Classics and Early Christian Literature

Classics and Early Christian Literature

A major in Classics & Early Christian Literature is an excellent foundation for a successful career and for a life informed by the highest ideals of western and Catholic culture. The heart of the major is the study of the Greek and Latin languages through the close reading of works from various genres of ancient literature. We are proud that at AMU our students encounter not only the notable authors of pagan antiquity, but also the intellectual pillars and Fathers of the Catholic Church in the original Latin and Greek. 

The fruits of this study are many: students gain access to the origins of western culture and society; they hone the skills of analysis, critical thinking, observation, accuracy, and careful writing, which are highly prized by employers and professional schools. The mastery of Latin and Greek grammar leads to a deeper understanding of English grammar, and the acquisition of a solid vocabulary in Latin and Greek enriches the understanding of countless English words. Students find that the classical languages are an excellent foundation for the study of modern languages, such as Spanish, French, and Italian. 

According to The Princeton Review

[w]e can’t overestimate the value of a Classics major … according to Association of American Medical Colleges, students who major or double-major in Classics have a better success rate getting into medical school than do students who concentrate solely in biology, microbiology, and other branches of science … Furthermore, according to Harvard Magazine, Classics majors (and math majors) have the highest success rates of any majors in law school … Even furthermore, Classics majors consistently have some of the highest scores on GREs of all undergraduates.

Those who major in Classics at AMU have gone on to graduate degrees in Law, Medicine, Classics, and the Humanities; some have entered the seminary and religious life; others have undertaken careers in teaching (a resurgence of interest in classical education has led to a great need for Latin teachers at the primary and secondary levels as well as in homeschooling groups). For all these reasons, a Classics major is an excellent preparation for a career in business, politics, publishing, library science, diplomacy, government, or any occupation in which critical thinking and a superior command of language are prized.


Core Courses

  • LATN 101 Elementary Latin
  • LATN 102 Intermediate Latin
  • LATN 103 Intensive Elementary Latin
  • LATN 104 Intensive Intermediate Latin

Required Major Courses

  • GREK 103 Elementary Greek
  • GREK 104 Intermediate Greek
  • LATN 203 Golden Age Prose (required for students of LATN 101, 102. Students from LATN 103, should move directly to LATN 304.)
  • LATN 204 Golden Age Poetry
  • GREK 203 Greek Readings
  • LATN 304 Latin Church Fathers
  • LATN 310 Latin Prose Composition

Elective Major Courses (Students with LATN 203 are required to take two electives. Students without LATN 203 are required to take three electives.)

  • LATN 403 Scholastic Latin Texts
  • GREK 403 Greek Poetry
  • LATN 404 Latin Epistolary Writing
  • LATN 415 Special Topics
  • GREK 415 Special Topics

Minor Programs

Students may choose to earn a minor in Latin or in Classical Languages (Latin and Greek) to complement or enrich their major in another discipline. A minor in Latin or classical languages is especially valuable to students majoring in theology, philosophy, history, literature, or prelaw. Religious vocation, law, teaching, and journalism are some careers for which the classical languages provide valuable background. As in all disciplines at Ave Maria University, 24 credit hours (6 courses) are required. Minor in Latin: LATN 101, 102, 203 and three courses from LATN 204 to 499; or LATN 103, 104 and three courses from LATN 204 to 499. LATN 203. Three courses in Latin from LATN 204 to 499. Minor in Classical Languages: LATN 101, 102, 203 or LATN 103, 104. LATN 203 Golden Age Literature. GREK 103, 104. One course in Latin from LATN 204 to 499 or GREK 203.

For more information or to view a complete 4 year plan please visit the academic catalogue.