Candidacy (ABD)

After passing your prelims and defending your dissertation proposal, you are officially ABD. Congratulations! This stage consists of researching, writing, and defending your dissertation. You must complete 32 thesis research credit hours, designated as History 599, during this phase.

The Dissertation Committee

You must establish your Doctoral Examination Committee within 1 year after reaching the ABD status. The committee can be the same as your oral preliminary examination committee, but many students choose different committee members at this stage to reflect the changing needs of research and writing. (See "Doctoral Dissertation Committee Approval Form" in "Departmental Forms.")

The committee has at least four members, of whom three must be members of the UIUC graduate faculty, and at least two must be tenured. One member may be from outside the Department of History, either from another department at UIUC, or from another university. The department welcome outside examiners but does not require them.

Dissertation Writing Workshop

The Dissertation Writing Workshop provides students a forum in which they can present drafts of their dissertation chapters for critique and discussion. By receiving feedback from their peers and a faculty member who is not necessarily from their field of study, students can refine their dissertation project while incorporating organizational, methodological, and theoretical feedback.