Classics and Archaeology careers
The occupations listed below are a selection of those which may make use of your degree directly
employed in national agencies, local authorities, museums, universities,
planning consultancies, and private practice, undertaking a wide variety of
activities from field practice to laboratory work, information management to
education, specialist research to artefact curation and display.
Prospects job profile: Archaeologist
Chartered Institute of Archaeologists: Careers and training
Archivists work in
national and local records offices, specialist organisations (such as
Canterbury Cathedral) and in businesses. They acquire, manage and maintain
documents and other materials that have historical importance and make them
accessible to researchers and other users.
Prospects job profile: Archivist
The Archives & Records Association: Careers in Archives
Acquires, cares for,
develops, displays and interprets objects and collections of historic interest.
In small museums, the curator is also responsible for managing the collection,
operations, staff and volunteers.
Prospects job profile: Museum / gallery curator
Museums Association: Entering the sector
Secondary school teacher
To teach in state schools (excluding academies
and free schools) in England and Wales, you must complete a period of “initial
teacher training”, such as a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education
(PGCE) course or school-centred training, which leads to Qualified Teacher
Status. It is important to build up teaching-related experience during your
undergraduate degree and to apply early for teacher training.
Prospects job profile: Secondary school teacher
Get Into Teaching: Discover the steps to become a teacher
As well as teaching through lectures and seminars, academic staff in
higher education also carry out research and a wide range of administrative and
pastoral tasks. Although a teaching qualification is not required, you will
need a higher degree, normally a PhD. Competition is strong for entry-level
Prospects job profile: Higher education lecturer
Target job profile: Higher education lecturer
Please note that some of these careers may require further study.
The analytical and communication skills developed through a Classics and Archaeology degree are likely to be useful in the following career areas:
Chartered accountants are never limited to one discipline. You can take your career into a diverse range of specialist areas including auditing, taxation, corporate finance, forensic accounting and business recovery.
Prospects job profile: Chartered Accountant
Inside Careers: Chartered Accountancy
The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales
Civil Service Fast Streamer
The Civil Service Fast Stream is a leadership development programme for those wanting to become senior leaders within the Civil Service
Prospects job profile: Civil Service Fast Streamer
Read about the 15 different Fast Stream schemes
Intelligence analysts work to protect UK
national security and to detect and prevent serious organised crime through the
acquisition, evaluation, analysis and assessment of secret intelligence.
Prospects job profile: Intelligence analyst
Library and information staff manage, organise, evaluate and disseminate
information. In specialist libraries and information units, such as those in
law firms and the Inns of Court or universities, law graduates may be able to
use their subject knowledge directly.
Prospects job profile: Academic librarian
Prospects job profile: Public librarian
Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals: Career support toolkit
In essence, a consultant’s job is to advise an organisation on improvements that can be made. Consultancy usually involves identification and assessment of a problem or analysis of a specific area, reporting findings and formulating recommendations..
Prospects job profile: Management consultant
Inside Careers: Management consultancy
Plans, co-ordinates and manages market research projects, collecting and analysing quantitative and qualitative information and communicating it to clients.
Solicitors take instructions from clients (who may be individuals, groups, public sector organisations or private companies) and provide expert legal support on a range of personal and commercial issues.
Advertising Account Executive (also known as Account Handler; Client Services Executive)
Advertising account executives are the bridge between the client and the agency. Account Executives are responsible for ensuring the smooth running of client accounts within the agency. They need to develop effective working relationships with client contacts. They will get involved with solving problems, drafting internal and external communications, and documenting progress on a variety of agency projects.
Systems analysts examine
IT systems and procedures, in both business and not-for-profit organisations.
They liaise between users of IT systems and programmers and other technical
specialists in order to ensure that the systems meets the user’s requirements
and will function efficiently and effectively.
Prospects job profile: Systems analyst
Target jobs: Systems analyst
You may be interested in graduate roles outside of Classics and Archaeology. There are many employers who are looking for graduates with good degrees but that don’t have a preference for the subject studied. To explore different career options see:
Classics or Ancient:
General abilities, qualities of mind and transferable skills of a graduate in Classics or Ancient
Honours graduates acquire the practical ability to:
- Orally present material in a clear and effective manner, using audio-visual aids when appropriate, and relating it to the concerns of the audience
- Present material in written form, with discrimination and lucidity in use of language, professional referencing, and clear and effective layout, including, as appropriate, tabular, diagrammatic or photographic presentation
- Work creatively and flexibly, both independently and also collaboratively with others
- Organise their work, conduct independent study, write and think under pressure and meet deadlines.
- Capacity for critical reflection on the extent and limitations of how and what one has learned, discovered and understood
- Capacity for critical judgement in the light of evidence and argument
- Engage in analytical and evaluative thinking about texts, sources, arguments and interpretations and forming judgements on the basis of evidence and argument
- Marshal arguments lucidly, coherently and concisely both orally and in writing
- Significant degree of autonomy, manifested in self-direction, and intellectual initiative, both in learning and study and in the management of the time devoted to them
- Extract key elements from complex information and to identify and solve associated problems
- Make effective and appropriate use of digital resources and information technology at all stages of their work.
- Linguistic aptitude, critical analysis, high levels of creativity and skills in researching, organising and presenting material.
- A willingness and ability to learn and to comprehend a breadth of challenging subjects.
Generic and employability skills: Archaeology graduates will be
equipped with the following general and widely applicable skills:
- Problem solving to develop solutions through creative thinking
- Producing logical and structured arguments supported by relevant evidence
- Planning, designing, executing and documenting a programme of primary research, working independently
- Assembling coherent research/project designs
- Marshalling and critically appraising other people's arguments, including listening and questioning
- Applying numeracy in practical contexts
- Demonstrating a positive and can-do approach to practical problems
- An ability to demonstrate an innovative approach, creativity, collaboration and risk taking
- Presenting effective oral presentations for different kinds of audiences
- Preparing effective written communications for different readerships
- Making effective and appropriate forms of visual presentation
- Making effective and appropriate use of relevant information technology
- Making critical and effective use of information retrieval skills using paper-based and electronic resources
- Collaborating effectively in a team via experience of working in a group, for example, through fieldwork, laboratory and/or project work
- Appreciating the importance of health and safety procedures and responsibilities (both personal and with regard to others) in the field and the laboratory
- Appreciating and being sensitive to different cultures, and dealing with unfamiliar situations
- An ability to evaluate critically one's own and others' opinions, from an appreciation of the practice of archaeology in its changing theoretical, methodological, professional, ethical, and social contexts
- An ability to engage with relevant aspects of current broad instrumentalist agendas such as global perspectives, public engagement, employability, enterprise, and creativity.
Source: QAA Subject benchmark statements. Access for further information on skills and qualities of mind.
This is not an exhaustive list of skills - you will develop many skills from your course, extra-curricular activities and work experience.
Find a job
The Careers and Employability Service provides information and advice on job searching to University of Kent students and recent graduates. This includes a vacancy database advertising a range of graduate jobs, sandwich placements and vacation work/internships.
The websites listed below may also be useful when searching for a job directly related to your degree.
- British Archaeological Jobs Resource: Portal to employment, training and industry news.
- The Museums Association: Find a job
- Museum Jobs
- Museum of London Archaeology: Research and engagement
- Graduate jobs, internships and placement years
Company reviews and application / interview tips for specific organisations:
Postgraduate study may enable you to explore aspects of classical and archaeological studies in greater depth or to study a new subject.
A postgraduate qualification, either academic or vocational, is required to enter many fields of work related to classical and archaeological studies, such as archive work, museum work, specialist areas of archaeology, or teaching.
If you are interested in other careers, some of these, such as law, will require study for a relevant professional qualification while in some others, such as journalism, a postgraduate degree is not a requirement, but may be an advantage. However, many careers will not require further academic qualifications. The Job profiles section of the Prospects website will tell you whether postgraduate study is essential, useful or not needed for a specific career.
There is no equivalent of UCAS for postgraduate study, so investigate courses early, using the resources listed below.
If you are already a student on a taught Master’s degree, you may wish to continue your studies by research, in the UK (at Kent or elsewhere) or overseas. Again, early planning is important. You should seek advice from your supervisor as to the possible options.
There are many reasons for choosing to continue into postgraduate study. You may wish to obtain a higher degree purely for interest rather than for career reasons. Whatever your motivation, you need to consider issues such as your suitability for further study, the options available to you and the costs involved.
- The Society for Classical Studies: Careers for Classicists
- Institute of Classical Studies: The national centre for the promotion and facilitation of research in Classics and related disciplines throughout the UK and abroad.
- Association for Latin Teaching: An association run by and for teachers of Latin.
- The Classics Association: Support the study and teaching of the Greek and Roman world in all its inspiring forms
- The Classics Library: The stie for Classics teachers everywhere
- Rogueclassicism: Classical podcastery
- Prospects: What can I do with my Classics degree?
- The Institute of Conservation: A membership organisation and charity with a passion for the care of cultural heritage.
- English Heritage: Cares for over 400 historic buildings, monuments and sites
- National Trust
- Current Archaeology: Careers in Archaeology
- Prospects: What can I do with my Archaeology degree
- Canterbury Archaeological Trust: One of the UK’s premier archaeological contractors
Looking for Careers Advice?
The Careers and Employability Service is open to all University of Kent students and recent graduates. We support students from the moment they start their course, throughout their student life and up to three years after their graduation.