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Program Requirements

For students enrolled in the Hispanic linguistics track, a minimum of 60 credits beyond the bachelor's degree is required for the Ph.D. The first 36 credits (or 12 classes) must include the required core courses (see below). Upon completing the 60 credits required for the Ph.D., students must have taken 3 doctoral seminars at the 800 level (2 out of these 3 seminars must be in Hispanic linguistics), and at least one course in Hispanic literatures. By the time the 60 credits are completed all candidates must have taken a minimum of 11 classes and seminars in Hispanic linguistics. Students entering the program with background in linguistics may request core-course waivers. Any requirement waivers must be approved by the Executive Officer or her/his appointed program advisor.

Required Core Courses:

  • SPAN 70600 - Fundamentals of Hispanic linguistics

  • SPAN 70700 - Linguistic and cultural issues in teaching Spanish

  • SPAN 70100 - History of the Spanish language
  • SPAN 72900 - Spanish in Social Context

First Examination: The First Examination will test the students' knowledge of the facts, concepts, principles, and theoretical frameworks that define each of the disciplines studied, and their ability to write coherent essays that are relevant to the main questions addressed by those same disciplines. The First Examination will cover the four areas of Spanish syntax, phonology, sociolinguistics and historical linguistics and will be based on coursework and a core list of required readings. On each area-examination the student will answer 10 out of 15 short questions and write 2 essays on 2 out of 3 given topics.

Second Examination: After completing a minimum of 60 credits and fulfilling all requirements, students must pass a Second Examination. For each student, the Executive Officer will appoint a committee of three professors including the student's mentor, who will serve as chair. The examination will have a written and an oral component. In consultation with the committee, each student must designate and describe a primary and a secondary area of concentration. For the secondary area, students will prepare an annotated bibliography. For the primary area, in addition to preparing an annotated bibliography, they will select a topic, and write a paper. The paper must have approximately 8000 words and demonstrate the student's command of the field and ability to write publishable articles. Bibliographies and paper must be handed to all committee members before the designated Second Examination date. The oral exam will consist of a presentation by the student followed by questions from committee members.

Language requirement: Any two of the following languages are required: French, German, Italian or Latin. Any other language with a significant literature in Hispanic linguistics or relevance to the student's doctoral work may be approved by the Executive Officer or her/his appointed program adviser. Proficiency may be demonstrated by passing a written test given by the program or by completing two semesters of a reading course offered by the City University and approved by the Executive Officer.

Dissertation: Within one semester of passing the Second Examination, candidates must submit to the Executive Officer their dissertation topic and the names of the director and the two readers of the Dissertation Committee.

Within one year of passing the Second Examination, candidates must submit a dissertation proposal to the Dissertation Committee for approval. The proposal must have at least ten double-spaced pages, must include a description of the topic, the methodology to be employed, the scholarly significance, the contribution to the field, and the feasibility of the project. A basic up-to-date bibliography of the topic following recent MLA guidelines will also be required. The proposal should be dated and signed by the thesis director. After writing the dissertation proposal, the candidate shall make an oral presentation of the written proposal before the Dissertation Committee for approval.

Upon completion of the dissertation and after approval by the Dissertation Committee, the candidate shall defend the dissertation publicly. The candidate's oral defense will consist of a presentation on the nature of the research and the results it has yielded, followed by a question period normally of one-hour duration.

Fonología          Historia          Sintaxis          Sociolingüística