PhD Requirements

Unit Requirements

The PhD in MENAS requires 72-75 units:

  • 12 units of core MENAS courses;
  • 3-5 units of advanced proficiency in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, or Turkish;
  • 22-24 units in chosen MENAS track;
  • 9-12 units in a minor from another school/department;
  • 6 units of MENA 799A: Comprehensive Exam Preparation; and
  • 18 units of MENA 920: Dissertation.  

All coursework should be determined in consultation with the dissertation advisor and the Director of Graduate Studies.

The unit requirements indicated above apply to all students who enter the program starting Fall 2022. Students who entered prior to Fall 2022 should consult the Director of Graduate Studies regarding requirements.


Students choose from one of the following tracks:  

Core Requirements for All Tracks

All PhD students are required to take 12 units of core courses:

  • MENA 595D: Middle East (3 units),
  • One graduate course in gender or culture in the Middle East (3 units),
  • One graduate course in Islamic Studies (3 units), and
  • One graduate course in Middle Eastern History (3 units).

A list of courses that meet the core course requirements can be found here: MENAS Graduate Courses for Core Requirements

Language Requirement

All students are required to achieve advanced proficiency in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, or Turkish. The language chosen is determined with the dissertation advisor, who may also determine that additional language requirements are necessary.

Comprehensive Exam & Dissertation

See the MENAS Graduate Student Handbook for information about the comprehensive exam and dissertation.