Graduate Program Ph.D.
Requirements for Admission
Applicants submit transcripts, three letters of recommendation, aptitude scores from the Graduate Record Examination, and a sample of written work.
Ph.D. students are advised to begin their graduate work at UCI, since those who have taken the M.A. elsewhere will be expected to enroll in the same courses that are required of all incoming students, with the exception of the First-Year Research Seminar. Subject to evaluation of their M.A. theses, these students will be exempted from this requirement. In the second and third years, the greater experience of those who enter with an M.A. may work to advantage in speeding them to the qualifying examination.
To be admitted formally into the doctoral program, students must satisfactorily pass a departmental evaluation at the end of their first year of study; this includes students who entered with an M.A. from another institution.
Incoming students are admitted for fall quarter only, and the deadline for application for fall admission is January 2.
Program of Study
The Department requires doctoral students to prepare themselves in three different areas:
1. History and Theory.
2. The first field (such as Modern Europe), which is designed as a teaching field as well as the focus of the student's dissertation.
3. The second field (such as American History or Critical Theory), which is designed as a second teaching field.
The courses required in this preparation include the History and Theory sequence, colloquium series in both fields, First-Year Proseminar/Research Seminar sequence, and the Second-Year Research Seminar. The normal academic load is three courses per quarter. However, applicants may be eligible for approved part-time status, which allows students to take a lighter course load at reduced fees for a maximum of two academic years.
Every doctoral student will be assisted by a departmental advisor in the student's general area of study who will be responsible for approving defined fields, guiding the student to consultant faculty, and supervising the examination.
All students, except as specified below, must demonstrate a reading knowledge of two foreign languages prior to taking the Ph.D. candidacy qualifying examination. Competency in a language may be established either by passing a departmental examination or through extensive language use in one of the research seminars. The specific languages that may be used to satisfy this requirement depend on the student's first field.
Students in American history may use a substitute for one of their languages. They may take two graduate courses in an allied discipline (e.g., critical theory, political theory, cultural anthropology, feminist theory, art history linguistics). Students pursuing the second option are expected to write a substantial paper that demonstrates the value of the allied discipline to historical inquiry. The two courses for the second option may not count toward fulfilling the requirement for the second field.
Qualifying Examination and Dissertation
In preparation for the oral Qualifying Examination, the student will present to the Ph.D. Candidacy Committee a portfolio of three papers totaling at least 45 pages on subjects related to the major field. Successful completion of this examination results in the student's advancement to Ph.D. candidacy. Within one academic quarter of the oral examination, new candidates must meet in a colloquy with their Doctoral Committee to present their dissertation proposal. Once the Doctoral Committee approves the proposal, the student begins intensive work upon the dissertation. The research and writing involved in this effort are expected to require from one to three years. At the end of this period an oral defense of the dissertation normally will be held, focusing on the adequacy of the student's research and thesis.
Students who enter with normal academic preparation and pursue a full-time program of study should be able to earn the Ph.D. degree within seven years.