The Department

The Greek and Latin programs at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln are as old as the university itself. Among the five professors in residence when the university opened its doors in the fall of 1871 were a professor of Greek and a professor of Latin. The university's original 1867 charter also called for the appointment of a Professor of Theology and the History of All Religions. In 1998 the original intention of the university's founders was fulfilled when the department became the Department of Classics and Religious Studies, two humanities fields of study that share common interests in text, language and history.

Majors and Minors

The department offers two majors.

1. The Classics and Religious Studies major is a joint major; students select from a menu of core courses, and are also required to specialize in either Classics or Religious Studies.
2. Classical Languages offers training in Latin and Classical Greek, with a heavy emphasis on the ability to read and comprehend ancient Classical literature.

Major in Classics & Religious Studies

The classics and religious studies major offers a wide range of courses in the civilization, religions and culture of the ancient Mediterranean world, as well as ancient and modern religions broadly conceived. It is an interdisciplinary major with two areas of emphasis, one in Classics and one in Religious Studies. Depending on your chosen emphasis, this major is designed to provide you with an excellent background to pursue graduate work in classical languages and literature, classical archaeology, ancient history, religious studies, literary scholarship, and other humane disciplines. In addition, the broad and humane education offered by the major serves as excellent preparation for careers in law, medicine, journalism, ministry, business and education.

Major in Classical Languages

This major is intended primarily for those interested in graduate study of the Greco-Roman world. As competency in both Greek and Latin is requisite for graduate study, students must take courses in both languages to complete the major. This major is also appropriate for students who wish to undertake advanced study in related fields such as linguistics, or to teach high school Latin.


A degree in Classics and Religious Studies or in Classical Languages is good preparation for advanced study in Classics or Religious Studies. Students from the department also go on to graduate degrees in law, the ministry, counseling, or the medical professions. Students who go directly into the working world find positions in government, business, industry, and non-profit organizations.