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Admissions Information

Application Deadlines

Degree Requirements


Financial Assistance








Passannante, Gerard, Full Member


Collins, Merle, Full Member

Donawerth, Jane L., Full Member

Kauffman, Linda, Full Member

Orlando, Valerie, Full Member

Ray, Sangeeta, Full Member

Richardson, Brian, Full Member

Wang, Orrin, Full Member

Associate Professor

Arsenjuk, Luka, Full Member

Baer, Hester, Full Member

Bauer, Ralph R., Full Member

Eades, Caroline M., Full Member

Gaycken, Oliver, Full Member

Jelen, Sheila, Full Member

Long, Ryan F., Full Member

Nunes, Zita, Full Member

Ontiveros, Randy, Full Member

Papazian, Elizabeth,

Passannante, Gerard, Full Member

Robertson, Kellie, Full Member

Valiavitcharska, Vessela V., Full Member

Zakim, Eric S., Full Member

Assistant Professor

Balachandran Orihuela, Sharada, Full Member

Resmini, Mauro, Full Member

Adjunct Associate Professor

Carpenter, Faedra, Full Member

Schonebaum, Andrew, Full Member

Affiliate Professor

Cohen, William A., Full Member

Doherty, Lillian E., Full Member

Frisch, Andrea, Full Member

Hallett, Judith P., Full Member

Igel, Regina, Full Member

Keshavarz, Fahtemeh, Full Member

Levinson, Jerrold, Full Member

Affiliate Associate Professor

Anischenkova, Valerie, Full Member

Mason, Michele, Full Member

Affiliate Assistant Professor

Barrenechea, Francisco, Full Member


Robinson, Eugene S., Adjunct Member

Professor Emerita

Berlin, Adele, Full Member

Peterson, Carla L., Full Member

More CMLT Faculty Information

Comparative Literature (CMLT)   

Program Title and Classification

Comparative Literature

Graduate Degree Program

College: Arts and Humanities


A small, elite PhD degree program housed in the Department of English, the Comparative Literature Program is committed to the comparative and transnational study of literature and other media. Combining its own dynamic resources with those of the English Department and other units in the College of Arts and Humanities, the Program supports a wide range of interests, including Western Hemispheric and Transatlantic Studies, Film, Early Modern Studies, Classical Reception, and Diasporic and Postcolonial Studies. Students in the Program work in at least two languages and national literatures, one of them Anglophone. The Comparative Literature PhD Program complements the current PhD Program in English, giving students a place to pursue true comparative studies. Students seeking admission to the PhD Program in Comparative Literature must demonstrate advanced language proficiency before entry into the Program, and commit themselves to achieving a high degree of intellectual expertise in two or more languages and national literatures. Graduates are as likely to find academic positions in departments of foreign languages as they are to find them in English. A doctoral degree in Comparative Literature can uniquely prepare them for a profession that more and more studies literatures and cultures within a globalized, transnational context. Students are admitted to CMLT with a Masters degree in a language or literature in hand. Exceptional candidates without the MA may be admitted to the program with the understanding that once they complete an MA degree at UMD (in the English Department or in another relevant language department) they will be directly admitted to the program in CMLT. 

Admissions Information

General Requirements:

Program-Specific Requirements:

  • Letters of Recommendation (3)
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  • Academic CV
  • Writing Sample: A single sample of critical writing of approximately 12-20 pages. While we encourage you to submit your best writing sample, we prefer a writing sample in your declared field of interest. The writing sample should include an updated works cited page to help us evaluate your critical and theoretical familiarity with a field, a period or a genre. (uploaded to the Uploads Requirements section of the application)
  • Supplementary Application
  • Master's degree

Applicants should have a strong background in arts and humanities. Students will not be admitted to the program without demonstrated proficiency in English and at least one other language. Each student must submit a critical writing sample (in English), three letters of recommendation, evidence of language proficiency, and GRE scores. International applicants must also submit TOEFL scores. Students are admitted to CMLT with a Masters degree in a language or literature in hand. Exceptional candidates without the MA may be admitted to the program with the understanding that once they complete an MA degree at UMD (in the English Department or in another relevant language department) they will be directly admitted to the program in CMLT.

For more admissions information or to apply to the program, please visit our Graduate School website:

Application Deadlines

Type of Applicant Fall
Domestic Applicants:
US Citizens and Permanent Residents
15 Dec
International Applicants:
F (student) or J (exchange visitor) visas
A,E,G,H,I and L visas and immigrants.
15 Dec

Other Deadlines: Please visit the program website at

Degree Requirements

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Core Requirements

Doctoral students are required to complete a total of 30 credits, including 12 credits of CMLT 899: Doctoral Dissertation Research.

Required courses include:

ENGL 602: Critical Theory and Literary Criticism (3 credits)

ENGL 611: Approaches to College Composition (3 credits)

Four additional courses (12 credits)


The Ph.D. degree normally entails at least 18 credits of course work (beyond M.A. courses) and 12 credits of dissertation research. Students take one course in Methodology (3 credits); one course in Theory (3 credits); two courses in Early Modern Literature (6 credits); and two courses in Modern Literature (6 credits). The designations early modern and modern remain flexible to accommodate different literary histories. In each of the two general periods, at least one course must be taken in the English Department in Anglophone or Comparative Literature and at least one course outside of the English Department in another language/literature. Students can use six credits of MA work to satisfy distribution requirements (though not total credit number requirements). Advising will address the depth, breadth, and coherence of each student's course plan and, if necessary, coordination among different histories of the early modern and modern.


Facilities and Special Resources

The Comparative Literature Program combines the benefits of a small department with the opportunities available at a large research university located in suburban Washington, D.C. Students have access to such University resources as the rare books and special collections of McKeldin Library, the Program for Africa and Africa in the Americas, the Women’s Studies Graduate Certificate program, and the Meyerhoff Center for Jewish Studies. Area resources include the extensive archival collections of the Library of Congress, the U.S. Archives, and the Folger Institute, as well as museums, galleries, embassies and cultural institutions in the Washington area and in the Baltimore-Philadelphia-New York corridor.

Financial Assistance

Comparative Literature students are eligible for graduate assistantships and university fellowships. Depending on available resources and the student’s own expertise, teaching and research assistantships may be available either in Comparative Literature or in an affiliated department.

Contact Statement

For more specific information about the program, contact:



Gerard Passannante, Director, Program in Comparative Literature, Associate Professor

2116 Tawes Hall, University of Maryland

College Park

MD, 20742

Telephone: (301) 405-3839

Fax: (301) 314-7539


Associated Information




Cross-cultural, interdisciplinary studies in literature, media, and the arts in light of textual and critical theory. Students design individual programs in a range of fields.


English Language and Literature (ENGL)