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Ph.D. Timetable

The below timetable clarifies the expectations of when each of the steps through the program should ideally be completed. Please bear in mind that, in individual cases, there may be a need to be flexible about the timing of specific aspects of the program. Overall, however, we believe it is best for our students to have a clear idea of the pacing of progress that the faculty believe will prove most fruitful. 

Year 1

1st semester (Fall) 

  • HIST 6100 
  • Two additional courses 
  • Languages (non-credit)
  • Explore possible dissertation topics
  • Start thinking about major and minor fields 

2nd semester (Spring) 

  • HIST 6110
  • HIST 8000: One hour independent study with first year adviser or recommended specialist; in conjunction with HIST 6110; Oversight of 1st year paper; See 6110 guidelines
  • Two additional courses
  • Write first of two required research papers
  • Tentative selection of major and minor fields, and of Ph.D. committee
  • Consult by May 1 with committee members about summer readings for qualifying exam and about summer research for second research paper
  • Take at least one language exam if two are required
  • Apply for internal funding for language training support in summer
  • Narrow range of possible dissertation topics 

1st summer 

  • Languages
  • Read in major and minor fields to prepare for qualifying exam
  • Preliminary research on potential dissertation materials and concepts
  • Conduct research in preparation for second research paper, if possible 

Year 2

3rd semester (Fall) 

  • Three courses
  • Write second required research paper in conjunction with one of the three courses or independent study taken this semester
  • Finalize major and minor fields and Ph.D. committee by October 15
  • Turn in Fields for Qualifying Exam Form to the graduate administrator by October 15
  • Work on finalizing reading list for major and minor fields for qualifying exam
  • Languages (non-credit)
  • Apply for archival travel grants for second summer
  • Make a list of grants to support dissertation research
  • Continue exam and dissertation reading
  • Refine dissertation topic 

4th semester (Spring) 

  • Three courses; students are encouraged to take independent study courses and/or reading courses geared toward preparing for their qualifying exam
  • Students should exercise caution in this semester in taking courses outside the department that require major papers to be written, unless such courses help with preparing for qualifying exam
  • Study for qualifying exam
  • Apply for archival travel grants for second summer
  • Submit forms for Ph.D. committee at least two weeks before qualifying exam
  • Mandated language exams must be passed by April 7
  • Take qualifying exam by May after classes end (or in some cases by December of the fifth semester) 

2nd summer 

  • HIST 8200: prospectus seminar (Maymester/ Aug-Oct; appears in YES as a fall course) 

Year 3

5th semester (Fall) 

  • HIST 8200: prospectus seminar. Return start of fall semester with draft
  • TA assignment
  • Apply for grants for dissertation research
  • Present dissertation prospectus by end of fifth semester (or by Spring Break of the sixth semester for those who took qualifying exam in fifth semester) 

6th semester (Spring) 

  • HIST 6300: teaching workshop
  • TA assignment
  • Work on dissertation 

3rd summer 

  • Work on dissertation 

Years 4 & 5

  • Dissertation research and writing 
  • HIST 9999: Dissertation research each semester in residence 
  • Two more semesters of TA work, for a total of four semesters of service