This manual is based on the Graduate School's requirements for the Ph.D. degree. It strives to clarify those rules and fill in the blanks where the Graduate School has left it to departments to do so. Requirements may change during the course of your years in the program, and we will alert you whenever that happens. But it is up to you to make sure that you consult the most recent version of the Handbook on the Graduate Studies website. This is especially true of funding. All descriptions of funding (above and beyond your contract) available to students from the Graduate Program in English depends on the availability of funds in the DGS budget, and the amount will vary from year to year.
In this manual, position titles have been used in place of names. The names of the people currently serving in these positions are listed below. Abbreviations that are commonly substituted for the full position title in departmental documents are also given here.
- DGS=Director of Graduate Studies: Rob Mitchell
- DUS=Director of Undergraduate Studies: Charlotte Sussman
- DGSA=Staff Assistant in the Graduate Studies Office (316 Allen): Maryscot Mullins
- FS=Financial Secretary for the English Department (303A Allen): Monika Allison
I. Ph.D. In English
A. English Program and Course of Study
(i) Course Requirements
During the course of their degree, students should expect to be exposed to:
- materials from different centuries;
- texts not only from both the British and American national literatures but also from Anglophone literature;
- a range of literary genres, media, and cultural studies;
- at least one course in which theory is the central subject.
Such diversified study should take place not simply in course work, but more comprehensively across coursework (including audited classes after prelim exams), exam fields, and teaching experiences. Generally speaking, students can be considered to have a minimum of 20 learning opportunities: at least 11 courses, 6 teaching experiences, and 3 exam fields.
We require all students in our program to take at least one course in which theory or one of its variants (Aesthetic theory, Critical theory, Cultural Studies, History of Criticism, etc.) is the central subject, and then require all students to have at least one 'hit' in 6 of the 10 following categories:
3. 18th Century British
4. 19th Century British: Romanticism or Victorian
5. Pre-Civil War American
6. Post-Civil War American
7. 20th Century and Contemporary Literatures: British, Irish, American, Post-colonial, Comparative
8. Genre: the Novel, Drama, Lyric Poetry, Epic or Romance.
9. Film, Video, New Technologies.
10. Literature in another language or Comparative Literature (with a non-Anglophone focus).
NOTE: These 'hits' are to be seen as a checklist whose main purpose is to ensure genuine breadth and diversity of study as you complete your degree. If you already have an advanced degree in which many of these areas have been studied, or can supply sufficient evidence of preparation in these areas, the DGS may, at his or her discretion, remit one of more of these areas of study. Up to 3 courses of the 11 required before your prelim exam may be remitted if you hold an MA degree from another institution.
Registration, Tutorials/Independent Study, Grades
Students must register every semester for either coursework or "continuation." Tutorials and independent studies must be pre-approved by the Director of Graduate Studies. Graduate students must maintain a minimum Grade Point Average of 3.0.
It is vital that you register every semester. After you have completed all required coursework, you should register for “continuation only.” Students who fail to register by the end of the semester and have not notified the DGS or the Student Records Coordinator of Graduate School Academic Programs will be withdrawn from the program. Such students may only be reinstated once, and they are responsible for paying the $200 reinstatement fee, possibly a sizable continuation fee as well.
Should you decide to drop a course, try to do so before the drop/add period ends. Otherwise a W will appear on your transcript.
Register for Summer Term 1 or 2 only if you are registering for a class. If awarded a summer research fellowship, you must register for “Continuation–Graduate School” for Summer Term–I. Register for Summer Term 2 only if you are registering for a class. The Graduate School will not necessarily approve your changing a graded course to an audit. All such changes must be requested before the drop/add period ends and require a signed audit form
Tutorials and Independent Studies
An independent study is an individualized course of study between one student and a professor. A tutorial is two students having a regular study session with a professor. The purpose of independent studies and tutorials is to supplement, rather than compete with, regular course offerings. All tutorials and independent studies must be pre-approved by the DGS. Credit-bearing tutorials may not exceed two students. (In cases in which more than two students wish to take a credit-bearing tutorial, then the professor who intends to lead that tutorial should propose it, during the time that one normally specifies teaching preferences, as a normal graduate course.) An English faculty member should not teach more than two English graduate students under credit-bearing tutorials or independent studies in any given semester.
The following criteria must be met in order for the DGS to approve the independent study:
- As a general rule, only one independent study or tutorial may be used to count towards the 11 course requirement for the Ph.D. and/or towards the distribution requirements.
- The reading and writing requirements for an independent study or tutorial must be at least equivalent to what would be required in a full graduate course.
- The independent study or tutorial must meet a minimum of once every two weeks.
- The independent study or tutorial should not duplicate English department course offerings that academic year.
To request approval for one of these special learning experiences, send your request to the DGS. Please include the following:
- A title for the study,
- The professor’s name
- The names of any other students who will be in the study
- A detailed description of the reading and writing requirements of the independent study or tutorial
- A rationale from each student taking the independent study/tutorial that both explains its place in your trajectory of study and indicates how it supplements rather than competes with course offerings for the current academic year.
- An indication for each student of whether you want to count the independent study or tutorial for course credit–remember only one independent study or tutorial can count towards the 11 course requirement of the Ph.D.
Once your request has been approved, you will receive a permission number for a particular course and section number. When the end of drop/add approaches, the registrar will add your professor's name and the title of the study to your enrollment/transcript.
Keep in mind that professors do these studies in addition to their regular course load and appointments. Please be sure the professor with whom you wish to study is willing to take on an independent study/tutorial before making your request to the DGS. If you choose to arrange an individualized learning experience, you are encouraged to study with an English professor; however, you may also arrange studies with professors in other departments.
You may register for courses at NC State and UNC at Chapel Hill. To do this, you must complete an inter-institutional approval form and have it signed by the DGS. Approval forms can be found on the Online Forms section of the English Graduate Student website: http://english.duke.edu/student-forms
The Graduate School requires a minimum Grade Point Average of 3.0. If you have any concerns about your grades, please consult the DGS. Discussions between a student, his/her advisors, and the DGS about any possible concerns about performance would normally long precede any attempt by the Graduate School to withdraw a student on the basis of grades.
In the event of a medical emergency or other urgent situation, you may request an incomplete from the professor of the course in which you are enrolled. Incompletes should be regarded as exceptional and extraordinary cases since they impede your ability to face the tasks of the next term and the demands of the program’s subsequent stages. You are not allowed to sit for your prelim exam until you have completed 11 graded graduate courses.
All Incomplete grades will be eliminated from your transcript once the work for a course has been completed and reported to the Registrar’s Office. (If work is not completed within one year, the Incomplete will remain.)
Annual Review/Progress Towards Degree
The Graduate School requires that all students enrolled in the program be reviewed each year.
The Graduate School requires that all students enrolled in the program be reviewed each year. If at any point, the faculty find that a student’s academic performance is at any time not satisfactory to the University, the University reserves the right to request the withdrawal of that student. It is incumbent on the DGS to share with the student in written form any faculty concerns that the student’s performance may not be satisfactory.
Annual Review of Progress before the Preliminary Exam
Before you take the Preliminary Examination, the DGS is responsible for monitoring your progress in the program. You will have to fill out your Annual Report each year, in consultation with the DGS as well as the faculty member designated as your advisor. The DGS collects and reviews reports from the faculty on your progress. During your third year, the DGS will check to make sure that your diversified requirements are being met and that you are indeed qualified to take the Preliminary Examination.
Annual Review of Progress after Successful Completion of the Preliminary Exam
Once you have passed your preliminary exam, you are responsible for your timely progress towards completion of the dissertation. In consultation with your director, you will continue to fill out an Annual Report each year in which you specify how much of your dissertation you have written over the past year, how much remains to be done, and how you plan to progress toward the goal in the coming year. The DGS is responsible for monitoring your reported progress and to let you and your director know your funding status.
Foreign Language Requirement
The Ph.D. Program in English requires students to demonstrate reading proficiency in one language other than English and in addition to his/her native language.
The Graduate School has issued no across-the-board language requirement. The Ph.D. Program in English requires students to demonstrate reading proficiency in one language other than English and in addition to his/her native language. "Reading proficiency" can be demonstrated in various ways, so long as they are comparable to passing a seminar taught in the language or passing a translation exam administered by the department. Please consult the DGS before pursuing an alternative to make sure it is indeed comparable. You are eligible for funding from the Graduate School and department to take intensive noncredit summer programs in Languages for Reading Purposes (LFRP).
Department language requirements may vary from specialty to specialty, so you must consult with the faculty who serve or are likely to serve on your preliminary exam committee in determining which language or languages are appropriate.
Expectations Regarding Information Opportunities for Learning & Professional Development
An important part of your educational experience in the Ph.D. program takes place outside of the classroom in lectures, job talks, and working groups sponsored by the English department and other departments and programs in your areas of scholarly interest.
An important part of your educational experience in the Ph.D. program takes place outside of the classroom in lectures, job talks, and working groups sponsored by the English department and other departments and programs in your areas of scholarly interest. Participation in such activities serves more than a supple mental role in your education as a scholar, member of a scholarly community and member of a broader profession. We expect you to take full advantage of these informal opportunities.
Passing the preliminary exam qualifies you to move on to writing your dissertation. Preparing for the exam should help you to become familiar with a range of literatures in your field and with the ways in which those literatures are composed, adjudicated, and modified in the critical fields that delineate them.
Passing the preliminary exam qualifies you to move on to writing your dissertation. Preparing for the exam should help you to become familiar with a range of literatures in your field and with the ways in which those literatures are composed, adjudicated, and modified in the critical fields that delineate them. We understand "field" dynamically and interrogatively, as a process of assembling a body of texts and determining what questions to ask of them. Thus you should, as part of your qualifying exams, expect to play an active role in defining the fields in which you will be tested. The preliminary exam also offers you a formal opportunity to think and converse about your chosen subject matter in a way that should prepare you for the hiring process, where you will have to talk with potential colleagues in adjacent fields, and for your future career as a college or university teacher, where you will be expected to work up new areas to serve curricular needs.
The Graduate School requires you to schedule and take preliminary examinations before the end of the spring term of your third year in the program. The Graduate School does not automatically grant extensions beyond this deadline. After consultation with your director and members of the committee as a whole, if you decide that an extension is necessary and justified, you must have your director write a letter of appeal to the DGS, who may well want to consult with you further. The DGS is responsible for recommending the extension to the Associate Dean of the Graduate School.
Toward the end of your second year, you should form a preliminary exam committee consisting of at least four faculty, including three from your research field, of which at least two must be from the English department. (Occasionally requests are granted to appoint persons not on the full-time graduate faculty–especially members of the graduate faculties of the University of North Carolina and North Carolina State.) The DGS is responsible for recommending your committee to the Associate Dean of the Graduate School, who approves and appoints the committee. This must all be done at least two months before the intended date for your exams. Normally, the same committee will administer both the prelim and the Ph.D. exams. But this same procedure must be followed in making any changes in your committee after the original committee has been appointed.
Forming a Committee
**Note**: Beginning May 5, 2018, no faculty member directing 8 or more exam/dissertation committees may direct an additional English department exam/dissertation committee. (This binding rule was voted in by the faculty as a whole on March 22, 2016 as a response to graduate student concerns raised in the 2015/2016 external review.) Hence, as you decide on the faculty members whom you will propose as your committee to the DGS, you should check with the DGS earlier rather than later that the faculty member whom you would like to propose as exam/dissertation director will in fact be able to serve that role on your committee.
Format and Scheduling
Prelim exams consist of two written examinations, one on the major and one on the two minor areas of concentration, followed by an oral exam. The DGSA is available to send exam questions only during normal business hours (8:30-4:30). If for any reason you need to receive the exam at another time, you need the approval of your chair and his/her willingness to be responsible for getting the exam to you.
Defining Major and Minor Fields of Study
- major authors and works in the period, genre, or topic;
- major literary and critical debates and trends in the literature of the period, genre, or topic and in scholarly studies of the literature;
- the general history of the literary period;
- the development of key genres within the period;
- major bibliographical, historical, and critical tools for study in the period, genre, or topic;
- selected works of minor writers in the period, genre, or topic.
- Submit your committee to the DGS for approval at least two months before you’d like the DGSA to schedule the exam.
- Beforehand, you might want to consult with the DGS to make sure that you understand the department’s requirements governing the formation of your committee, preparation for the exam, and how the exam itself will be administered and evaluated. The DGS is responsible not only for recommending your committee to the Associate Dean of the Graduate School but also for recommending any changes you may make in the committee’s composition. They too must be approved by the Associate Dean of the Graduate School, who appoints the committee.
- Consult with your director and committee members to make sure you understand the expectations for their respective sections of the exam, as well as for its oral component.
- Consult with the DGSA about the mechanisms of exam distribution and collection.
Responsible Conduct of Research Requirement
All doctoral students at Duke are required to complete Responsible Conduct of Research training.
The dissertation is the culminating research document for your work.
Topic and Committee
Dissertation Chapter Meeting
Application for Graduation
Committee Approval Form
Advisor Letter and Defense Announcement
Deadlines and Time Limits
Graduate School Appointment
The Dissertation Defense
Checklist for the Dissertation defense
- Make sure you have fulfilled your RCR requirements
- Apply for graduation in ACES
- Turn in your Committee Approval Form (if making a change to your committee)
- Consult with the DGSA to schedule your defense and send your official defense announcement
- Send your dissertation to your committee so that your committee has–according to Graduate School rules–‘at least two weeks to read the dissertation prior to the defense.’
- Your dissertation director sends an email to firstname.lastname@example.org stating that you are ready to defend
- Submit your dissertation electronically to UMI/Proquest by the deadline.
- The Grad School will contact you about any formatting issues and will set up a time to meet with you.
- Meet with the Grad School representative to review any issues. They will give you the Final Doctoral Examination Certificate to be signed by committee members at your defense.
- Make sure all bursar fees and fines are paid off
- Consult with your director about the electronic publication embargo form and if necessary, get his/her signature on your embargo request
- Submit Final Doctoral Examination Certificate to the Graduate School.
- Submit one Dissertation Title Signature page with original signatures of each committee member to the Graduate School.
- Submit one Abstract Title Signature page with original signatures of each committee member to the Graduate School.
- Submit signed “Non-Exclusive Distribution License and Dissertation Availability Agreement.”
- Within 30 days of your examination make the corrections required by the Graduate School and your Dissertation Committee. NOTE: If your exam is held less than 30 days before the semester deadline for completion of requirements, you must adhere to the semester deadline. If you need a period of time longer than 30 days for making changes in the thesis/dissertation, have your Director of Graduate Studies make a request for an extension of time to Susan Williford stating the reasons for the delay and specifying at what date the thesis/dissertation will be submitted.
- If, at the end of the semester or term, you cannot meet the submission deadline, you will be required to register for the ensuing semester in which you will receive your degree.
- Submit the revised PDF file to UMI/ProQuest.
- You will receive notification when the Graduate School has accepted your dissertation and you have been cleared for the Ph.D. degree.
The department takes very seriously its mission to train you as a teacher as well as a scholar and an intellectual, and to make pedagogy a lively and integrated aspect of departmental culture. You will follow a carefully designed pattern of teacher-training which includes unique opportunities to work with faculty in the classroom, participate in the Thompson Writing Program, teach core English Department courses, and design your own first year literature seminar.
The department takes very seriously its mission to train you as a teacher as well as a scholar and an intellectual, and to make pedagogy a lively and integrated aspect of departmental culture. You will follow a carefully designed pattern of teacher-training which includes unique opportunities to work with faculty in the classroom, participate in the Thompson Writing Program, teach core English Department courses, and design your own first year literature seminar. These opportunities are described more fully below.
The pedagogical plan is as follows:
Trajectory: Years 1-6
Fall: Take 3 courses and do no teaching
Spring: Take 3 courses and do a teaching apprenticeship (in two of the next three terms)
Fall: Take 3 courses and do a teaching apprenticeship (if applicable)
Spring: Take 2 courses and do a teaching apprenticeship (if applicable)
Fall & Spring: Audit courses and have a teaching assignment each term (teaching assistant, W101 course, or Writing Studio)
Spring: Preliminary exams taken by the end of year
Fall: Chapter meeting
Fall & Spring: Teach a Eng. 90S course in one term and act as a teaching assistant in the other
Fall & Spring: Teaching assignment in each term
Funding is not guaranteed. Most students have been funded for this year with Graduate School, external (Ford, Mellon, Javits, etc) or departmental fellowships.
Note that some students may serve as a research assistant, rather than a teaching assistant, in their third, fourth, or fifth years. The average time for completion of degree is six years.
Teaching Apprenticeships (TAPs)
Note: Any teaching apprenticeships with faculty outside the English Department should be pre-approved by the DGS. Please make sure that any outside faculty receive a copy of our guidelines for teaching apprenticeships: https://english.duke.edu/sites/english.duke.edu/files/file-attachments/r...
Teaching Assistants (TAs)
Thompson Writing Program (TWP)
Summer Teaching Assignments
Funding & Finances
Funding and Award Letters
All students who are admitted and enter the Duke Ph.D. program receive annual stipends in addition to having their tuition and fees paid. For the academic year 2016-17, the stipend amount of $22,470 covers nine months of living expenses, in addition to one year of health insurance which the graduate school pays. Full funding is provided during your first 5 years in the program. The department requires that a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) be filled out every year by all students beginning with those entering in 2007. The application can be found at: https://fafsa.ed.gov/
At the beginning of July, you will receive a funding/award letter outlining your specific financial support and teaching or other responsibilities for the upcoming academic year. The letter lists all the funding that the university and English department will provide for your education and living expenses. Items included are: tuition and fees which the university will pay, stipends and fellowships awarded, and teaching positions for which you will earn a salary. If you are receiving at least one of these financial supports, then you can expect an award letter from us to be placed in your campus mailbox. It is important that you confirm your funding by July 31 each year. Failure to confirm your funding by this deadline may cause a delay in our ability to allocate the funds to you. If you have not received your annual funding letter in early July, please notify the DGSA immediately so s/he can email you a copy of the official letter.
Note: the email version does not take the place of the official letter, which still must be signed by you as confirmation of your acceptance.
Note: incoming students receive their award letters directly from the Graduate School as part of our offer of admission.
The standard package of graduate student support in the English department does not cover the summer months in years 3-5.
Some possible sources of funding are: FLAS (Foreign Language and Area Studies), TIP (Talent Identification Program), Duke Temporary Services, Graduate School Summer Research Fellowships, and Library Internships. A word of caution, though, for students in the third year and beyond: If you elect to work at Perkins Library, the Gothic Bookstore, or any other place outside the English Department, this will involve a change in your payroll status. Please notify the FS before you begin working.
Sixth or Final Year Funding
In recent years, we have been able to fund a final year free of teaching responsibilities (usually the 6th year but for some students the 5th) so that you may focus on completing your dissertation. Sixth year funding is not guaranteed as part of the funding package. Funding for this year has been made possible through the Graduate School, external, and departmental endowed fellowships for which you apply in the previous year. Note that the purpose of dissertation completion fellowships is to allow you to work full time on your dissertation. Neither the Graduate School nor the departmental endowed fellowships allow you to take on other on-campus employment while being supported by a dissertation completion fellowship except with special permission from the Dean and/or the DGS.
If your fellowship award includes payment of tuition and fees, those charges will be automatically covered by the financial aid office of the Graduate School. Every summer, the Graduate School Financial Aid office gives the Bursar information about paying tuition and fees. If you are in years 1-6 and you opt to take the health insurance provided through Duke and you are fully funded through the Graduate School, the English department or an external source, your health insurance will also be paid automatically through your bursar account. If you opt to take health insurance outside of Duke, the money for that insurance will not be deducted from your stipend, nor will you get a deposit paid to your bursar account. Your bill is generated by the Bursar's Office as a matter of routine billing and may be generated before the Financial Aid office reports funding information to the Bursar. The people in the Bursar's Office know that the Graduate School will pay the tuition and fees (and health insurance where applicable), so you will NOT be held responsible for them. Thus, you should only pay any other fees that the University is not responsible for paying. The University pays your health fee, activity fee, and recreation fee.
Note: the recreation fee is only paid by the Graduate School through the end of your third year. To access the university recreation centers in years 4+, you would need to pay the fee ($136.50/semester in 2016-2017).
If you have any tuition and/or fee payments or adjustments on your bill from a previous year that have not been paid, your registration will be blocked. Thus, it is important to notify the DGSA as soon as you become aware of any outstanding charges for which the University is responsible.
Checks and Payroll
As outlined in your funding letters/contracts, your annual award consists of full stipend during your first two years, then stipend and teaching payments in later years. Stipends are considered non-compensatory payments. These checks will be paid to you on the last business day of the month, beginning in September and ending in May. If the last day of the month falls on a weekend or holiday, checks will arrive early. Check issuing schedules also vary around the Thanksgiving and the Christmas holidays. If you have questions about when to expect a stipend check, see the FS. Payments for teaching and research assistantships are considered compensatory. Salary payments will paid to you on the 25th of each month you work (generally September through April, though research assistantships may continue during the summer).
During the academic year, compensatory pay (regardless of source) is limited to a total of $3,000 over the amount you are being paid for your departmental work as a teaching assistant or instructor. No one in years 1 - 5 will be allowed to receive work pay over $3,000. Anyone who goes over that amount will be expected to pay the overage back to the Grad School. Wages for work done during the academic year must be paid during the academic year--they will not carry forward into the summer. The Grad School also expects students who are receiving summer fellowships to limit any additional summer support to $1,850 or less. If the amount of summer support goes over $1,850, the Grad School expects students to pay those additional wages back.
Note for rising 3rd year students: Once you take on TAing or teaching responsibilities, your funding has to be separated between stipend and salary. Beginning in September of your third year, you will receive two checks per month, a salary check on the 25th of each month and a stipend check on the last day of the month. However, in order to make sure you get your salary check, you will need to complete some forms (see the FS)--including tax-withholding forms. These forms should be completed before you leave for the summer following your second year. You must bring either your passport or your driver's license and social security card (these are required documents we have to see in order to complete the forms) to the FS. To check pay statements after you’ve been set up in the payroll system, log into the Duke@Work site: http://www.hr.duke.edu/selfservice/.
You are required by Payroll to have your stipend and salary checks deposited directly to your bank account. The advantages in doing so are that the deposit occurs at midnight on the day before you would receive the paper check, funds are secure, and you don’t have to worry about picking up and cashing checks.
To fill out the direct deposit form for your stipend checks, you can get the form from the FS or one may be printed from the following website:
http://finance.duke.edu/payroll/forms/index.php#dds (log in required). The direct deposit form for your work pay can be filled out online here: http://www.hr.duke.edu/selfservice/. You must set up direct deposit for your stipend and work pay separately. They are considered two separate payrolls.
Be sure you mark the correct box on the form for the payroll you wish deposited. For stipend payments, check the non-compensatory box. You may either mail the form or deliver it in person to the Payroll Office, 705 Broad Street, Durham NC 27708. They will not accept faxes. It usually takes one month for your direct deposit to be activated, so don’t be surprised if the first check you receive is “live.”
The University considers you to be a student, not an employee, even though you may be paid on a payroll. Your stipend checks (non-compensatory payroll) must be reported on your taxes as income, but there are no withholding or reporting requirements to the University. You may ask Graduate School Financial Aid to
withhold/report taxes from your stipend.
IRS Publication 970 (www.irs.gov) spells out the laws governing taxability of scholarships and fellowships and outlines how to itemize expenses to be withheld from taxation. You may list your health insurance, along with books, supplies and equipment,
and this money should be reimbursed to you by the government.
Your salary checks (compensatory payroll) must also be reported on your taxes as income. Taxes are withheld from these checks according to the tax forms you complete. In January of each year, you will receive a W2 statement which provides the amount of salary you earned and the taxes you paid during the previous year. If you received salary checks and do not receive a W2 form by January 31 of the following year, please alert the FS immediately.
If you are an international student, you must meet with the International Office to have your tax status determined before going on payroll. International students should ENSURE that their forms have been properly filed with Payroll by August 21 (date may vary slightly) in order to receive their first check. The department will help you with this.
All students are required to carry health insurance. You may elect to have your own policy or be covered by Duke’s policy; however you must submit proof of other insurance to the Bursar’s Office, or you will be charged for the Duke coverage. The Graduate School pays health insurance for all students fully funded through the Graduate School, the English department or through external sources.
Note for students beyond year six who must cover their own health insurance: If you are being paid a salary through the compensatory payroll, you may sign up for academic year payroll deduction for health insurance. This option will allow you to pay fall and spring charges–including the insurance premium–over eight equal payments/deductions. The payroll deduction authorization form is available at http://finance.duke.edu/bursar/forms/index.php. This form can be faxed to the Bursar’s Office or emailed from the website. Account representatives are available to provide assistance in calculating the deduction amount and completing the form.
Please note that unless you have summer funding, payment of your health fee will give you access to services at the Student Health Center during the academic year only (your health insurance is year-round, however). If you are staying in Durham over the summer and wish to access healthcare, you have a few options:
- Pay the summer fee for the Student Health Center ($272.00 for the entire summer, or $136.00 for either summer session I or II)
- Go to a local urgent care center and use your student health insurance (according to Blue Cross/Blue Shield’s current posted policy, a basic urgent care center visit is $45, plus additional fees for lab work, medications, etc.)
Working During the Academic Year
Like outside funding agencies, the Department of English and Graduate School put restrictions on other teaching, research, and advising jobs you can pick up in addition to the stipend or fellowship received from the Graduate School, your work at the Thompson Center, or department-based fellowships. You must request permission from the DGS before agreeing to take on either extra or substitute work assignments elsewhere on campus. The DGS, in consultation with your principal advisor / dissertation director, will want to make sure that such work will not divert you from your progress toward the Ph.D. or conflict with the terms of your agreement with the department or Graduate School, causing money to be subtracted from your fellowship or TA stipends.
Being a student is your full-time job; therefore, you are expected to work no more than 19.5 hours a week during the academic year. We have designed teaching assignments to fit into this time constraint. It is sometimes possible to take on TAships outside the department as a replacement for a TAship in the department, provided that the department has covered its internal responsibilities. Please contact the DGS as soon as possible if you are considering this, since s/he will need to work out the finances with the relevant department or program.
Departmental Fellowships for Advanced Students
The English Department offers several fellowships for which you may apply. Priority for these fellowships will be given to students in their sixth year. All fellowships are for one year and provide stipends equivalent to the current annual funding amount. For example, full-year fellowships for 2016-2017 are $22,470 and half-year fellowships are $11,235. These awards cannot be held concurrently with other major awards if the total fellowships exceed the annual funding amount ($22,470 for 2016-2017), and you will not be permitted to take on other on-campus employment while being funded to work full-time on your dissertation.
To apply, send a dissertation proposal, a timetable for completion, and a letter of recommendation from your advisor or supervisor to the DGS. If you have recently applied for a graduate school fellowship, you may ask faculty to use letters they prepared for that fellowship application. The DGS and faculty members of his/her Advisory Committee will determine the recipients of the awards. You may apply for more than one fellowship. If you choose to do so, you can submit one application and specify the fellowships for which you wish to apply. The tentative application deadline for 2017-2018 fellowships is Friday, March 10, 2017. Recipients will be notified in May.
The following fellowships are available from the English Department:
- Charles and Susan Armstrong
- DeWitt Wallace: Priority is given to African American and other minority students.
- John L. Lievsay: First, but not exclusive, consideration is given to students studying in the area of the English Renaissance.
- Ashbel G. Brice: Only students studying in American Literature shall be eligible,
- William Preston Few: Priority is given to students who are nearing completion of the dissertation.
- Reynolds Price: Priority is given to students with an involvement in creative writing.
Graduate School Fellowships for Advanced Students
The Graduate School offers several fellowships for which the English department may nominate advanced students. These fellowships include the following:
- JB Duke International Fellowship: Provides one year of stipend support for one or two advanced students to do research abroad. You must be doing dissertation research abroad for the term of the award. Each department may nominate up to two students per year.
- Stern Dissertation Year: Awarded to students in the write-up stage of their dissertations. You must be an advanced graduate student with your dissertation within sight of completion and all other degree requirements met. You are expected to be in your final year at Duke. Each department may nominate up to two students per year.
- Price Dissertation Fellowship: The Price Fellowship is intended for students who have 1) passed their preliminary examinations, and 2) are actively engaged in the process of research for their dissertation project. It is not intended to support the writing of an already fully researched dissertation.
- Evan Frankel Fellowship for Students in the Humanities: The Frankel fellowship will be awarded to advanced humanities students in the write-up stage of their dissertation. This support provides an annual stipend (equivalent to the Graduate School minimum stipend established each year), as well as tuition, health and recreation fees. In addition, the Graduate School will pay the health insurance premium for recipients who enroll in the Duke student medical insurance plan.
- Ottis Green Fellowship: Open to all Ph.D students but preference is given to those who have participated in the Preparing Future Faculty or Certificate in College Teaching Programs.
- Summer Research Fellowship: Summer research fellowships are available to students in the Humanities and Social Sciences in the summer following years three-six who have passed their preliminary exam. In addition to summer tuition and fees, the fellowship awards a summer stipend of $5,500.
You are also encouraged to apply for other Duke University fellowship opportunities such as the Library Internship, the Myra and William Waldo Boone Fellowship for Canadian Graduate Students, and fellowships offered by the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Women’s Studies, and the John Hope Franklin Center. To learn more about any of these advanced fellowships, you may see the DGSA or find information here: https://gradschool.duke.edu/financial-support/find-funding.
Conference Travel Grants for Pre-Prelim Students
For a student in good standing who has not yet taken their prelim. exam, the English Graduate Studies Office will reimburse up to $750 once each fiscal year for domestic conference travel expenses or up to $1,000 once each fiscal year for international conference travel expenses. These grants are available only if you are giving a paper at a conference. Only one graduate conference total can be submitted for grant funding by any individual student during the pre-prelim period. The fiscal year runs July 1 - June 30.
You must submit the Conference Travel Fellowship application to the DGSA at least one month prior to the conference. To apply, go to http://gradschool.duke.edu/sites/default/files/documents/conftrav.pdf. In addition to the completed conference travel application, you will need to give the DGSA a brief letter of intent, a brief abstract of the paper that will be presented, and the invitation to the conference.
During your conference trip, keep all your receipts and confirmations of payment. Make sure you keep your boarding pass for proof of your travel. Upon your return, submit your original receipts to the DGSA. Expenses without receipts may not be reimbursed.
Allowable travel expenses include: airfare, train or bus fare, taxi fares, mileage (if you use your own car), food, lodging, and the conference registration fee. If you travel with another student and share expenses, be sure to make a copy of shared receipts and indicate the name of the student who will be submitting the originals.
Conference Travel Grants for Post-Prelim Students
Once you have passed your prelim exam, the Graduate School and English Graduate Studies office will reimburse up to $750 per student for domestic conference travel expenses or up to $1,000 of international conference travel expenses. Grants are available once per student per fiscal year (July 1 - June 30) and only if you are giving a paper at a professional conference, not a “graduate conference.”
You must submit the Conference Travel Fellowship application to the DGSA at least one month prior to the conference. To apply, go to: http://gradschool.duke.edu/sites/default/files/documents/conftrav.pdf. In addition to the completed conference travel application, you will need to submit a brief letter of intent, a brief abstract of the paper that will be presented, and the invitation to the conference.
During your conference trip, keep all your receipts and confirmations of payment. Make sure you keep your boarding pass for proof of your travel. Upon your return, submit your original receipts to the DGSA. Expenses without receipts may not be reimbursed.
Allowable travel expenses include: airfare, train or bus fare, taxi fares, mileage (if you use your own car), food, lodging, and the conference registration fee. If you travel with another student and share expenses, be sure to make a copy of shared receipts and indicate the name of the student who will be submitting the originals.
MLA Graduate Student Travel Grant
The MLA offers a Graduate Student Travel Grant to qualified Ph.D. candidates. The $400 travel grant is given to advanced students as partial reimbursement of expenses for travel to and attendance at pre-convention workshops, sessions in their areas of scholarly interest, meetings with job counselors, and interviews at its annual convention. You must be a current member of MLA (the deadline to join the association or to renew membership in order to qualify for the grant is November 30, 2016) and must have met all the requirements for the Ph.D. except the dissertation.
For additional information or details on how to apply, please refer to the MLA website at https://www.mla.org/Resources/Career/MLA-Honors-and-Awards/MLA-Financial... . Letters of application must reach the MLA by December 1, 2016.
Departmental Placement Grant
The Graduate Program will give a grant of $500 to students who are embarking on the job market. This money may be used for MLA travel, including conference registration for the MLA. Trip receipts must be submitted to qualify for this grant. Any one student may qualify for this grant once; support for another year depends on available funds.
Dissertation Travel Awards
A small number of awards for dissertation research abroad are granted annually by the Graduate School. Application times will be announced by the DGS.
Graduate Student Representation
The DGS benefits from consultation with graduate student representatives elected to serve on a Graduate Student Advisory Committee.
The DGS benefits from consultation with graduate student representatives elected to serve on a Graduate Student Advisory Committee. Each year the DGS asks the graduate students to convene and elect two representatives, one pre-prelim and one post-prelim, to serve on the committee.
Students meet with the DGS once a semester to address their questions and concerns. Students are encouraged to attend all Department events, to help our during recruitment week, and to attend hiring talks and receptions. Students whose field interests are similar to the candidates may be included in other events. It has been common practice for students to convene at the end of the process and write a letter or letters of opinion addressed to the Chair. The Chair may distribute this letter or letters at the faculty meeting where the candidates are discussed.
The English Department is committed to providing placement support because helping you get a teaching job is an important aspect of our program.
Because helping you to get a teaching job is an important aspect of our program, the English Department is committed to providing placement support. The Department offers full support for up to two years or until a tenure track job is obtained, whichever comes first. This support includes advice, assistance with preparing your application materials (cv, application letter, and abstract), coaching for interviewing and giving job talks, providing you with job information, and mailing dossiers through Interfolio. The department will provide you with a sponsorship package of up to $250 through Interfolio for each department-supported year you are on the market. You are also eligible for the Departmental Placement Grant.
The DGS will either serve as placement director or appoint a committee chair to oversee the activities involved in preparing you to go on the job market. Each spring term, the Placement Committee will meet with interested students to advise you on the placement process, help you determine your readiness for the job market, suggest necessary summer preparation, and provide a time line for various aspects of the process. Details about placement support will be provided at this meeting. Another meeting is held at the beginning of the fall term to assist you in requesting placement support. Various meetings and workshops may also be scheduled during the fall term.
The DGSA will collect your information, assist you in creating a profile in Interfolio, assemble and upload your letters of recommendation in to Interfolio when needed, send you copies of job announcements, and post these announcements outside the office. S/he will also schedule meetings with the Placement Committee, arrange mock interviews and job talks, and keep you informed of placement activities.
Leaves of Absence
You can take a leave of absence from the program (for up to two semesters) without penalty.
You may apply for a leave of absence from the program (for up to two semesters) without penalty. Permission needs to be obtained from the DGS and approved by the Associate Dean before the beginning of the semester of leave. Leaves of absence are granted only for medical and personal reasons or to enable a student to take advantage of important fellowship opportunities. They are never granted to complete or continue academic studies that are part of the routine requirements of the English department program. In order to be eligible for leave, you must be in good academic standing. You do not pay any fees while on an approved leave. In cases in which a personal leave is taken during years 1-6, the leave does not stop the funding "clock": i.e., a one or two semester leave taken in years 1-5 will mean one or two semesters less funding from the Graduate School, and a one or two semester leave taken in year 6 will mean one or two semesters less sixth-year funding from the department.
Parental Accommodation Policy
Graduate students are entitled to parental leave.
Please review the Graduate School's parental leave policy: https://gradschool.duke.edu/sites/default/files/documents/policy_parental_accommodation.pdf
Duke follows U.S. Department of State guidelines for students with visas. For specific help, students can contact Duke International Office for assistance.
The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has a website designed to answer all your questions about the visa process. The website provides information on all aspects of the visa process, step-by-step instructions on applying for a visa, and links to DOS Web pages with updates on policy and procedural changes.
There is currently a special site with helpful information specifically for prospective students: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/study-exchange.html
If you need specific help with a student visa, you may also contact Duke’s International Office at: http://www.studentaffairs.duke.edu/ihouse.
Use of Departmental Lounge
A department lounge is located in 328 Allen for faculty, graduate, and undergraduate student use.
A department lounge is located in 328 Allen for faculty, graduate, and undergraduate student use. This room serves as a lounge and meeting/conference room. Free coffee and tea are available. A refrigerator, microwave, and toaster oven are also available for your use. We also have a small collection of books which may be read in the lounge or checked out (through the DGSA). Graduate student mailboxes are located inside this room. It is open during the week from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm.
Where to Get Help
The are several key offices and individuals who are available to help graduate students.
This section details the responsibilities of several key people and offices in the program. It is designed to help you become familiar with these people and some of the resources they provide.
For all questions regarding course requirements, extensions of deadlines for submitting papers in a course, permission to take an Incomplete, and examinations in a course, you should consult your instructors. If there are differences that cannot be resolved or if an instructor cannot be reached, consult the DGS on how to proceed.
All entering students are assigned both a faculty and a student advisor who can offer advice and counsel to you on an individual basis. Your faculty advisor is expected to meet regularly with you and at least once a term, especially during the registration period. You are encouraged to make an appointment with your faculty advisor soon after arriving on campus. Student advisors are an indispensable part of the passing along of student wisdom, as well as an integral part of your initiation into the culture of the graduate program. Once your prelim committee is formed, the committee chair becomes your primary advisor. The DGS is always available as a back-up advisor. In addition to individual sessions with your advisors, you will want to participate in the annual meetings which the DGS holds with all the students in your class year. These meetings are designed to inform you of teaching assignments and guide you through the various stages.
Director of Graduate Studies (DGS)
The DGS is responsible for administering departmental regulations regarding graduate study and for ensuring that they are in accord with Graduate School requirements. Contact Rob Mitchell, the DGS, about the following matters:
- Preliminary examination
- Dissertation and final examination for the Ph.D.
- Advising on academic or other aspects of the graduate program
- Instructional questions such as registration for courses, independent studies and tutorials, or ways of satisfying foreign-language requirements
- Requests for Leave of Absence, committee formation
- Approval for Report of the Doctoral Preliminary Exam, Final Examination Announcement for Ph.D., and extensions of dissertation deadlines
- Applications for financial aid
- Requests for travel funds
- Teaching assignments
- Graduate School competitive fellowships and department fellowships
Staff Assistant in the Graduate Studies Office (DGSA)
The DGSA serves as a liaison between graduate students and the DGS. She is available during the week 8:30 am to 4:30 pm to assist you with academic matters. She is also a resource person who can provide you with information and direct you to the appropriate people and places for help. You may contact Maryscot Mullins, the DGSA, by calling (919) 684-5538, emailing her at email@example.com, or visiting 316 Allen Building. The DGSA is responsible for the following:
- Maintaining complete and confidential academic records on students in the program
- Providing assistance to students and answering questions about academic matters
- Assisting students in scheduling advisory, placement, and chapter meetings as well as exams and defenses
- Contacting the Graduate School concerning appropriate graduate school matters
- Submitting all committee forms for approval by the Graduate School
- Organizing admissions files and coordinating recruitment events
- Coordinating placement activities and assisting with Interfolio dossier service
Department Financial Secretary (FS)
The FS is responsible for handling all financial matters of the department. She is available weekdays, from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm, to answer any questions you may have about stipend or salary checks, reimbursements, travel grants, or other financial concerns. You may contact the FS by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by visiting 303A Allen Building.
Preliminary Exam/Dissertation Committee
Once the preliminary examination committee has been formed, the chair of this committee becomes your principal academic advisor. He or she and the DGS should be consulted on all questions regarding areas of concentrated study, the topic of the dissertation, and the manner of proceeding with it. Other committee members may serve as advisors as well.
All committees must be approved by the Graduate School. The preliminary exam committee must be approved at least 60 days prior to the preliminary exam. All members of the committee must be approved members of the Graduate Faculty.
Director of the Thompson Writing Program
Denise Comer, Associate Director of the Thompson Writing Program, oversees instruction in the University Writing Courses. In concert with the DGS, tutors are appointed each year. Ms Comer then assigns tutors to their sections and schedules teaching hours. On all matters related to the Thompson Writing Program, she is the person to consult. You may contact her at (919) 660-4357, email@example.com, 101 Art Building. If you will be working in the Writing Studio, then you will be working with Eliana Schonberg, 668-0900, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coordinator of Academic Programs in the Graduate School
Tiffany Casey of the Graduate School is responsible for all routine registration and certification procedures. She decides questions on course loads, drop/adds, and the like; and she can advise on other Graduate School rules, regulations, and procedures. You may contact her at (919) 681-3248, email@example.com, 2127 Campus Drive.
Graduate School Financial Aid Office
Lisa Wioskowski is responsible for all graduate student financial aid. She can answer questions and advise you on financial aid matters. She can also provide you with emergency loans. You can contact Lisa at (919) 681-3247, by email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Her office is located in the Graduate School at 2127 Campus Drive.
Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Graduate School
Associate Dean John Klingensmith is responsible for formulating and administering university policies on graduate study. He is the final authority on the enforcement of Graduate School regulations. He receives from the directors of graduate studies all applications for university fellowships, dissertation travel grants, conference travel grants, and summer awards.
You should not petition Dean Paula McClain for redress of grievances until you have exhausted all other means. The procedure to follow is to consult first with the instructor respecting difficulties that may have arisen in courses, with the committee chair respecting the preliminary examination or the dissertation itself, with the DGS respecting any such difficulties that remain unresolved or any others that are his or her primary responsibility, and finally with the Chair of the Department if these difficulties persist. Further problems may then be referred to the Graduate School, but first to Associate Dean Klingensmith before referral to the Dean. You may contact John Klingensmith at (919) 681-1559, 2127 Campus Drive. Denise Leathers is his assistant: email@example.com.
Graduate Student Affairs
The central mission of the Office of Graduate Student Affairs (GSA) is to enhance the quality of graduate student life by working closely with individual students, student organizations, faculty, and other campus offices. The aim is to provide a broad array of programs on issues related to graduate student life such as health, safety, harassment prevention, housing, mentoring, and professional development. GSA also has a particular role in establishing support services that address the specific needs of students from different ethnic backgrounds, international students, gay and lesbian students, students with disabilities, women, and other groups. This office is committed to helping students become active participants in the Duke University community. You may contact this office at (919) 684-2056, firstname.lastname@example.org, 2127 Campus Drive.
Librarian for Literature and Theater Studies
Duke University Libraries: http://www.lib.duke.edu
Arianne Hartsell-Gundy is the Librarian for Literature and Theater Studies at Perkins Library. She loves working with students and endeavors to stay in touch with your needs and interests. She is available to assist you with any library needs you might have. For example:
BOOK PURCHASE REQUESTS:
Please, let me know if you're not finding what you need in the library in the way of books, journals, or electronic resources. I have responsibility for purchasing materials in literatures in English (US, UK, Canada, Commonwealth), theory, criticism, and theater studies/drama, but I can forward requests in other subject areas to the appropriate librarian as well.
I know you all are intimately familiar with the most important research tools in literature, but there are changes in the library daily, and I can help you efficiently search the MLA Bibliography and ABELL, and use other primary research tools in print and online form...then you'll have more time for the exploring, thinking, and writing you'd like to be doing. Contact me with any research problem--no question is too small, too silly, or too big. We can talk through e-mail or set up an appointment to discuss your research questions.
INSTRUCTION FOR YOUR STUDENTS:
I can provide classroom sessions on library resources tailored to the courses you're teaching, or even specific projects you've assigned your students. Tired of your students' bibliographies being composed entirely of citations gleaned from a Google search? I can help! Sessions can take an entire class period or more, but even half an hour gets results. Possible topics might include navigating library databases, evaluating sources, using citation management tools, finding book reviews, and more.
You may contact her by phone (919-660-5881) or by email (email@example.com). Please see her research guide to see some of the resources available to you: http://guides.library.duke.edu/literature