Coursework Requirements

Foreign Language Requirements

The foreign language requirement is formulated so as to emphasize the relationship between the knowledge of foreign languages and the study of literature. The requirement of a high degree of proficiency in one foreign language may be satisfied in three ways:

  1. By passing the Graduate School examination with a mark of “high pass” defined as follows: the entire passage must be translated accurately and with good idiomatic comprehension, meaning that the translation needs to produce an equivalent text in good English; (click here for testing dates) -
  2. By completing with a grade of “A” an intensive summer course for reading knowledge offered free of charge through the Summer Reading Knowledge Course Program -
  3. By completing with a grade of “A” a course offered by a Rutgers University language department at the 300 level or above; such a course must be approved in advance by the Director or Associate Director.

Unless the student enters with proficiency good enough to pass the Graduate School examination without further preparation, we strongly recommend the second option, the Summer Reading Knowledge Course, as the most efficient and effective.

Students should choose a language relevant either to the history of literatures in English or to their eventual dissertation areas.

It is expected that students will fulfill the foreign language requirement before the beginning of their second year of course work. Students should take any necessary courses during the first year or over the summer following the first year to ensure that this requirement is fulfilled in a timely manner. It is mandatory for students to have fulfilled the requirement by the end of course work. Students who have not done so will not be permitted to take their Qualifying Examinations. Failure to fulfill the requirement on time will also result in loss of eligibility for fellowship, research, and conference travel funding, and could jeopardize renewal in the program.