The dissertation is defended by oral examination before a committee including the sponsor, the second reader, a third reader with a specific interest in comparative literature and society, and two other faculty selected from outside the list of participating faculty listed above whose fields are appropriate to the candidate’s dissertation subject. Please note that dissertation defenses of ICLS students are scheduled by ICLS and not  by the candidate’s home department.

  • The defense is administered by and at ICLS.  Candidates must contact the ICLS coordinator at kkl2116@columbia.edu when it comes time to schedule their exam. The candidate is required to turn in their Intent to Distribute and Defend form to GSAS and the ICLS office will complete and submit their Application for the Dissertation Defense form.
  • After successfully defending the dissertation, students must deposit it before receiving the degree.

Please note: It is recommended that students in the dissertation-writing phase schedule a date to present their work in the ICLS Graduate Student Colloquium. This is a valuable opportunity to present a chapter in progress for feedback well in advance of the dissertation defense. Please contact the ICLS office for more information.