Degree Information: Doctoral
Ph.D. dissertation work begins with the required non-credit course ENGL 8099
Research in Caribbean Literature and Linguistics. This course is taken after the completion of the five (5) required 8000-level core courses and before the Ph.D. comprehensive exams. ENGL 8099
can only be taken once; if the student fails to complete the work, s/he will receive an INP (incomplete no pass). If the work is not completed by the following semester, the student will not be able to continue in the Program.
On completion of the Research course, the student enrolls in ENGL 8890 Writing of Doctoral Critical Essays in order to fulfill the requirements of the comprehensive exams. After successfully passing the exams, the student then enrolls in ENGL 8891 - Dissertation I to write and submit an acceptable dissertation proposal no later than the first week of November (1st semester) or April (2nd semester); it can be handed in any time before. Advisers have ONE week to read proposal and return to student for revisions. Students have ONE week to revise the returned proposal which will then be submitted to the other readers and a date for the defense established.
In all subsequent semesters, while working on the dissertation, the student enrolls in ENGL 8892 - Dissertation II. (Please note that all requirements for the Ph.D. must be completed within eight (8) sequential calendar years from the date of first admission/enrollment as a Ph.D. student.) Once the student has successfully defended the dissertation proposal, the Registrar will officially certify the student as ABD (all but dissertation).
According to Middle States and UPR-Río Piedras criteria, professors who direct thesis and dissertations must be active and productive scholars in the area of specialization of the dissertation. The dissertation committee should have at least three (3) members (including the director), of which two should belong to the Caribbean Projects subcommittee of the Graduate Committee of the Department of English. However, committees can be as large as five (5) members (in rare cases more) and draw on qualified professors from other disciplines if the dissertation subject so warrants.
The dissertation is the final requirement for the Ph.D. as well as an initiation in professional academic scholarship. It permits Ph.D. candidates the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge of the theories and research methodologies of the field as well as their mastery of style and form and coherent analytical discourse. The dissertation should represent an original and significant contribution to the knowledge of the field.
No specific limitations are placed on the scope and length of the Ph.D. dissertation. However, it is assumed that the study will be highly focused, involve research or analysis not previously recorded in published form, and achieve a depth of vision not usually possible in less than 200 double-spaced pages of text. At the same time, the direction and focus should be sufficiently sharp to insure that the dissertation does not exceed 600 double-spaced pages. (Dissertations that incorporate creative or performance elements follow these same guidelines.)
All Ph.D. dissertations will be published by University Microfilms International and must conform to the format established by the Office of the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research to that effect. A fee is required for that purpose.
For more detailed information on the dissertation proposal, the selection of the dissertation adviser and committee members, turning in the completed dissertation before the defense, the defense itself, and the submission of official copies after the dissertation defense, please refer to section 5.8.9 (pages 14-16) of the Reglamento General de los Programas Graduados
(October 2000) of the College of Humanities of the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras Campus.