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The author's aim is to persuade this audience that the project will make an original and valuable contribution to some already on-going discussion or problem in one or more fields, or that it will break entirely new ground and even revise the existing structure of disciplinary fields.The dissertation proposal is thus a persuasive rhetorical form, one that seeks to gain readers' assent to the proposition that the proposed study is well-founded and will advance inquiry or discussion in some important way.The readers, the Director of Graduate Studies, and the Chair or Program Director must approve the final draft.
Proposals can take many forms but strong proposals share certain characteristics: These two elements together constitute what the guidelines refer to as a "literature review." That is, the purpose of mentioning the scholarly, theoretical, and aesthetic traditions within which the project is situated is not merely to show that the author of the proposal has undertaken a search of the relevant work in the proposed field(s).
Rather it is to show how the current project fits within or contests an already on-going discourse and how it will contribute to, amend, or displace that discourse.
A template for the proper formatting can be found here.
Prior to submission, the abstract must be read and approved by your major advisor, the Director of Graduate Studies, and the Chair/Program Director.
In the semester prior to your intended graduation cycle you must submit the Intent to Graduate Form.
This form is forwarded to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and you will receive a confirmation email once it has been processed.Thus the "review of the literature" and the "contribution to the field" are both parts of a single effort: to make and support the claim that the proposed project is worthwhile because it grows out of and then extends or revises work currently under way in the arts and humanities and related disciplines.A dissertation supports its claim to originality by positioning its argument both The following dissertation proposals have been selected and annotated by members of the Graduate Studies Committee to suggest the various ways in which a successful proposal can be formulated.It also implicitly argues that the author of the proposal has enough command of the subject to pursue it successfully.Scholars in the arts and humanities typically write short proposals to join conference panels and to place essays in journals and collections.The approved dissertation prospectus should provide readers with a sufficient sense of the whole to make the review of drafts of individual chapters valuable.Faculty members should provide written or oral responses to drafts within a reasonable time period.You will receive further communication regarding your diploma name and mailing address directly from the Registrar’s office.Students undergo final oral examinations in which they defend their dissertations as valuable contributions to knowledge in their fields and demonstrate a mastery of their fields of specialization in relation to their dissertations.Regular full-time tenured and untenured faculty who are approved sponsors may choose to continue in their sponsor role if they leave Columbia University.Beginning in the semester following the defense of their prospectus, students in participating departments will hold a Dissertation Progress Meeting once each semester with their sponsor and at least one other faculty member, in order to receive timely feedback on their dissertation work and regular support throughout the dissertation-writing process.