graduate studies religion LA los angeles interfield programs claremont colleges

Individualized Interfield Ph.D. Programs

The Religion department also offers individualized programs in cooperation with other Schools and Departments of the University.  These programs are ideal for those who wish to pursue the doctorate in a program of studies that involves two related but different fields and to teach and do research in areas demanding transdisciplinary work.    In particular the Religion department encourages applications for interfield Ph.D.s in Religion and Politics, Religion and Philosophy, and Religion and Culture.  Other possible interfield areas are Religion and Education, Religion and Literature, Religion and Information Science, Religion and the Arts, and Religion and Psychology.

About the Program

Students must be approved for admission by the deans and faculty of the two fields involved in the interfield degree.

The Interfield Ph.D. requires a minimum of 72 units beyond the bachelor's degree.  The distribution of the 72 units need not be equal between the two areas, but depending on the judgment of the advisors and deans, they should involve substantial work in both areas to deserve the name of an interfield degree. 

Those who have done graduate work at another institution may have up to a total of 24 units of their graduate work in both areas transferred to their degree program, depending on their appropriateness to the degree and subject to approval by the relevant advisors and deans.  The 24 units need not be split equally between the two areas.

Within the general guidelines of the University, the two advisors, in consultation with the student, will work out the specifics of the language or research tool requirement, qualifying examinations, and the composition of the dissertation committee.

In consultation with advisors in both areas the student must complete a detailed Interfield Ph.D. Program Proposal specifying (1) courses to be taken in each area, (2) language or research tool requirements, and (3) the areas of qualifying examinations.  It is understood that this is a proposal and a projection and that it may be modified or complemented in the future.  The student must have this Proposal approved by the faculty and deans of both areas and submit it to the Office of Admissions and Records.  Students must submit this Proposal before the end of the first semester of their work.  Current students who wish to switch to the interfield degree must do so early enough in their coursework to be able to complete the requirements in reasonable time.  In this case they must also submit to the Registrar a Field or Change of Degree Form signed by them and their advisors and deans.

Significant changes must be approved by the relevant advisors and deans and submitted to the Office of Student Records/Registrar.

Upon completion of all the requirements except the dissertation those students who do not already have the master’s degree will receive the master’s degree in the field of their choice.

The title of the degree will list the two fields, not specific research projects.  Which field is listed first depends on the preference of the student in consultation with his or her two advisors and the approval of the two deans.

It is the responsibility of the two advisors to assist the student in carrying out these provisions.

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