HFEL0004 - Rhetoric


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: School exam
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
School exam 100/100 4 hours E

Course content

Rhetoric as a discipline originated in classical Athens, where persuasive technique became a prerequisite for the development of democracy, and essential in connection with the ensuing expanding forensic activities. Roman orators and theorists further refined and developed this discipline. Generally, all kinds of oral and written presentation involve, deliberately or not, rhetorical patterns. Rhetorical reflection also integrates elements of philosophy, ethics, semiotics and other humanistic disciplines. But modern forms of communication, e. g. the press, television, the movie industry, advertising, and political debate, in particular, exploit rhetorical persuasive technique. This course comprises formal aspects of classical rhetoric, and further demonstrates how various modern forms of communication integrate rhetorical patterns.

Learning outcome

The course gives insight into the formal aspects of classical rhetoric, and further aims at exposing rhetorical patterns, whether obvious or subliminal, in various modern forms of communication.

A candidate who passes this course is expected to have the following learning outcome according to the course curriculum, defined as knowledge and skills:


The candidate

  • has knowledge of strategic, intentional language application and of fundamental formal rhetoric, as well as insights into the rhetoric of the middle ages, humanism and recent rhetoric
  • is acquainted with basic knowledge of the classical languages (Greek and Latin) and knows the terminology based on the classical languages
  • has knowledge about the decisive role of rhetoric for law and the democratic development of Athens
  • has knowledge of the importance of rhetoric for the dissemination of scholarship and its usefulness as a tool of analysis and interpretation within a number of scholarly fields


The candidate

  • is able to analyse techniques of argumentation in debates and in media by means of rhetoric as a strategic method
  • has acquired general insights into techniques of communication, written as well as oral
  • has insight into ethical and epistemological problems connected with problems of relativism of values within sophistic rhetoric in antiquity

Learning methods and activities

Lectures. Four-hour written examination.

Required previous knowledge


Course materials

See syllabus

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
HFEXFAC003 7.5
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Foundation courses, level I


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2023

Language of instruction: Norwegian

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Classical Civilization
  • History
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Historical and Classical Studies


Examination arrangement: School exam

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Autumn ORD School exam 100/100 E 2023-11-29 15:00 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
SL123 Sluppenvegen 14 1
SL238 Sluppenvegen 14 1
SL110 turkis sone Sluppenvegen 14 45
SL317 Sluppenvegen 14 1
Spring ORD School exam 100/100 E 2024-06-05 15:00 INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
SL110 lilla sone Sluppenvegen 14 30
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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