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Classics is the study of the history, culture, and languages of the ancient Mediterranean world, with a particular focus on the Greeks and the Romans. At UIC the field is geographically and chronologically more expansive, encompassing also studies in the Near and Middle East and northern Africa, the medieval through modern periods, and reception. In addition to a wide range of courses in classical studies, students can also learn introductory through advanced Arabic, and introductory through intermediate Latin and Modern Greek.

Students who major in classical studies go on to pursue careers in law and professional scholarship, teach, and find employment in a wide range of fields. Recent graduates have entered law, medical, and divinity schools, while others have taken positions in business, public service, and education. The training students receive in critical reading, analytical thinking, and written and oral rhetoric is highly valued and sought by prospective employers.

The Department of Classics and Mediterranean Studies offers a program leading to the Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Classical Studies. Minors in Classical Studies and Arabic are also offered.

The department is part of the School of Literatures, Cultural Studies and Linguistics, which comprises six independent departments and three academic programs, creating a collaborative environment for interdisciplinary study.