ATS2924 - Introduction to Ancient Egyptian language - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Centre for Ancient Cultures

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Hilary Gopnik


Dr Caleb Hamilton

Unit guides



  • First semester 2019 (On-campus)




This unit introduces students to the basics of ancient Egyptian language in its classic phase, Middle Egyptian, written in hieroglyphs. This script developed during the late fourth millennium BCE and was used for a wide variety of inscriptions for approximately one thousand years. It is one of the oldest forms of writing known, and the language has continued in various forms to the present day. Through the study of its basic structure students will be introduced to the unique way in which the ancient Egyptians expressed themselves and will read some simple texts.


On successful completion of this unit students will:

  1. acquire a basic understanding of the structure of the language;
  2. acquire an understanding of the grammar of Middle Egyptian;
  3. be able to translate basic inscriptions;
  4. be able to write in the hieroglyphic script.
  5. be able to relate translations to the broader cultural framework of Egyptian society - the actual meaning of the text.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study