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Welcome to

St Albans Girls' School

Classical Civilisation

Curriculum Intent and Overview
Classical Civilisation A Level is designed to challenge all students by immersing them in the ancient world through a variety of perspectives. There is an ambitious curriculum with cross-curricular ties and the breadth of skills required from various subjects such as English, Geography, History, Politics, Philosophy, Art and Sociology. The accrual of cultural capital is supported through the careful choice of options chosen in addition to topics linked to contemporary debates and concepts such as LGBTQ+ rights, gender equality, dictatorships, rhetoric, relationships, identity and morality.  





The Department

Miss L Kemp, Lead Practitioner for Classics and Miss M Warner-Smith

A Level

Exam Board: OCR

Specification Number: H408/11, H408/22, H408/31

Course content:

Classical Civilisation A Level is studied via the three named modules below; these units are examined at the end of Year 13.  Students will study some of the most fascinating aspects of the ancient world. From the epic tradition to meet the world of mythical heroes, gods and monsters, to comparing context with propaganda and then to contemplating love in all forms and sparking debates as to women’s place in Greek and Roman society.

 Our three modules for examination are:

  • The World of the Hero - 40% (The 'Odyssey' and the 'Aeneid')
  • Imperial Image - 30%
  • Greek Religion - 30%


Classical Civilisation is taught in a variety of learning styles; from creative team work activities, to one on one feedback, from dramatic projects to intense exam style practise. Throughout the course students will get to engage with a wide range of digital resources as well as the opportunity to visit sites/lectures outside of school to embrace studies of the Classics outside the classroom where possible.

Why Classical Civilisation at St Albans Girls’ School?

Students should study Classics at St Albans Girls' School as it is a rare opportunity to learn about the ancient world. Students are supported with Google Classroom forums where resources are available to extend and help reinforce learning and facilitate peer discussions.

Expectations of students:

A passion for literature and myths, an intrigue about past cultures and civilisations and a desire to explore the challenges of philosophy and relationships are essential qualities for a Classics student.  Practically, students are required to fully prepare for lessons, for instance carefully reading their key texts as well as wider literature, constructing organised notes and submitting essays/work on time with 100% effort.  The language of Classical epics (Homer and Virgil) can be complicated and students taking this course need to be resilient in their learning and prepared to put in the time to grapple with both the nuanced descriptions and basic narrative of the texts.  Classical Civilisation A Level teaches the skills of analysis, attention to detail and the ability to put forward a balanced and critical argument. Students are encouraged to vocalise and challenge ideas in class, both in debate and when constructing formal presentations.

What websites are recommended?

OCR Exam Specification Linear A Level

The 'Iliad' and the 'Aeneid'

Ancient History Encyclopaedia

Classical Poetry

Ancient History

What equipment is needed?

  • Key texts for given modules (including Rieu's translation of the 'Iliad' and West's translation of the 'Aeneid')
  • OCR support guides for the three modules (optional)

Career Paths:

Classical Civilisation A Level is recognised by all universities as an eye opening, multi-disciplinary course enabling students to formulate a range of key vocational skills. Opportunities for future study and employment cover both academic and artistic fields including politics, journalism, architecture, law, education, the civil service and archaeology to name but a few.

Get in touch

Mr P O'Neill

Sandridgebury Lane

St Albans



(To request a paper copy, please contact our Administration Department)

01727 853134