University of California, Riverside

Comparative Literature and Languages



M.A. Degree Timeline


Comparative Literature Graduate Program M.A. Portfolio or Thesis and Oral Examination

  1. Recommended Timeline
    1. Years 1 and 2: Fulfill course requirements (see General Catalogue)
    2. Year 2
      1. Fulfill language requirement (demonstrating proficiency in each of your languages) before requesting advancement to M.A status. In some cases one language requirement may be fulfilled between the M.A. presentation and the Ph.D. qualifying exam.
      2. Fall Quarter: Begin working with Faculty Advisor to constitute three-member M.A. committee whose members cover your three areas of specialization. Decide whether you are submitting a portfolio or a thesis.
      3. Fall, Winter, or Spring Quarter: You may enroll in a 291 to get units while working on your portfolio or thesis.
      4. Spring Quarter: Submit Portfolio or Thesis. You need to provide bound hard copies of your portfolio or thesis to each M.A. Committee member at least two weeks before your M.A. Examination date. Schedule your examination date before June, if possible.
  2. Contents of Portfolio or Thesis
    1. Portfolio: Consists of three essays, each representing one of your three literary or interdisciplinary areas, and a 750-1000 word commentary explaining the aims and achievements of the essays in relation to one another. Committee members of students working in the science fiction track should represent a student’s two literary areas of specialization and the science fiction concentration. The three essays in the Portfolio should be revised from previous forms, such as seminar papers or other written analytical materials, and the entire Portfolio should be submitted in thoroughly proofread and edited MLA format. Remember that it is your responsibility to provide your committee members with bound hard copies at least two weeks before the date of your exam.
    2. Thesis: Consists of a comprehensive analytical research paper (approximately 40-50 pages) that incorporates each of the student’s three areas of specialization. It may develop topics of previous papers with expanded research and theoretical directions, or explore an entirely new area. The thesis should be submitted in thoroughly proofread, edited MLA format. Remember that it is your responsibility to provide your committee members with bound hard copies at least two weeks before the date of your exam.

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Department of Comparative Literature and Languages
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