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German Language and Literature Ph.D.

The Ph.D. program focuses on German Studies from the Enlightenment to the Present with special focus on Cultural Studies, including Gender Studies, Film Studies, and Post-Colonial Studies.

Other areas of specialization can be accommodated according to departmental expertise.

Degree requirements for the Ph.D.

  1. Completion of at least 24 hours of coursework beyond the master's degree over a period of residency at the University of Maryland of at least one year, and a further 12 hours of dissertation research;
  2. A reading skill examination in a language other than English or German, which may be another Germanic language or a language related to the candidate's research;
  3. Comprehensive written examinations, consisting of one general exam and two specialty exams;
  4. The dissertation, an original study in the field of specialization on a topic approved by the advisor and the examining committee;
  5. Oral defense of dissertation (two hours).

Course Requirements

24 credits at the 600 and 800 level

  1. GERM630: “Methods and Concepts of German Studies” - 3 credits
  2. Four 800 level German studies courses - 12 credits
  3. Three electives at the 600/800 level - 9 credits - Students are encouraged to select courses related to their field of interest outside the department, such as courses in the Departments of Comparative Literature, Women's Studies and History. Up to 3 credits of independent study (GERM898) may replace an elective.
  4. GERM899: “Dissertation Research” - minimum 12 credits

Ph.D. Comprehensive Examinations

  1. Two four-hour examinations covering two areas of concentration (specialties) to be approved by the student’s advisor and the graduate director; a topic in German/cultural studies encouraging an interdisciplinary focus such as gender, film, post-colonial studies, preferably a combination of two different areas. Students are required to have reading lists approved by the advisor and Graduate Committee (primary and secondary works for these areas of concentration).
  2. One general four-hour examination (Middle Ages [optional] to 21st century). Students will answer three questions: one question from the Middle Ages - 16th/17th century [optional], and two [or three] questions from 18th-21st century and/or interdisciplinary studies.

Reading Requirement

All Ph.D. candidates must satisfy the reading requirement in one other foreign language (other than English or German) by coursework (equivalent of second year) with the grade "B" or by examination (Princeton examination or an examination conducted by the respective foreign language department). Certificates such as "Latinum" may be used to satisfy the requirement.

Who to Contact

Julie Koser

Associate Professor, German Studies
Affiliate Associate Professor, The Harriet Tubman Department of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Affiliate Associate Faculty, Classics
Associate Professor, School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures

3210 Jimenez Hall
College Park MD, 20742

(301) 405-4106