Prospective Students

The Department of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies offers four MA programs and two PhD programs:

  • MA Ancient Culture, Religion and Ethnicity
  • MA Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology
  • MA Classics
  • MA Religious Studies
  • PhD Religious Studies
  • PhD Classics. The PhD in Classics has three streams: Classics; Classics (Ancient History); and Classics (Classical Archaeology).

MA Admission Requirements

Applicants for the MA must hold a bachelor’s degree. This will normally be in Classics (Latin and Greek), Classical Studies (non-language program), Near Eastern Studies, or Religious Studies, and must include at least 18 credits at the 300 and 400 level in courses directly related to the intended field of study:

  • MA in Ancient Culture, Religion and Ethnicity:at least 18 credits at the 300 and 400 level in Classical, Near Eastern, or Religious Studies, and/or in classical languages.
  • MA in Classics: at least 18 credits at the 300 and 400 level in Ancient Greek and/or Latin are required, including at least 6 credits in each language.
  • MA in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology:at least 18 credits at the 300 and 400 level in Classical Studies and/or Near Eastern Studies, including at least 6 credits studying classical art or archaeology.
  • MA in Religious Studies:at least 18 credits at the 300 and 400 level in Religious Studies (which may include up to 6 credits at the 300 or 400 level either in the study of Asian religions (ASIA) or of a classical language: Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew, Classical Arabic, and/or Latin).

All MA applicants must additionally have completed a minimum of one year’s study (6 credits, or equivalent; minimum grade: B-/68%) in classical languages (Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew, Classical Arabic, and/or Latin) prior to admission. It is strongly recommended that applicants have completed two years of language study before entrance.

All applications must meet the minimum requirements of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. A one-term course is typically worth three credits at UBC. A credit represents one hour of instruction per week for one term.

PhD Admission Requirements

Applicants for the PhD must have an MA and must have completed a minimum of 12 credits of course work at the graduate level (i.e. numbered 500 or above) in the relevant field. All applications must meet the minimum requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

  • PhD in Classics and PhD in Classics (Ancient History): a minimum of 12 credits at the graduate level in Ancient Greek and Latin, with at least 3 credits in each language.
  • PhD in Classics (Classical Archaeology): a minimum of 12 credits at the graduate level in Classical Archaeology. Applicants must also have completed at least three years’ undergraduate study (18 credits, or equivalent) each in Ancient Greek and Latin prior to admission (minimum grade: B-/68%), and have fulfilled the archaeological fieldwork requirement.
  • PhD in Religious Studies: a minimum of 12 credits at the graduate level in Religious Studies, and this may include up to 6 credits in the study of Asian religions (ASIA). Applicants must also have completed at least three years’ undergraduate study (18 credits, or equivalent) in one of Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew, Classical Arabic, or Latin prior to admission (minimum grade B-/68%)

All applications must meet the minimum requirements of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. A one-term course is typically worth three credits at UBC. A credit represents one hour of instruction per week for one term.

Please visit the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies to review the UBC Graduate Studies Application and Admissions Procedure in more detail.

Please carefully review the Admission Requirements and the Requirements and Policies for your program before applying.

Deadlines:

The applicants’ online application must be completed and submitted by:
Friday, January 5th, 2018 (for the MA and PhD programs)

All letters of reference must be received (through the online system) by Monday, January 15th, 2018.
These deadlines are very strict. Remember to request references early!

All students are to apply for September entry. In very exceptional circumstances the Department will consider January admission for the MA program only.

Documents required for all graduate applications:

  • On-line application form.
  • 3 letters of reference.
    • These should be submitted online using the electronic reference (“e-ref”) system in the applicationReferees listed on the applicants’ forms will be sent an automatically-generated email invitation to submit their references once the applicant has submitted his/her on-line application, and then will have until Monday, January 16th, 2018 to submit their references online. Referees can choose to answer the list of standard questions provided online, OR submit a separate, signed letter of reference as a PDF that is uploaded to the system OR both, if they wish.
  • Statement of intent.
    • Applicants should answer the following statement that appears on the online application: “Please provide a brief statement of your academic and/or professional goals and how these align with this graduate program” (Free Text, no more than approximately 600 words).
  • Sample of writing. This can be a term paper or a substantial scholarly paper, and should be uploaded to the online application.

Additional documents required for international applications:

  • International applicants are required to submit their original diplomas. Transcripts and diplomas in a language other than English must be accompanied by certified English translations.
  • TOEFL score (if required). Score (minimum 600) must be less than 2 years old at time of application, OR IELTS score of minimum 7.5 with no individual band scoring less than 7.0

Note: GREs are not necessary.

We aim to support all of our graduate students, with the vast majority receiving funding. Well qualified PhD applicants (with a completed MA) receive approximately $25,000 per year over four years (including scholarships, teaching assistantships and research assistantships; contingent upon academic performance), with exceptional students receiving over $40,000 per year.  Typical support for MA students is around $20,000 per year for two years (contingent upon academic performance).

Teaching Assistantships

Full TAship: 12 hours/week, approximately $11 500 (MA) or $12 000 (PhD) per year
Average TAship for incoming students: 6 hours/week

Major UBC/Department Awards (over $15,000)

GSI (Graduate Support Initiative) (amounts vary)
Includes entrance scholarships, tuition awards.
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/graduate-support-initiative-gsi-awards
No separate application required.

Killam Doctoral Fellowships ($30,000 a year)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/killam-doctoral-scholarships
No separate application required.

David and Blanche Gwynne-Vaughan Memorial Scholarship (up to $20,000 a year)
Administered by the department.
No separate application required.

Four year Doctoral Fellowships ($18,200 a year)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/four-year-doctoral-fellowship-4yf
No separate application required.

UBC Affiliated Fellowships (open to all students) (up to $30,000 a year)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/affiliated-fellowships; in particular #350, 4821, 4856.
No separate application required.

Major external awards that can be held at UBC

Vanier Scholarship ($50,000 a year)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/vanier-scholarship

SSHRC Graduate fellowships (Canadians only) ($17,500-35,000 a year)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/sshrc-graduate-scholarships

Mackenzie King Memorial Scholarships
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/mackenzie-king-memorial-scholarships

UBC Awards (up to $10 000)

International Tuition Award (amounts vary)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/international-tuition-award|
No separate application required.

Scholarships for exchange students (amounts vary)
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/scholarships-exchange-students
No separate application required.

Additional Awards (under $2000)

Graduate student international research mobility award
http://www.grad.ubc.ca/awards/graduate-student-international-research-mobility-award

Various awards and bursaries administered through Student Financial Assistance & Awards
http://www.students.ubc.ca/finance/graduate-students/types-of-financial-support/

Departmental travel fund (one conference per graduate career)
Administered by the department

Malcolm F. McGregor Memorial Scholarship (amounts vary)
Administered by the department

Dennis Molnar Graduate Student Travel Scholarship (amounts vary)
Administered by the department 

Homer Armstrong Thompson Travel Scholarship (amounts vary)
Administered by the department

MA in Ancient Culture, Religion, and Ethnicity (ACRE)

The ACRE program is an interdisciplinary program housed within the department that allows students to craft a program that best suits their academic goals. Every ACRE student’s program is unique and designed to suit their academic aims. The degree is also suitable for students wishing to pursue Classics or Religious Studies, but lacking the required undergraduate preparation.

MA in Classics (CLAS)

The MA in Classics is a two-year degree that allows students to gain the necessary proficiency in Greek and Latin to proceed to a PhD. It is designed to provide core skills in philology, and to be flexible enough to allow for specialization in Ancient History, Literature, or Philosophy.

MA in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology (CNAR)

The MA in Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology is a two-year degree that allows students to specialize in the archaeology of the ancient Mediterranean and Near East. Coursework can survey from the Bronze Age civilizations of the Near East and Egypt to Roman provincial archaeology, providing a broadly based foundation for further archaeological training. The degree balances research with fieldwork to best prepare students for a career in archaeology.

MA in Religious Studies (RELG)

The MA in Religious Studies provides a foundation in the history and study of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and in the variety of methodologies that are used to study them. Students also have the opportunity to explore other religious traditions and texts within a comprehensive worldview that seeks to understand the place of religion in society in antiquity and today.

PhD in Classics

Our program is designed to develop candidates’ skills to the highest level by developing competence in Greek and Latin and the relevant modern languages and by exposing candidates to a very wide range of academic approaches to the ancient world, thus taking advantage of the unique combination of disciplines in this department. Students’ progress is monitored constantly stage by stage to ensure that no aspect of their development is neglected. Up until the Comprehensive Examination the emphasis is on range and breadth; after that, students will be encouraged and enabled to narrow their focus so that they become world experts in their chosen dissertation topic. Our aim is to equip our graduating PhD students with all the professional skills they may need to attain a tenure-track teaching position and to carry out the varied responsibilities which such a position brings.

Under normal circumstances a student will be able to complete this program in 5 years.

PhD in Classics (Ancient History)

This program gives candidates an opportunity to build a PhD in Ancient History that is multidisciplinary with its sister-fields of Archaeology and Philology, taking maximum advantage of the range of expertise available in and beyond CNERS. While the candidates will focus their various course projects on historical topics, it is envisaged that as much as half of this work will be undertaken in courses that are primarily archaeological or philological in nature. The faculty teaching those courses will make every effort to support the candidates’ selection of historically focused research projects.

The Ancient History option provides students with a unique opportunity to combine the study of Ancient history with a second historical field. The Department of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies envisages that those who successfully complete this program will be able to enter the job-market confident in their ability to teach both Greek and Roman history, an additional field complementary to their major field (determined by the student early in the program), either Greek or Latin at an advanced level, with graduate-level proficiency in the other. The department believes that this program will make graduates attractive to History departments as well as those teaching Classics.

Under normal circumstances a student will be able to complete this program in 5 years.

PhD in Classics (Classical Archaeology)

This program gives candidates an opportunity to build a PhD in Classical Archaeology that is multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary, and taking maximum advantage of the range of expertise available in and beyond CNERS. Candidates will focus their various course projects on archaeological topics, but it is envisaged that courses may be also undertaken in areas that are primarily historical or philological in nature; cognate courses in Near Eastern archaeology and Egyptology may also be taken. The teaching faculty will make every effort to support the candidates’ selection of archaeologically focused research projects.

The Classical Archaeology option provides students with an opportunity to combine the study of Classical Archaeology with other branches of Classical and Near Eastern studies, not only to contextualize their own archaeological work, but also to equip them to enter the job-market confident of their ability to teach both Greek and Roman archaeology as well as a related field in ancient studies and Greek or Latin to at least entry level.

Under normal circumstances a student will be able to complete this program in 5 years.

PhD in Religious Studies

The PhD program in Religious Studies at present provides training in Early Judaism, Christian Origins, and Religions of the Late Antique Mediterranean. The level of achievement reached will provide the successful candidates with the professional equipment to conduct original research in their chosen fields and to teach at the college or university level.