Is Classical Civilisation Hard?

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JotunBoss
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#1
Report Thread starter 7 years ago
#1
I'm starting my 2nd year of college in September and I'm not sure I did great on my Use of Maths exam to get me into A2. I don't see a point in redoing the course if I'll end up with an AS Level anyway since I'm only staying for 2 years overall (this year done). I'm hoping to have passed to carry onto A2 and get the full A Level but if I don't then I'm thinking of doing Classical Civilisation for the 2nd year and leave it as an AS Level.

I'm also doing Creative Writing and Information & Communication Technology (ICT) which I'm going to get the full A Level on.

So I'm wondering if it's a difficult course? I'm terrible with History and only did a half GCSE in school and got an F because the half GCSE wasn't of much use. Do I need any kind of prior knowledge and would it be difficult to handle alongside the other two A2 Courses and it is worth it to just do one year? Thanks.
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Classics_Teacher
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#2
Report 7 years ago
#2
I teach Classical Civilisation and while I wouldn't say that the subject is 'hard' or 'easy', it's pretty intensive and if you're new to the classical world like my students are, it can seem like quite a struggle at first. However, most of my AS students stick with it and end up really enjoying it by the end of the course, even if they'd actually only picked it as a fourth subject with the intention of dropping it.

That said, I normally suggest that students have at least a B grade in English and/or History at GCSE, and the fact that your GCSE History grade is so low would give me some cause for concern.

Generally, at my college, if someone hasn't got a high enough grade in a particular subject at AS, then they drop that subject and pick up General Studies, which is somewhat easier to do within the space of a year, even to A2 Level, than a subject like Classical Civilisation.

Have a word with whoever teaches Classical Civilisation where you are and see what they suggest and also speak to current students if you can. It will give you a much better idea of whether you think it's for you or not.
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harry_
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#3
Report 6 years ago
#3
Hi, as an oxford graduate in classical studies and now as a museum curator I feel somewhat qualified to answer this!

Many people choose art subjects or humanities because they are deemed as easy- huge error! They are actually not easy or doss subjects. You have to think for yourself, selecting evidence from a text that you feel puts your point across, and back it up accordingly. You can't exactly make the book up if you haven't read it so you'll have to make sure you understand the pivotal moments of each chapter, and can use examples to illustrate your point from across the whole book. It is a very rewarding topic however, and results in many transferable skills- interpretation, being selective, writing coherent and logically, and being able to put your point across in an articulate manner.
I took classical literature at sixth form, there were only 3 people in the class- but despite this I was the only one who got an A*...if you don't work you will not get a good grade...it is intensive but extremely interesting and rewarding, it is also highly valued by employers due to the transferable skills.
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