• Class Number 4645
  • Term Code 3130
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Christopher Bishop
    • Christopher Bishop
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 22/02/2021
  • Class End Date 28/05/2021
  • Census Date 31/03/2021
  • Last Date to Enrol 01/03/2021
SELT Survey Results

How did the Greeks and Romans construct a map of the world they lived in?  How did people in antiquity imagine the world, or their own neighbourhood?  When they travelled, what sort of mental map did they use?  This course will range from the practicalities and purposes of travel in the ancient world to the intellectual frameworks of geographers.  How did travellers communicate their knowledge of the world to each other and to the audience of armchair travellers?  And how did the knowledge gained by travellers inform the work of geographers?  Students will read a range of ancient sources in translation, including Herodotos, Strabo, Pausanias and Ptolemy, as well as less well-known writers, and be invited to plan their own travels in the ancient world.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. demonstrate familiarity with an important body of written and material evidence for the history of classical Greece and Rome;
  2. evaluate the development of geographical ideas and knowledge in antiquity, and gain insights into the practicalities and social attitudes governing travel and mobility in the ancient world;
  3. demonstrate competency in handling difficult, tendentious, and fragmentary evidence, and skills in close reading and analysis;
  4. demonstrate capacities for working in groups and presenting material, ideas and arguments orally; and
  5. demonstrate capacities in analytical, argumentative and descriptive writing.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Through a glass, darkly — the perceivable universe of the Neolithic Exercise # 1
2 An Age of Bronze
3 The Phoenician Sea
4 Traders, Pirates, Mercenaries — Greeks in the southern and eastern Mediterranean
5 The New City — Carthage rises in the West
6 Herodotus — the “Father of Lies”?
7 The Academies of Alexandria — towards a science of geography Exercise # 2
8 Journey to the West — missionaries from India
9 The Periplus of the Eritrean Sea
10 Journey to the East — missionaries to India
11 Periegesis — The Hellenic world of Pausanius
12 The Children of Kush — Axum and the Red Sea trade Essay (3000 words)

Tutorial Registration

Register via course Wattle page

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Class Participation 10 % * * 1, 2, 3, 4
Exercises 10 % * * 1, 2, 4
Group Presentation 10 % * * 1, 2, 3, 5
Essay (3000 words) 30 % 28/05/2021 11/06/2021 1, 2, 3, 5
Final Examination (3 hours) 40 % * * 1, 2, 3, 5

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4

Class Participation

The seminar is an essential part of the learning experience at university and historically predates the lecture as the primary method of teaching. It is the perfect venue to discuss your ideas, clarify your thoughts and resolve any unanswered questions. Prepare yourself for this discussion by reading as much as you can.

The Detailed Course Schedule provided on Wattle lists the classical and modern sources that will constitute the recommended reading for each seminar. This is the minimum that you should read. If a particular source seems more interesting to you, or you think that it might help you with your essay topic or with the final exam, follow the bibliographical data to explore the source further. You are expected to spend at least three or four hours preparing for each seminar. This may seem like a lot, but reading and research are the keys to understanding and appreciating Classics.

Use the focus questions provided for each tutorial to inform your reading. After each reading, spend some time trying to see where each piece fits in to the overall course. Why was this reading set? What am I expected to learn from this? You might like to write down some notes. Do this after each reading — by the time you have read several pieces, they will all seem to have fused together! 

You will be expected to present your opinions in class. The notes you have taken will help you here. Remember that your participation assessment is based on the level of your demonstrable engagement, rather than your level of knowledge, so a tutorial is also the perfect place to make mistakes!

Date Due: Weekly

Value: 10% overall

Assessment Task 2

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 4


During the semester, students will be required to complete two exercises that will assess their understanding of specific concepts or areas of expertise explored in the course. These exercises will be posted on Wattle. They will go live at 08:00 on Friday morning and will remain open until 16:00 the following Monday, so students will have four days in which to attempt each exercise.

Students are permitted only one attempt at each exercise and, once students begin each attempt, they will have 15 minutes in which to complete them. Further instruction on how to access, complete and submit these quizzes will be given in class. 

Date Due: By Monday of weeks 2 and 8

Time Limit: 15 minutes (each)

Results: posted on Wattle by 17:00 on the Monday of weeks 3 and 9

Value: 5% per exercise for a total of 10% overall

Assessment Task 3

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 5

Group Presentation

Students are expected to do research for every class and will often be called upon to comment on the readings and to clarify minor points, but some facets of the things we study require more information and need to be shared in a more formal setting. Students will choose a topic linked to the weekly seminars for weeks 2 through 11 for which they will then research and prepare a presentation. These presentations are expected to last for 10 minutes per presenter and to generate another 10 minutes of question-time (again, per presenter). Students can elect to do presentations in groups of up to three. Presentations should include audio-visual material.

The topics for these presentations and the weeks in which they are to appear are as follows:

Topic 1: Into the Great Green — Henenu in the Land of Pwnt (week 2)

Topic 2: An Empire of Trade — the Phoenician Sea (week 3)

Topic 3: Greek Mercenaries in Assyria and Egypt (week 4)

Topic 4: Beyond the Pillars of Melqart — the voyages of Hanno and Himilco (week 5)      

Topic 5: Scylax of Caryanda (week 5)

Topic 6: Herodotus (week 6)

Topic 7: Pytheas and the Unformed World (week 7)

Topic 8: Eratosthenes — To measure the world… (week 7)

Topic 9: The Edict of Ashoka (week 8)

Topic 10: The Periplus of the Eritrean Sea (week 9)

Topic 11: Apollonius of Tyana (week 10)

Topic 12: The Periegesis of Pausanius (week 11)

The written report that accompanies the presentation will take the form of a (brief) formal essay and will confirm to standard academic practice, particularly with regards to the use of footnotes and the provision of bibliographies.

Date Due: Weeks 2 through 11

Limits: 20 minutes (per presenter), 1000 words (combined report)

Results: posted on Wattle by 17:00 of the Monday following submission

Value: 10% overall

Assessment Task 4

Value: 30 %
Due Date: 28/05/2021
Return of Assessment: 11/06/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 5

Essay (3000 words)

An essay of approximately 3000 words (this word length excludes long quotations, footnotes and bibliographies) is to be completed on one of the following five questions:

1. Did Pytheas of Massalia sail as far as Iceland? Why were ancient writers disinclined to believe his account of Thule?

2. Why does Herodotus discuss geography in his Histories? How does his geographical material illustrate and further the major themes of his work?

3. What can Herodotus’ ethnographic descriptions tell us about Greek attitudes to other cultures in the Mediterranean?

4. Roman Greece is sometimes described as a theme park, with Greek culture and landmarks packaged as touristic attractions. Using Pausanias’ account of either Delphi, Thebes, Sparta or Corinth (choose ONE), analyse how the significance of the physical site is expressed in relation to its cultural or literary renown. To what degree does Pausanias’ account of this site confirm that the “local” culture is being packaged to fit tourists’ expectations?

5. How scientific was the ancient discipline of geography? To what extent were ancient geographers limited by technology, and to what extent were they limited by prevailing ideologies?

Alternatively, students may propose their own essay topics to the convenor (you must have written approval to pursue your own essay topic before you submit your work).

You will be assessed on the degree to which you have based your work on ancient sources, the skill with which you handle those ancient sources and critically examine modern arguments, your ability to engage with the topic yourself rather than relying solely on the judgments of others, your ability to write clearly and concisely, and your thoroughness in citing sources (both ancient and modern). A guide for writing this essay, together with the assessment rubric and bibliographical advice is given at the end of this course guide.

Date Due: 16:00 (4pm) Friday 28 May 2021 (week 12)

Word Limit: 3000 words (not including large quotations or footnotes)

Results: posted on Wattle by 17:00 (5pm) Friday 11 June 2021

Value: 30%

Assessment Task 5

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 5

Final Examination (3 hours)

The final assessment for the course will be a three-hour examination, during the examination period. Any work covered during the semester is eligible to be included in the examination. A detailed account of the format of the examination paper will be given by week 12.

Date Due: TBA

Time Limit: 3 hours, with 15 minutes reading time

Value: 40%

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Christopher Bishop
6125 2901

Research Interests

Classical Greek And Roman History, Latin And Classical Greek Literature, Late Antiquity, Early Medieval History, Classical and Medieval Reception Studies, Medievalism, Comic Book Studies

Christopher Bishop

By Appointment
By Appointment
Christopher Bishop
6125 2901

Research Interests

Christopher Bishop

By Appointment
By Appointment

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