By Vaibhav Hulsure

PhD Admission Process in India – Gaining admission to the top PhD programmes in India is tough, considered the tough selection criteria and competition. A PhD degree holder is considered to be an expert in his field. Higher Education gives one expertise and in-depth knowledge in the subject. People with higher education hold the top positions. A Doctorate Degree is considered as one of the highest educational degrees one can have in any field. The Ph.D. course which is Doctor in Philosophy is designed to get a Doctorate Degree in the field of your interest. A person with a Ph.D. degree in any field or subject is respected as a Master and highly knowledgeable person in that subject. So, we can say that if one holds a PhD degree from a reputed Indian University, it will add weight to her resume. Ph.D. is a research-based course that is available in many disciplines such as, Engineering, Arts, Economics, Science, Law, Management and different subjects related to these fields.

Candidates who have completed a master’s degree in their subject and are interested in getting expert knowledge of the subject, should go for the Ph.D. course. The demand for the Ph.D. course in India is increasing day by day. A candidate aspiring to get a Doctorate Degree should know all the information related to the Ph.D. course in India. Therefore, here we have compiled all the details of the Admission Process for Ph.D. in Indian Universities.

Those of you who are still making up their minds whether to opt for a PhD degree or not, please read this to check out the advantages of doing a PhD.

Ph.D. Course Details

Ph.D. Programmes in India are designed for students who have completed Post Graduation in their subject. This course is of a duration of 3 years and can be extended up to 5 to 6 years. Getting a doctorate degree or completing a Ph.D. course totally depends on the thesis or research paper you present at the end of the course. If your thesis is approved by external examiners who are subject experts, then only you will get a Doctorate degree in the respective subjects. 

Here is an overview of the P.hd course.

  • The candidate has to choose a specific topic in the subject for the thesis and submit it to the university.
  • Depending on the topic and subject, expert faculty from the university will be assigned as supervisor or guide for the candidate.
  • In the first year, of course, the candidate will be given coursework. In this, the candidate will study the research work of other scientists to get more knowledge about his or her topic.
  • After completion of coursework candidate will start research for the thesis. He or she needs to submit a progress report to the supervisor every 6 months.
  • The thesis will be submitted to the supervisor first. Other faculty from the university will also review the thesis and may suggest some modifications to it.
  • Once your thesis is approved in the university you will go through external examination where experts from other universities and industries will question your thesis. Candidate must able to defend and prove the thesis to examiners.
  • After successfully clearing these oral exams you will be eligible to get a Doctorate degree in the topic.

The Ph.D. course was earlier available through distance mode, however now UGC has announced that Doctorate Degree course through Distance Education mode is invalid. Candidates have to complete this course in the university under the guidance of expert faculties.

Those candidates who have cleared the exams like UGC NET, GATE, JEST, they are also offered fellowship for doing a Ph.D. Even universities like IGNOU  and Delhi University offers a full-time fellowship for Ph.D. students.

Admission Process for PhD in Indian Universities

Here is a step by step admission process for PhD in Indian Universities-

  1. Visit the official page of the educational institution and see all the details about all Ph.D. courses. Then select the area of research that you want to pursue.
    2. The candidates who want to apply for admission to a Ph.D. course should always keep an eye on the newspaper and also on the website of the University for admission to the course of choice.
    3. Up next, the candidate needs to fill the form and then submit the application for the Ph.D. course as given in the schedule. Candidates should also keep in mind that they should pay the fee in time and also submit all the required documents along with the application form.
    4. Some institutes in India mention that candidates need to submit their research proposal with the application form. Institutes then conduct scrutiny of the form.
    5. After the scrutiny, most of the Institutes shortlist candidates who then appear in the entrance exam. There is also another round that is conducted to shortlist candidates for admission in the Ph.D. program.
    6. Those candidates who are selected for the Ph.D. program are then assigned guides for research.

IITs are one of the top Educational Institutes in India. They also have Ph.D. courses in different subjects. Pursuing a Ph.D. from IIT can be the best choice for you.

The admission process of Ph.D. from IIT is as follows- 

  1. Application form for Ph.D. in IIT is available twice a year. So one can apply for this at any of these two timings of the year.
    2. If you have a good GATE score, it is beneficial for admission but it’s not always necessary to have one.
    3. Most of the IITs now conduct a written exam which is followed by an interview. And sometimes it includes a presentation.
    4. Then the final list is prepared based on all the 3 parameters-  the percentage of the written exam, interview, and presentation.
    5. Then if you have some good plan or proposal, you can contact a guide or supervisor.

Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) invites applications from Indian citizens.

List of some top IITs for admission in PhD

1.IIT Kharagpur
2.IIT Bombay
3.IIT Madras

Admission process of PhD at DU

  • Those Candidates who have a degree in masters and equivalent must appear in the entrance exam conducted by the Delhi University (DU).
  • Then, based on those candidates’ abilities in the written test they are called for the interview.
  • Candidates who qualify the UGC-NET or UGC-CSIR NET  or an equivalent exam may get a chance for a direct interview.

Admission process of Ph.D at JNU

  • Candidates for Ph.D are selected through an entrance exam followed by a viva voce.
  • Both of these are conducted by Jawaharlal Nehru University. The willing candidates should register online and fill the application form.
  • Candidates also can submit their application form in offline mode.

Admission process for Ph.D at IISc Bangalore

The candidates who are eligible for the Ph.D. program can submit their form through the official website. 

Admission process for PhD from IGNOU

The eligible and willing candidates can apply for the Ph.D. program at IGNOU. The application form are granted by the Indira Gandhi National Open University twice a year. So that is an advantage for this Institution.

This University also conducted an entrance exam for selecting Ph.D. Candidates. Those eligible candidates who applied for this may appear for this exam.

The admission process of PhD from AIIMS 

  • All India Institute of Medical Science, New Delhi calls for the application for the entrance exam for the Ph.D. program. The exam will be held online.
  • Duration of the course: From registration to submit the thesis is the time period for AIIMS. The minimum time of the course is three years and the maximum will be 5-6 years.
  • Eligibility criteria: The eligibility criteria for those candidates who want admission in AIIMS.They just need any one of the given criteria.
    a) They should have MBBS/BDS with a minimum of 55% in the subject concerned by the National Board of Exam.
    b) Candidates who are holding 55% in M.Sc with a nursing specialty will be also eligible for the Ph.D. course in AIIMS.

For the non- Medical candidates

  1. a) They have to appear for exams which consist of 30 marks aptitude related MCQ questions, biostatistics, research methodology, cell biology, lab technology, etc.
    b)Then they have to do an exam of 40 marks about their subject related theory in the form of multiple-choice questions.

Application process: Candidates who are seeking admission to Ph.D. in AIIMS should have applied his/her application form through the official website after completing the registration one should have completed the mandatory requirements.

Also See: Top PhD entrance exams in India


What is the process of a Ph.D. after the UGC NET?

  • The willing candidates who get selected to the Ph.D. program after qualifying UGC NET,  become eligible for financial assistance under JRF scheme for 2 years. 
  • UGC NET which is also known by NET is a test that determines eligibility for college and university lecturer.

Usually, NET is the exam where you are either awarded NET or JRF. Everyone who clears this exam can get the NET qualification.

The process of doing a PhD after completing UGC NET exams actually depends on two conditions which are as follows-

1.Doing PhD when you are awarded NET qualification :

a) For almost all the universities one has to clear the entrance exam for qualifying Ph.D. program. There are very few institutes that don’t conduct any entrance exam.
b) Once you clear the entrance exam, you have to submit the thesis on the chosen subject in your own interest.
c) Now, it’s the University’s responsibility to call you for the interview. This interview depends on your academic profile along with your thesis.
d) Then after some days, those who are selected in the interview are called by the institutes or universities.
e) If your name is in the list, you will be assigned a guide from your respective field.

2.When you are awarded NET along with JRF qualification:

a) Once you have got the JRF selection, nearly all the universities release you from the requirement of appearing in the entrance examination.
b) Then you have to submit a thesis in the subject you have chosen for D.
c)  Now, it’s the University’s intention to call you for the interview. This interview depends on your academic profile along with your thesis.
d) Then after some days, those who are selected in the interview are called by the institutes or universities.
e) If your name in the list, you will be placed under a guide in your respective field.

Is there any entrance exam to do a Ph.D. from IIT?

  • As we mentioned earlier most universities or institutes conduct an entrance exam for admission to Ph.D. and there are also a very few institutes that don’t conduct any entrance exam.
  • But the answer to- ‘is there any entrance exam to do a Ph.D. from IIT ?’ the will be “yes”. You have to get a good score in GATE exam and then perform well in the written exam as well in the interview.
  • While most of the Indian Institute of Technology (IITs) conduct the entrance exam, some rare IITs don’t take the entrance exams for giving admission to Ph.D. courses. They take some other written exams followed by an interview.

We can conclude that those of you who are looking forward to a PhD degree from a reputed university or institute in India must be prepared to face tough tests and a lot of competition to gain a seat.

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