All schools & programs > College of Liberal Arts and Sciences > Department of English >

Doctor of Philosophy in English

Visit their website » Print...

Ph.D. in English Degree Requirements

Students entering the program with the B.A. have, while being continuously enrolled, 8 years to complete the M.A. and Ph.D. combined. Students entering with the M.A. have 5 years to complete the Ph.D.

Go to the top of the page top

Ph.D. Requirements: Literature and Creative Writing

  1. Ph.D. candidates must earn 24 hours of credit in appropriate formal graduate courses beyond the M.A. At least 15 hours (in addition to introduction to literary studies if not taken for the M.A.) of this course work must be taken from among courses offered by the Department of English at the 700 level and above.
  2. Required courses: Introduction to literary studies and 2 seminars offered by the Department of English at KU beyond the M.A. Students with master’s degrees earned elsewhere may be required by the director of graduate studies, acting on behalf of the graduate committee, to take additional course work.
  3. A reading knowledge of 2 of the following languages: French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Russian, Old English, or Spanish, or demonstrated fluency in one of these.
  4. A comprehensive examination, to be completed after satisfaction of formal course requirements. This examination, which has both written and oral components, consists of 3 areas of study.
  5. In the semester following the comprehensive examination, a 90-minute dissertation proposal review, which is to provide formal direction for the dissertation.
  6. At least 1 year of supervised quarter-time teaching for qualified candidates except for those who do not plan to undertake teaching careers or who have already had extensive teaching experience.
  7. A dissertation of substantial merit.
  8. Final oral examination and defense of the dissertation.

Note: Responsible scholarship requirements were approved after this catalog was finalized. Contact your department or program for more information about this requirement for doctoral students.

Go to the top of the page top

Ph.D. Requirements: Composition and Rhetoric

Each student admitted to the Ph.D. program in composition and rhetoric is assigned a graduate adviser from among the faculty in composition and rhetoric, who will help the student plan an initial course of study. After the first semester, students may ask other faculty members in the field to serve as their graduate advisers, depending on availability. The students and their graduate advisers together design and monitor a coherent program of study, individualized to serve each student’s goals within current expectations for a Ph.D. in composition and rhetoric. As an interdisciplinary field, study in composition and rhetoric might involve work in other departments, programs, or schools as well as English, including, for example, communication studies, linguistics, education, psychology, American studies, women’s studies, or history.

Each student’s individualized program of study must meet the minimum requirements detailed below.

  1. At least 36 hours of credit in appropriate formal graduate courses beyond the B.A. At least 30 hours of this course work must be taken from among courses offered at the 700 level and above. ENGL 997 and ENGL 999 credit hours cannot be included among the 36 hours.
  2. Students in this specialization may take up to 12 hours outside the department without petition, with written approval by the students’ graduate advisers. Students may petition to take more hours outside the department, with the approval of their graduate advisers, and provided they can demonstrate how the courses fit within their programs of study.
  3.  An introduction to the field: Either ENGL 800 Introduction to Graduate Study in English or ENGL 780 Composition Studies
  4. A reading knowledge of 2 of the following languages: French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Russian, Old English, or Spanish, or demonstrated fluency in one of these.
  5. At least 3 seminars (numbered 900 or above) offered by the Department of English at the University of Kansas, at least 2 of which should be in composition and rhetoric.
  6. ENGL 999 Dissertation (at least 12 hours).
  7. A comprehensive examination, to be completed after satisfaction of formal course requirements. This examination, which has both written and oral components, consists of 3 areas of study.
  8. In the semester following the comprehensive examination, a 90-minute dissertation proposal review, which is to provide formal direction for the dissertation.
  9. At least 1 year of supervised quarter-time teaching for qualified candidates except for those who do not plan to undertake teaching careers or who have already had extensive teaching experience.
  10. A dissertation of substantial merit.
  11. Final oral examination and defense of the dissertation.

Note: Responsible scholarship requirements were approved after this catalog was finalized. Contact your department or program for more information about this requirement for doctoral students.

Go to the top of the page top

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY.