Graduate Program Information


Yale’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese offers the Ph.D. in Spanish peninsular literature, Latin American literature, and a combination of Luso-Brazilian and Spanish/Spanish American literatures. In addition, the department participates in a combined Ph.D. program with the Department of African American Studies as well as a combined Ph.D. program in conjunction with the Renaissance Studies Program.

The program is typically five or six years long. The first two years are devoted to course work and the fulfillment of the two language requirements; the third year, to the Qualifying Examination and the preparation of the Dissertation Prospectus; the fourth and fifth (or fourth through sixth) years, to the writing of the dissertation. The student participates in the Teaching and Pedagogy Program during years two through four, taking the required course in modern languages pedagogy in the second year, and teaching one course per semester in the department’s basic language sequence during the third and fourth years. Assisting in literature courses is offered as available. No teaching is done during the two years of course work or during the dissertation fellowship year.

All Ph.D. candidates at Yale can receive six years of full funding. This consists of a 12-month stipend in each of years one and two, during which students complete their course work, a 12-month stipend in each of years three and four, during which students are expected to assist in teaching in one course each semester, and a 12-month stipend during the year (usually year five) in which students take the dissertation completion fellowship. With progress on the dissertation confirmed, Yale guarantees again a 12-month stipend in the sixth year typically through teaching assignments. The University also covers the premiums for basic health care and hospitalization at the University Health Service for students, 50% of that premium for spouses, and 100% for families with children during the entire period in which a student is registered, even if registration is extended beyond the five years of the financial aid package.

Program Requirements

1. Sixteen graduate-level courses, two of which are required (Methodologies of Modern Foreign Language Teaching and History of the Spanish Language) and up to four of which can be taken outside the department.

2. Two language requirements: (a) a reading/translation knowledge of Latin, usually satisfied by taking two semesters of Latin during the academic year or the intensive course during the summer; and (b) reading/translation competence in another language relevant to the student’s program.

3. Participation in the Teaching and Pedagogy program.

4. Qualifying Examination, consisting of written and oral components.

5. Dissertation Prospectus, prepared in consultation with the student’s adviser and approved by the faculty.

6. Doctoral Dissertation, prepared in close consultation with the adviser, approved by the faculty and Graduate School, and completed during the fifth or sixth year of study.

Special Admission Requirements

Alumni Job Placement

Graduate Student Handbook