Fast Track A Level in Classical Civilisation (Full AS+A2)


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Fast Track A Level in Classical Civilisation (Full AS+A2)


Syllabus: ‘A’ Level H041/H441 (10/2016)

(Issue: 11)

Examining Board: OCR 2016
Fast Track is a unique programme designed specifically for learners who want to obtain the qualifications in a short space of time; need to improve a current grade; revise to re-sit the AS/A level. Popular with mature students, returning learners, who need to prove academic ability before entry to higher education at University or, even improve employment prospects; all of whom want the flexibility of learning online at their own pace rather than conventional settings.
This Fast Track level three (3) course is based on the OCR Advanced General Certificate Education (GCE); that also includes units from the AS level (A-GCE) Specifications for Classical Civilisation, which became available from 2016 examination series. 
This course consists of FOUR UNITS (4) from the GCE ‘A’ Level and is a qualification in its own right.   Students are strongly recommended to familiarise themselves with the new OCR specification for the A level GCE in Classical Civilisation (for first examination in 2016). 
The concept of the programme is to be able to study at a paced level that allows students to complete the programme in a short space of time, usually 12 months. In doing so, students can plan to sit the most suitable examination series following completion. Students can also use the course to sit either the A level or the AS level and in some cases students may want to sit both! 

College Fees

The College remains at the competitive edge of online and distance learning; and through our excellent track record, provide a quality assured programme of learning our fees are within the range of market trends for similar courses, but remain readily affordable. 
Our fee for this course is £ 365:00* which can be paid in full or, through instalments.
(*The course fee excludes ALL external examinations costs).

Key Features

Oxford Learning College offer the opportunity to study Classic Civilisations courses as specified by OCR. This A level syllabus has several features the aims of these Classics specifications are to encourage Students to:
·         Develop an interest in, and enthusiasm for, the classical world;
·         Acquire, through studying a range of appropriate sources, knowledge and understanding of selected aspects of classical civilisation;
·         Develop awareness of the continuing influence of the classical world on later times and of the similarities and differences between the classical world and later times;
·         Develop and apply analytical and evaluative skills at an appropriate level;
·         Make an informed, personal response to the material studied.
In addition, the Latin and Classical Greek units aim to encourage Students to:
Develop an appropriate level of competence in the language studied and a sensitive and analytical approach to language generally.

Course Entry Requirements

Good English oral, reading and writing skills, previous study at level two (GCSE, IGCSE etc) or equivalent.  Full tutor support is given although, Tutor’s are not able to support beyond specific syllabus queries, learning difficulties and marking/grading of TMA’s.  General support is offered by OLC through its online and telephone student services centre.

Study Hours

Approximately: Ninety (90) hours of personal study time, per unit, which is supported by the student’s OLC Tutor, which is an optional arrangement for students, but we greatly encouraged students to access this to achieve a good examination outcome.


This qualification supports progression in our College to other Advanced GCE and other International Higher Awards in many academic subjects (see our level 4 & 5 portfolio of courses online); and also, allow students to move onto Higher Education or similar Institution completing: Foundation Degrees; Degrees Post-graduate and other formal qualifications.


Course Syllabus & Contents

The whole ‘A’ level has FOUR (4) specific units of study, which are sub-divided into FOUR (4) Units of learning, these are:

AS Modules

The Advanced Subsidiary GCE is the first half of the GCE course and consists of Units 1 and 2. It may be awarded as a discrete qualification or contribute 50 per cent of the total Advanced GCE marks

Unit One: AS Unit CC2: Homer's Odyssey and Society

The principal focus of this unit is on literature, society and values. The unit is also concerned with history and archaeology. Students must study Homer's Odyssey. Passages for the commentary questions will be selected from books 4–12, 18–22. Students must be prepared to answer commentary questions on passages taken from any of the material prescribed for the unit           

Literary context

Students should be able to demonstrate knowledge and an understanding of: 
Oral tradition;
Transmission of the texts, including when the epics were written down;
What their preliterate form was and whether they were composed by one or more poets; Structure of the epic;
Narrative techniques, including flashback, retardation, episodes;
The language of epic, including formulae and similes;
Presentation of character; · supernatural elements, such as monsters;
Realism and fantasy;
Disguise and recognition;
Social and cultural context Students should be able to demonstrate an Understanding of the following:
·         The role of the gods and the power of fate;
·         The stories of the heroes;
·         The concept of heroism, including the ideas of honour (timé) and reputation (kleos);
·         Moral concepts, such as justice and revenge;
·         Life and society as portrayed by Homer;
·         The part played by women in the epics and their position in society;
·         Hospitality and guest friendship (xenia);
·         The role of slaves;
·         Historical and archaeological background


Unit Two: AS Unit CC4: Greek Tragedy in its context

The principal focus of this unit is on literature, society and values. The unit is also concerned with history, philosophy and religion.
From June 2015 until the end of this specification, inclusive, the set texts will be: Aeschylus' Agamemnon, Sophocles' Antigone and Euripides' Medea and Electra

Literary context

 Students should be able to demonstrate knowledge and an understanding of:
·         The theatre building and machinery;
·         Use of actors;
·         Use of the chorus;
·         Other dramatic conventions, such as the structure of the plays, messenger speeches and deus ex machina;
·         Attitudes towards the portrayal of violence and death;
·         Characterisation, including the role of minor characters;
·         Language;
·         Dramatic irony;
·         The nature of tragedy, including concepts such as hamartia, peripeteia and katharsis;
·         The particular styles and approaches characteristic of each of the three tragedians and their contribution to the development of Greek tragedy.

Social and cultural context

 Students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of how 5th century Athenians viewed the following: 
·         Dramatic festivals;
·         The role of the gods and fate in the world;
·         Oracles, omens and prophecies;
·         Moral concepts, such as 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;
·         The importance of children and the family

Unit Three: A2 Unit CC8 –

Art & Architecture in the Greek World
The principal focus of this unit is on art, architecture and religion. The unit is also concerned with society and values. Students must be familiar with the specified free-standing sculpture, architectural sculpture, vases, and temple architecture for example:
·         Artistic and cultural context Students should be able to demonstrate knowledge and an understanding of:
·         Stylistic features and development of vases, sculpture and architecture (including the evolution of different types of buildings, physical characteristics, architectural elements and the Doric and Ionic orders);
·         Composition (including portrayal of physical form, drapery, movement and emotion);
·         Techniques (including black figure, red figure and white ground vase painting techniques and building techniques);
·         Function of art and architecture (including shapes and uses of vases, function of sculptures and use of individual buildings and of building complexes);
·         Themes

Prescribed Materials

In this unit students will be guided in their studies through the learning materials to make careful study and commentary on exhibits and examples in the following aspects of art and architecture:
·         Free-standing sculpture
·         Architectural sculpture
·         Vase-painting
·         Temple architecture
Although the learning materials are in themselves comprehensive in content, tutors are available to assist students in developing further enquiry into these important aspects. 

Unit Four: A2 Unit A2 Unit CC10:

Virgil and the world of the hero           
The principal focus of this unit is on literature, society and values. The unit is also concerned with history, politics and religion. Students must read the prescribed books selected from Virgil’s Aeneid and Homer’s Iliad. These books are: Aeneid: Books 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 12. Iliad: Books 6, 18, 22 and 24. Passages for commentary may be taken from any of these books.

Literary context

Students should be able to demonstrate knowledge and an understanding of the following areas:
·         The composition of both epics;
·         Plot;
·         Narrative techniques including speeches and repetition;
·         Descriptive techniques including similes and imagery;
·         Characterisation;
·         Themes within the epics 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 Rome’s imperial destiny.
Political, social, historical and cultural context
Students should also show an awareness of: Virgil’s relationship to the regime of Augustus; and equally the political and historical background in which the, Aeneid was written.

Prescribed Material

Students may use any complete translation of the texts. Where a translation is printed on the question paper it will be taken from:
Virgil, Aeneid translated by D West (Penguin)
Homer, Iliad translated by M Hammond (Penguin). 
Extracts printed on the examination question papers will continue to be taken from these translations even if they go out of print during the lifetime of the specification, and therefore, our college may use any complete translations in our written materials.

Support Materials

Although the course programme is ‘self contained’ the student may wish to obtain further materials in regards to learning. The following materials are in the main useful, but not essential to guide learning: - 


What's Included

Online learning materials, online resources, and full tutor support for one year upon signing our Terms and Conditions agreement.

Entry Requirements

Although the A-Level programmes build on the course content of GCSE, it is not necessary to have this qualification before undertaking an A-Level. However, in order to meet the demands of the course, it is recommended that candidates have literacy and communication skills equivalent to C or higher at GCSE. Please note that full tutor support is still provided throughout your course duration.

The format of the Examinations

PLEASE NOTE: All exams are held during the May - June exam period of every year.

International Students

If you are based outside the UK, it may be possible to sit your examination through your local British Council, depending on your location.

Further Information

Your course is delivered online via the Oxford Learning On Campus website.

After enrolling online, you will receive a username and password to access the On Campus area. This is delivered within a few moments and three-working days.

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.

Materials and support provided by Oxford Learning.Oxford Learning

Our A-Level programmes are eligible for UCAS points, making them a great choice for students aiming to progress to University. UCAS points are awarded according to the grade earned, please see below for details.

A levels are also widely recognised by employers and are useful for students looking to progress their careers or meet requirements for promotion.

UCAS Points Table
A* = 56
A = 48
B = 40
C = 32
D = 24
E = 16

Course Fee


Payment by Instalments

Students are able to pay course fees in monthly instalments. Click here to download our instalment plan.

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