ADMISSIONS: Admissions for Fall 2023 are now closed. The application for the Fall 2024 incoming class will open in September 2023. Please see "GSAS Admissions" at the right for more information about the application process. Admissions questions can be directed to email@example.com.
Comparative Literature PhD applicants with an interest in Russia should be aware of the Interdisciplinary Specialization in Russia, which takes advantage of curricular offerings in the Department of Russian & Slavic Studies. Students who pursue the ISR may choose to take up to half of their points in or cross-listed with the Department of Russian & Slavic Studies while earning the doctoral degree in Comparative Literature. For more information please contact the Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Russian & Slavic Studies.
For all other questions on the graduate program, contact Deirdre Collins firstname.lastname@example.org. We accept students for the doctoral program only—there is no standalone M.A. offered by this department.
Ph.D. Program Requirements
A Master of Philosophy (MPhil) degree is earned en route to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). Students graduate with the MPhil upon completion of all requirements other than the dissertation and dissertation defense.
These requirements include: 72 points of coursework—40 points in comparative literature and 32 in a national literature or literatures and/or courses from affiliated departments. These courses must include a full year of study in criticism and theory, two courses of which must be criticism before 1800, one course which must be contemporary (20th century), and one non-U.S./Western European literature. An MPhil thesis that revises an approved term paper to the equivalent of publication standards required and generally completed by the end of the second year. The PhD written examination, a take-home examination on three topics, is completed midway through the third year in the program, followed within the next semester by the oral examination, or prospectus defense, which requires that an adviser and two major readers approve the proposed PhD dissertation. Students must also be certified in three languages in addition to English—or, substituting for the third language—three courses in a non-literary discipline. Past examples include: performance studies, cinema studies, and africana studies to name a few.
The Graduate School of Arts & Science requires that all PhD students earn the MPhil by the end of their fourth year in the program. Completion of the MPhil signifies a move from PhD student to PhD candidate. PhD candidates work in regular consultation with their three core committee members while researching and writing their dissertation. Two additional readers join the committee when the candidate defends their dissertation. Please also refer to our Departmental Handbook, available here.