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Online course

Rome: a Virtual Tour of the Ancient City

Explore the architecture and history of Rome, walking around a 3D digital model of the ancient city, with this free online course.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Rome: a Virtual Tour of the Ancient City

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Why join the course?

Take a guided tour around ancient Rome with University of Reading expert, Dr Matthew Nicholls, using his detailed, historically accurate and award-winning, 3D digital model of this awe-inspiring city.

Immerse yourself in the architecture and history of Ancient Rome

Join Matthew on a walk around the city of Rome, and ask yourself:

Why was this ancient city built where it was? Did all roads really lead to Rome? How was drinking water supplied to the city’s million inhabitants? Where did Romans worship their gods and meet their political masters? And which buildings provided a backdrop for the spectacular events that both celebrated emperors and secured the loyalty of the masses?

The course will encourage you to explore the answers to all of these questions and many more. It combines excerpts and ‘virtual walk around’ views of the 3D digital model with timelines, animations and 360 degree panoramic images. Moving seamlessly between the digital model and real-life film footage of contemporary Rome, Matthew brings the ancient city to life as never before.

By the end of the course, you will:

  • be familiar with the topography, architecture, and political and social history of ancient Rome;
  • understand how experts study these topics and what they use as source material to gain an accurate insight into the past;
  • and better understand and interpret the archaeological ruins that you might encounter, for example, on holiday in Rome.

Learn with a Roman history expert from the University of Reading

Throughout the course, you will learn with Dr Matthew Nicholls, a recognised expert on ancient Rome. Matthew has extensive broadcast and public speaking experience on Roman history, and directs a specialist Masters degree on the ancient city in the Department of Classics at the University of Reading.

Download video: standard or HD

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

Who is the course for?

This course is open to anyone with an interest in discovering more about ancient Rome. You might be: planning a visit to the Italian capital; an avid watcher of documentaries on Roman history; or considering studying archaeology, classics or history at university.

Who will you learn with?

Matthew Nicholls

Dr Matthew Nicholls is a Roman historian at the University of Reading, specialising in the 3D reconstruction of ancient spaces. He also directs the University's Open Online Course programme.

Who developed the course?

The University of Reading has a reputation for excellence in teaching, research and enterprise.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Get extra benefits, upgrade this course. For $79 you’ll get:

Unlimited access

Upgrading will mean you get unlimited access to the course.

  • Take the course at your own pace
  • Refer to the material at any point in future

If you’re taking a course for free you have access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join. If you upgrade the course you have access for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn.

A Certificate of Achievement

Upgrading means you’ll receive a Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course.

  • Prove your success when applying for jobs or courses
  • Celebrate your hard work
  • Display on your Linkedin or CV

To receive a Certificate of Achievement you need to mark 90% of the steps on the course as complete.