Calendar of Progress - Fifth Year

Dissertation research and writing occupy most of the student’s time. Many students find that the fifth year is the best one in which to conduct research abroad. Students conducting dissertation research abroad should register in absentia.

First Chapter Submission

Students must submit to their dissertation committee a complete draft of a chapter of the dissertation within a year of submission of the prospectus, or in other words, by October 1 of their fifth year at the latest. The chapter should be the result of original research and come from the body of the dissertation, not the introduction. The committee will provide feedback to the student, preferably within two weeks.

Dissertation Progress Report

The Graduate School requires submission of a Dissertation Progress Report in the spring term of each year after admission to candidacy.


Some fifth-year students may be TFs, under the conditions described above, but third- and fourth-year students have priority; fifth year students may also be eligible to teach as PTAI’s or in the College Seminar program.

Other support

Although most students will wish to delay doing so until the sixth year, students who can demonstrate that they will devote their full time to work on the dissertation during the fifth year (and, if they have had a Graduate School fellowship, have used it for a full four years) are eligible for Yale Dissertation Fellowships from the graduate school and, if nominated by a faculty member, for Robert M. Leyland Dean’s Scholar or Yale East Asian Prize Fellowships; there are a few other highly competitive dissertation-year fellowships available from non-Yale sources. Application for Yale Dissertation Fellowships must be made in the spring of the academic year preceding that in which the fellowship is to be held; students should check the “Grants and Fellowships” notebook in the department office and the Fellowship Library of the Graduate School, for information about other fellowships, and all students are strongly urged to apply for them.

Summer Funding

The Graduate School provides doctoral students with five summers of support. Grants from other sources such as the Council on East Asian Studies are available.