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Time Allocation: Classical Civilisation is a GCSE option choice; therefore, during KS4, 2 hours per week are allocated to its study.

Exam Board: OCR

Course Content: The Classical Civilisation course enables students to develop an interest in, and enthusiasm for, the Classical World. In effect, Classics is a study of the way of life of the peoples before and after the time of Christ. How can we study our world today and understand the position we are in if we do not know its origins? These cultures were the 'grandparents' of our modern day culture today in many different ways, such as:

  • Sport
  • Art and architecture
  • Plays and poetry
  • Ideas about religion
  • Ideas about politics (democracy, fascism and communism)
  • Growth of roads, towns, cities, trade, government, monetary systems... the list is endless!

Through studying a range of appropriate sources, students will acquire knowledge and understanding of selected aspects of classical civilisation. This will allow them to develop their awareness of the continuing influence of the classical world on later times and of the similarities and differences between the classical world and later times. They will use a range of sources to develop and apply analytical and evaluative skills at an appropriate level, with the ultimate goal of making an informed, personal response to the material studied.

A summary outline of the course is as follows:


Year 9

Year 10

Year 11


Understanding archaeology and evidence


Rome including the study of:

Religion; entertainment; life in the home; family

Odyssey (continued)


Sparta including the study of: the state; their relationship with others; government; women; home life; education; military organisation and battles


Preparation for Controlled Assessment continued


Write up of Controlled Assessment





Rome (continued)





Sparta (continued)





Odyssey – an introduction

This involves studying key episodes in the story of the return of the Greek hero Odysseus from the fighting at Troy as told by Homer in the ‘Odyssey’, one of the first pieces of European literature.


Sparta continued)


Preparation for Controlled Assessment: Ancient Olympic Games.

This involves investigating the athletic events making up the ancient Olympic Games and the tourist sights which a visitor to ancient Olympia would have seen



Formative Assessment:

Assessment will take place at regular intervals throughout the course. At the end of each module students, will take a mock examination, as well as formal mock exams in the Spring term of Year 10. In the Autumn term of Year 11 students will complete their write up of a 2000 word essay on the Ancient Olympic Games. Homework will be issued once a week, which will include practice on exam questions.

Summative Assessment:

There are four elements to the final assessment of this course:

Unit 1: Daily life in ancient Rome (25%) The paper consists of six short answers and one extended answer, lasting one hour in the summer of Year 11.

Unit 2: The Odyssey (25%) The paper consists of six short answers and one extended answer, lasting one hour in the summer of Year 11.

Unit 3: Daily life in ancient Sparta (25%) The paper consists of six short answers and one extended answer, lasting one hour in the summer of Year 11.

Unit 4: The ancient Olympic Games (25%) This will be made up of two questions, written in lesson time under controlled conditions and with a total word limit of 2000 words. Students spend more than ten hours in class on their research, as well as time at home, for this assessment. Preparation for this assessment will take place in the latter half of Year 10 during lessons and then written up under exam conditions in Year 11

Please click on the link below to peruse through the OCR specification, exam papers and for any further information:


Why you should consider studying Classics

 During the course students will benefit from a variety of transferable skills for their future including:

  • to read a piece of writing and understand its various levels of meaning: surface, metaphorical, implied, hidden
  • to put a mass of material into a coherent and logical order
  • to understand the usefulness of a piece of evidence for a particular question being asked
  • to present your view in a discussion with confidence
  • to produce a piece of writing which is coherently constructed, logically argued and fluently written.
  • working independently and to deadlines

In addition, you will be unique! Very few state schools offer Classics as a GCSE option and we are privileged to have it here!

What skills profile a GCSE Classics student should have:

Good communication, reading, written, thinking and arguing skills.

What opportunities a GCSE in Classics will lead to:

The skills in thinking, arguing and communicating that you will develop in your studies are transferable to a wide variety of different professions and careers. This includes careers in: law, medicine, administration, education, the civil service; arts; writing; curators; archives; archaeology; politics.

Famous Classicists include:

JK Rowling; Boris Johnson; Chris Martin; Sigmund Freud; Ted Turner (founder of CNN)

For more information contact Mrs Kouttis.