Graduate Program

The PhD program in Celtic languages and literatures is the only one of its kind in North America. Unlike graduate degree programs in North America and abroad that focus exclusively on Irish or one of the other Celtic languages, the Harvard program provides training in several Celtic languages and affords PhD students the opportunity to conduct advanced research in one or more of the Celtic traditions.

Secondary Field

PhD students in any department in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Harvard may undertake Celtic as a formal Secondary Field by taking four half-courses in Celtic. In the secondary field, a student concentrates on just one of the Celtic languages, either Irish or Welsh.

Graduate students in other departments at Harvard are welcome to take occasional courses in the Celtic Department without completing the Secondary Field.

Ad Hoc Degree

Students enrolled in the PhD program in Celtic Languages and Literatures may after a year’s graduate work arrange to pursue an Ad Hoc PhD that combines Celtic with another discipline in a personally tailored program. The Ad Hoc degree is quite different from a PhD in one field and a secondary field in another. In the Ad Hoc degree program, all of the student’s work—including the General Exam and the dissertation—involve multiple disciplines in accordance with the student’s personal research plan.