The PhD program in German Studies at the University of Waterloo is designed to prepare candidates for a wide range of employment opportunities both within and outside academe. The multi-foci approach of this innovative program of studies encompasses applied linguistics (sociolinguistics, SLA, CALL), literary and media/film studies and fosters productive independent learning and scholarship. Program participants are encouraged to take an interdisciplinary approach to their studies, during the course of which they will attain a critical knowledge base in the core areas of German Studies. Professional development and training for academic and non-academic careers are an integral part of the program. The Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies encourages all PhD students to spend at least a term of study at one of our partner universities in Germany. All PhD students teach a variety of undergraduate courses and are encouraged to develop a strong teaching portfolio from the first term in our program onwards. Teacher training workshops and seminars are an integral part of our program, and PhD students are assisted in obtaining the "Certificate in University Teaching" or the "Certificate in University Language Teaching" from the University of Waterloo's Centre for Teaching Excellence.

PhD in German degree requirements

  • six graduate courses after the MA;
  • GER 600 (Methods of Research) as one of the six courses (waived if the student has taken a similar course in a previous program of study);
  • Candidates must obtain a minimum overall average of 78% in the courses presented in fulfillment of the degree requirements;
  • reading proficiency test in a language other than German or English;
  • two qualifying examinations;
  • a prospectus and prospectus discussion;
  • a semi-annual doctoral colloquium;
  • the dissertation and dissertation defence.

PhD in German - typical timeline

  Activity Milestone
Term 1
  • 2 courses
  • Teaching assistantship (including TA seminar)
 
Term 2
  • 2 courses
  • Research or teaching assistantship (including TA seminar)
 
Term 3
  • Preparation for Qualifying Examinations
 
Term 4
  • 2 courses
  • Research or teaching assistantship
  • Preparation for Qualifying Examinations
 
Term 5
  • Preparation for Qualifying Examinations
  • Prospectus preparation
  • Oral Qualifying Examination
Term 6
  • Research or teaching assistantship
  • Prospectus preparation
  • Written Qualifying Examination
Term 7
  • Dissertation writing
  • Research or teaching assistantship
  • Prospectus discussion
  • Language requirement completion
Term 8
  • Dissertation writing
  • Doctoral Colloquium 1
Term 9
  • Dissertation writing
  • Research or teaching assistantship
 
Term 10
  • Dissertation writing
  • Research or teaching assistantship
 
Term 11
  • Dissertation writing
  • Research or teaching assistantship
  • Doctoral Colloquium 2
Term 12
  • Dissertation submission, defense, revisions, final approval
  • PhD!

Please note:

  • PhD candidates normally perform TA or RA duties (as part of their funding package) in two out of every three terms. The RA/TA-free term can be in the fall, winter, or spring term, depending on the teaching needs of the department.
  • Depending on the student's program of study and research interests, it is possible to take graduate level courses offered by other departments. Department approval from the Graduate Officer is required.