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Classics AS/A Level at Fortismere School

Course description

Classics is a fascinating subject, with a huge breadth of subject matter whose influence is very much still felt today. You will study the first pieces of Western Literature filled with Gods, Goddesses, Heroes and Monsters. You will consider the very beginnings of our civilisation and read gruesome tales of suicide, infanticide and mass murder.

This is a subject that combines many other subjects. By studying an entire civilisation rather than focusing just on literature or history, you will get a great insight into how literature, religion, history, politics, art, architecture and philosophy inform each other. This will give you a richer appreciation of each.

Like History, Classics offers an important insight into where we come from and why modern society is the way it is. Like Religious Studies, Classics raises vital questions about matters that we take for granted by comparison to very different societies. Like English, it develops one’s appreciation of literature and one’s use of the language.

As an essay subject, Classics trains students to collect a diverse range of information and to synthesise this information into clear, concise arguments. In learning about the ancients, you will develop more familiarity with many of the references to the Classical world which abound in English (and European) literature.

Course content

AS: Unit CC2 - Homer's Odyssey and Society & Homer's Odyssey and the society and values it represents - One exam of one and half hours, one question is a commentary question based on any text from “The Odyssey”, one essay question about Homer’s Odyssey and the society and values it represents - Example essay question  “Women are deceptive and not to be trusted in the Odyssey”  How far do you agree with this opinion?    (45 marks)

Unit CC4 - Greek Tragedy in its context & The works of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides, as works of literature and as social documents - one exam of one and half hours,one question is a commentary question based on any text from the tragedies above, one essay question about Greek Tragedy in its context - Example essay question  “Would Clytemnestra be a better title for Aeschylus’ play than Agamemnon?”  (45 marks)

A2: Unit CC10 - Virgil and the world of the hero, Virgil's Epic, the Aeneid, in its literary and cultural context - Parts of Homer's Iliad - One exam of two hours, one question is a commentary question based on any text from “The Aeneid””, one essay question - Example essay question - 'The heroes in epic are concerned first and foremost with their own reputation.’ Consider to what extent this is true both of the Iliad and the Aeneid.[50]

Unit AH4 (Entry code F394): Roman History: the use and abuse of power - A study of the Roman World from the late Republic to the early empire, The fall of the Roman Republic 81–31 BC, The invention of Imperial Rome 31 BC – AD 96, Ruling the Roman Empire AD 14–117 - One exam of two hours,one option out of three, two questions answered from each option - Example essay question - “Governors were incompetent, procurators corrupt and the army brutal and insensitive” How far do the sources support this view of the administration of the Empire? [50]

Further information

AS: completing the AS only will give you a qualification in Classical Civilisation

A2: completing AS and A  will give you an A Level in Classics

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Fortismere School directly.

Last updated date: 07 October 2016
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    • We have an outstanding and popular sixth form, with students joining us from a wide geographical area. Our students usually study four AS level subjects in Year 12 and, three or four A2 subjects in Year 13 for the full A level award.

      We support our students’ academic progress by a system of target setting and monitoring. We also provide excellent guidance for students, as well as additional mentoring for those making Oxbridge applications or preparing for BMAT and UKCAT (medical) or Law entrance exams. The vast majority progress on to university and a sophisticated guidance system ensures that they are well advised in their decision-making.

      We have a strong focus on school leadership and on students taking responsibility for their progress.