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Ph.D Program in English - The Graduate Center, CUNY

For more insights into our program, see the video below.

The Graduate Center, CUNY | Ph.D Program in English from GC Videography Fellows on Vimeo.

With a distinguished faculty of scholars and writers, a dynamic cohort of graduate students, and an abundance of cultural resources in New York City, the Ph.D. Program in English provides students with a stimulating environment in which their intellectual interests can thrive.

A Wide-Ranging Curriculum

We offer many seminars in both established and emerging fields—everything from medieval literature to digital humanities. Particular strengths of our wide-ranging curriculum include feminist, gender, and sexuality studies; critical theory; poetics and aesthetics; critical race studies; popular culture; life writing; and Composition and Rhetoric.

Our large faculty features prominent scholars, creative writers, biographers, cultural critics, digital humanists, and memoirists.

We encourage our students to follow individualized and interdisciplinary courses of study. Many students take courses in other doctoral programs at the Graduate Center or complete one of the Graduate Center's Certificate Programs. Through the Interuniversity Doctoral Consortium, students can register for courses at such institutions as Columbia University, Princeton University, New York University, and Rutgers University.

A Vibrant Scholarly Community

To promote intellectual vitality and conviviality, the English Program sponsors weekly Friday Forums, which bring internationally recognized scholars, writers, and publishers to discuss a wide variety of literary and cultural topics. The English Student Association also organizes a yearly conference—the 2019 topic is "Black Lives."

Through mentoring, programming, and curricular offerings, the Ph.D. Program in English is committed to fostering a culturally diverse environment informed by CUNY’s historic mission to educate “the whole people,” not just “the privileged few,” and by the Graduate Center’s mission to “enhance access to doctoral education for traditionally underrepresented groups.”

As voting members of various Program committees, students actively participate in decisions about admissions, curriculum, faculty appointments, and other policy matters.

A Commitment to Support

Our students receive expert training as scholars, teachers, and writers.

Throughout the year, we offer professional development workshops to assist students in presenting conference papers, applying for fellowships, publishing their work, and finding academic employment. In recent years our students have accepted teaching positions at Adelphi University; Georgia Institute of Technology; Pennsylvania State University; University of California, Santa Cruz; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina; University of Oklahoma; and Washington and Lee University, as well as at several CUNY colleges.

Through support provided by five-year Graduate Center Fellowships, students design and teach their own courses at one of the CUNY colleges. They also enroll in a semester-long Teaching Practicum. An interdisciplinary Composition and Rhetoric Community at the Graduate Center offers support and training centered on writing-centered pedagogies.

Although we do not offer courses in Creative Writing, many of our faculty and students are published novelists, poets, essayists, and creative non-fiction writers. Students can participate in the Graduate Center Poetics Group or in Lost and Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative.

Executive Officer (EO)

Kandice Chuh

The Graduate Center
Room 4406.03

Phone 212-817-8321

Deputy Executive Officer (DEO) for Admissions & Financial Aid

Siraj Ahmed

The Graduate Center, CUNY 365 Fifth Avenue
Room 4105

Academic Program Coordinator

Nancy Silverman

Assistant Program Officer
Graduate Center
Room 4409.03

Phone 212-817-8334