Requirements for Progression through the M.A. and PhD Degree

This curriculum, with the deadlines indicated, has been devised with the aim of moving graduate students toward their program of study as quickly as possible. In the case of PhD students, the aim is to offer them a good grounding in a broad range of Italian studies before the specialized work on the dissertation begins. If students fail to meet any of the requirements set out below they will normally be placed on probation, the condition of which is that they will be terminated from the program if they do not comply with a new deadline, to be fixed at a date agreed with the Director of Graduate Studies.

Requirements for PhD Students with a 5-year Award
Requirements for PhD Students with a 4-year Award (Post-MA)
Requirements for MA Students
Requirements for One-year MA Students

 

REQUIREMENTS FOR PHD STUDENTS WITH A 5-YEAR AWARD

YEAR ONE
Semesters 1 and 2; summer
Students should complete 24 points of coursework (3 courses at 4 points each semester). Three four-point courses totals 12 points; 12 points constitutes full-time status. During these and other semesters of coursework, at least 2 of the 3 courses should normally be chosen from Italian Studies offerings, while the third may be from another NYU department. Students are encouraged to consult with the Director of Graduate Studies as they choose their courses each semester.  

For both terminal M.A. and Ph.D. students, incompletes are granted only under exceptional circumstances and after student consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies. This applies to all years of coursework.  

During the summer following the first year of study, PhD candidates may revise one of their first year seminar papers as a long paper, following the revision advice of the professor to whom it was originally submitted. The revised paper will be around 25 pages in length and may be submitted in the first week of the fall semester of students’ second year. Students should aim to produce a work of publishable quality and will be encouraged where appropriate to submit the paper to a journal on completion. The student's work on the long paper will count for 4 credits. To obtain the 4 credits, students MUST enroll in a Guided Individual Reading before the summer begins.

YEAR TWO
Semesters 3 and 4; summer  
PhD students should complete 24 points of coursework, so that they will conclude their second year with 52 credits. After the first year of study or from within the NYC consortium, PhD students may also register for courses in the NYC graduate consortium, subject to approval from the DGS. For students taking three courses, the proportion of departmental and external courses should remain that outlined above (2 of 3 internal as usual practice), though exceptions may be made in the case of students with strong interdisciplinary interests.  

During the summer between years 2 and 3, students will begin reading for the PhD exam, and will compile a list of 20-25 works in the field in which they intend to work for their dissertation (List D of the PhD exam). This list must be approved by the DGS and the member of faculty with whom the student intends to work for his/her dissertation at the beginning of the fall semester of the third year.    

YEAR THREE
Semesters 5 and 6; summer
Students should complete coursework (20 points, for a total of 72 points), including the 4-credit doctoral seminar. Twelve of these points (3 courses) should be taken in the fall semester and eight (2 courses) in the spring. Students must satisfy second language proficiency (other than Italian); where necessary, passing the language proficiency examination by the end of the fall semester.  

Students must attend the doctoral seminar, which will be held in the fall semester and is intended to facilitate preparation for the PhD exam. Readings will concentrate on the first three lists: List A (pre-1600 primary texts); List B (post-1600 primary texts); and List C (historical, theoretical, and critical works). In the spring semester, students will continue to prepare for the exam on their own, concentrating on List D and preparing a sample teaching syllabus based on one or more of the lists. They are required to take the PhD qualifying exam before the end of the spring semester.

Students will submit a one-page dissertation proposal to their chosen PhD advisor at the end of the spring semester, and will begin work over the summer on the dissertation prospectus. The dissertation prospectus should be about 10-15 pages, including bibliography, and should outline the principal hypotheses and arguments of the thesis, its theoretical basis, the methodologies and sources to be utilized, and how it will be structured.  

Students may apply to study in Florence or Pisa (at NYU’s Villa La Pietra or the Scuola Normale di Pisa) during the spring semester of year four. Those wishing to do so should apply to the Director of Graduate Studies by February 1.    

YEAR FOUR
Semester 7
  
Students should continue to work on their PhD prospectus during the first semester under the guidance of their advisor, and should decide, in consultation with their advisor, which faculty members will make up the balance of the dissertation committee. Students are required to present their prospectus for oral examination by the end of the fall semester. 

Semester 8  
Once their dissertation prospectus has been approved, students will begin work on their dissertation research under the guidance of their advisor.    

YEAR FIVE
Semesters 9 and 10
  
Students should begin to write their Ph.D. thesis with the aim of having a completed draft by February of Year 6. Students should meet regularly with their advisor and establish a schedule for submission of the chapters.    

YEAR SIX
Semester 11 and 12  
Students will be self-funding in the final year of the program, drawing on their earnings from teaching in the earlier years of the program.  

Students should turn in a completed draft of the dissertation to their advisor and their first two readers by February 1 of their sixth year. The advisor and first two readers should give students comments and suggestions for revision by March 1. Students should finish all revisions and send the thesis to external readers by April 1. Any final revisions can then be completed in time for them to file by May for their Ph.D. degree.  

The department will provide information sessions for completing students who plan to go on the job market, and students should consult their advisors when drafting job letters and other application materials. Mock interviews will be held on request for students who obtain MLA interviews.  


REQUIREMENTS FOR PHD STUDENTS WITH A 4-YEAR AWARD (POST-MA)

YEAR ONE
Semesters 1 and 2; summer

Complete 24 points of coursework (3 courses at 4 points each semester). Three four-point courses totals 12 points; 12 points constitutes full-time status. During these and other semesters of coursework, at least 2 of the 3 courses should normally be chosen from Italian Studies offerings, while the third may be from another NYU department. Students are encouraged to consult with the Director of Graduate Studies as they choose their courses each semester.  

For both terminal M.A. and Ph.D. students, incompletes are granted only under exceptional circumstances and after student consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies. This applies to all years of coursework.  

Students will spend the summer beginning their reading for the PhD exams, and will compile a list of 20-25 works in the field in which they intend to work for their dissertation (List D of the exam). This list must be approved by the DGS and the member of the faculty with whom the student intends to work for his/her dissertation at the beginning of the fall semester of the third year.  

YEAR TWO
Semesters 3 and 4; summer
Students should complete 16 points (12 in the fall semester, including the 4-credit doctoral seminar, and 4 in the spring), so they will conclude their second year with 72 credits (40 for NYU coursework, 32 transferred credits for their MA).  

After the first year of study or from within the NYC consortium, PhD students may also register for courses in the NYC graduate consortium, subject to approval from the DGS. For students taking three courses, the proportion of departmental and external courses should remain that outlined above (2 of 3 internal as usual practice), though exceptions may be made in the case of students with strong interdisciplinary interests.  

Students will attend the doctoral seminar in the fall semester. This is intended to facilitate preparation for the PhD exam. Readings will concentrate on the first three lists: List A (pre-1600 primary texts); List B (post-1600 primary texts); and List C (historical, theoretical, and critical works). In the spring semester, students will continue to prepare for the exam on their own, concentrating on List D and preparing a sample teaching syllabus based on one or more of the lists. They are required to take the PhD qualifying exam before the end of the spring semester.

By the end of the spring semester, students with a four-year award will produce a one-page dissertation proposal for their chosen PhD advisor. They will be expected to begin work on their dissertation prospectus over the summer. The dissertation prospectus should be about 10-15 pages, including bibliography, and should outline the principal hypotheses and arguments of the thesis, its theoretical basis, the methodologies and sources to be utilized, and how it will be structured.    

YEAR THREE
Semesters 5 and 6; summer
Students will continue to work on their PhD prospectus during the first semester under the guidance of their advisor, and should decide, in consultation with their advisor, which faculty members will make up the balance of the dissertation committee. Students are required to present their prospectus for oral examination by the end of the fall semester. Students must satisfy second language proficiency (other than Italian); where necessary, passing the language proficiency examination by the end of the fall semester.  

In the spring semester, students should begin to write their PhD thesis with the aim of having a completed draft by February of Year 5. Students should meet regularly with their advisor and establish a schedule for submission of the chapters.  

Students may apply to study in Florence or Pisa (at NYU’s Villa La Pietra or the Scuola Normale di Pisa) during the spring semester of year four. Those wishing to do so should apply to the Director of Graduate Studies by February 1.    

YEAR FOUR
Students will continue writing their Ph.D. thesis.    

YEAR FIVE
Students will be self-funding in the final year of the program, drawing on their earnings from teaching in the earlier years of the program. They should turn in a completed draft of the dissertation to their advisor and their first two readers by February 1 of their fifth year. The advisor and first two readers should give students comments and suggestions for revision by March 1. Students should finish all revisions and send the thesis to external readers by April 1. Any final revisions can then be completed in time for them to file by May for their Ph.D. degree.  

The department will provide information sessions for completing students who plan to go on the job market, and students should consult their advisors when drafting job letters and other application materials. Mock interviews will be held on request for students who obtain MLA interviews.    


REQUIREMENTS FOR M.A. STUDENTS

YEAR ONE
Students should complete 24 points of coursework (3 courses at 4 points each semester). Three four-point courses totals 12 points; 12 points constitutes full-time status. During these and other semesters of coursework, at least 2 of the 3 courses should normally be chosen from Italian Studies offerings, while the third may be from another NYU department. Students are encouraged to consult with the Director of Graduate Studies as they choose their courses each semester.  

Incompletes are granted only under exceptional circumstances and after student consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies. This applies to all years of coursework.

YEAR TWO
Students should complete the remaining 8 points of M.A. coursework. By December 1, students must inform the Director of Graduate Studies which seminar paper they intend to expand into their M.A. thesis and must choose an advisor from among the departmental faculty. By March 1, terminal M.A. students must give their thesis in draft form to the advisor, so as to leave time for eventual revisions as suggested by the advisor and by other faculty members. They should aim to complete by May 1 for May graduation. There is usually no oral defense of the M.A. thesis, which should be between 40-50 pages.  


REQUIREMENTS FOR ONE-YEAR M.A. STUDENTS

Complete 32 points of coursework (4 courses at 4 points each semester or, in Florence, a combination of 4 points courses and 2 points courses). At least 2 of the 3 courses should normally be chosen from Italian Studies offerings, while the third may be from another NYU department. Students are encouraged to consult with the Director of Graduate Studies as they choose their courses each semester.  

Incompletes are granted only under exceptional circumstances and after student consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies. This applies to all years of coursework.

Before the spring semester students must inform the Director of Graduate Studies which seminar paper they intend to expand into their M.A. thesis and must choose an advisor from among the departmental faculty. Students will begin writing their theses during the spring semester Works in Progress Seminar and in the Guided Individual Reading with their advisor.  They will submit a drafted portion (10-15 pages) of the thesis plus a detailed outline by the end of the semester. They will be required to submit drafts of the whole thesis and the final version by the following deadlines:

1st Draft – early June (exact date to be updated during Spring)
2nd Draft – early July (exact date to be updated during Spring)

Final Thesis Submission to Department of Italian Studies – Monday, September 1, 2017

Students should send a copy at each stage also to the second reader. The reader is not required to check the drafts in detail but this practice should ensure that s/he has access to the work in progress and can pick up any problems at an early stage.

September graduation is contingent upon approval of thesis by both the advisor and second reader before the September 1 departmental deadline. There is usually no oral defense of the M.A. thesis, which should be between 40-50 pages.