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This subject will be offered at both Standard and Higher Levels.

The syllabus aims to enable students to study works in the original language, to respond to texts as literature and to develop awareness of classical literature and civilisation. At both levels candidates are enabled to study in depth, and independently, an aspect of language, literature or civilisation which they find of particular interest as a piece of coursework. This provides invaluable research skills. Students will be encouraged to read a wider range of literature in translation as a complement to the study of original texts, and to understand the Roman civilisation along with its differences from, and similarities to, their own culture.

At Standard Level students prepare for:

  • Paper One ~ Unseen translation from Ovid’s brilliantly entertaining Metamorphoses, or from Cicero one of Rome’s most eloquent and prolific politicians, whose influence is still visible in speeches from our politicians. The topic aims to build on basic language skills and develop a familiarity with the style of the chosen author. Examination is translation into English of one passage with the aid of a dictionary.
  • Paper Two - Literature: In-depth discussion of authors in the original Latin, either connected by a theme (Love, Villains, Women), or a genre (History, Epic, Elegy). Examination is in the form of translation and comprehension questions from three selected extracts of familiar Latin text. Topics are chosen for the variety and interest they can offer to the student.

Students also have to prepare a ‘research dossier’ - see below.

Research Dossier

An annotated collection of source materials relating to a topic in classical literature, language, religion, mythology, art, archaeology or influence which may be related to but not overlapping with, a subject area studied in the Topic paper, or another area. The annotations should amount to approximately 1000 words and develop an argument linking all the sources together. This dossier is worth 20% of the final marks. This is a great way for the students to develop the breadth of their knowledge, and in the past has provided us with some really insightful and fascinating pieces of work.

At Higher Level

Students must achieve at least a grade 7 at GCSE to take this subject at Higher Level

  • Paper One - A longer, slightly more challenging passage for translation.
  • Paper Two - More text to be learned over the two years, with four extracts examined, as well as an additional holistic 300 word essay on one of the two topics.
  • Dossier - As Standard, with a word count of 1500.