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PhD Degree Requirements

The MA/PhD in English Language and Literature is an integrated program that allows students to earn an MA on the way to the PhD. Students who enter the program without an MA in English or a related field are required to earn an MA while completing their coursework.

Degree Requirements

  • Master's Degree. May be earned at UW or at another accredited institution prior to admission.
  • Coursework. Total of 65 credits of coursework required, up to 10 of which may be transferred in from another institution; may include all credits from an MA in English Language & Literature from UW
    • Students who entered the program Autumn 2018 or earlier:  Total of 75 graded credits of coursework required, up to 30 of which may be transferred in from another institution
  • Language Requirement. Intermediate-level reading competency in a language other than modern or Middle English.
  • Request to Proceed to Doctoral Study. Formal request to continue on to doctoral study.
  • PhD Examinations. Written examination (includes a research statement and two course syllabi) and an oral, comprehensive General Examination, based on reading lists prepared under the guidance of the student's doctoral supervisory committee. The student plays an active role in selecting this committee and its chair.
  • Dissertation Prospectus and Dissertation.
  • Final Examination (Dissertation Defense).

In accordance with the Graduate School's doctoral degree requirements, all work for the doctoral degree (including the dissertation defense) must be completed within ten years. This includes quarters spent on-leave or out of status as well as applicable work from the master’s degree from the UW.

If a student wishes to remain in student status beyond the ten-year limit, then they must submit a written statement to the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) that explains why additional time is needed and provides a detailed timeline for completing the dissertation. If the student has a supervisory committee chair, the DGS will communicate with the chair about the request and respond to the student in a timely manner.

Additional Information

Staff in the English Graduate Office are available to answer questions concerning admission and program requirements.