Doctor of Philosophy

Degrees offered:

  • Doctor of Philosophy in Humanities
  • Doctor of Philosophy in History of Ideas
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Literature
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Visual and Performing Arts

The programs leading to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) are designed primarily for individuals who wish to conduct advanced research and to teach at the college level, but it is open to qualified candidates who wish to enhance fully their knowledge and skills.

PhD Degree Plan (MA from UT Dallas; started doctoral program before Fall 2014)

PhD Degree Plan (MA from UT Dallas; started doctoral program Fall 2014 – Summer 2018)

PhD Degree Plan (MA from UT Dallas; started doctoral program Fall 2018 or later)


PhD Degree Plan (MA from elsewhere; started doctoral program before Fall 2014)

PhD Degree Plan (MA from elsewhere; started doctoral program Fall 2014 – Summer 2018)

PhD Degree Plan (MA from elsewhere; started doctoral program Fall 2018 or later)

The programs provide students with a flexible, interdisciplinary context within which to pursue their studies, built on connections among specific courses and areas of interest. Each student plans an individual program of studies in consultation with an assigned advisor.

All students are required to take Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Arts and Humanities (HUMA 6300) within their first two semesters of enrollment and to take two seminars in each of the three areas of study. After that, students mainly take classes within their main area of study:

  • History of Ideas (HUHI) which concentrates on history and philosophy
  • Literature (HUSL) which concentrates on literature, creative writing, translation and rhetoric
  • Visual and Performing Arts (HUAS) which concentrates on the visual and performing arts, art history and film studies

Students in the Humanities program design an individual program that may contain courses from the different areas of study.

Students who have completed pertinent graduate work at other institutions (30 hours of humanities courses, language training and written work roughly equivalent to the portfolio) may qualify for a Master of Arts equivalency upon admission to the graduate program. Students admitted with an MA equivalency must take HUMA 6300, the required core course for all of the programs in the School of Arts & Humanities.

Students seeking a PhD will normally complete a minimum of 60 semester hours of course work beyond a master's degree or its equivalent, demonstrate advanced proficiency in an approved foreign language, pass the Doctoral Field Examinations, submit a dissertation proposal, and complete and defend a dissertation.

Within the first 18 semester credit hours of coursework applicable to the degree plan, students must successfully complete HUMA 6300, one course under HUAS, one course under HUHI, and one course under HUSL. In addition, doctoral students in HUAS (VPA), HUSL (LIT), and HUMA, must also complete at least 2 organized courses offered at the 7000-level as part of their 42 hours of coursework. Students in HUHI (HI) do not have to complete any 7000-level courses.

Learn more about the Foreign Language Requirement

Learn more about the Doctoral Field Examinations

Learn more about Dissertation Proposals

Active involvement in the process of creation and performance is basic to the design of the PhD in Visual and Performing Arts. We recommend that students working in the PhD program for Visual and Performing Arts take at least one ensemble/workshop (in addition to any taken at the MA level). Students pursuing the PhD in Visual and Performing Arts may submit a creative project as part of their dissertation.

Learn more about Creative Project as Dissertation Guidelines

To be a full-time student, nine (9) hours of courses per semester is required; three (3) hours of courses per semester is required to be enrolled in the program.

To have courses taken outside the School of Arts and Humanities applied to one of its degrees, students must seek prior approval from the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies. They may also petition to have appropriate transfer courses applied to their degree plan.

PhDs Awarded Each Year

PhDs Awarded in 2018

PhDs Awarded in 2017

PhDs Awarded in 2016

PhDs Awarded in 2015

PhDs Awarded in 2014

PhDs Awarded in 2013

PhDs Awarded in 2012

PhDs Awarded in 2011

PhDs Awarded in 2010

PhDs Awarded in 2009

18 Characteristics of Texas Public Doctoral Programs