We propose the following agenda for change in doctoral programs in the modern languages and literatures. We believe our recommendations respond appropriately to the current circumstances of our fields. We also believe they are realistic. As we document in the appendix to this report, many of these recommendations reflect changes in doctoral programs that are already under way. We have been gratified to find that many departments have taken steps to respond to the pressures we describe here, and we have also found that doctoral students are looking for new opportunities both within their programs and in their careers. We view these developments as grounds for optimism.
- Redesign the doctoral program.
- Engage more deeply with technology.
- Reimagine the dissertation.
- Reduce time to degree.
- Strengthen teaching preparation.
- Expand professionalization opportunities.
- Use the whole university community.
- Redefine the roles of faculty advisers.
- Validate diverse career outcomes.
- Rethink admissions practices.
[First recommendation: Redesign the Doctoral Program]
[Skip to next section: Conclusions]