PhD in English Literature

Call for Applications for PhD candidates for the academic year 2024-2025

Chair of the PhD Committee: Prof. Ayelet Ben-Yishai

Information on PhD: see Graduate Studies Authority regulations here.

Admission Requirements:

  • To be eligible to apply to the PhD program the applicant must hold an MA degree in English Language and/or Literature, or other relevant disciplines, from a recognized university in Israel or abroad, with a minimal final grade of 90 in the Research Thesis and of 86 in the degree.
  • Candidates must secure a Faculty supervisor to advise the candidate in the dissertation.
  • Acceptance to the PhD program will be determined by the PhD Committee. The Committee will evaluate the candidate’s ability to conduct independent PhD-level research based on the following application materials:
    • Declaration of Intent. A 5-8 page document outlining the proposed research topic and questions, the theoretical approach, and provisional list of primary texts.
    • Written consent from the designated supervisor.
    • A letter from the designated supervisor explaining the viability and importance of the proposed research.
    • Two letters of recommendation from lecturers in an academic institution. One of the letters should be from the MA thesis supervisor. These letters should be addressed to the PhD Committee of the Department of English Language and Literature, and should be sent directly to Ms. Sally Mansour, the Departmental Coordinator. Please indicate in the Subject line that this is a letter on your behalf for the PhD Program.
    • Grade transcripts and copies of the BA and MA degrees.
    • A copy of the MA Thesis, including evaluation and grade.
    • Hebrew and English CVs.
  • All application materials will be submitted to the PhD Committee via the Department Office.
  • The candidate may be invited for an interview with the PhD Committee. 


The normative duration for PhD studies is 4 years.

The course of study is divided into two stages:
Research phase A: The duration of studies in research phase A shall not exceed two years. During this period of study, and no later than the end of the first academic year, the student will be required to complete the research proposal, obtain the supervisor’s approval of the proposal and submit it for review by the Department PhD Committee, and meet other requirements imposed by the Committee.

Research phase B: The duration of studies in research phase B shall be from the end of research phase A and up to four years from the beginning of their PhD studies. During this phase, the student will be required to complete the writing of the doctoral dissertation, obtain the approval of the supervisor (and the accompanying committee, if appointed), the approval of the Departmental PhD Committee, and submit their work to the Graduate Studies Authority for evaluation.

Submission of a doctoral dissertation: Upon completion of the research project, the work will be submitted with the signature of the supervisor(s) to the Departmental PhD Committee. After a check is made that the student has completed all of their requirements as mandated by the regulations, the work will be forwarded to the Graduate Studies Authority for evaluation in accordance with the regulations.

For further information, please contact the Department Office, or E-mail:

Direct PhD track:

Admission Requirements: 

  • A candidate who wishes to enroll as a full-time student in the direct track to the PhD must have a BA from a recognized institution of higher learning in Israel or abroad with an average of 90 in both majors.
  • The student must submit:
    – A statement of intent
    – Hebrew and English CVs
    – A supervisor’s consent
    – Recommendations
    – Transcripts
  • The candidate may be invited for an interview with the PhD Committee.

Program Structure:

  1. Completion of courses, with a numerical grade, of at least 28 hours-per-week at the MA level with a weighted grade of at least 90.
  2. Submission of two seminar assignments. The student must obtain a grade of at least 90 on each of the two seminar assignments.
  3. To transition from the first to the second year, the student must complete coursework of at least 16 hours-per-week, with a weighted grade of at least 90, and at least one seminar with at least a 90 on the assignment.
  4. Submit a PhD proposal no later than the beginning of the fourth semester of study.

    The duration of these assignments is two years.

    Upon approval of the doctoral research proposal and upon meeting all the curriculum requirements above, the student will move on to the status of a PhD student, within which s/he will conduct the research and write the dissertation.

    The duration of the studies for writing a dissertation is three years.

    Once the requirements of the Direct PhD track as described above are fulfilled and the doctoral research proposal is approved, the student will receive an MA Diploma.

Preliminary Research Studies track

This track is intended for candidates who have completed their MA degree without a thesis.


  1. MA degree from a recognized institution of higher education in Israel or abroad, with a final grade of at least 86.
  2. Written consent from a supervisor who will agree to guide the candidate in the MA thesis.

Track Requirements:

  1. Completing the thesis.
  2. If necessary, adherence to the curriculum which may be assigned by the Departmental PhD Committee.

    Graduation in this track does not constitute an automatic acceptance for the PhD degree.