Department of Germanic Studies

PhD Core and Course Requirements

Core Requirements

If you entered the program with a related MA degree, fulfill your core requirements during your first year.

PhD Course Requirement

In consultation with the Graduate Advisor, the PhD student who has filled Core Program Requirements develops a primary and a supporting area of specialization;the primary area is usually the area of the proposed dissertation. These areas should represent professionally acknowledged focuses for research and teaching in the field, defined as the broad spectrum of literar, cultural, and linguistics specializations represented in the major professional organizations. How these fields are defined helps the student choose coursework and plan for the Candidacy Procedure.

Although the PhD is not awarded on the basis of a specified number of courses or credit hours, 27 credit hours (9 courses) beyond the Core program are a customary minimum. These 9 courses form the basis for a student's minimum competency in the primary area (a minimum of six graduate-level courses) and supporting area (a minimum of three graduate-level courses). Note that additional hours may be required to establish a student's competency to write a dissertation. Students are also encouraged to check the offerings in other relevant departments, such as Linguistics, Philosophy, History, Art History, Musicology, Comparative Literature, or Foreign Language Education.

Students must also fulfill the following requirements in conjunction with their coursework:

  1. in the summer after finishing the core,  complete the Qualifying Procedure and be evaluated by the Graduate Studies Committee as qualified to enter the doctoral program (students will receive one summer session of support to complete this requirement;
  2. near the completion of coursework, undertake the Candidacy Procedure; and
  3. defend the dissertation in a final oral examination.

For more extensive procedural information on all program policies, please ask the Graduate Coordinator for copies of the Academic Guidelines