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Students should consult the department's Ph.D. requirements, stipulated here, together with those of the Graduate School, outlined in the Graduate Handbook.
An M.A. degree with a major in art history is usually required for admission to the Ph.D. program. If the student has a Master's degree in an area other than art history, or if there is a question concerning the applicant's ability to pursue a doctoral program in art history, additional courses may be required. A fellowship student who enters with an M.A., or who has received an M.A. in the department and has advanced to the Ph.D. program, is expected to complete all Ph.D. degree requirements but the dissertation (attain admission to candidacy) within four semesters of matriculation or defense of the thesis. A student with an assistantship who enters with an M.A., or who has received an M.A. in the department and has advanced to the Ph.D. program, is expected to complete all Ph.D. degree requirements but the dissertation (attain admission to candidacy) within five semesters of matriculation or defense of the thesis. It is expected that a student will complete and defend the dissertation within three years of being admitted to candidacy. Provisions for continuous registration are to be made during this time (see the Graduate Catalogue).
A student may proceed from the B.A. directly to the Ph.D., without acquiring an M.A. degree. With the support of the student's advisor, the student must submit an application to the graduate faculty for approval.
Course Requirements for the Ph.D.
A total of thirty-three credit hours, after the M.A. degree, is required for the Ph.D. program. This involves seven courses (21 credit hours); the final twelve credit hours will be Dissertation Research (ARTH 899). Students who have not already taken the department's Methods of Art History (ARTH 692) as part of their M.A. coursework must take it as one of their seven Ph.D. courses, even if they have already taken a methods course elsewhere. For distributional requirements for the Ph.D., if the student enters from another institution, and has not already satisfactorily completed the equivalent of UMD distributional requirements, see Distributional Requirements for the M.A. For the direct Ph.D.--in which the M.A. degree is bypassed--the student must complete a total of fifty-seven credit hours, including Methods of Research (ARTH 692) and fourteen other courses, in at least five of the eleven areas specified above in the description of the Master's program; the final twelve credit hours will be Dissertation Research (ARTH 899).
Graduate courses in other departments of the University, or courses equivalent to our 600/700 level art history courses in the Washington Area Consortium, Johns Hopkins University, and the Folger Institute may be taken with the approval of the advisor and the Director of Graduate Studies. No more than two courses for the Ph.D. program (four courses for the direct Ph.D. program) may be taken outside the Department of Art History and Archaeology.
Directed Studies courses (ARTH 798) provide students at the M.A. and Ph.D. levels with the opportunity to work closely with individual faculty members within the Department on projects not normally included in the graduate curriculum. With the support of the supervising faculty member, the student should submit a one-page proposal to the Director of Graduate Studies. The proposal should describe the subject and objective of the project. The Director of Graduate Studies will present the proposal to the Graduate Faculty for its approval at the Graduate Review held at the end of each semester. Directed Studies courses do not satisfy required distribution courses at the M.A. level and are not counted as 700-level seminars.
A minimum grade of "B-" is required for all courses approved for graduate credit. Two grades below "B-" result in dismissal from the program.
A student must make satisfactory progress in meeting programmatic requirements, must demonstrate the ability to succeed in his or her course of studies or research, and must attain performance minima specified by the graduate program in all or in particular courses; otherwise his or her enrollment will be terminated.
The Graduate Committee
The student's Graduate Committee will advise on the student's program and evaluate his/her progress. The Committee will comprise three members of the Graduate Faculty, including the student's advisor, who will serve as chair. Of the two remaining members, one will examine the student in the major field, and one in the minor. Composition of the committee will be determined by the advisor and the student and approved by the Director of Graduate Studies.
The Academic Program
1) The major will represent a well-defined, fairly broad geographical and chronological area of study.
2) One or more minors will be elected. Minor area(s) will be smaller than the major field and not overlap the major.
Ph.D. students are required to submit a formal request, addressed to the Department's Curriculum Committee, naming the proposed major-minor combination and briefly explaining the rationale for this choice. (A form for this purpose is available from the Coordinator of Graduate Studies.) Under a new policy, the choice of contiguous fields for the major and minor is permissible. In the event that the committee has questions, it may request further consultation with the student, or may refer the proposal to the judgment of the whole faculty.
A written record of the approved major and minor fields will be kept in the student's file. If the fields are modified the record must be amended and approved by the committee. It should be noted that the subject of the dissertation will normally fall within the student's major field of concentration and that it will be concerned with one problem within the broader area.
The Doctoral Examination
The student's advisor will direct the student to take the Ph.D. examination. The doctoral examination will be in two parts, both of which are graded pass/fail. The examination may be taken only during the fall or spring academic terms. If the examination is failed, the student may attempt it once more. An unsuccessful second attempt will require the student to withdraw from the Ph.D. program.
Part I. The written examination
The written examination will consist of three four-hour sessions, to be completed within a one-week period. At the start of each session, the student will be given a topic (some choice may be offered) on which to write for the entire session. Two sessions will treat the student's major field, and one will treat the minor. Topics may be focused on specific visual material, historiography, bibliography, or historical and theoretical problems in the field. During the examination sessions, the student may leave the examination room for short breaks but may not consult notes or any other sources. By the end of each four-hour session, the student will submit his/her essay to the Graduate Secretary, both as a printed document and as an electronic file. The student's Graduate Committee will meet in advance to agree upon the questions for the written examination. Afterwards, all members of the committee will read the student's responses, and the committee will then meet a second time to plan the oral examination, at least one day before it is to be administered.
Part II. The oral examination
The Graduate Committee will administer a two-hour oral examination on the student's major and minor areas of study. Usually, this examination will take place within a week after the last of the written sessions, and it will include questions on the essays as well as on new topics. Questions may be broad or quite specific to particular works of art. In addition to being able to identify important works from the major and minor fields, the student may be asked to speak about works with which he/she is unfamiliar. The Committee will evaluate the student's skills in visual analysis as well as his/her knowledge of factual information, specific works of art, scholarly literature, and general concepts. Reproductions or original works of art may be used during the examination.
Doctoral Dissertation Proposal
After successfully completing the doctoral examination, the student will write a dissertation proposal. Students should be aware that the decision to supervise a dissertation rests with the individual faculty member, and that it is necessary to secure this consent before work on the dissertation proceeds. The proposal should usually include the following:
1) A statement of the problem that will be investigated or the hypothesis that will be argued; an explanation of the value the dissertation would have for the field of art history.
2) A statement of existing scholarship related to the thesis.
3) The primary sources consulted or to be consulted, their location, and their availability.
4) Secondary sources consulted or to be consulted, and their availability.
5) A work plan (an outline of the projected research, including travel) and the methodology to be used, followed by an example to demonstrate the plausibility of the method.
Within six months of successfully completing doctoral exams, the student will meet with his/her Graduate Committee to review and discuss the dissertation proposal, its scope and significance. (The membership of the Graduate Committee may be adjusted before this meeting, but it should comprise at least three members, at least two of whom will be full-time permanent Departmental faculty.) The timing of the interview, within this stated span, will be determined by agreement between graduate student and advisor. At the discretion of the advisor, and in consultation with the student, additional committee members (internal or external) may be invited to participate.
Upon acceptance of the dissertation proposal, the approved proposal will be signed by the committee and placed in the student's permanent file. At that time the student should apply to the Graduate School for admission to candidacy. The application requires the signature of the major advisor and the departmental Director of Graduate Studies.
The dissertation is prepared under the direction of the student's advisor. After approval by the advisor, the student will prepare the paper according to Graduate School guidelines. The dissertation will then be submitted to the Dissertation Committee, which must include five faculty members, including a Dean's Representative (a faculty member from another program at the University). The Dissertation Committee must be approved by the Dean of the Graduate School . The advisor must submit to the Director of Graduate Studies a list of all committee members at least four weeks before the final copy of the thesis is distributed. Should a student wish to include a Special Member (a scholar with no official affiliation with the University) on the Dissertation Committee, the student must request a nomination from the Director of Graduate Studies no later than four months before the proposed oral defense date.
The Dissertation Committee, which will have the student's advisor as chairperson, will be allowed a minimum of four weeks in which to read the thesis before the oral examination. In conformity with the Graduate School 's guidelines, this departmental policy (in relation to the time given to the Committee) supercedes all other policies.
Regular and substantial consultation between adviser and doctoral candidate regarding the nature and expectation of the final oral defense is expected. Please consult the Graduate School Handbook, and especially its section detailing the final oral defense and the responsibilities of the Graduate Dean’s Representative (http://www.gradschool.umd.edu/catalog/doctoral_degree_policies.htm).
The candidate will be given a final oral examination by the Committee on the dissertation and the areas it represents. The student then will have approximately two weeks in which to make the changes requested by the committee before the final copies are due to the Graduate School . One archival copy on paper (with the images gathered at the back) and one electronic copy (with the images excluded, for reasons of copyright) must be submitted. For electronic submission requirements, see http://dissertations.umi.com/umd . Please note: the student is responsible for meeting all deadlines of the Graduate School.