Doctor of Philosophy in Romance Languages

General Departmental Requirements

a coastline in Spain

All Ph.D. candidates must take one research-related course in either

  • General Literary Theory
  • Linguistic Research Methodology

These courses need not be language-specific; they can be general and inclusive of all literatures and languages.

All doctoral candidates, regardless of the area of study, must adhere to the following:

  • The minimal formal coursework required is 60 semester hours.
    • Up to 30 hours of transferred credits earned at another institution
    • Students who have completed a master’s thesis need accumulate only 54 hours of coursework.
  • At the conclusion of the coursework, before work on the dissertation itself can begin, a preliminary examination must first take place, leading to the creation of an acceptable dissertation prospectus, as described in the PhD Exam Structure.
  • Once all coursework is completed, an additional 18 hours of dissertation research are required.
  • All doctoral candidates must possess reading knowledge of one language in addition to English, their native language, and their language of specialization.

It is strongly recommended that, before the termination of studies, all doctoral candidates reside for a period in a country or location requiring constant interaction in the language of specialization.

All new graduate teaching assistants in Spanish must take SP 502 (teaching practicum).

Romance Languages areas of study

Candidates for the Romance languages areas of study will be allowed to tailor their programs individually, with the advice of a Graduate Advisor. The goal will be to meet the interests and career requirements of the candidate by utilizing the full resources of the department and of cognate graduate programs offered by the University. Students choosing this option may pursue one of the following configurations:

(1) Combined study of two Romance languages, with an accumulation of 30 hours of coursework in each, including up to 30 transferred hours. However, a maximum of 18 hours in either language can be transferred from a prior MA to satisfy requirements towards either area of study option of the Romance Languages of the Ph.D.

(2) Area of study in Spanish, with 18-hours in the other language or in an allied discipline.  A variety of combinations are possible, depending upon the student’s needs, and limited only by his or her qualifications and the cooperation of other faculties. Possible configurations include German, TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language), and Film Studies. Other customized programs can be made to incorporate combinations of coursework in linguistics, Italian studies, history, art history, women studies, English, anthropology, etc.  The curriculum for a Spanish major must include coursework in at least four of the following fields:

  • 16th-17th Century Peninsular
  • 19th Century Peninsular
  • 20th-21st Century Peninsular
  • Colonial
  • 19th Century Latin American
  • 20th-21st Century Latin American
  • U.S. Latinx Studies
  • Transatlantic Studies

(3) Area of study in Spanish, with a 30-hour area of study in Linguistics. In consultation with a Graduate Advisor, available linguistics coursework can be selected from the departments of Modern Languages and Classics, English, Anthropology, and Communicative Disorders, as well as from the College of Education.

PhD Exam Structure

MLC Dissertation Completion Timeline and Recommendations