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University of Pittsburgh    
2017-2018 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog 
  Jun 18, 2024
2017-2018 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog [Archived Catalog]

French and Italian Languages and Literatures - Film Studies - French Concentration, PhD

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The PhD in Film Studies at the University of Pittsburgh is an interdisciplinary and interdepartmental degree that stresses the history, theory, and aesthetics of international cinema, video, television, and new media. While the student will earn a PhD in Film Studies (granted by the Film Studies Program), he or she will also be a full member of French, fulfilling all requirements for the PhD in French. French will appear as an Area of Concentration on the student’s transcript. Thus, the student graduating with a PhD in Film Studies will be doubly qualified: in film studies as well as in French Studies.

Students must fulfill all of the requirements for the PhD in French (listed above) and the following additional requirements:

Core Courses in Film Studies (7 credits):

a two-course (6 credit) sequence taken in any order:


This will not count toward seminar credit within the French program and will be given on aSatisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis.

Electives in Film Studies (12 credits):

  • Four elective Film Studies courses (in any department).


Of the total six required seminars, the student must take at least two courses taught by a member of the faculty outside of French. These courses can include the two required core courses as well as any of the four electives.

Additional Requirements

Teaching: All film PhD students will be required to serve as TA/TF for at least one film class. If the Department of French and Italian does not offer a film course or has no TA/TF positions for a film course, students will be required to teach one term of the undergraduate course Introduction to Film (or another such introductory course developed in the future) as part of his/her overall experience as a TA/TF.

Credit Requirement: Minimum of 72 hours, including the master’s degree, earned from any suitable combination of formal course work, independent study, research, teaching or dissertation work as detailed elsewhere in this bulletin.

Preliminary Examination/Evaluation: The two required core courses in Film Studies (Film History/Theory I and II) will serve as the preliminary exam in Film Studies. Successful completion of these two classes with a grade of B or better will constitute passing the preliminary examination.

To maintain funding, students must also pass the required preliminary evaluation conducted by the French faculty at the end of the first year of enrollment.

Comprehensive Examination: The Comprehensive Exam must contain at least one component focusing on Film Studies, and at least one component on French Studies (including its relation to cinema).

At least one member of the exam committee will be a member of the graduate faculty in Film Studies.

Dissertation Committee: The dissertation will be completed in the Department of French and Italian and must involve film and/or media studies as subject matter incorporated with French Studies (as determined by the dissertation director).

The Chair of the dissertation committee will be a graduate faculty member in the Department of French and Italian who is also a member of the interdisciplinary Film Studies graduate faculty. The external member of the committee will be a member of the Film Studies graduate faculty from outside the Department of French and Italian. It is expected that students will have been exposed to these faculty members in taking the required Film Studies courses (taught by the interdisciplinary Film Studies faculty), elective Film Studies courses (outside the student’s associated Department), and in the Proseminar (taught by the interdisciplinary faculty).

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