The Graduate Program in Italian StudiesThe Italian Studies Graduate Program at the University of Texas at Austin is a broad-based, interdisciplinary program designed to offer students maximum flexibility in course selection and choice of specialization. Based in the Department of French and Italian, the program leads to both the Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees, with the MA conceived as a step toward the PhD rather than as a terminal professional degree.
While core courses in Italian literature and culture are taught by Italian professors in the Department of French and Italian, the program also draws heavily on the talents of scholars in other disciplines--such as Archeology, Architecture, Art History, Classics, Comparative Literature, English, Film Studies, History, Linguistics, and Music--who have expertise on Italian topics. Students therefore benefit from ample training in specialized Italian courses as well as from the intellectually stimulating experience of being in the classroom with graduate students from other departments. For today's competitive job market, in which interdisciplinary skills are at a premium, graduates of the program will be exceptionally well-prepared.
Admission to the doctoral program is based on the candidate’s potential for original work in Italian Studies. The college record should include substantial advanced coursework in Italian. The program is not designed for students only seeking an MA.
Designed to train students in the methods of scholarly research and to prepare them for college teaching, the Italian graduate program offers financial assistance in the form of Teaching Assistantships (TAs) and Assistant Instructorships (AIs). As teaching assistants, graduate students help faculty with the conduct and delivery of their courses. Graduate students who hold a Master's degree (or have completed 30 hours of graduate coursework) and who have completed a course in teaching methods may be eligible for employment as assistant instructors. AIs, though still under the supervision and direction of department faculty, teach their own courses (generally lower-division Italian language classes). Competitive fellowships administered by the graduate school are another possible source of financial support.Resources
The General Libraries at the University of Texas at Austin, among the top ten research libraries in the U.S. and Canada, is well furnished with primary and secondary source materials in Italian language, history, literature, and film. The Fine Arts Library and the Architecture and Planning Library both have excellent holdings on Italian arts and culture, and the Visual Resources Collections contain over 50,000 slides of Italian artwork. Manuscripts and rare books on Italian subjects from the holdings of the renowned Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center provide unprecedented research opportunities for Italian Studies graduate students: holdings include 20 medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, 200 incunabula, 5,345 manuscripts from the fifteenth to the mid-eighteenth century, and over 1,600 other rare works.
The Suida-Manning Collection, one of the finest collections of Renaissance and Baroque art in the United States, is another world-class resource for graduate work in Italian Studies. Housed in the new Blanton Museum, this collection includes approximately 250 paintings, 400 drawings, and 50 sculptures spanning the fourteenth through the eighteenth centuries, with exceptional depth in sixteenth through eighteenth-century Italian art. The University currently also has three excavation projects in Italy: Metaponto and Croton (Southern Italy), Torre Annunziata (Naples), and Ostia (Rome).