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Department of Greek and Latin Philology


Bachelor’s and Master’s Level

At the Bachelor’s and Master’s level, our Department offers study programs in the Classical Languages Greek and Latin, in Medieval Latin and in Ancient Studies. In the Fall semester of 2019 a Major-Minor-structure was introduced throughout the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Zurich. Besides, new single-subject programs  – including one in Ancient Studies – are available at Master’s level. 

Many of our study programs allow students either to combine language and literature (with the option of specializing in linguistics – a unique selling point of Zurich Classics) or to study literature on its own. We also take part in a number of interdisciplinary study programs. Since 2017 our Department has been in charge of  programs in ancient studies, which are offered in collaboration with Ancient History and Archeology. We are also associated with modern literature and linguistics programs (in particular the mono-master in literature and the mono-master in linguistics) and with the MA study programs in Medieval Studies.

At the Bachelor’s and Master’s level, classes are on the whole taught in German, but coursework and essays may be submitted in one of Switzerland’s national languages or in English. Detailed information on our courses can be found on the German-language page.

Doctorate and Post-Docs

Our Department offers Individual Doctorates in Greek Philology (with the choice of focusing on language or literature), Latin Philology (with the same choice), and Medieval and Modern Latin. In addition to producing an original research contribution in the form of a PhD thesis, students must earn 12 ECTS Credits. The doctoral candidate is individually supervised by a Doctoral Committee. Thanks to our contacts with researchers in Zurich, the rest of Switzerland and abroad, doctoral students get access to a wide network of the scholarly community. A cotutelle de thèse (doctoral project conducted in a formalized arrangement between two universities) is also possible and can be a decisive asset for the student’s future career.

The PhD thesis may be submitted either in one of Switzerland’s national languages or in English. Students are supposed to complete their doctorate within three years, but an appropriate extension may be granted, if studying part time. If you intend to write a PhD at our Department, do not hesitate to contact the professor under whose supervision you would like to work.

For further details please check the guidelines on the German-language page, or get in touch with our Student Advisory Service. General information on studying for a doctorate with the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences can be found here, information on the application procedure here.
After completing their dissertation, anyone intending to embark on an academic career might wish to consider habilitation. The habilitation process serves to confirm that a person is able independently to represent their field at university through their teaching and research work. The assessment is generally based on a habilitation thesis and trial lecture. As an academic qualification, “habilitation” is used chiefly in the German-speaking academic sector. In the disciplines which we offer, it is often still a requirement for anyone wishing to become a professor.
General information on habilitation at the University of Zurich can be found here, while specific information on the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (including its habilitation ordinance) is available here.

Funding Options

If you arrive from outside Switzerland and are interested in doctoral or post-doc study at the University of Zurich, Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships are particularly worth exploring. Via the Federal Commission for Scholarships for Foreign Students, the federal government provides a number of subsidies, including university scholarships, for researchers from all disciplines. The details of the scholarship depend on your country of origin. 

The University of Zurich also has its own, highly competitive Research Fund, which provides promising next-generation researchers with financial support in the form of a Candoc or Postdoc grant.

A compilation of further options for funding your studies at UZH is provided here in German.