Classical Archaeology and Ancient History - Master's Programme in the Humanities 2020/2021

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Much of what we take for granted today has its origin in the classical cultures around the Mediterranean. The Master's Programme in the Humanities, specialising in Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, gives you a broad education in the history, archaeology, art, religion and philosophy of the Ancient World. You will learn to analyse historical processes and phenomena through fascinating source material. You will also choose to specialise in an area and write a scientific thesis.

Why this programme?

​If you are interested in Mediterranean archaeology and ancient history, this is the programme for you. Much of what we take for granted in politics, economy and culture has roots in Antiquity. You learn to analyse and communicate a cultural heritage central to European identity.

The Master's Programme in the Humanities, specialising in Classical Archeology and Ancient History, is one of the international Master's programmes offered by the Faculty of Arts. The full programme runs over two years and is worth 120 credits, but you can also choose to complete the programme in one academic year, leading to a Master of Arts, 60 credits.

The programme contains both compulsory and elective courses. The Department of Archaeology and Ancient History normally offers four or five courses in Archaeology, Classical Archaeology and Egyptology every semester. You can also choose courses from other subjects if you want to broaden your education further.


The programme leads to a Master of Arts (120 credits) with Classical Archaeology and Ancient History as the main field of study. It is also possible to graduate after one academic year with a Master of Arts (60 credits).

All specialisations of this programme


The Master's Programme in the Humanities, specialising in Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, commences with the compulsory course Cosmopolitan Pasts (7.5 credits). It runs at 50% of a full-time study load and you will take the course together with students from the Master's Programme in the Humanities, specialising in Archaeology from both campuses (Uppsala and Visby).

The other compulsory course, The Craft of Research (7.5 credits), runs throughout the first semester and provides support for the writing the Master's thesis.

Apart from this, you have the opportunity to design your education according to your own interests. At the beginning of your first semester, you will establish an individual study plan (ISP) together with the programme coordinator or director of studies. At that time, you will decide how to plan your studies: which courses to take, when to write your Master's thesis, etc. The ISP is revised every semester, or, if needed, more often.

The department offers a number of courses, which normally run at 50% of a full-time study load. The idea behind this is that you should read two courses in parallel, or read one course while working on your Master's thesis.

Apart from the courses offered by the department, which vary from semester to semester over a two-year cycle, you can choose to take an internship (worth 7.5 and/or 15 credits), or take courses individually tailored to suit your needs. You may also take courses offered by other departments at the university.

Most of the department's courses are offered both in Uppsala and in Visby, but some are only given at one campus.

The 45 credit Master's thesis is divided up and written over several semesters. You can choose to devote your full attention to the thesis, or read a course at the same time. Most courses are given in English, but you can choose to write your thesis either in English or in Swedish.

Courses within the programme

You can choose how to organise your studies yourself, after consulting with the Director of Studies. Below you can see one example of how the course work can be organised for the full, two-year programme.

Semester 1
Cosmopolitan Pasts, 7.5 credits (compulsory)
The Craft of Research, 7.5 credits (compulsory)
Elective courses corresponding to 15 credits

Semester 2
Elective courses corresponding to 15 credits
Advanced Field Course in Archaeology, 15 credits

Semester 3
Internship, 15 credits
Degree project, 15 credits

Semester 4
Degree project, 30 credits

Learning experience

The Master's Programme in the Humanities, specialising in Classical Archaeology and Ancient history, starts with two compulsory courses, followed by a range of elective courses offered both by the Department of Archaeology and Ancient History and by the Faculty of Arts. Courses are typically worth 7.5 credits and run at 50% of a full time study load. The content, teaching and learning outcomes of each course, detailed in a syllabus, varies but normally include two or four hour of seminars and lectures each week.

Between classes, you are expected to read and digest texts and sometimes also discuss them with other participants. Some courses are more practically oriented, e.g. internships and those on Geographical Information Systems (GIS). During these courses, you are expected to work up to 30 or even 40 hours per week in an office or a lab. Yet other courses are offered by the Swedish Institutes in Athens and Rome. If you are accepted to one of these courses, you will spend between one and ten weeks in Greece or Italy.

The assessment is normally continuous through active participation in seminars and submissions of several small, individually authored texts with specified deadlines, but may also consist of a single, longer text submitted at the end of the course. Practically oriented courses normally include continuous assessment by a supervisor.

The programme is offered in English and as a student you are given the choice of writing your Master's thesis in either English or Swedish.


With a Master of Arts degree, specialising in Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, you are eligible for further PhD studies in this field. Previous students have found work as archaeologists, museum curators and educators, investigators for the public sector, aid workers, tour leaders and guides, cultural writers, and researchers and lecturers at universities.

Career support
During your whole time as a student UU Careers offers you support and guidance. You have the opportunity to partake in a variety of career activities and events, as well as receive individual career counselling. This service is free of charge for all students at Uppsala University. Read more about UU Careers.


Classical Archaeology and Ancient History

120 credits

Autumn 2020 - 100 % - Campus

Location: Uppsala

Application Deadline: 2020-01-15

Enrolment Code: UU-M5002 Application

Language of Instruction: English

Academic requirements
A Bachelor's degree, equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen, from an internationally recognised university. The main field of study must be within the humanities or social sciences.
Also required is 60 credits in classical archaeology and ancient history.

Language requirements
All applicants need to verify English language proficiency that corresponds to English studies at upper secondary (high school) level in Sweden ("English 6"). This can be done in a number of ways, including through an internationally recognised test such as TOEFL or IELTS, or through previous upper secondary (high school) or university studies.
The minimum test scores are:

  • IELTS: an overall mark of 6.5 and no section below 5.5
  • TOEFL: Paper-based: Score of 4.5 (scale 1–6) in written test and a total score of 575. Internet-based: Score of 20 (scale 0–30) in written test and a total score of 90
  • Cambridge: CAE, CPE
More information about English language requirements

Selection: Students are selected based on:

  • a total appraisal of quantity and quality of previous university studies; and
  • a statement of purpose (1 page) where you detail why you want to pursue Master's studies within the programme.
Tuition fee-paying students and non-paying students are admitted on the same grounds but in different selection groups.


If you are not a citizen of a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country, or Switzerland, you are required to pay application and tuition fees. Fees cover application and tuition only and do not cover accommodation, academic literature or the general cost of living. Read more about fees.

Application Fee: SEK 900

Tuition fee, first semester: SEK 50000

Tuition fee, total: SEK 200000

Contact and further resources


Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology: Claudia Merli

+46 18 471 22 83

Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, Archeology, Egyptology

Gender Studies: Jacob Bull

+46 18 471 57 98

Cultural Heritage and Sustainability: Gustaf Leijonhufvud

+46 18 471 28 87

Musicology: Mattias Lundberg

+46 18 471 15 84

Philosophy: Pauliina Remes

Aesthetics: Elisabeth Schellekens Dammann

For admissions-related or general information, please contact our applicant support team:

For information and over-arching questions regarding the Master programme in the Humanities, please contact programme coordinator Molly Sundberg

Contact the respective department for information about your chosen specialisation.