username5311450
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The above
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Clez
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I don't have any experience in Ancient Greek specifically, but I imagine it would depend on how much Ancient Greek knowledge you have up until now and whether or not it's a running interest for you already. If it's a lifelong obsession, it's likely it will be easier for you, whereas if you are just starting, it's likely to be incredibly daunting and complex as you will have no frame of reference.

It's also worth considering as to why it is you want to study it in the first place, and what value it will hold for you in the future. Classics is largely a pretentious subject (requiring additional study such as Latin) which has little real world or academic value unless you happen to want to go into a profession involving history, archaeology or a specific specialism in Ancient Greek.

Also, at GCSE level, the importance at play is simply to get through them and pass them with marks high enough to get you onto the next thing and get a job - so my advice is that, unless you're considered to be some kind of genius or you really enjoy the concept of learning complex things for fun, just choose a broad field of study that encompasses your vision of your professional career and then stick with it. Education isn't the be and end all of life, it's just a tool to enable you to live your social life better or worse.
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Martins1
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I studied my GCSEs in 2016 and did Classical Greek OCR GCSE. I had no prior experience with Greek but a few years experience w Latin. It was reasonably easy on the whole but I was fortunate to have good teachers and they did make us work hard for it.
I would say it's a lot of work but not necessarily that difficult conceptually. I imagine it would be a LOT harder if you have no background in Latin. Also, although by far the most interesting choice, studying classical Greek literature is tough.

It goes without saying that any real answer to this question entirely depends on you, your abilities, your interests and your work ethic...
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Martins1
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(Original post by Clez)
I don't have any experience in Ancient Greek...

Classics is largely a pretentious subject (requiring additional study such as Latin) which has little real world or academic value unless you happen to want to go into a profession involving history, archaeology or a specific specialism in Ancient Greek.
I have to admit, I think this is very misguided advice. I would think twice about taking such strong advice on the lack of value and pretentiousness of a subject from someone who hasn't studied it...

Firstly, classics is not a pretentious subject. Studying classical greek, admittedly, often relies on some knowledge of Latin - but then physics relies on maths too. The pretentiousness is limited to a small number of the community (just as some mathematicians are pretentious) but I didn't experience it when studying it and it's certainly not embedded in the subject, the GCSE or the teaching structure.

Secondly, the suggestion that it is of little real world value. This is a highly reductive claim that something is only valuable if it will be used later in life. 99% of what you learn won't be applicable to your later life profession. Doesn't make that knowledge, nor learning it, useless.

To anyone who makes this suggestion: ask yourself why you value a job later on in life? The answer is probably along the lines of: 'to make money so I can be happy'. Well, why not allow yourself to directly enjoy life by studying something you enjoy, e.g. Greek? Studying Greek was amazing for me and so enlightening and fulfilling. I learned so many interesting things that (along with studying Latin) have blossomed into a full-on passion for classics and philosophy and literature and history, etc. I was so fulfilled by knowing I'd completed a difficult extra GCSE and putting the work and time in. Think about having children: most parents put having children as one of the most rewarding experiences of their life. They probably wouldn't say any particular aspect of having a child e.g. changing a nappy is very rewarding. Lots of small things which may not seem rewarding can add up to become a very fulfilling overall activity - so it is with studying Greek GCSE.

Looking forward only with an eye to a future profession is not the sensible way forward! If you constantly put off your present enjoyment of life so that sometime later on you can get a good job and be happy, I promise you'll never find that happiness; you'll always be putting it off until you've completed yet another thing.

Moreover, you don't need to study something directly applicable to a job to get that job. No need to study law to go into law. Plenty of people go into good jobs with degrees in subjects they enjoyed but weren't directly relevant e.g. history, philosophy, classics... (And ofc studying Greek GCSE doesn't restrict you from studying law at uni either!)

Finally, it's worth noting the utility of Greek as a subject, even only studied to GCSE. I studied it part-time on the side so it meant putting in a lot of work which developed my ability to work independently (v useful for my A levels and uni degree!), to manage my time, etc. Interpreting texts is invaluable and the language aspect will improve your linguistic ability as well as your problem solving skills. It'll develop your understanding of literature and stimulate a wealth of ideas and interests while giving you the ability to think about history, context, literature, philosophy, politics and more. So, if enjoyment isn't enough for you, there's plenty to gain anyway.

Just my two cents.
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username5311450
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This is amazing thank you so much! I’m currently taking German, computer science, geography, latin and rs which I think is pretty heavy. If I swapped rs for Ancient Greek I think the work load would be huge. That isn’t to say I don’t have the motivation for Greek, I really do. I just think along with all these other subjects it could be quite an manageable? Rs is almost my release subject
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Clez
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(Original post by Martins1)
I have to admit, I think this is very misguided advice. I would think twice about taking such strong advice on the lack of value and pretentiousness of a subject from someone who hasn't studied it...

Firstly, classics is not a pretentious subject. Studying classical greek, admittedly, often relies on some knowledge of Latin - but then physics relies on maths too. The pretentiousness is limited to a small number of the community (just as some mathematicians are pretentious) but I didn't experience it when studying it and it's certainly not embedded in the subject, the GCSE or the teaching structure.

Secondly, the suggestion that it is of little real world value. This is a highly reductive claim that something is only valuable if it will be used later in life. 99% of what you learn won't be applicable to your later life profession. Doesn't make that knowledge, nor learning it, useless.

To anyone who makes this suggestion: ask yourself why you value a job later on in life? The answer is probably along the lines of: 'to make money so I can be happy'. Well, why not allow yourself to directly enjoy life by studying something you enjoy, e.g. Greek? Studying Greek was amazing for me and so enlightening and fulfilling. I learned so many interesting things that (along with studying Latin) have blossomed into a full-on passion for classics and philosophy and literature and history, etc. I was so fulfilled by knowing I'd completed a difficult extra GCSE and putting the work and time in. Think about having children: most parents put having children as one of the most rewarding experiences of their life. They probably wouldn't say any particular aspect of having a child e.g. changing a nappy is very rewarding. Lots of small things which may not seem rewarding can add up to become a very fulfilling overall activity - so it is with studying Greek GCSE.

Looking forward only with an eye to a future profession is not the sensible way forward! If you constantly put off your present enjoyment of life so that sometime later on you can get a good job and be happy, I promise you'll never find that happiness; you'll always be putting it off until you've completed yet another thing.

Moreover, you don't need to study something directly applicable to a job to get that job. No need to study law to go into law. Plenty of people go into good jobs with degrees in subjects they enjoyed but weren't directly relevant e.g. history, philosophy, classics... (And ofc studying Greek GCSE doesn't restrict you from studying law at uni either!)

Finally, it's worth noting the utility of Greek as a subject, even only studied to GCSE. I studied it part-time on the side so it meant putting in a lot of work which developed my ability to work independently (v useful for my A levels and uni degree!), to manage my time, etc. Interpreting texts is invaluable and the language aspect will improve your linguistic ability as well as your problem solving skills. It'll develop your understanding of literature and stimulate a wealth of ideas and interests while giving you the ability to think about history, context, literature, philosophy, politics and more. So, if enjoyment isn't enough for you, there's plenty to gain anyway.

Just my two cents.
"How dare you imply that taking this subject is pretentious" - then writes long, pretentious essay that only reflects the accuracy of the initial observation. :rolleyes:

- A poor example comparison. Physics and maths are both incredibly useful, both in real life and academically. Maths in particular has a practical application in almost every area of life. Deep knowledge of Ancient Greek language and culture does not, has no practical application and is often covered in much easier subjects that do have real life application, such as History, Drama and English. It's a luxury subject designed for people who have the luxury of pratting around in their education because their parents are rich and whatever happens they will be ok - which is why it's traditionally taught at fee-paying schools and not at normal schools.

Your working profession and your inherent talents are the key aspects to your life which opens doors to other things which makes life comfortable and enjoyable. The idea is to learn focused, applicable skills and get it over and done with so you can get on with making money and enjoying yourself, in a way which will fast track you from the former to the latter in as little time as possible. The older you get, the quicker time passes and you don't have many years to begin with. If ancient history interests you (and it does for me) then by all means look into it in your spare time, but if you have no profession in mind which specifically requires it, then it is pointless to study it in an academic capacity.

On the contrary, there are many professions which require direct degrees - law being one of them contrary to your assertion. Similarly, medicine, pharmacy, architecture, planning, forensics, archaeology and science professions all require directly related degrees. A random degree will only really help with fast tracking you up promotional ladders in certain industries such as management and the civil service. Outside of history professions, a classics degree is only really useful if you are set on becoming a successful Tory politician, because they like the sort of superiority that comes from pratting around with an endeavor which serves purely as intellectual entertainment.

Unlike the OP, I didn't ask for your two cents, largely because two cents in Britain is an overly redundant currency.
Given your sarcastic intent, you'd have been better saying "just my two drachma", which would have at least given you an air of wit, rather than overbearing pomposity.
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xx_clove
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I was going to take my gcse our Ancient Greek this summer (until corona happened lol), and I think it's of a similar difficulty to latin. I hadn't studied greek until Y10, so I did have to learn it from scratch l in 2 years. It's not particularly difficult in my opinion, as long as you remember to go over your grammar and vocabulary regularly, just like any other language. It is a fair amount of work though, I didn't do RS, but from what I've heard from other students at my school, it's less work than greek.
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