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Doctoral Degree


The Department of Hispanic Studies offers a Ph.D. in Spanish to train students for academic positions as scholars and teachers. We emphasize advanced course work and independent research, culminating in the doctoral dissertation. Our program is designed to provide in-depth coverage of the student’s primary area of study, while also assuring ample coverage of the broad field of Hispanic Studies.

Admission Requirements
Candidates who hold the M.A. from UCR must be recommended by the faculty to continue for the Ph.D. Minimum course requirements.

Course Requirements
There is a minimum course requirement of 24 units beyond the M.A., though in practice doctoral students usually find that more than the minimum is advisable for doctoral training. Students may, with the permission of their advisor, take courses outside the Department to fulfill their requirements. The normative time to completion of the Ph.D. degree, after the M.A., is nine quarters. The normative time to the completion of the Ph.D. after the B.A. is 15 quarters.

Long Paper
As part of their preparation in their major area of specialization, students present a paper of 40 to 50 pages in length, representing scholarly research and analysis in their chosen field of study. The long paper will form the basis of the doctoral dissertation.

Written and Oral Qualifying Examinations
Students choose two areas of concentration as examination areas. One area is the field of major emphasis; a second area or topic is selected in consultation with the chair of the guidance committee.

The area of specialization is defined by the long paper and dissertation topic. The doctoral examination consists of a five-hour written examination (three hours in the major field and two hours in the secondary field or topic), followed by an oral examination of approximately two hours. The oral examination deals with the major and secondary examinations and the long paper. The written and oral examinations are conducted by the qualifying committee nominated by the graduate advisor in consultation with the student and appointed by the graduate dean. Upon the successful completion of the written and oral qualifying examinations, the student is recommended to the graduate dean for advancement to candidacy.

Language Requirements
In addition to Spanish and English, the candidate must demonstrate a reading knowledge of one other language. Students specializing in Latin American literature must select Portuguese as this language. This requirement may be fulfilled by departmental examination or by satisfactory completion of one Brazilian literature class.

Dissertation and Final Oral Examination
Students prepare a dissertation presented as prescribed by the Graduate Division under the direction of the candidate’s dissertation committee. After completion of the dissertation, the candidate is examined by the dissertation committee. This examination normally takes the form of a public presentation by the candidate followed by questions from the committee.