Module Catalogue 2019/20

CAH1012 : West meets East: Greek History and Society, 776-200 BC

  • Offered for Year: 2019/20
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Joseph Skinner
  • Lecturer: Dr John Holton, Dr Matthew Haysom
  • Teaching Assistant: Miss Emma Gooch
  • Owning School: History, Classics and Archaeology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
Pre Requisites
Pre Requisite Comment


Co Requisites
Co Requisite Comment



This module aims to:
• Acquaint you with the history of the Greek world from 776 BC, the traditional date for the first Olympic Games and thus the ‘beginning’ of Greek history, until 200 BC.
• Enable you to engage critically with scholarship dealing with the central historical
questions of that period, a crucial part of your training as either a classicist or historian.
• Foster core skills in using and evaluating primary evidence.
• Provide you with a secure foundation for the study of ancient Greek history.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will provide you with a broad introduction to history of the Archaic and Classical Greek
world during the period 776-200 BC. Key political events in mainland Greece and the Aegean will be
set in their wider context: a world shaped by mobility and exchange that extended from the Rock of Gibraltar (known in antiquity as the Pillars of Herakles) to (following Alexander's conquests) the White Mountains in modern Afghanistan.
Topics covered include: the origins and nature of Greek identity, art and culture; Greek settlement
overseas; contact and interaction with non-Greeks; political thought; the origins, development and
internal workings of the Greek city state; Greek society (slavery, religious belief, sexuality); the
economy; the Persian Wars; the Delian League and the road to empire; Athenian democracy;
Sparta; The Peloponnesian War; Athens’ downfall and its immediate aftermath; the causes of Sparta’s defeat and the rise of Thebes; the rise of Macedon under Philip, the conquests and legacy of Alexander the Great, and the age of the Hellenistic kingdoms.

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module, you will have a sound knowledge of the broad
sweep of Greek history from 776 to 200 BC. Having developed a comprehensive
understanding of the major historical themes that shaped the Greek world during this
period you will also be accustomed to using a variety of primary and secondary materials
to answer (and formulate) historical questions relating to political events, warfare, society
and culture.

Intended Skill Outcomes

The module will foster a variety of transferable skills (not all directly assessed), including:
oral discussion; listening and note-taking skills; analytical reading of set texts; identification
and deployment of material relevant to a particular question; engagement with primary
evidence; written exposition; effective time-management.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion751:0075:0045% of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture271:0027:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading751:0075:0045% of guided independent study
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching71:007:00Class discussions/close reading of set texts
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork12:002:00Museum Visit
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study141:0014:0010% of guided independent study
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures will introduce you to key historical topics and how to approach them. Lectures are not merely intended to provide you with answers. Instead, they will provide you with the knowledge and skills that will enable you to both formulate and answer your own questions. Your listening and note-taking skills will play a key role in this process. The class discussions are an opportunity for you to develop your understanding dynamically, e.g. by engaging in discussion of how you should go about addressing historical questions, the relative merits of different types of evidence or approach to the sources or by gaining clarification of any points that you do not understand. In doing so you will develop your analytical skills, oral communication skills and your ability to work as part of a team.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination901A75The exam consists of 2 gobbets and one essay question.
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1M251500 words
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Computer assessmentMClass tests administered via Blackboard
Computer assessmentMMap test administered via Blackboard
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assignment assesses knowledge and understanding of the texts set for the module, the ability
to compare and contrast related source texts on a common subject, and the ability to expound and
criticize a textual extract lucidly, succinctly and with relevance in a relatively brief space.

The unseen examination tests the students’ acquisition of a clear, general and overall knowledge
of the subject plus the ability to think and analyse a problem quickly, to select from and to apply
both the general knowledge of aspects of the subject to new questions, problem-solving skills,
adaptability, the ability to work unaided and to write clearly and concisely.

Submitted work tests intended knowledge and skills outcomes, develops key skills in research, reading and writing.

The (formatively assessed) class tests are designed to test the students' knowledge of Mediterranean geography, key terminology and core concepts.

All Erasmus students at Newcastle University are expected to do the same assessment as students registered for a degree.

Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending semester 1 only are required to finish their assessment while in Newcastle. This will take the form of an alternative assessment, as outlined in the formats below:

Modules assessed by Coursework and Exam:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be one essay in addition to the other coursework assessment (the length of the essay should be adjusted in order to comply with the assessment tariff); to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Exam only:
The normal alternative form of assessment for all semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be two 2,000 word written exercises; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Modules assessed by Coursework only:
All semester 1 non-EU study abroad students will be expected to complete the standard assessment for the module; to be submitted no later than 12pm Friday of week 12. The essays should be set so as to assure coverage of the course content to date.

Study-abroad, non-Erasmus exchange and Loyola students spending the whole academic year or semester 2 are required to complete the standard assessment as set out in the MOF under all circumstances.


Past Exam Papers

General Notes


Disclaimer: The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2019/20 academic year. In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described. Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2020/21 entry will be published here in early-April 2019. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.