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Learning pathways

Students need to understand how their learning in classical studies can connect to other learning areas and their lives outside school. When they do, it is a powerful tool to motivate, engage, and enhance the relevance of their learning.

Classical studies programmes (within and across years) should collectively equate to more than the sum of their parts. Nothing should feel isolated or be a dead end.

In years 11–13, students may specialise within classical studies or take courses that are broader, gaining a ‘taste’ of a subject or exploring options across or outside learning areas.

At school

At school, whether students take classical studies for one year or five, it should offer them opportunities to build the skills and understandings necessary for informed and active citizenship in the modern world. At increasing levels of sophistication, they learn to think critically about sources, apply their understandings in different contexts, and to examine and compare values. As students advance, they engage with more complex source material and more sophisticated thinking. Classical studies will offer opportunities for students to not only gain an enthusiasm for classical civilizations but to select, organise, and communicate information clearly and logically and to evaluate the reliability of evidence.

Classical studies can make connections to a student’s total programme in terms of developing and applying their understanding of classical studies’ key concepts and the key competencies of the New Zealand Curriculum. Classical studies courses can offer opportunities to apply skills in and connect to authentic contexts of local and global communities. By planning for the students’ own abilities and interests, classical studies courses can offer a range of worthwhile activities and opportunities to all students so they can see that the subject offers a range of options for them that are of real relevance.

Beyond school

Beyond years 12 or 13, students might choose to pursue classical studies as a discipline by studying courses in classics (classical studies, Latin, or ancient Greek) at a number of universities. The focus on the key concepts provides insight into the origins of modern civilisation. This insight combined with the literacy and critical thinking skills developed by the subject effectively prepares students for successful study in a wide range of humanities and legal programmes.

Learning for life

The rationale for the lifelong importance of classical studies can be found in Why study classical studies? Classical studies can be the basis for careers as diverse as:

  • advertising
  • archaeology
  • architecture
  • broadcasting and journalism
  • graphic and interior design
  • information technology
  • law
  • marketing
  • medicine
  • museums and art galleries
  • philosophy
  • politics
  • teaching
  • tourism.

The study of classics is a rich area for sustaining and extending students’ personal interests and explorations by:

  • teaching them about some of the origins of modern civilisations and culture
  • challenging them to think critically and make informed judgments
  • enabling them to recognise diverse ideas, values, and traditions
  • introducing them to a whole field of knowledge that may become a lifelong interest and source of pleasure.

Last updated August 3, 2012