Artium Baccalaureatus

Why Declare an A.B. Degree?

The Artium Baccalaureatus, the A.B. Degree, is the traditional bachelor’s degree conferred by the College of Charleston and remains the College’s most prestigious degree. Since the founding of the College in 1770, the study of Greek and Latin has been a core component of the undergraduate curriculum. [Read more about the history of Classics at CofC.] The A.B. decree is a well-recognized program, but prestige is not the only benefit. High-level training in Greek or Latin provides linguistic and critical thinking skills that will improve your writing, communication, and research skills. [Read more about Greek and Latin.]

Having the A.B. Degree on your transcript shows that you have undertaken rigorous academic training outside of and in addition to the coursework for your major(s) and minor(s). Graduate schools and employers receive hundreds, sometimes thousands, of applications from students with high GPAs and similar majors. The A.B. makes you stand out from the crowd. Only a few historical colleges and universities still offer this program of study (for instance, Harvard University, Princeton University, Bryn Mawr College). [Read more about careers in Classics.]

Earning an A.B. Degree

Students in any major can earn the Artium Baccalaureatus (instead of a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science). In recent years students from a wide range of majors (including Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, English, Historic Preservation, History, Mathematics, Political Science, and Psychology) have elected to pursue an A.B. Degree.

The chief requirement is to demonstrate competency in an ancient language by completing two 300-level courses in either Latin or Greek. Preparatory to these upper-level courses, students must complete the four-semester sentence in either Latin or Greek, which fulfills the College of Charleston’s four-semester General Education requirement for language.

Two courses in classical civilization are also required, but these are easy boxes to check as so many courses can “double count” for General Education requirements.

Checklist for the A.B. Degree

Latin Track (18 hours)

  • LATN 101  Elementary Latin (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • LATN 102  Elementary Latin (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • LATN 201  Intermediate Latin (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • LATN 202  Intermediate Latin (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • LATN 300 or 400
  • LATN 300 or 400

[Read more about upper-level Latin courses.]

(Note: Students who place into a Latin course are exempt from the hour requirements for courses they have skipped. For instance, if you place into LATN 201, you only have to take 12 hours for the A.B. Degree: LATN 201, LATN 202, LATN 3xx, LATN 3xx). [Read more about Latin placement.]

Greek Track (18 hours)

  • GREK 101  Elementary Ancient Greek (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • GREK 102  Elementary Ancient Greek (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • GREK 201  Intermediate Ancient Greek (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • GREK 202  Intermediate Ancient Greek (counts for Gen. Ed. Language)
  • GREK 300 or 400
  • GREK 300 or 400

[Read more about upper-level Greek courses.]

Classical Civilization Component (6 hours) – Required for Both Tracks

Choose two more courses from any that count for other Classics programs. [Read more about courses in classical civilization.]

Earning an A.B. Classics

Unlike other A.B. decrees, the A.B. with a Classics major requires knowledge of both languages. [Read more about majoring in Classics.]