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Forming a Doctoral Committee

During the middle of the second year of study, students begin to prepare for the second phase of doctoral study, the qualifying process. By the end of the second year or the beginning of the third year, students should have constituted a doctoral committee, completed a LTXX 298 course (in which they have prepared reading lists and chosen a research paper topic), and met with their committee in a pre-qualifying meeting. They thus can begin reading toward the qualifying examination in the summer following the second year of study.

The Doctoral Committee

The student invites a tenured professor to chair her/his doctoral committee. (Non-tenured professors may co-chair committees with tenured professors.) The student and chair consult about the constitution of the rest of the committee. The chair invites prospective members to join the doctoral committee.

Ideally, the committee will consist of professors with whom the student has studied. Four members of the committee must be ladder-rank members of the Literature Department whose work relates to the student's project. One member of the committee must be a tenured member of another department who can consult with the student on the dissertation project. (Please consult the graduate coordinator for stipulations about other configurations of the committee [i.e., non-UCSD committee members]).

The committee advises the student on the areas for reading lists and the long qualifying paper, conducts and evaluates the qualifying examination, supervises the preparation of the dissertation prospectus, advises the student on dissertation research and writing, and conducts the dissertation defense.

When the committee has been constituted, the committee chair informs the graduate coordinator of the committee's membership. the graduate coordinator then files with OGS a form to establish the committee. This form must be filed no later than the second week of the quarter prior to the qualifying examination.

Reconstituting the Doctoral Committee

When a change in the committee is necessary, the committee chair is responsible for the formal arrangements of finding another faculty member and informing the student and the graduate coordinator of the change. She then submits a request in writing to the Dean of Graduate Studies at OGS to reconstitute the membership of the committee. When the committee chair must be changed, the Director of Graduate Studies will advise the student and formally initiate the change with the department.

The Paperwork

The form constituting the Ph.D. committee must be filed no later than the second week of the quarter prior to the qualifying examination. The Ph.D. Requirements Worksheet must also be filed no later than the second week of the quarter prior to the qualifying examination.
Graduate Coordinator
Kristin Carnohan
115 Literature Building
(858) 534-3217

Application Open:
9/1 - 12/1 (deadline)