Length of Study. Students are expected to complete the requirements for the degree in six years of registration. The first two years are generally spent taking courses full time; the third is spent preparing a dissertation prospectus within workshops and completing all requirements except the dissertation; the remaining years are spent pursuing and writing up a work of original research. The average length of time required to complete the program is five years. A small percentage finish in four years, although students are guaranteed registration for 6 years in which to finish their degree.

Residency Requirement. Doctoral students in this program are required to be in residence in New Haven for at least three years.

Dissertation. The doctoral dissertation is the climax of the graduate school experience. Every dissertation makes an original contribution to a student’s field of study by discovering significant new information, achieving a new synthesis of ideas, developing new methods or hypotheses, or applying established methods to new materials. A dissertation also demonstrates the student’s mastery of relevant resources and methods. Students work with two advisers throughout this process.