 are available over the 3.5 year studentship Sat 26th May 2018 The QUEX Institute studentships are available for January 2019 entry. This prestigious programme provides full tuition fees, stipend of £15,000 p.a, travel funds of up to £15,000, and RTSG of £15,000 over the life of the studentship. The studentship funding is provided for up to 42 months (3.5 years)
University of Exeter Progression to Postgraduate Research Programmes £750 to £1,000 There is no application for this award. You will be automatically considered. A tuition fee discount is available to University of Exeter students progressing directly from an undergraduate degree to a limited number of MbyRes, MPhil and PhD programmes in September 2018. This award is available for selected programmes only, please see the main advertisement for details.
Fulbright Scholarships: Postgraduate Student Awards Varies Mon 1st Oct 2018 Fulbright US Student Postgraduate Student Awards can be applied to any master's or doctoral degree at any recognised UK university, as well as for independent research projects.
Marshall Scholarships for graduate study Varies Mon 1st Oct 2018 Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a graduate degree in the United Kingdom.
Global Education Program Scholarship Fully funded Deadline passed
(Sun 5th Nov 2017)
The Global Education Program (GEP) scholarship is provided by the Russian Government and covers Masters and PhD studies in science, engineering, medicine, education and management in social sphere.
BECAR (Argentina) Fully funded Deadline passed
(Thu 11th Jan 2018)
Postgraduate scholarships offered jointly by Bec.Ar/Universities UK, available for students of Argentinean nationality with a first degree of minimum 4 years. Priority areas are Science, Technology and Innovation. The recipient will be expected to return to Argentina on completion of their studies.
COLFUTURO Scholarships Loan Programme £20,000 Deadline passed
(Wed 28th Feb 2018)
COLFUTURO offers scholarship-loans to provide financial support to Colombian citizens to access high-quality postgraduate study Masters or Doctoral programs abroad.
Sports Scholarship and High Performance Programme up to £3000 plus additional support services & coaching Deadline passed
(Sat 31st Mar 2018)
Sports scholarships are awarded to students of outstanding sporting ability who show evidence of achievement at international level in their chosen sport. We also encourage applications from students who have achieved at national or regional level for consideration onto our High Performance Programme.
Leventis Doctoral Studentship £25,000.00 per annum Deadline passed
(Mon 2nd Apr 2018)
One Doctoral Studentship within the area of Classics and Ancient History (open to UK/EU and International students). This studentship is available to fund research on any aspect of Greek or Roman antiquity.
Postgraduate Research Global Excellence Studentships - PhD (Funded) Full international fees plus research allowance and £14,777 annual stipend Deadline passed
(Mon 16th Apr 2018)
The University is offering a number of Postgraduate Research Global Excellence Studentships for Postgraduate Research to top students from around the world. The award pays international fees, a research allowance and stipend (currently £14,777 pa) for up to 3 years
*Please note that if you have submitted an application to one of our MPhil/PhD programmes you will not automatically be considered for funding. You must submit a separate funding application, including all required supporting documents, via the link provided in each award to be considered for that award.

The College of Humanities works closely with the University’s Career Zone to help you gain the skills, experience and expertise employers are looking for. There are a wide range of opportunities to enhance your employability, along with the support you need to make important career decisions.

We have our own Employability Officer who works to develop close links with employers and arranges careers events. 

Employers

Exeter School
Goodridge Ltd UK
Homerun Consulting
Met Office
National Museum Wales
Plymouth College

Stellenbosch University University of Exeter

Occupations

Classics Teacher
Climate Change Communications Manager
Consultant
English Foreign Language Teacher
Freelance Journalist
Lecturer
Production Supplier Analyst
Teacher in Ancient and Greek literature

*Employment destination information sourced from the DLHE surveys 2013/14 and 2012/13

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