During their second or third year, students prepare for and undertake their departmental examination. This examination has three written components, followed by an oral candidacy examination.
1. General examination (normally term 3): a two-hour written examination to demonstrate insightful knowledge of a reading list of playscripts and historical/theoretical publications. Reading list is provided by the Department of Drama’s PhD committee.
2. Dissertation Proposal (normally term 4): the candidate tables a well-structured and researched doctoral thesis proposal, including primary and secondary bibliography. The proposal, supported by a Thesis Supervisor, must be approved by the Department of Drama’s PhD committee, and is subject to a first oral exchange with the Supervisory Committee from which a reading list and topics for Special Field exams will emerge.
3. Special Field Exam (normally term 4 or 5): the candidate is expected to write two major essays, one each on the primary and secondary focus of the dissertation proposal, with a focus on the major relevant theoretical sources and literature. The actual subjects of each essay will be negotiated and agreed on by student, thesis supervisor and supervisory committee.
4. Candidacy Examination (normally within two weeks of completion of written essays): a two-hour long oral examination held by the supervisory committee and two additional members, on concerns, issues and topics arising from the Special Field written examinations, with a focus on the student’s research topic.