The comprehensive exams for the M.A. in Latin are preceded by two other foundational requirements: the modern language exam and the sight-translation exam.
Modern language exam in French or German
Competence in French or German is demonstrated by passing a departmental examination. The examination is one hour long and consists of a single passage of academic French or German. A dictionary may be used. To pass the examination, students must be able to translate approximately one full page into standard English with a high level of accuracy. Students who have not previously studied the language at the college level should first take and pass the graduate-level reading courses offered by the Department of Modern Languages (French 500 or German 500).
To qualify to take a translation (reading list) examination in Latin, graduate students must pass a sight examination in that language. Sight examinations are one hour long, and consist of a single passage in prose and a single passage in poetry. They are taken without a dictionary by arrangement with the graduate advisor.
The comprehensives for the M.A. in Latin consist of the following two exams:
- One 3-hour translation examination in Latin, based on an official departmental list of Latin texts:
- One 3-hour essay examination in Roman Literature/History, based on an official departmental list of secondary scholarship, with essay questions (one or more required) drawn from an official departmental list of questions known in advance:
A passing grade on comprehensive examinations is B minus (80%). Each examination is graded separately and awarded a high pass (90-100%), pass (80-89%), or failure (below 80%). Students who fail any examination may retake that examination a second time; failure on the second attempt at any one examination will result in dismissal from the program.