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Ph.D. Program Requirements

Students are normally admitted directly into the Ph.D. program which requires a minimum of 60 credits. Students are required to take the core courses as soon as they can in their program and maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0. In their first three years, they will satisfy requirement (A) and (B):

A.  Coursework

Required Courses       (12 credits)
i.           LIN 521 (Syntax I)    ii. LIN 621 (Syntax II)   iii.  LIN 523 (Phonology I)   iv.  LIN 623 (Phonology II)
Elective Courses       (minimum of 18 credits)  
Electives may include courses in other departments. The student’s choice of elective is decided in conjunction with faculty and must be approved by the doctoral program director.
30 additional credits       (which includes 9 credits of dissertation research each semester after other coursework is complete)

B.  Qualifying Papers
  •  Acceptance by the department of two papers of publishable quality in distinct areas of linguistics (referred to as Qualifying Papers (QPs)).
  • Each paper will be defended orally before a committee of at least three faculty members, at least two of whom will be full-time faculty from within the department. The inside membership of the two qualifying paper committees must not be identical.
  • The pre-defense draft of a qualifying paper must be submitted to the committee by at least three weeks before the defense date.
  • Public presentation of one of these papers is required to move to the dissertation stage.  
  • Submission for journal publication of one of these papers is required to complete the program.
QP Deadlines:
  • QP 1:  The revised, post-defense version of the first qualifying paper must be accepted by the end (last day of classes) of the 4th semester
  • QP 2:  The revised, post-defense version of the second qualifying paper must be accepted by the end (last day of classes) of the 6th semester.  
  • Failure to meet the first deadline may affect the student’s priority for funding.
  • Students who have not had the final versions of both qualifying papers accepted by their committees by the end of the 6th semester will normally be dismissed form the program. 
C.  Dissertation
  • Acceptance by the department of a dissertation to be defended orally. Before proceeding to write the dissertation, the student must have a dissertation proposal accepted by the dissertation committee. The dissertation proposal is normally no more than 10 pages. It outlines your topic and how you go about investigating this topic.
  • You should submit the proposal to your advisor within three months after completing the QP requirement. Your advisor will organize a discussion in which available committee members consider your proposal with you. The purpose of this is to ensure that your topic is manageable and substantive. The committee members indicate their acceptance of the proposal by signing the Acceptance of Dissertation Proposal form available in the Graduate Office.
  • The dissertation committee will consist of a minimum of four members, at least three from the full-time faculty in the department and at least one from outside the department (or University). The committee will be chosen in consultation with the dissertation supervisor, who will be a full-time member of the department faculty. When your advisor indicates that your dissertation is ready to be defended she/he will schedule a defense, which is open to anyone who cares to attend.
  • When the dissertation is successfully defended and judged acceptable by the committee, they will sign the title page (see Guidelines for Preparation of Thesis and Dissertation, available from the graduate school).
  • The final version of the dissertation will then be submitted to the graduate school. See the graduate secretary for submission deadlines at the beginning of each semester.
D.  Language Requirement

Demonstrated knowledge of two foreign languages other than the student’s mother tongue. This requirement may be satisfied by any of the following methods:

  • Submission of an analytic paper demonstrating knowledge of the structure of the language.
  • Satisfactory completion of a course in the structure of a language.
  • Satisfactory performance on a standardized exam designed to measure language proficiency.
  • Satisfactory completion of two years of college-level instruction in the language.
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