The dissertation is defended by oral examination in the student’s home department before a committee including the sponsor, the second reader, a third reader who is an affiliated faculty member at ICLS, and two other faculty selected from outside the list of participating faculty listed above whose fields are appropriate to the candidate’s dissertation subject. Other than including an ICLS faculty member, the student should follow their home department defense guidelines.

NOTE: Make sure your home department administrator informs ICLS ( at of defense matters including: scheduling, emailing us a copy of the GSAS defense application (with ICLS checked) and passing of defense (copy of signature sheet emailed to us.)

Students should familiarize themselves with the GSAS Guidelines for Dissertation Distribution and Defense.

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 on the comparative work well in advance of the dissertation defense. Please contact the ICLS office for more information.