The study of the contribution of Latin to the vocabulary, grammar and syntax to English enhances one's knowledge of that language. The Latin program offers beginning and intermediate courses that incorporate authentic texts drawn from archaic to classical times, including secular, theological and liturgical works.

Imperium Romanum (the Roman Empire) once sprawled across Europe, North Africa, and Asia Minor. Centuries after its demise, its linguistic and cultural influences continue to exist. The study of Latin opens windows on a culture that influences our world through the arts and literature as well as fields as diverse as medicine, engineering, law and government, to name a few.

Students will learn to read and translate the language and to understand its indelible impact on modern English. Also offered are special topics courses – both lower- and upper-division – which focus on some aspect of language, literature and culture.

Students may elect to major in Interdisciplinary Humanities with a concentration in either the Humanities or European Studies track.

Upper-division courses will be completed in disciplines such as history, philosophy, political science, and theology and religious studies. These courses are conducted in English. With the prior permission of the director of Interdisciplinary Humanities, Latin 294, 394, 494 and 499 may be counted toward the requirements of both tracks.

The Classical Studies minor (Option 1) requires Latin 101-201 and makes 202 one of the choices from a list of lower-division courses. With the prior permission of the director, Latin 294, 394, 494 and 499 may be counted toward the requirements.

Core Curriculum Program

Students who enroll in Latin to complete the Core Curriculum requirement will most likely need to take the full, three-semester sequence (101, 102, and 201).

We offer very advanced students the opportunity of taking the Competency Exam in lieu of 201. To learn more, visit our the competency section of the Language Gateway.

Note: Please read the placement policy of this department before enrolling in your first Latin class at USD or elsewhere.

Minor Programs

Although we do not offer a minor in Latin, the Interdisciplinary Humanitiesmajor and minor programs offer students with an interest in Latin the option of selecting a concentration in Classical Studies. Advanced courses are taken through a variety of departments in the College of Arts and Sciences (such as History, Philosophy, and Theology and Religious Studies). Those courses are taught in English.

A separate Classical Studies minor has also been developed. Option 1 requires the completion of Latin 101, 102, and 201, an additional lower-division course, either Latin 202 or one taken from the list of approved classes, and 9 upper-division units selected from this list.