Contact a Humanities Office or Academic unit.
Find your course outlines.

CLASSICS 1M03 History Of Greece & Rome (C01)

Academic Year: Fall 2018

Term: Fall

Day/Evening: Online

Instructor: Prof. Kyle McLeister



Phone: 905-525-9140 x 23383

Office Hours: Online Office Hours by Appointment

Course Objectives:

We will survey the history of ancient Greece and Rome from the Bronze Age (c.1500 BCE) to the fall of Rome (476 CE), examining the course of military and political events and the development of culture and society. We will also consider the evidence from which we reconstruct this history: what kinds of evidence (literary, archaeological, etc.) exist and the problems and possibilities of its interpretation. In addition to gaining knowledge of the history of ancient Greece and Rome and learning to assess and interpret evidence, you will, over the course of a series of assignments, gain skills in library research and academic writing.

Lectures and Tutorials

There will be two online lectures per week; the video lectures can be watched at any time. Students are responsible for keeping up-to-date with these lectures. Each lecture will be followed by a self-assessment quiz; these quizzes must be completed before you can move on to the next video.

In addition to the lectures, students will attend an online tutorial, led by the professor or by a teaching assistant, once a week (further information about these tutorials and WebEx, the service which will be hosting them, will be posted during the first week on Avenue to Learn). It is absolutely necessary that you attend these tutorials, having done all preparatory reading. 15% of your final grade will be based on attendance and participation in tutorials, in addition to which a significant portion of the final exam will be devoted to material covered only in the tutorials.

Textbooks, Materials & Fees:

Readings in Ancient History - Claude Eilers, 2nd Edition

Radix Antiqua Publishing

Method of Assessment:

Passage for comment exercise 10%

Academic writing exercise 10%

Library exercise 10%

Essay 20% – Due Date Included in Schedule Below

Tutorial Quizzes 10% (1% each)

Tutorial participation 15%

Final exam 25% (scheduled by registrar during exam period)

In preparation for each tutorial (except Academic Writing), you are required to take an online quiz (on Avenue), consisting of questions about the tutorial readings. You will be able to complete the quiz up to one hour before the time of your tutorial but not thereafter.

In the first part of the term, you will write three small assignments. Instructions and materials for the assignments will be posted on Avenue. The assignments are due in the dropbox on Avenue by the start time of your tutorial on the weeks listed in the schedule below. Be sure to submit your assignments on time; assignments which are submitted on the day of your tutorial but after the tutorial’s start time will be considered one day late and late marks (-3% a day) will apply accordingly. All assignments must be submitted as Word Documents or PDFs.

In the second part of the term, you will write an essay of 6-8 typed, double-spaced pages. The essay is worth 20% of your final mark and your grade will depend on its clarity and quality as a written argument as well as on the information and ideas it contains. It should develop one central argument, set out in your introduction (thesis statement). This argument should be developed clearly and consistently in the body of the paper. Each paragraph should deal with one main claim or idea and each step of the argument should build logically to the next. Your argument should be rooted in analysis of the primary sources (the ancient evidence) and engagement with contemporary scholarship (secondary sources). Remember, sources don’t speak for themselves. If you tell us something about a source you should explain what the significance of this is. Any quotation or reference to a source (primary or secondary) must be accompanied by citation. Any factual claim should be supported by citation of a source unless it is general knowledge (lectures can be considered general knowledge in this case) and similarly, unless it is general knowledge, you must acknowledge by citation the source from which you take any idea. Your essay must include a bibliography listing all works cited. Not to cite your sources is to commit plagiarism and will result in a failing grade.

Instructions and materials for the essay will be posted on Avenue.

The final exam, which the registrar will schedule during the examination period, will be based on the material covered throughout the course, including in tutorials. Please note that the final exam will not be online and will instead be written on campus just like any other exam.

Policy on Missed Work, Extensions, and Late Penalties:

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar “Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work”. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015.

Late penalties of -3% per day will be applied to all assignment that are submitted after their due date.

Please Note the Following Policies and Statements:

Academic Dishonesty

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.

Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: "Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty"), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

  1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
  2. Improper collaboration in group work.
  3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Email correspondence policy

It is the policy of the Faculty of Humanities that all email communication sent from students to instructors (including TAs), and from students to staff, must originate from each student’s own McMaster University email account. This policy protects confidentiality and confirms the identity of the student.  Instructors will delete emails that do not originate from a McMaster email account.

Modification of course outlines

The University reserves the right to change dates and/or deadlines etc. for any or all courses in the case of an emergency situation or labour disruption or civil unrest/disobedience, etc. If a modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with an explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. Any significant changes should be made in consultation with the Department Chair.

McMaster Student Absence Form (MSAF)

In the event of an absence for medical or other reasons, students should review and follow the Academic Regulation in the Undergraduate Calendar Requests for Relief for Missed Academic Term Work. Please note these regulations have changed beginning Fall 2015. You can find information at If you have any questions about the MSAF, please contact your Associate Dean's office.

Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities

Students who require academic accommodation must contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to make arrangements with a Program Coordinator. Academic accommodations must be arranged for each term of study. Student Accessibility Services can be contacted by phone 905-525-9140 ext. 28652 or e-mail For further information, consult McMaster University's Policy for Academic Accommodation of Students with Disabilities.

Academic Accommodation for Religious, Indigenous and Spiritual Observances

Students requiring academic accommodation based on religion and spiritual observances should follow the procedures set out in the Course Calendar or by their respective Faculty. In most cases, the student should contact his or her professor or academic advisor as soon as possible to arrange accommodations for classes, assignments, tests and examinations that might be affected by a religious holiday or spiritual observance.

Topics and Readings:

Week 1 (September 4 – 9)

Aegean Bronze Age

No tutorial (and therefore no readings or quiz)

Week 2 (September 10 – 16)

Greek Dark Age

Tutorial 1: Greece in the Heroic and Dark ages (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 1) – Quiz on Avenue

Archaic Period

Week 3 (September 17 – 23)


Tutorial 2: Tyranny, Oligarchy, Democracy (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 2) – Quiz on Avenue


Week 4 (September 24 –30)

Persian Wars

Tutorial 3: Athens and Sparta (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 3) – Quiz on Avenue – Passage for Comment assignment due


Week 5 (October 1 – 7)

Peloponnesian War

Tutorial 4: The Peloponnesian War (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 4) – Quiz on Avenue

Fourth-Century Athens

                                                       READING WEEK (OCTOBER 8 - 14)

Week 6 (October 15 – 21)

Philip & Alexander

Tutorial 5: Academic Writing (no readings, no quiz on Avenue) – Academic Writing Assignment Due

Alexander: World Conqueror

Week 7 (October 22 – 28)

The Hellenistic World

Tutorial 6: The Hellenistic World (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 5) – Quiz on Avenue – Library Assignment Due

Early Rome

Week 8 (October 29 – November 4)

Roman Expansion

Tutorial 7: Roman Expansion (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 7) – Quiz on Avenue

The Late Republic 1

Week 9 (November 5 – 11)

The Late Republic 2

Tutorial 8: The Gracchi (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 8) – Quiz on Avenue

The Civil Wars

Week 10 (November 12 – 18)


Tutorial 9: The Augustan Reorganization (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 10) – Quiz on Avenue – Essay due November 14th (5:00 PM)

The Julio-Claudians 1

Week 11 (November 19 – 25)

The Julio-Claudians 2

Tutorial 10: The Julio-Claudians (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 11) – Quiz on Avenue

Vespasian to Caracalla

Week 12 (November 26 – December 2)

The Third-Century Crisis & The Tetrarchy

Tutorial 11: Roman Religion (Readings in Ancient History, Chapter 12) – Quiz on Avenue

The Fall of the Western Empire