Candidates for the Ph.D. are required to defend the dissertation formally. This Defense will consist of two parts:

(1) The Dissertation Review (which will take place on at some point in the week immediately before the date of the public presentation) will be a meeting in which the committee will confer with each other and then meet with the student, in order to discuss the project and offer requests and advice for further revision, both before and after filing the thesis. This meeting will address any remaining requirements for the completion and filing of the dissertation.

(2) The Public Defense will take place soon after.  The student will give a public, oral presentation of the dissertation for approximately 40 minutes, followed by an open-floor question period; faculty and students who are NOT on the dissertation committee will be encouraged to ask questions. The presentation may focus on a selected portion, but must include an account of the whole. The presentation is chaired by someone NOT on the dissertation committee, such as the Chair of the Graduate Group in Classical Studies or any other standing faculty member.   After the presentation,the committee will determine whether the dissertation has been satisfactorily defended.  If so, the signing of official forms will take place.

The dissertation defense will be scheduled only when the dissertation chair, in consultation with the committee members, has confirmed that the dissertation is close to completion. A draft of the whole dissertation incorporating all suggested revisions must be submitted to the committee at least two weeks before the scheduled defense. The defense must take place at least one month before the SAS deadline for official submission of the dissertation. Students who finish their dissertations in the summer months may have to defer their defense until early fall.

“Close to completion” implies the following:

  1. All individual chapters, including introduction and conclusion, have been read and commented upon by all committee members; all suggested revisions to each chapter have been acted upon to the satisfaction of all committee members.
  2. The final order of chapters has been determined and all chapters, including introduction and conclusion, have been revised accordingly.
  3. A complete bibliography of works cited has been compiled.