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A Level in Classical Civilisation (Full AS+A2) [ODL] £295.00
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£295.00

Course Aims

Oxford College (ODL) are pleased to offer the opportunity to study to AS and A2 the Classical Civilisation A-level course as specified by OCR. The A-level has several aims:

  • To give a knowledge and understanding of the classical world through direct study of original sources
  • To encourage and develop an enthusiasm for the classical world
  • To develop an awareness of the relationship between the modern and the classical world, and the effect that
  • the latter has had on shaping and making the former
  • To give candidates the chance to form their own personal responses to the set texts chosen for study
  • To further and enhance their analytical and evaluative skills.

Course Outline

Students are strongly recommended to familiarise themselves with the OCR specification for the A-level GCE in Classical Civilisation. The document can be downloaded as a pdf file, alongside further student support and assessment materials at:

http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/asa_levelgceforfirstteachingin2008/classics_civilisation/index.html

The OCR A-level in Classical Civilisation is divided into four units. These are:

AS Level

Unit 1: Homerís Odyssey and Society (F382)

Homerís epic poem the Odyssey and the values and societies it represents. The principal focus of the unit is on literature, with secondary focus on history and archaeology. The examination questions will be set on Odyssey Books 4-12 and 18-22.

The social and cultural context: The themes to be studied and on which candidates shall be examined are: the role of the gods and the power of fate; the stories of the heroes; the concept of heroism including timť and kleos; morality including justice and revenge; life and society as portrayed by Homer; the role of women; hospitality and xenia; the role of slaves and the historical and archaeological background.

The literary context: Furthermore, candidates are expected to demonstrate their knowledge of: the oral tradition; textual transmission of the texts; the preliterate form of the texts and theories of the composition of the text; structure of the text and literary techniques; the language of epic; characterisation; supernatural elements; realism and fantasy; disguise and recognition and nostos.

Unit 2: Greek Tragedy in its Context (F384)

The tragic plays of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides as literary works and as social documents for the societies and values they represent. The principal focus of this unit is on literature, society and values, with a secondary focus on philosophy, religion and history. From June 2009-2011 inclusive, the examination questions will be set on: Aeschylusí Agamemnon; Sophoclesí Oedipus the King and Euripidesí Medea and Bacchae.

The social and cultural context: Candidates will be expected to demonstrate their knowledge and show understanding of the following in fifth century Athens: dramatic festivals; the role of the gods and fate; oracles, omens and prophecies; morality including justice and revenge; death and burial; the stories of the heroes and the ideas of honour and reputation; the role of men in the life of the city; the position of women in society and the importance of children and the family.

The literary context: Furthermore, candidates are expected to demonstrate their knowledge of: the theatre building and machinery; the use of actors; the use of the chorus; other dramatic conventions; attitude towards the portrayal of death and violence; characterisation; use of language and dramatic irony; the nature of tragedy including hamartia, katharsis and peripeteia and the particular styles and approaches characteristic of the three tragedians and their contribution to the development of the genre of Greek tragedy.

A Level

Unit 3: Art and Architecture in the Greek world (F388)

The sculpture, architecture and vase painting of the classical Greek world with a principal focus on art, architecture and religion. The secondary focus is on society and values. Candidates must be familiar with a range of free-standing sculpture, temple architecture, vase paintings and architectural sculpture.

Prescribed material: For further details of the prescribed artefacts of visual culture see the OCR specification p.54 onwards for details of this unit.

http://www.ocr.org.uk/Data/publications/key_documents/AS_ALevel_GCE_Classics_Specification.pdf

The artistic and cultural context: Candidates will be expected to show knowledge and understanding of: stylistic features and development of vases, architecture and sculpture; the evolution of different types of buildings; physical characteristics; architectural elements and the Doric and Ionic orders; composition; techniques; function of art and architecture and themes.

Unit 4: Virgil and the World of the Hero (F390)

Virgilís epic poem the Aeneid and the values and societies it represents, with a principal focus on literature, society and values, and a secondary focus on religion, politics and history. The similarities and differences between Virgilís portrayal of the hero and that found in selected parts of Homerís Iliad.

The political, social, historical and cultural context: Candidates are expected to show their knowledge and understanding of: Virgilís relationship to the regime of Augustus and the political and historical background in which the Aeneid was written.

The literary context: Furthermore, candidates are expected to show knowledge and understanding of: the composition of both epics; the plot; narrative and descriptive techniques; characterisation and themes including heroism, honour and reputation, family, women, the role of the gods, the power of fate, the portrayal of war, moral values and the role of Aeneas in imperial history of Rome.

Format of the Examinations

AS Units 1 and 2

Each unit is worth 50% of the total marks available for the AS GCE, and 25% for the A2 GCE if taken. The papers are each 90 minutes long and each carry 100 marks.

Unit 1: Homerís Odyssey and Society

Section A: commentary question (45 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of two, each question having three sub sections.

Section B: essay question (55 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of three. Bullet point guidance is given for each of the essay questions.

Unit 2: Greek Tragedy in its context

Section A: commentary question (45 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of two, each question having three sub sections.

Section B: essay question (55 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of three. Bullet point guidance is given for each of the essay questions.

A2 Units 3 and 4

Each unit is worth 25% of the total marks available for the A2 GCE. The papers are each 2 hours and each carry 100 marks.

Unit 3: Art and Architecture in the Greek world

Section A: commentary question (50 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of two, each question having two sub sections.

Section B: essay question (50 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of two. This unit is synoptic.

Unit 4: Virgil and the world of the hero

Section A: commentary question (50 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of two, each question having two sub sections.

Section B: essay question (50 marks). Candidates answer one question from a choice of two. This unit is synoptic.

Textbooks

Homer Odyssey Translated by E V Rieu, revised translation by D C H Rieu (Penguin)

Aeschylus Agamemnon Translated by R F Fagles (Penguin)

Sophocles Oedipus the King Translated by R F Fagles (Penguin)

Euripides Medea Translated by P Vellacott (Penguin)

Euripides Bacchae Translated by J Davie (Penguin)

Virgil Aeneid Translated by D West (Penguin)

Homer Iliad Translated by M Hammond (Penguin)

Entry Requirements

The A-level builds on the course content of the Classical Civilisation GCSE, but it is not necessary to have this qualification before undertaking the A-level. However, in order to meet the demands of the course, it is recommended that candidates have literary and communication skills equivalent to C or higher at GCSE, though full tutor support is given throughout. Basic English reading and writing skills are required.

Study Hours

Variable according to student commitment, though OCR recommend 180 guided learning hours for AS and 360 guided learning hours for A2.

Qualification

AS/A2 - A level in Classical Civilisation. Both AS and A2 level courses and examinations must be successfully completed to gain a full A level.

Specification: OCR (AS) H041 and OCR (A2) H441

What's Included

Learning documentation, Online Resources and Tutor support for 2 years.

Course Fee

Full A Level (AS & A2) £295.00
AS Level Only £195.00
A2 Level Only £195.00 (Enrolments taken from Summer 2009)

Further Information

Courses in paper/file format are still available at an additional fee of £45.00 and must be enrolled upon via telephone. This service is only available to those students studying within the United Kingdom. All students outside the United Kingdom will receive the online format.

Windows: Windows 98, 2000, XP, Vista - Acrobat Reader 8.0 and above
Macintosh: Mac OS X, Mac OS 9.2 - Acrobat Reader 8.0 and above

As an A Level student you will have access to our online 'Common Room', where you are able to receive the latest course updates, extra materials and information. You will also be able to take part in the student chat room and forums as part of our online student community.

Once enrolled, your username, password and personal Oxford College Student number will be emailed to you within 5 working days, which will give you access to your course materials via the ĎCommon Roomí.

The full A Level will be a 2 year course, AS Exams to be taken in 2009 and A2 in 2010. Due to Examination Board restrictions, there is no flexibility to complete this course any sooner.

Students are required to arrange and pay for their examinations and manage the course work element if the subject requires this. Students must check the relevant examination board website for further information and final examination sitting dates for the specification.

www.ocr.org.uk

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