Graduate Programs in Humanities

The Graduate Program in Humanities brings together scholars from history, philosophy, literature, creative writing, art history, film studies, and the performing arts who share a commitment to transnational and interdisciplinary approaches to humanistic study and practice. The MA and PhD programs provide students with a flexible context in which to pursue research across a wide range of critical approaches and theoretical debates in the arts and humanities disciplines.

You will find the procedure for applying to the graduate program in Humanities here.

Doctor of Philosophy in Humanities

The PhD in Humanities requires 60 semester credit hours (SCHs) minimum. Click here to access the degree plan template for the PhD in Humanities.

Coursework: 42 semester credit hours

Forty-two semester credit hours of which twenty-seven are taken as organized graduate-level courses in History (HIST), Philosophy (PHIL), Literature (LIT), and Visual and Performing Arts (VPAS). At least six SCHs of doctoral coursework must be taken in organized courses numbered at the 7000 level.

Required Courses: 6 semester credit hours

  • HUMA 6300: Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Arts and Humanities (taken first fall semester of enrollment)
  • ARHM 6310: Team-Taught Interdisciplinary Seminar

Distribution Requirements: 9 semester credit hours

Students must take one course from each of three programs (i.e., one HIST or PHIL, one LIT, and one VPAS).

Elective Courses: 18 semester credit hours

Students take 18 SCHs of organized graduate-level HIST, PHIL, LIT, and VPAS courses.

Field Exam Preparation: 9 semester credit hours

9 semester credit hours of IDEA 8305, LIT 8305, or VPAS 8305. No more than 6 semester credit hours in the same program.

Foreign Language

Students in all PhD programs in the School of Arts and Humanities are expected to demonstrate intermediate-level reading proficiency in a foreign language (equivalent to two years of foreign-language study at the undergraduate level). Students must fulfill the language requirement before scheduling doctoral field examinations.

As part of its approval of a dissertation proposal, the Graduate Studies Committee will consider the appropriateness of a candidate's language preparation for the research or creative project. Faculty members chairing field examinations and dissertations should ensure that students possess the necessary language proficiency to carry out their proposed doctoral research.

Click here for more information related to satisfying the language requirement.

Doctoral Field Examinations

The doctoral field examinations consist of three written sections and an oral defense. The examining committee, composed of three members of the faculty, oversees definition and preparation of the three examination fields. Only two of the three faculty members can be from the same track (i.e., Literature, History/Philosophy, Visual and Performing Arts). One faculty member must be from a different track.

Initial committee formation must take place during the semester in which students complete thirty-six semester credit hours of coursework, which will typically be followed by nine semester credit hours of HUMA 8305: Field Exam Preparation. Exams normally should be completed before completion of 60 semester credit hours.

Dissertation

Students are formally advanced to PhD candidacy when they have successfully completed the doctoral field examinations and received final approval for dissertation topics. Students should submit a preliminary dissertation proposal for consideration during the oral section of the doctoral field examination. After that examination, a four-person supervising committee is formed, normally from the examining committee plus an additional faculty member, to oversee dissertation work. The supervising committee must then approve a formal dissertation proposal before the student submits it to the Graduate Studies Committee for final approval.

Each candidate then writes a doctoral dissertation, which is supervised and defended according to general University regulations.

Master of Arts in Humanities

The MA in Humanities requires 33 semester credit hours (SCHs) minimum. Click here to access the degree plan template for the MA in Humanities.

Coursework: 33 semester credit hours

Thirty-three semester credit hours of which twenty-seven credit hours are taken as organized graduate-level courses in History (HIST), Philosophy (PHIL), Literature (LIT), and Visual and Performing Arts (VPAS).

Required Courses: 6 semester credit hours

  • HUMA 6300: Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Arts and Humanities (must be taken during the first Fall semester of enrollment in the program)
  • ARHM 6310: Team-Taught Interdisciplinary Seminar

Distribution Requirements: 9 semester credit hours

Students must take one course from each of three programs (i.e., one HIST or PHIL, one LIT, and one VPAS).

Elective Courses: 18 semester credit hours

18 semester credit hours of organized graduate-level HIST, PHIL, LIT, and VPAS courses

Professional Option

Students in the professional option must complete thirty-three semester credit hours of coursework. They are not required to complete a portfolio or meet the foreign language requirement.

Research Option

Students in the research option must complete thirty-three semester credit hours of coursework, fulfill a foreign language requirement, and complete a portfolio.

Foreign Language

Click here for more information related to satisfying the language requirement.

Portfolio

Two research papers or a creative project plus a scholarly essay originating in or completed for graduate courses are revised and presented in a portfolio for evaluation by a master's committee.