college header
Find Out More About . . .

How to Apply



Follow Us:


Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Composition

Admission to Ph.D. from Master's Program

Students admitted only to the M.A. program at TCU must reapply for admission to the Ph.D. program; their record is subject to review by the department's graduate admissions committee: admission is not automatic.

Completion of Prior Master's Degree

In special cases, students may be given provisional admittance to the Ph.D. program if they have not yet completed their Master's program. They will, however, lose any Fellowship, DA, GI, or GA appointment if they have not completed their Master's degree before the beginning of their second year in the TCU doctoral program.

"Transferable" Credit

Doctoral program students who have completed a Master's degree in English studies at another appropriately accredited university may receive credit for as much as 6 courses (18 credit hours). The DGS will assess a student's official transcripts, and make an appropriate judgment concerning such courses. When a student's earlier course work is incomplete, or in a disciplinary field other than English studies, or completed more than 6 years previously, such credits are not transferable. Transfer credit is not available for students in the M.A. program.

(Technically, the department does not "transfer" credit, but instead certifies to the university that appropriate graduate coursework has been completed elsewhere; TCU requires that all doctoral students complete at least 30 hours of course work at TCU, not including dissertation guidance.)

Course Requirements for the Ph.D. Program in Rhetoric and Composition (as of Fall 2012)

Students must complete for credit a minimum of 54 semester hours of graduate courses hours exclusive of 12 credit hours for the dissertation. Post-graduate hours completed more than seven years prior to a student's admission into TCU's graduate program in Rhetoric and Composition may not count toward requirements; the graduate advisor will determine applicable credit on a case-by-case basis.


Of the 54 hours, at least 36 must be taken at TCU. Students must take 9 hours in Foundations to the Profession and remaining hours in Electives, as outlined below.

I. Foundations to the Profession (9 hours): Students must complete 9 hours in coursework that addresses each of the three
areas listed below.

  1. Three (3) hours in ENGL 60513 - Teaching College Composition
  2. Three (3) hours in ENGL 60113 - Introduction to Graduate Studies and the
    Profession of English
  3. Three (3) hours in ENGL 60723 - Research Practices in Composition and Rhetoric

II. Electives (27 hours): Students must complete a minimum of 12 hours in coursework that addresses at least 4 of the 6 areas listed below. Although each 3-hour seminar typically
addresses two of the following areas, students will receive credit for only one area
per course.

1. Rhetoric & Culture
2. Composition & Literacy
3. Pedagogy
4. Digital Humanities & Multimedia
5. Textual/Scholarly Production
6. Theory

Students should select their additional coursework based on intended area(s) of
specialization, in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies.

Language Requirement

Reading knowledge of one approved foreign language, typically selected from French, German, Spanish or Latin, is required. Other languages may be offered on approval of the Departmental Graduate Committee, but the language should be the one most appropriate to the student's research, field of concentration or professional development. This requirement may be met by satisfying the general University statement under PhD Degree Requirements or by any other means approved by the Departmental Graduate
Committee. The language requirement must be satisfied before the student can be admitted to candidacy for the PhD degree.

link to chair TCU English Facebook TCU English Twitter TCU English Flickr TCU Youtube