Critical Race and Ethnic Studies Designated Emphasis



Doctoral students from other departments may obtain a designated emphasis in Critical Race and Ethnic Studies (CRES) by completing the following requirements in addition to the requirements for the doctorate in their home department:

Committee Composition and Departmental Approvals

The student must have a designated graduate advisor from the CRES principal faculty or by exception from affiliated faculty. The student must meet with this CRES advisor to develop a coherent plan for meeting the requirements for the designated emphasis, preferably before the end of the student’s first year. This plan must be approved by the CRES department chair.

A member of the CRES principal or affiliate faculty (usually the CRES graduate advisor) must serve on the student's qualifying examination committee and on the student's dissertation committee.

Course Requirements

The student must take four relevant graduate seminars taught by CRES principal faculty, at least one of which must have the CRES designation. Substitutions and other exceptions to this requirement may be approved on an individual basis by the CRES Department chair, in consultation with the student's advisor of record. One relevant graduate seminar taught by non-program faculty may be counted with the approval of the CRES Department chair. The department chair may also approve the substitution of an individual or group independent study addressing a set of readings or focused on research and writing for one of the four required graduate courses. The specific courses used must reflect a coherent plan of study that embodies both breadth and focus.

Current academic year courses recommended for the designated emphasis (DE) are listed on the CRES website, but eligible courses are not limited to this list.

Writing, Research and/or Teaching Requirements

The student must prepare a significant piece of scholarly writing in the area of CRES. This writing may take the form of a substantial seminar paper, a master's or qualifying exam essay, or a portion of the doctoral dissertation. The student's CRES advisor will determine whether a particular piece of writing meets this requirement.

Students pursuing the designated emphasis are encouraged to serve as a teaching assistant for at least one CRES core or elective course. CRES faculty are encouraged to appoint CRES designated emphasis students as teaching assistants when possible and appropriate.

Proposing and Obtaining the Designated Emphasis

Once a plan for meeting the requirements is agreed upon, the student should complete the CRES DE application, obtain the CRES advisor’s and department chair's signatures, and submit the application to the CRES administrative office. The request for the designated emphasis must originate in the degree-granting department.

Once the requirements have been met, the student submits relevant documentation to the CRES administrative office for final approval by the CRES Department chair. At a minimum, the student should submit copies of the qualifying examination and/or Dissertation Committee Nomination forms and a note from the advisor confirming that the writing sample and proposed courses have been completed. If the proposed courses have changed, an explanation of the changes should be included.

The CRES administrative office will notify the student and the home department of approval for the designated emphasis.