GraduateGuide to Graduate Study

Guide to Graduate Study

Note: Students entering the program in 2019 or earlier are subject to the language, breadth, exam (Part One and Part Two) and time-to-degree requirements articulated in the 2016-2019 version of the Guide to Graduate Study. Requirements in these areas given here apply to students entering in 2020 or later.  Other program revisions appearing here (prospectus guidelines, e.g.) apply to all students.

First Stage

Language Requirement

In practical terms, the purpose of the language requirement is to prepare students to read literary and critical works in languages other than English. However, departmental faculty believe that there is also an intrinsic value in linguistic study for anyone seriously interested in literature. Students in the Ph.D. program are expected to demonstrate a reading knowledge of one language other than English. Examinations requiring translation of literary and critical passages are offered by the department each quarter in French, German, and Spanish and once a year in Italian. Other languages are acceptable, by petition, as long as comparable examinations can be arranged by the student in another UCLA department.

A basic reading knowledge of a language may be established in one of the following ways: (1) by passing a special reading examination offered by the English Department or certain UCLA language departments; (2) by passing with a letter grade of B or higher the elementary language course offered by various language departments, e.g. Spanish 3, Japanese 3, Persian 1C, or by passing a higher level language course which requires an elementary course as a prerequisite; (3) by passing with a letter grade of B or higher the summer intensive language course offered by various language departments, e.g., Arabic 8, French 8 or Latin 16; (4) by passing with a letter grade of B or higher English 211, Old English; (5) by passing with a letter grade of B or higher an upper-division or graduate level course in the literature (not in translation) of the language. Students may petition to have prior coursework counted as fulfillment of the requirement, but work done more than two years before entering the program is not accepted.

The language requirement must be fulfilled before the student is permitted to take the Part One examination.

Students who entered the program before 2020 must fulfill the language requirements in place at that time.  Please refer to the 2016-2019 version of the Guide to Graduate Study for further guidance.

Course Requirements

Fourteen letter-graded courses are required. These courses must be English department courses at the graduate level (200 or above) or equivalent courses offered by English department faculty in other departments or programs on campus. All students are required to take English 200 (Graduate Proseminar) in their first year, which they may count toward their 14-course minimum.  With the approval of the Vice Chair, Ph.D. students may apply to the fourteen-course requirement up to three courses offered by faculty in departments other than English (such as literature in another language, history, art history, Afro-American studies, film, gender studies).

Students who enter the program with an M.A. degree may petition the Graduate Vice Chair to grant credit toward the 14-course requirement for letter-graded graduate courses taken in their M.A. programs. At the Vice Chair’s discretion, a maximum of four such courses may be credited toward the degree.

All graduate students in the First and Second stages of the program are required to take a minimum of 12 units per quarter. Students pursuing the doctorate take English 596 (Directed Individual Study) each quarter during the First Stage, usually on an S/U grading basis, under one or more individual professors.

Students at any stage of the program may take courses for S/U grading, but such courses cannot be used to satisfy degree requirements. The work required to receive a grade of Satisfactory must be agreed on in advance with the instructor of the course.

Of the fourteen letter-graded courses for the Ph.D., a minimum of two courses must be in periods through 1800, two in periods after 1800, and two in genre, theory, or methods.  (Classes in other areas will not ordinarily satisfy the breadth requirement, but students may petition the Graduate Committee for a ruling.) Students who entered the program before 2020 must fulfill the breadth requirements in place at that time.  Please refer to the 2016-2019 version of the Guide to Graduate Study for further guidance.

While a student can take Independent Studies (ENGL 596) for fulfilling the necessary units for a full course load, a maximum of two letter-graded ENGL 596 courses — and no more than one per academic year — can count toward the 14-course requirement, by petition. For an ENGL 596 to count toward the 14-course requirement, its syllabus should reflect the reading and writing (or other media) assignments of a typical seminar and must be approved by the Vice Chair no later than the first week of the quarter.

First Year Advising

The general adviser for graduate students is the Vice Chair for Graduate Studies. The Vice Chair and a second member of the Graduate Committee or faculty in the student’s field also serve as the personal advisers for first-year students. These two advisers meet with entering students, approve their plans for study each quarter of their first year, counsel them as the need arises, and evaluate their academic progress periodically. Among the factors considered in the evaluations are course grades, written evaluations of performance in seminars and other courses, and progress toward the satisfaction of degree requirements.

After the first year, students are encouraged to choose faculty advisors whose fields reflect their evolving research interests and to meet with them regularly.  The department also encourages students to consult frequently with any and all faculty, and in particular with those in their special fields of interest, throughout their graduate careers at UCLA. The staff Graduate Advisor should be consulted on any questions or problems that arise.

First Stage Evaluation

After spring quarter of the student’s first year in the program, the Graduate Vice Chair reviews the student’s file, which includes the faculty’s written reports on course work as well as grades. Faculty are to provide these reports to the Vice Chair on a quarterly basis within two weeks of the last day of each quarter. The Vice Chair reports the findings of this review to the Graduate Committee during the subsequent fall quarter and advises the student as to their progress in the program.

[Note: Effective Spring 2022, first stage evaluation will be performed as follows:]

After spring quarter of the student’s first year in the program, the Graduate Vice Chair meets with the student’s first year seminar instructors to review overall academic performance and to identify specific areas needing special attention. The Vice Chair reports on the student’s overall progress, including the findings of this review, to the Graduate Committee during the subsequent fall quarter and advises the student as to their progress in the program.

The Part I Exam

Students are required to finalize the membership of their examination committees by the winter quarter of their second year. They are required to finalize their reading lists by fall quarter of the third year and to take the exam no later than the spring quarter of their third year. In case of extenuating circumstances that delay the formation of a committee for the Part I exam, students are required to submit a petition to the Vice Chair to take their exam no later than a year after finalizing the membership of their examination committee.  Under the supervision of the committee, the student devises three reading lists, each consisting of approximately 30 primary texts (or equivalent bodies of work, as in the case of poems, short fiction, essays, etc.), and 10 critical texts that have been important to the development of the field, each list representing a coherent field of literary study. At least two of these fields must be historical, chosen in most cases from among the currently recognized historical periods and including a substantial number of canonical works by major authors. The third exam topic may be an additional historical field (following the same requirements as the other historical lists), a special topic (e.g., African American literature, literary or critical theory, media studies), or one devised by the student. Where the third field is a special topic or a newly-devised topic, its list is to consist entirely of works not included on either of the two other lists.

Once the student and individual faculty members complete the lists, all three lists together must be approved by the entire examination committee. The lists are then submitted to the Vice Chair for approval. The Vice Chair will appoint an examination committee chair, and the First Qualifying Examination can then be scheduled.

The Part I exam centers on a two-hour oral examination. The written component of this exam, required by the university, consists of an unrevised paper that the student wrote for an English seminar and which best represents their critical skills and thinking. This paper is submitted to the committee members two weeks before the exam. Although not required, it is preferable that the student select a paper that is relevant to the fields in which they are being examined.

In order for a student to receive a Pass on the examination, all examiners must agree that the student has passed all three sections of the examination. If a student fails one section, the student will receive a Fail and will be required to retake that section. If a student fails two sections, the student will be required to take all three sections again. The examinations may be retaken only once. Before any failed examination is retaken, the Graduate Committee reviews the record as a whole and offers, through the Vice Chair, advice on how students should proceed. Faculty will be reminded of their responsibility to conduct a rigorous exam, to be willing to judge that a student has failed, and to be willing, when a second failure has occurred, to instruct the Vice Chair that the student not be permitted to continue in the program.

Part I Exams should be completed no later than the end of the third year of study and preferably earlier. Students must complete the language requirement and have no outstanding incompletes before the exam can take place. Ordinarily the examination occurs after the 14-course requirement is completed, but in some circumstances it may occur before all course requirements are satisfied, provided that, at the time of the exam, the student has completed at least one language requirement, has no more than two required courses remaining, and has no outstanding incompletes.

Students not already holding a Master’s or equivalent degree may receive the UCLA MA in English after they have satisfied the 14-course requirement (including at least nine English 200-series seminars), completed one foreign language requirement, and passed the First Qualifying Examination.

M.A. Thesis Option

Students who choose to leave the program upon obtaining the MA may elect the thesis plan for the terminal MA. Students choosing this option must request a committee from the Vice Chair a minimum of two quarters before completion of the program.  The committee will consist of three faculty members who will meet with the student as a group to consider the thesis proposal.  The thesis will be not less than forty pages (10,000 words) or more than sixty pages (15,000 words) in length. The thesis itself must be filed no later than the tenth quarter after admission.

Second Stage

As soon as possible after successful completion of the First Qualifying Examination, students select a dissertation director and begin to prepare the dissertation prospectus. Once students advance to this stage, they may take up to 12 units of English 597 per quarter with the dissertation chair(s). Student is required to update the dissertation chair(s) on progress in order to receive a satisfactory grade for each quarter.

When the student decides on a dissertation topic and a faculty member agrees to direct the dissertation, the student should inform the Graduate Counselor. The dissertation director serves as the official adviser for the remainder of the student’s time in the program.

The Part II Exam

When the student’s dissertation directors conclude the student is sufficiently prepared (but no later than three quarters after they pass the First Qualifying Examination), the student takes the second qualifying examination, also known as the University Oral Qualifying Examination or Part II Exam. This examination is administered by the student’s doctoral committee, which must be formally nominated and approved in accordance with Graduate Division Minimum Standards for Doctoral Committee Constitution as amended by the department before the exam can take place.

The doctoral committee must consist of a minimum of four faculty members, at least three of whom hold current UCLA Academic Senate faculty appointments. Of these three UCLA members, at least two, including the committee chair or one co-chair, must hold these appointments in the English Department. Two of the three UCLA members must hold the rank of professor or associate professor (regular or in-residence series).  All committee members read, approve, and certify the dissertation.

At least one month before the examination, students must submit their prospectus to each member of the committee. The prospectus must be a substantially researched overview of the proposed dissertation,  and its length is established in consultation with the student’s committee. Typically, the prospectus is 4,000 to 5,000 words – and no more than 9,000 words – plus a bibliography of relevant works, including ones the student may not have already read. It is in the student’s interest, of course, to have a draft read farther in advance by all participants so as to identify any points of substantial doubt or disagreement well before the exam.

The second qualifying examination, which normally lasts for about two hours, focuses on the issues raised by the proposed dissertation and attempts to ascertain both the feasibility of the project and students’ preparation for it. Though this examination concentrates on the prospectus, students should be prepared to discuss a wide range of works that bear on the proposed dissertation. Students are encouraged to consult with their committee in advance of the examination. The grading on the examination is pass or fail. The candidate may, at the discretion of the committee, repeat the examination once only.

Third Stage

When students pass the second qualifying examination, they advance to candidacy and receive the Candidate in Philosophy (C.Phil.) degree. Students proceed with preparing the dissertation and enroll each quarter in English 599 to reflect this ongoing research and writing. Students are encouraged to enroll in seminars in their field whenever they are offered. All course requirements (oral reports and term papers) may be satisfied through work connected with the dissertation.

A final oral defense of the dissertation is optional, at the discretion of the doctoral committee, but is usually not required.

Time to the Ph.D. Degree

Standard time to degree is 6-7 years. The maximum allowed by the department under normal circumstances is 8 years, after which there is a requirement of departmental petition.

Time to Degree and Qualifying Exams

Part I Exam

By spring of Year 3

Part II Exam

By spring of Year 4

Dissertation Filed

In year 6 or year 7


All entering students are offered six years of guaranteed funding in the form of tuition and fees plus a combination of fellowship and TA support, including four consecutive years of summer stipend support.  Each year’s support also includes enrollment in UC SHIP, a comprehensive health insurance plan that includes dental and vision benefits for graduate students. As part of their funding package, students are guaranteed two years of fellowship funding,

  • a University Fellowship for the first academic year, and
  • a year of dissertation research fellowship support—normally awarded in the fifth or sixth year of study.

There are additional funding opportunities at UCLA, awarded competitively, that can be used to augment the initial funding package—such as the Graduate Summer Research Mentorship and the full-year Graduate Research Mentorship—as well as outside fellowships.  Students are encouraged to make use of University and outside sources of information to seek out and apply for these fellowships.  (See UCLA’s Graduate Student Financial Support Manual for more information.) All funding is contingent on the student’s maintaining good academic standing and satisfactory time to degree, and failure to do so can result in a loss of funding.

Information on need-based aid can be found at the Financial Aid Office, A129 Murphy Hall, or


Career Development Expectations: First Stage

During stage one, students will be learning, largely through observation, what it means to be a professional academic.  Students should take this time to identify their strengths and weaknesses and build a game plan for professional development.



  • To begin, we recommend all PhD students complete the Skills, Interests, and Values assessments in Imagine PhD, a free, confidential, online career planning tool, and that they revisit these assessments at least once per academic year.  Students should discuss their results with any or all of the following: the Vice Chair for Graduate Studies or Director of Professionalization in the English Department, their adviser, or a graduate counselor at the Career Center (we strongly recommend becoming familiar with and making use of the Career Center, especially their advising services and workshop offerings).
  • We recommend students use Imagine PhD’s “My Plan” feature to build a 5-7 year timeline that includes completion of their degree.  Plot degree milestones and, drawing from assessments, plot skill-building activities.
  • Build skills at this stage through coursework, teaching, volunteer opportunities (academic and non), and summer employment.
  • Stage one is an ideal time to build healthy habits that will ensure success in graduate school.  Students should make time to have fun, cultivate friendships, and attend to their physical and mental health.  UCLA is rich in such resources, and we recommend students explore offerings from UCLA Recreation, UCLA Counseling and Psychological Services, and the Graduate Student Resource Center.

Career Path Preparation

Stage 1 is the time to learn the contours of academia and lay the foundations for professional success.  We recommend students take the following steps before moving on to stage two.

  • Build an Online Presence – most students already have one, but the start of PhD work is a good time to ensure one is representing oneself professionally across platforms, and to build a presence on relevant academic platforms.  The Career Center holds regular workshops about this, and you may discuss online strategies individually with a Graduate Career Counselor.
  • Create both a cv and resumé, and be sure to understand the difference between the two.  See chapter five of the Career Preparation Toolkit for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Scholars.  
  • Attend talks – this is an excellent way to be exposed to new ideas, to observe and absorb codes of professional, public academic behavior, and meet people.  Attending departmental events especially is a crucial aspect of collegial behavior.
  • Review academic and non-academic job ads – becoming familiar with how employers describe what they’re looking for in a future colleague is an excellent way for students to begin thinking about skill-building and self-presentation.  Links to various academic job sites can be found at the “Academic Job Search” age of the “Career Development” CCLE site; Imagine PhD pulls non-academic job listings in real time from  These may be found in the “Apply” section of each Job Family.

Communication Skills

  • Students should, in their first stage, continue to develop as writers through course work and publicly engaged writing and add any writing or publication goals to their timelines.
  • They should also gain familiarity with the major conferences and journals in their field.

Career Development Expectations: Second Stage


Students should take time at this stage to pause and reflect.  Passing the Part One exam is a major achievement, and students should savor their accomplishment.  Students can also use this time to think and plan for their ideal outcomes. Students should be thinking, that is, about what they – not their advisers or peers – really want to be doing once they earn the PhD.  At this stage students should be staying on track to finish their degree and figuring out what kind of academic (in terms of field, institution type, and public engagement) they want to be should they choose to pursue an academic career.   We recommend students take the following steps before advancing to candidacy.

  • Students should revisit their timeline – either in Imagine PhD’s “My Plan” or some other format – regularly, at least once per academic year to ensure timely degree progress and make any necessary adjustments.
  • Students should begin exploring their career options.  The profiles in the “Explore” section of Imagine PhD’s resources for the “Faculty” job family offer a sense of what it is like to work at various institution types.  Students might also consider conducting informational interviews with faculty.  More about informational interviews can be found in chapter 3 of the Career Preparation Toolkit for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Scholars.  
  • Now is the time to begin thinking in earnest about other areas of professional interest.  Besides being a professor, what other careers might be of interest? See chapter 2 of the Toolkit for resources to begin such exploration, be sure to complete the Imagine PhD assessments, and consider scheduling an appointment with a Graduate Counselor at the Career Center.
  • Leadership roles, collaborations (such as in teaching and event planning), volunteer positions, teaching opportunities beyond English, and administrative positions on campus are ways to begin expanding skills and experience, which is something students should pursue at this stage.
  • Students should continue prioritizing their physical and mental health.

Career Path Preparation

During stage two, students should continue …

  • Updating their online presence regularly.
  • Reviewing job ads (academic and non)
  • Attending talks

Communications Skills

  • At this stage students should know what the major CONFERENCES in their field are and begin thinking about attending them.  Students should, with guidance from their adviser and the Director of Professionalization, be strategic about conference attendance in order to derive the most benefit from the effort and money it takes to attend one.  The Graduate Writing Center offers workshops on preparing conference papers, and you can access video from an English Department workshop on attending conferences on the “Workshops” page of our Career Development CCLE website.
  • Stage two is also a good time to think in concrete terms about PUBLISHING.  By now, students know the major journals in their field and can begin thinking about what kinds of articles they’d like to place where and when.  As with conferences, some strategic planning is in order when it comes to publication. Students should confer with their advisers, watch the English Department workshop about publications on the “Workshops” page of our Career Development CCLE website, and avail themselves of resources at the Graduate Writing Center.
  • While an article looks wonderful on a CV, so does a grant, especially one from beyond UCLA.  Stage 2 is an excellent time to explore EXTERNAL FUNDING.  Students can use the UCLA GRAPES Database (Graduate PostDoc Extramural Support) to search for funding opportunities and should watch the English Department workshop about funding on the “Workshops” page of our Career Development CCLE website.

Career Development Expectations – Third Stage

In this last stage of the PhD students should strategize for a strong finish and begin planning for life beyond UCLA.


  • Review and finalize timeline for degree completion and update regularly
  • Review job search goals, revise as needed and update action plan; this review and revision can be done in conversation with the student’s adviser, the Director of Professionalization, and a graduate counselor at the Career Center.
  • Stay healthy with rest, exercise, diet, and recreation.
  • Maintain a competitive edge by finishing their dissertation and professionalizing their wardrobe.

Career Path Preparation

  • Make sure online presence is up to date and tailored to specific roles the student is targeting
  • Finalize application materials, including references, and tailor as needed. See chapter 5 of the Career Preparation Toolkit for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Scholars to get started, and be sure to watch the series of workshops on the “Academic Job Search” page of our Career Development CCLE website.
  • Search for and apply to job openings and postdoc positions

Communications Skills

  • Complete the dissertation and continue submitting work to journals
  • Schedule a mock interview with the English Department and at the Career Center
  • Continue to engage diverse audiences through presentations, teaching, or community involvement.

Teaching Assistantships

Appointment of Academic Apprentice Personnel Teaching Assistants, Associates, and Fellows

Regulations governing appointment, titles, and salary of apprentice personnel require each department to establish for appointment “a set of criteria appropriate to its philosophy and need, so that it is known and understood by its appointees”.  Accordingly, the Department of English has established the following criteria for appointment and advancement consistent with categories defined by the Administration.  The regulations establish three categories for employing apprentice personnel according to their qualifications.  These are half-time appointments that will be subject in all respects to current University policies.

  • All appointments are for one year or less.  Requests for reappointment for additional one-year terms (not to exceed four years except by petition) will be considered during the annual review and assessment of all applicants competing for the positions available.  It is University policy that graduate students may not be employed for more than 18 academic quarters in any combination of Academic Student Employee appointments (TA, GSR, Reader or Tutor) at 25% of full time or higher. In order to exceed 12 quarters of such appointments, students must be advanced to candidacy for the Ph.D., and the Department must receive approval from the Graduate Division for an exception to the 12-quarter limit.
  • Students must notify the Academic Student Employee Personnel Coordinator in the English Department when requirements for Teaching Associate and Teaching Fellow titles have been met.  Students should also consult with the Graduate Counselor regarding TA category changes.

Criteria for Appointment

  • Initial appointment:  Once students have either passed English 495A-Supervised Teacher Preparation, they are appointed to apprentice teaching titles on the basis of their accomplishment in course work, qualifying examinations, progress toward the doctorate, and their prior experience and training in composition teaching.  The committees rarely appoint students without some graduate work to a Teaching Assistantship.  During the first quarter of appointment, the student must enroll in English 495B.  The University requires that Teaching Assistants enroll in English 375 (4 units for a 50% appointment) with the instructor of record for each quarter of their appointment.  (If the instructor of record is from a different department, the TA must enroll in a 375 course in that department.)  In addition, during each summer TA’s must remove all Incompletes accumulated through the end of Winter quarter.  Students with GPA’s below 3.0 are ineligible for appointment.
  • Reappointment:  In addition to scholarship and progress toward the doctorate, applicants for reappointment are judged on their teaching effectiveness.  Teaching effectiveness and excellence will be judged by reports of advisers appointed for the academic year, teaching evaluations, and the report of the Vice Chair.

All appointments and titles are based on the following additional criteria:

  • Teaching Assistant: Teaching assistants are selected for their scholarship and promise as teachers. They may not be given sole responsibility for the content of a course, selection of assignments, planning of exams, or grading, nor are they to be used exclusively as readers. They may supervise teaching assignments in small sections of undergraduate courses.
  • Teaching Associate: A teaching associate has a master’s degree or has completed at least 36 units of graduate coursework (not including courses 375 or 495) and has at least one academic year of UCLA TA experience (or approved collegiate teaching experience at a comparable institution). Advancements to teaching associate are made upon recommendation by the chair of the department, based on performance evaluations by supervising faculty (which must be documented if advancement is withheld from an otherwise qualified student).
  • Teaching Fellow: A teaching fellow is formally advanced to doctoral candidacy, has demonstrated professional maturity and excellence as a scholar and teacher, and has at least two academic years of UCLA TA experience (or approved teaching experience at a comparable institution). Advancements are made as described for teaching associate.

(N.B.  TA salaries are governed by the union contract between the University of California and the UAW for the Academic Student Employee Unit.)

Students working as Readers, Research Assistants, Teaching Assistants, and Tutors are members of the Academic Student Employees Unit and are subject to union rules and regulations.  For more information, please go to the Academic Student Employees section of the Graduate Division website.


The English Graduate Union (EGU) comprises and represents all English graduate students and operates as the collective voice of the English graduate body. Its officers, who are elected annually, work closely with the department’s faculty and administration of the University to ensure that policy decisions reflect student concerns.  The EGU holds general body meetings at least once a quarter and on an as-needed basis. The EGU officers may be reached via e-mail at


The officers for 2021-2022 are Dyese Elliott-Newton, Salem Martinez, and Nicole Prucha.

Hooding Ceremony

Ph.D. Candidates who complete degree requirements after the previous year’s spring filing deadline and before the current year’s spring filing deadline are eligible to participate in the UCLA Doctoral Hooding Ceremony, held traditionally on Thursday afternoon of the spring quarter finals week. See the Graduate Division Hooding Ceremony webpage for more information.

Graduate Study Groups

THE ALTHUSSER READING GROUP meets at least quarterly and throughout the summer, and sometimes invites outside speakers.  We read works by French philosopher Louis Althusser and related material. The group is coordinated by Prof. Eleanor Kaufman.


THE AMERICANIST RESEARCH COLLOQUIUM (ARC) is an intellectual meeting-place for scholars with interests in any area or period of American literature and culture. Graduate students, faculty, postdoctoral scholars and other visitors are welcome to participate. The colloquium has met regularly since 2002, and usually convenes once or twice per quarter, on Thursday afternoons at 4:00, to discuss work in progress by its members and by invited guests. The usual format is a pre-circulated paper or draft chapter, which is presented for discussion (although occasionally we host a formal lecture, or convene a roundtable), followed by refreshments and sociability. UCLA graduate student alumni of ARC are now teaching at some of the finest universities and colleges around the country. ARC is coordinated by Prof. Christopher Looby and Prof. Carrie Hyde.

THE EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY / ROMANTIC WORKING GROUP is comprised of graduate students who meet regularly to share work-in-progress, debate secondary criticism, and discuss matters of pre-professional concern to young scholars of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. For more information, email the group at

THE ENVIRONMENTAL HUMANITIES RESEARCH GROUP (EHRG) is UCLA’s first organization and interdisciplinary working group that connects graduate students and faculty who are interested in the environmental humanities. Throughout the year, the group meets several times a quarter to discuss readings, run work-in-progress workshops, and sponsor speaker and workshop series. The EHRG has the support and co-sponsorship of LENS (the Laboratory for Environmental Narrative Strategies) and the English department. For more information, please contact

LATINX LITERARY READING GROUP brings together faculty and students across several departments at UCLA including English, Comparative Literature, Spanish, and Chicana/o Studies. The group meets twice a quarter to discuss current work in the field and to workshop members’ own writing. Recent meetings have centered on Hemispheric American studies, Central American studies, and writing the dissertation prospectus and dissertation. On occasion, we also invite speakers to discuss their work and offer advice on professionalization. For more information contact Prof. Marissa López.

THE LONG EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY SEMINAR is an interdisciplinary two-hour seminar, held at the Huntington Library four or five times each year. It features work and speakers from all aspects of the period. Past talks have approached the eighteenth century from the perspective of literary studies, performance studies, musicology, history, history of science, and art history. Funded generously by the USC-Early Modern Studies Institute, it is the first collaborative effort among the Huntington, UCLA, and USC. Speakers, who have included Malcolm Baker (Art History, UC-Riverside), Laura Brown (English-Cornell), and John Brewer (Humanities, Cal Tech), are drawn from the local community and community of Huntington fellows, with one or two visiting speakers per year. For further information please contact either Prof. Sarah Kareem or Prof. Ashley Cohen (USC), or visit the seminar website.

MEDIEVAL AND EARLY MODERN STUDENT ASSOCIATION (MEMSA) is an organization dedicated to supporting medieval and early modern graduate students in their academic and professional development by providing a community of scholars in which they may share their research, teaching, and grant and job search experiences. Scholarly activities include methodologies workshops, focused reading groups, conferences, round tables, and mock exams designed to assist graduate students in their exam preparation, research, and professional lives. We partner with various other organizations across campus to cultivate interdisciplinary dialogue and a robust community of emerging scholars.  For more information, contact For up-to-date information about our forthcoming events, please join our OrgSync group (accessible via the “Campus Life -> Student Organizations” link at

THE MEDIEVAL READING GROUP meets regularly. For more information, please contact Prof. Matthew Fisher or Prof. Christine Chism.

THE NINETEENTH-CENTURY GROUP is an interdisciplinary research colloquium for the study of British literature and culture broadly and openly defined, including trans-atlantic exchanges, empire, and more. We are interested in the long nineteenth century—including the late eighteenth century and the Edwardian period. The Group holds meetings each quarter for the purpose of providing a place where graduate students and faculty can share their work in progress. We also discuss work circulated by invited visiting scholars. Most meetings occur on Tuesdays at 4 p.m. Scholarly participants from outside UCLA are welcome. For information see the website or contact Prof. Jonathan Grossman.

POETRY READINGS AT THE HAMMER MUSEUM. The longest continuously operating series of poetry readings in southern California began forty-six years ago at the Sunset Canyon Recreation Center under the direction of Doris Curran, whose project Professor Stephen Yenser has advised nearly from the beginning and has curated since 1993. Each year it presents eight or nine poets, many of whom have been awarded prizes such as the Nobel, the Bollingen, the Tanning, and the Pulitzer; fellowships ranging from the MacArthur to the Guggenheim; and terms as Poet Laureate of the United States. The coming year’s schedule includes former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky, Irish poet Eamon Grennan, and UCLA Ph.D. Rhoda Janzen. Each year’s program concludes in June with UCLA students who have won poetry awards during the academic year.

THE POSTCOLONIAL LITERATURE AND THEORY COLLOQUIUM meets on a bi-monthly basis to workshop faculty and graduate student essays, to discuss recent scholarship in the field, and to host lectures and events on campus. Past events have included talks by Peter Hulme, NourbeSe Philp, Tiphanie Yanique, a conference on “Globalized Islands”, film screening by Anne Keala Kelly, and a book launch of Chamorro writing. For more details, and to subscribe to our email list, see the PLTC website:

THE QUEER STUDIES READING GROUP welcomes all graduate students and faculty to informal discussions of books, articles, and works-in-progress related to queer literature, culture, and theory across history and the globe. Contact Kersti Francis, Emma Spies, and/or Emma Ridder for more information.

THE SOCIAL JUSTICE PEDAGOGY WORKING GROUP meets at least once each quarter and welcomes all graduate students and faculty. The goals of this working group are to read and discuss current research on higher education pedagogy with a special emphasis on social justice-oriented approaches, to create opportunities for graduate students to workshop and share lesson plans and techniques, to create a community-wide dialogue on the practical applications of these practices in the classroom, and to workshop papers related to pedagogy. All of the above will be approached with an emphasis on social justice. Social justice in pedagogy requires examining not only the content of courses, but also the structures and methodologies by which educators create communities in the classroom. For more information and/or to join our mailing list, please email

THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY GROUP meets once each quarter on a Thursday evening at a faculty member’s home to discuss literary, historical, and cultural matters from 1660 to the early nineteenth century. Drawing on the vibrant eighteenth-century community in Los Angeles, we invite a scholar who is visiting the Huntington or the Clark Library, or a faculty member from an institution in the Los Angeles area, to present a pre-circulated paper followed by a lively in-depth exchange. Recent speakers have included Harriet Guest (York), Carole Fabricant (UC-Riverside), and Joseph Roach (Yale).  For further information, please contact graduate student co-ordinators Lesley Thulin, Bethany Johnsen, and Suzannah Beiner.

THE 20/21 WORKING GROUP is a graduate student and faculty reading/working group focused on 20th- and 21st-century texts and issues. The group meets a few times a quarter to share works-in-progress and discuss concerns related to post-1900 scholarship. For more information, please contact

THE UCLA WORKING GROUP IN MEMORY STUDIES brings together faculty and graduate students from across the humanities and social sciences who are interested in the interdisciplinary field of cultural memory studies. Cultural memory studies focuses on the dynamic interplay between the past and the present in local, national, and transnational contexts and can involve the study of works of art and literature; memorials and monuments; processes of reparation, reconciliation, and transitional justice; activist movements; media; and more. The working group usually meets two to three times per quarter for discussions of recent scholarship in the field, coffee chats with visiting speakers, and other events. In February 2020, we hosted our first conference on “Memory and Political Responsibility” with keynote speaker Ann Rigney (Utrecht University). For more information, please visit our website.

Resources for Scholarship

English Reading Room

The English Reading Room is a library maintained by the Department of English that houses close to 30,000 book and periodical volumes in the fields of British and American literature, as well as references and interdisciplinary sources needed to support these areas of study.


Charles E. Young Research Library
Holdings for the study of British and American literature are extensive, beginning with comprehensive reference works, complete runs of major and secondary periodicals, and circulating copies of works by authors and poets covered in the English Department’s graduate curriculum, as well as extensive holdings of other writers beyond those covered in formal instruction.

The William Andrews Clark Memorial Library
The William Andrews Clark Memorial Library is part of the UCLA library system. It is a rare books and manuscripts collection, with particular strengths in English literature and history (1641-1800), Oscar Wilde, and fine printing. It stands thirteen miles off campus (about a half-hour drive), in the West Adams District of Los Angeles north of USC. It is administered by UCLA’s Center for Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Studies.

UCLA Library Department of Special Collections
The strengths of Special Collections lie primarily in British and American literature of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Collections of the period 1750 to 1900 were formed around the Michael Sadleir Collection of Nineteenth-Century British Fiction, which numbers today nearly 18,000 volumes and is considered the finest in the world. Women writers of the period are well represented, and American writers who published simultaneously in England-such as Melville-are also found in the collection. Related to the Sadleir Collection is another world-class collection: British and American Children’s Books, whose strength lies particularly in the period up to 1840.


Research Centers at UCLA


American Indian Studies Center
The AISC maintains a reference library, publishes books as well as the American Indian Culture and Research Journal, provides academic counseling and support to students, actively promotes student recruitment and retention, supports academic programs in American Indian Studies (AIS) and administers postdoctoral and predoctoral fellowships and research awards through the Institute of American Cultures. The Center acts as a focal point for scholars, staff, students and community members who are interested in research, education, and issues about Native Americans.

Asian American Studies Center
The Reading Room/Library houses the most extensive archive on Asians and Pacific Islanders in the nation. With its holding of over 5,000 books and monographs, 30 Asian Pacific ethnic and regional newspapers, over 300 community and campus newsletters, and 5,000 pamphlets, it serves as a valuable resource for scholars and students seeking information on Asian Pacific Americans. In support of the Asian American Studies research and teaching program at UCLA, the library also develops indexed bibliographies, electronic reference aids, and other valuable reference guides. In collaboration with UCLA’s University Research Library, the Center has established special collections that will preserve and provide access to rare, hard-to-find materials donated by members of the Asian Pacific community in Southern California. The Asian American Movement Archive Collection, Japanese American Research Project, the Chinese American Archives, and the Korean American Research Project Archives are examples of the valuable materials donated by and available to the community.

Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies
The UCLA Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies Library and Media Center was established in 1969 to provide specialized reference and information services on the experiences of people of African descent. The most notable holdings in the library include: the sixteen-volume Black Women in the United States History collection, The Marcus Garvey and the Universal Negro Improvement Association Papers, selected volumes of The Schomburg Library Nineteenth-Century Black Women Writers sixteen-volume bibliography, Crisis magazine (1916-present), the sixty-volume UCLA Oral History Program collection, the Journal of Negro History (1916-present), and the Bibliographic Guide to Black Studies (1975-present). The library also has an extensive vertical file based on the Lexicon of African American Subject Headings, audiocassette tapes of campus and regional lectures, special web-based Bunche Center library-generated pathfinders and bibliographies, and the only regional print collection of major national African American newspapers

Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies
Each year, the Center sponsors and co-sponsors lectures, seminars, and conferences and hosts visiting professors, post-doctoral scholars, and other visiting researchers. A widely respected journal, Viator, is edited and published annually by CMRS, as is a graduate-student journal, Comitatus. A variety of books and monographs have also been published under the Center’s aegis.

Center for Modern and Contemporary Studies
The UCLA Center for Modern and Contemporary Studies promotes humanistic research and provides a forum for scholarship concerned with 19th- and 20th-century society and culture. It sponsors small seminars, mid-size workshops, larger public lectures, conferences and various special events. The Center houses the UC Transnational & Transcolonial Studies Multicampus Research Group, an interdisciplinary community of scholars in the humanities and the social sciences from throughout the University of California system.

Center for Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Studies
The Center, a member of the UCLA Humanities Consortium, provides a forum for the discussion of central issues in the field of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century studies. It organizes academic programs, bringing together scholars from the area, the nation, and the world, with the goal of encouraging research in the period from 1600 to 1800. It seeks to enlarge the Clark’s holdings in this period in order to enhance research opportunities. Its publications program is dedicated to making the results of its conferences known to the larger scholarly public. It provides resident fellowships and scholarships to support of research in early modern studies and other areas central to the Clark’s collections.

Center for the Study of Women
The UCLA Center for the Study of Women (CSW) is a nationally recognized center for research on women and gender. Established in 1984, it is the only unit of its kind in the University of California system, and it draws on the energies of 245 faculty from 10 UCLA professional schools and 34 departments. By bringing together scholars with similar interests, CSW has played an important role in the intellectual life of UCLA. Through its conferences, seminars and administration of grants, CSW has enabled feminist scholars to exchange ideas and secure funding. CSW works in conjunction with the UCLA Women’s Studies Program to develop curriculum and promote feminist learning among both undergraduate and graduate students. Together, the Center for the Study of Women and the Women’s Studies Program constitute an important platform for women’s concerns in Southern California. The UCLA Center for the Study of Women contributes to the advancement of women by expanding and sharing knowledge.

Chicano Studies Research Center
The research collection assembled by the Chicano Studies Research Center Library at UCLA is considered among the most important national and international research collections on the Chicano experience. In addition to a definitive collection of Chicano-related research guides and directories, the library holdings consist of monographs; serials; pamphlets and clippings; dissertations and theses; journal articles; as well as maps, films, videotapes, tape recordings, slides, and serveral important archival collections. Of special note are library holdings that include monolingual and bilingual English and Spanish newspapers and journals published throughout the southwestern United States beginning in the late nineteenth century.

The Hammer Museum

  • UCLA Hammer Poetry Readings
    Organized and hosted by Stephen Yenser, poet and professor at UCLA, this series brings nationally and internationally renowned poets to the Museum for readings from their own work.
  • Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts
    The UCLA Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts is one of the finest university collections of graphic arts in the country. The Grunwald Center’s holdings consist of over 35,000 works of art on paper including prints, drawings, photographs, and artists’ books from the Renaissance to the present. Among the artists represented are Albrecht Dürer, Ishikawa Toyonobu, George Cruikshank, Paul Cézanne, Henri Matisse, Barbara Morgan, Jasper Johns, June Wayne, and Carlos Almaraz. A primary resource for teaching and research, the Grunwald Center serves UCLA students, faculty, and the public and is available for scholarly study by appointment; call 310.443.7078.

UCLA Film & Television Archive
The UCLA Film & Television Archive is the second largest moving image archive in the United States after the Library of Congress, and the world’s largest university-based media archive.  It is committed to the collection, restoration and exhibition of moving images.  The Archive’s public programs can be seen at the Billy Wilder Theater in Westwood Village, Los Angeles.  The Archive loans prints from its vast collection to cinematheques and film festivals around the world.  Additionally, footage licensed from the Archive has appeared in many notable projects for the big screen, television and other media.  Many items in the Archive’s collections can be accessed for research by appointment through the Archive Research & Study Center at UCLA.

Research in the Los Angeles Area


Beyond Baroque
Beyond Baroque’s archive houses the West Coast’s most comprehensive, independent collection of small press chapbook and magazine publications as well as an extensive collection of literary ephemera. The archive collects and preserves works and is non-lending. It is open to members, researchers, and workshop participants. It contains over 40,000 volumes of rare small and independent presses, self-published writers’ chapbooks, rare avant-garde and hand-printed literary periodicals, broadsides, and anthologies, with a specialization in post-‘68 work. The chapbook collection, one of the few dedicated to the form, features self-published and limited-run, handcrafted Xeroxed, mimeographed, offset and hand-printed one-of-a-kind works.

California African American Museum
The mission of the California African American Museum is to research, collect, preserve, and interpret for public enrichment the history, art and culture of African Americans with an emphasis on California and the western United States. CAAM’s Research Library supports the mission of the California African American Museum housing more than 20,000 items of books, periodicals, and records. The Library provides programmatic and research service and materials support for its staff and curators. The Research Library is managed by a certified librarian who is also available to serve the general public on days when the Museum is open and by appointment.

Getty Research Institute
The Research Institute’s Special Collections houses rare and unique materials, supported by the secondary resources of the library, that enable scholars and other advanced researchers to conduct primary research in all fields relevant to the visual arts. Its holdings range in date from the late 14th century to the present. Its geographic coverage, while strongest in Western European materials, includes significant holdings in Central and Eastern Europe, with selective strengths in North and Latin America, particularly of the 20th century. Special Collections contains rare books and archival materials as well as rare photographs, prints and drawings for the study of the visual arts and culture. Included are artists’ journals and sketchbooks, albums, architectural drawings, art and architectural treatises, early guidebooks, emblem books, festival books, prints, and drawings.

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens
Located in San Marino, California, the institution serves some 1,800 scholars each year conducting advanced research in the humanities. The library’s rare books and manuscripts comprise one of the world’s largest and most extensively used collections in America outside of the Library of Congress. Researchers who use our collections produce the leading scholarly books and articles in their fields; these in turn become the basis for the textbooks that are used in elementary, secondary, and undergraduate education across the nation. The Huntington also serves some 20,000 school children in the Los Angeles area, providing informal botanical, art, and library education through extensive on-site programs. Among the treasures for research and exhibition are the Ellesmere manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, a Gutenberg Bible on vellum, the double-elephant folio edition of Audubon’s Birds of America, and an unsurpassed collection of the early editions of Shakespeare’s works.

Japanese American National Museum
The Japanese American National Museum is the largest museum in the United States dedicated to sharing the experience of Americans of Japanese ancestry. The mission of the Japanese American National Museum is to promote understanding and appreciation of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity by sharing the Japanese American experience. The museum’s Hirasaki National Resource Center serves more than 8,000 researchers, writers, students, family historians, filmmakers, and other museum visitors annually both onsite and online through its reference, research and reproduction services.

Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Since its inception in 1965, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) has been devoted to collecting works of art that span both history and geography, in addition to representing Los Angeles’s uniquely diverse population. In keeping with LACMA’s commitment to research and education, the Mr. and Mrs. Allan C. Balch Art Research Library maintains an extensive, non-circulating collection of research-level materials that support the museum’s collections and programming. The library holds over 200,000 monographs, exhibition catalogs, journals, periodicals, reference resources, and current auction catalogs, as well as a growing collection of art ephemera files. As of January 2014, the library shares its space with LACMA’s Art and Technology program.

Margaret Herrick Library, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
The Margaret Herrick Library is a world-renowned, non-circulating reference and research collection devoted to the history and development of the motion picture as an art form and an industry. Established in 1928 and now located in Beverly Hills, the library is open to the public and used year-round by students, scholars, historians and industry professionals.

Museum of Latin American Art
The Museum of Latin American Art expands knowledge and appreciation of modern and contemporary Latin American art through its Collection, ground-breaking Exhibitions, stimulating Educational Programs, and engaging Cultural Events.

The Museum of Tolerance
The Museum of Tolerance (MOT) is a human rights laboratory and educational center dedicated to challenging visitors to understand the Holocaust in both historic and contemporary contexts and confront all forms of prejudice and discrimination in our world today. In addition to books and periodicals, the Library also hold many other formats, including videos (VHS and DVD), audiocassettes and CDs, educational kits, visual materials (posters, slides, etc.), and microfilm.

The Southern California Library
The Southern California Library documents and makes accessible histories of struggles that challenge racism and other systems of oppression so we can all imagine and sustain possibilities for freedom.  SCL is a community library and archive located in South Los Angeles. Founded over 50 years ago, the Library holds extensive collections of histories of community resistance in Los Angeles and beyond. Everyone is welcome to use the Library’s resources to research and put to practice the histories of everyday people working to create change.

Policies and Procedures

coming soon!