The Savvy Scientist

The Savvy Scientist

Experiences of a London PhD student and beyond

PhD FAQs – A Complete Beginner’s Guide to Doctoral Study

how to do phd

Tempted to do a PhD but have lots of questions? Hopefully this collection of popular PhD FAQs will help you to tick a few off the list!

Note – If you’re already sure that you want to do a PhD, and are looking for guidance on the applications process, check out my post on How to apply for a PhD which includes advice from successful PhD applicants. My post-PhD reflections on the things I regretted from my own PhD may be useful for you too, you can find that post here .

Let’s start with the absolute basics of PhDs!

What does PhD stand for?

PhD stands for Doctor of Philosophy. Doctor of Philosophy ? No matter which subject area your PhD is in you’ll become a Doctor of Philosophy because philosophy derives from Greek to mean “Love of wisdom” which make a bit more sense.

What is a PhD?

A PhD is a type of research degree classified as a doctorate. You get a PhD by doing original research into a topic, typically for at least three years.

There are loads of other types of doctorate and a PhD is simply the most common. EngD is another which is relatively common for industry-funded engineering students here in the UK.

PhD & DPhil what’s the difference?

There is no real difference between a PhD and DPhil, they’re both Doctor of Philosophy qualifications. A small number of historic institutions in the UK such as Oxford and York offer DPhils but the degree itself is equivalent.

How common are PhDs amongst the population?

Approximately 1% of the working population (25-64 years old) have a PhD. This varies a lot by country:

how to do phd

Can you call yourself Doctor with a PhD?

Yes you can. Though to avoid confusion with medical doctors, rarely will PhD-holders use the “Dr” title outside of their workplace.

Sometimes PhD-holders will add the abbreviation PhD after their name if they want to make it clear they are a non-medical doctor, for example “Jeff Clark PhD”.

What have I done about my title since getting my PhD? Nothing so far!

Why do a PhD?

Unlike a lot of other degrees, most PhD students get paid to study . Read more in the finances section below.

There are lots of potential reasons to want to do a PhD. The PhD students from our monthly PhD Profiles series said the following:

how to do phd

Sara found research the most enjoyable part of her undergraduate degree and a PhD was a way to carry on with research.

how to do phd

Ornob wants to pursue a career in evolutionary biology so began with a PhD in the field.

how to do phd

Vivienne has aspirations to be a professor so a PhD is a job requirement to progress in academia.

how to do phd

Jeff (me!) had an interest in the field and enjoyed research. I wrote a whole post with a deep dive on why I decided to do a PhD here .

how to do phd

Floor had enjoyed research during her Masters and didn’t think that she wanted a career in industry, so decided to do a PhD.

It’s important to mention that you don’t need to have a desire to stay in academia to do a PhD. In fact, even if you do want to go into academia afterwards, it’s probably good to know early on just how competitive it can be. Many people sadly cannot make a career out of academia long term.

Enjoy the subject matter and want to spend a few years researching it? That is reason enough to do a PhD. I’ve also now written a whole post about the benefits of having a PhD .

Applying for a PhD

Do you need a masters degree to do a phd.

No you don’t necessarily need a Masters degree to do a PhD as long as you can demonstrate you’d be suitable for a PhD without it.

For a more in-depth answer see the separate post here :

Can You Get a PhD Without a Master’s?

If you don’t have a Masters, I’d recommend checking out Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs) which offer combined Masters + PhD courses. We have discussed CDTs with a graduate in Floor’s post here .

What grades do you need to do a PhD?

Entry requirements for PhDs can vary. In regards to the UK system usually you’d generally be expected to have at least a 2:1 from your undergraduate degree, plus some research experience.

My experience : I (narrowly) got first class honours in my undergrad (MEng) which certainly does help. But if you can demonstrate aptitude in research you usually don’t need a 1:1. It would be expected for you to have done well in any research projects. If you can get your name on a publication then even better!

The easiest way to find out what is expected is to check the PhD advert for entry requirements. For details on applying for a PhD, including how to find PhD adverts, check out my guide here :

How to apply for a PhD

I work in industry, can I come back and do a PhD?

Absolutely! I worked for almost four years between finishing my first degree and starting my PhD.

A PhD is more similar to a job than any other point in your education, so if you’ve spent time in a structured role it can provide you with a good work ethic. If your time in industry adds relevant skills and experience to your application, even better!

I’ve met loads of people older than me who are pursuing PhDs. If it’s your dream, it’s never too late to start a PhD!

What is the social life of a PhD student like?

Let me get this out the way first: PhD students should be able to have a life outside of the lab! If a PhD student has no time away from research I would personally suggest that they were doing things wrong.

Even if you really enjoy your project, it is good for your mental health to have a social life!

No matter the size of your research group there are often departmental and university-wide events. Plus, besides everyone you may meet through your research and department, PhD students can still join societies and sports clubs through the students’ union. I spent one of my birthdays during my PhD on the beach in Morocco with the surf club, don’t let being a PhD student put your off getting involved!

Check out the full post I’ve written: Do PhD Students Have a Social Life? Sharing My Experiences Making Friends and Avoiding PhD Loneliness

If you do go on to do a PhD, make sure to make the most of all the opportunities ! Your time as a PhD student is fantastic for personal growth.

How much holiday do PhD students get?

Sadly unlike undergraduates, PhD students don’t follow fixed semesters. This means no more three month long summer holiday, sorry!

However most departments recommend PhD students take 7-8 weeks of holiday a year , which is more than practically any job outside of academia.

I kept track of all the time off I took during my PhD and you can find the details here , including a month by month breakdown:

Do PhD Students Get Holidays? Sharing How Much Annual Leave I Take

Getting a PhD

How much work is a phd.

For a month I tracked how many hours I was working and what I was working on, so you can see a breakdown of my calendar here . I found I was working for roughly 40 hours a week. Now that I’ve recently finished my PhD, I’d say that that amount of hours was pretty representative of the whole PhD.

How Much Work is a PhD?

I do of course know some people who worked much longer hours, but most PhD students were on a similar schedule to me. Working roughly 9-5 on weekdays. Treat it like a job and you’ll be fine. PhD students don’t need to be slaving away long hours.

I managed to be strict with my time, largely avoiding work late nights or going in at the weekends. One of the main perks of doing a PhD is that you have autonomy and can be flexible with when you work. As long as you get the work done, any reasonable supervisor won’t mind when you’re there.

Yes I’ve heard stories of PhD students having to clock in and out with an expectation that they spend a certain number of hours in the office. I personally think this is stupid and doesn’t build trust. Try to speak to current PhD students from the group when choosing a supervisor .

How is a PhD assessed?

What you submit at the end of your research varies between universities and countries. Sometimes it’s a thesis and other times it can be a bunch of published papers. In all situations you give some kind of presentation and answer questions about your work.

In the UK you usually submit a thesis in preparation for a viva voce . The viva is an oral exam where you discuss your research with several academics and at least one will be an expert in your field. My viva wasn’t as scary as I thought it might be, but nonetheless it was five hours ( FIVE HOURS! ) long. At the end of your viva you’ll get told the outcome of your PhD with any changes to be made to your thesis.

There is often no requirement , to publish your work in journals during a PhD in the UK but it does help.

In other countries you may have to publish a certain number to pass your PhD and effectively these can be submitted instead of the thesis. This approach makes much more sense to me.

How long does it take to get a PhD?

In the UK, typically between three and four years to complete your research and submit the thesis. It can then take a few months for the exam (viva voce) to take place and then for any corrections to the thesis to be made.

Nosey about my PhD? For me personally, I started the PhD on 1st October 2016, submitted my thesis on 17th February 2020, had the viva on 25th March, submitted my minor corrections on 30th March and had the email to say it was officiated on 1st April 2020. Yep, April Fool’s Day…

When you realise your degree certificate will forever say your PhD was awarded on April Fools Day! #academiclife @imperialcollege — Jeff Clark (@savvy_scientist) April 14, 2020

We cover all the stages of a PhD here, including putting the length of a PhD in the perspective of a whole career:

How Long Does It Take To Get A PhD?

Are PhDs really difficult?

No, well not how you might think.

You don’t need to be a genius, but you do have to be smart with how you work. Here I go into how a PhD is pretty different to all the prior years spent in education:

How Hard is a PhD?

Check out my new post covering academic challenges and failures relating to my own PhD: Overcoming Academic Challenges and Failure During a PhD

Money-Related Questions

How much does a phd cost.

If you have funding, which is explained below, all your fees are paid for by the funding source. If you are looking to self-fund, then you’ll have to pay bench-fees/tuition fees, which are usually approximately £4,000 a year for home students in the UK.

Fees vary massively depending on both the country the PhD work takes place in and where you’re from. For example, I believe Australian universities charge around $100,000 in fees to overseas PhD students. Of course ideally you have funding which covers both this and pays a stipend!

Do PhD students pay taxes?

In the UK, PhD students do not pay income tax, national insurance, council tax and student loan repayments. This means that if you can secure funding, even though you may earn less than friends in typical jobs, you get to keep all your earnings!

Do PhD students get paid?

Most PhDs, at least in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) get a stipend: basically a tax-free salary.

How much do PhD students get paid?

At the time of writing, most PhD students in the UK get around £16,000 a year . Doesn’t sound like a lot, but:

  • As mentioned above, you don’t pay income tax, national insurance, council tax or make any student loan repayments. My most popular post is this one , comparing the income of PhD students vs grad jobs and the difference really isn’t that big. Plus it’s only for 3 to 3.5 years!
  • You’re getting paid to learn science, working on something you’re really interested in. It’s amazing.
  • You have a lot more freedom than practically any “proper job”.
  • You’re getting paid, to be a student…
PhD Salary UK: How Much Do PhD Students Get Paid?

In summary, PhD stipends are really not that different to grad starting salaries. Please don’t be put off from a PhD simply because for a few years you might be earning a bit less than if you were working in another job.

Depending on what you want to do with your career, having a CV may lead to higher salaries. What is 3 years of lower wages out of a 40+ year career? The answer: nothing!

Where do I find PhD funding?

Getting funding will likely be the biggest hurdle for you to secure a PhD. I have a post here detailing the different types of funding and how you can find a project with funding attached.

How to Find PhD Funding in the UK

Can you self-fund a PhD?

Yes you can self-fund a PhD, and some students are in a position to do so. Just be careful that you account for university fees and not just your living costs.

Are you allowed to have another job at the same time?

Most universities encourage you to get involved with work within your department as a graduate teaching assistant (GTA). Some countries even insist that you work a certain number of hours as part of a contract for your monthly stipend.

Working as a GTA you might be invigilating exams, helping in tutorials, marking coursework etc and at Imperial you usually earn around £15-£26 an hour.

If you’re looking to work a full time job in tandem with your PhD (and doing the PhD full time), it is best checking your university’s policy. Some may have regulations against you working over a certain number of hours which could impede you from concentrating on the PhD.

There are extra ways to make money on the side which I address here :

How to Earn Money Online for Students

Can you get a mortgage as a PhD student?

Since I did my PhD in London I didn’t even consider buying somewhere during my PhD. I’m not interested in being tied into a massive mortgage for 25 years to buy a shoebox!

If I’d accepted my PhD offer for a CDT at Leeds I certainly would have tried to buy somewhere with my partner. I found this page useful when doing research. Buying a property with a partner who has a normal job would definitely make the mortgage application a whole lot more successful.

Will a PhD help your career?

This depends on what you want to do with your career. Some example scenarios:

  • Staying in academia – a PhD is usually required
  • Certain technical jobs in industry – a PhD may be required or a big bonus
  • Non-technical jobs – a bonus

I do not imagine any scenarios where having a PhD is worse than not having one. It is true though that for certain careers there may be other things you could do which would be a better use of your time, for example gaining more direct work experience.

If you want to do a PhD that shouldn’t stop you though, and considering the length of your career taking a few years out for a PhD is inconsequential.

Whichever career path you fancy taking, if you are at all interested in doing a PhD I think you should at least apply.

PhDs in London

Can someone afford to live in london as a phd student.

Yes! I lived in London for my PhD and actually was able to save money every single month while taking many holidays and not living in a tent.

I have a few posts sharing my experiences living in London which you may find useful:

For a month last year I tracked all my expenses to get an idea of my costs living in London as a student, you can find it here .

Sharing my monthly living expenses as a student in London: September 2019

Related to reducing costs, I learned to cycle in London and loved it. It saved me about £100 a month too!

Learning to cycle in London: my first 1000 miles

On top of that, for the whole of 2019 (third year PhD) I tracked my money, and the report is here :

My personal finances report for 2019

Where is good to live in London?

I’ve lived in three different houses during my PhD in London and have a pretty good idea now of good places to live in London. You can read this whole post talking about living in London as a student and the associated costs including a breakdown of rent :

London student accommodation: Breaking down the cost of living in London for students

Bonus: Read the journeys of PhD students

Before I started my PhD I had a ton of questions and nobody who I could ask about their experience. The reality is that many of these PhD FAQs have a variety of answers as everyone’s PhD story is different. Therefore if you’d like to hear first hand from people who are going through the journey check out my series of PhD profiles , with a new profile every month. You can also discover some of their top tips for applying!

how to do phd

If you’d like personalised help with your PhD application I am now starting to offer a small number of one-to-one sessions. Please contact me to find out more or click here to book a call.

Is there anything else you’d like to know to help with a potential PhD application? Let me know and I’ll write about it! You can subscribe to stay up to date here:

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Related Posts

how to do phd

PhD Salary UK: How Much Do PhD Students Get Paid Compared to Graduates?

5th February 2024 5th February 2024

how to do phd

The Benefits of Having a PhD

7th September 2022 30th January 2024

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My top PhD regrets: 10 lessons learned by a PhD grad

21st April 2022 25th September 2023

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how to do phd

How to get a PhD?

Interested in obtaining a phd learn more about the steps to earn a phd, careers with phd, list of colleges offering programs and more..

Updated by TCM Staff on 15th April 2021

How to get a PhD: Steps and Requirements Explained

15th April 2021

College Monk — How to Get a PhD

A PhD is a postgraduate doctoral degree awarded to those students who produce an original thesis and make a significant research contribution to their respective field.

PhDs are available for those in a variety of different fields, and it’s often considered the highest and most well-respected degree available. Earning a PhD truly establishes someone as an expert in their field and indicates the deepest level of knowledge on a particular subject.

What is a PhD?

PhD — technically short for Doctor of Philosophy — is a type of doctoral degree, often considered the highest-level degree one can earn.

A PhD is a type of research degree that requires students to do an extensive amount of research and produce an original work, known as a dissertation.

People often use their PhD as a launchpad to pursue a career in academia. But, it’s also a popular option for those pursuing a career in STEM.

Those with PhDs make up a fairly exclusive club. Data from the US Census Bureau shows that fewer than 5% of the population holds a doctorate. And it’s not surprising, considering it often takes up to eight years to achieve this coveted title and requires writing an original dissertation the length of a book.

A PhD is actually just one type of doctoral degree. PhDs are research-focused. The other type of doctorate is application-focused (also known as an applied doctorate).

why PhD image


PhD admission requirements 

Not just anyone can earn a PhD. Given how well-respected the title is, it takes a lot of work and very specific criteria to enter a doctoral program.

The most basic requirement that all PhD candidates must have is a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. You won’t be accepted without this. You also usually need a high GPA.

Another requirement is a statement of purpose. In this statement, doctoral candidates will describe why they’re seeking a PhD, what they’ve done so far to prepare themselves, and what goals they plan to accomplish later.

Finally, PhD applicants will need several letters of recommendation. 

If you’re considering pursuing a PhD, it’s critical that you work to build relationships with professors and mentors who might recommend you. There’s a lot of competition, especially for the top PhD programs, and excellent recommendations will help you to stand out.

Keep in mind that the requirements might vary somewhat from one school to the next, so it’s important to do your research and decide ahead of time where you’ll apply.

Steps to obtain a PhD

Earning a PhD is no easy feat. It takes most students years to do so. Let’s look into the steps someone must take to get a PhD.

Step 1: Complete an undergraduate degree

Before you can take the next step toward your PhD, you’ll first have to receive a bachelor’s degree through an undergraduate program at a reputable university.

This education will provide the foundation for your more advanced coursework later. It’s important that you maintain a high GPA throughout your undergraduate years.

Step 2: Complete a master's program

Once you complete your bachelor’s degree, the next natural step is to pursue a master’s degree.

Graduate school requires that a student take the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) or the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT). A master’s degree typically takes about two years to achieve, and will be in a particular field of study.

While not technically required for a PhD, most people earn a master’s degree before earning their PhD.

Step 3: Apply for a PhD program

Once you complete your graduate program, it’s time to apply for your PhD program.

There are many doctoral programs to choose from, so it’s important that you research and find the best fit for your field of study.

During the application process, you’ll have to submit the following:

  • A completed application
  • Undergraduate and graduate transcripts
  • Your GMAT or GRE scores
  • Letters of recommendation
  • A statement of purpose

Step 4: Complete your coursework

When you begin your PhD program, you’ll start by taking your coursework. 

As is usually the case with undergraduate and graduate programs, you’ll likely have some required courses and some electives. Usually, students will prepare their own plan of study for the courses they’ll take over the next couple of years.

Step 5: Prepare a research proposal

A research proposal is a document that outlines what, exactly, a PhD student will focus on during their research. 

A research proposal should include the major question or questions someone plans to answer with their dissertation, and how exactly they plan to arrive at that answer. 

Even though the proposal won’t be a part of your final thesis, it plays a vital role in shaping your PhD.

Step 6: Complete a literature review

The literature review is the first thing you’ll do before starting your project report.

In this review, you’ll conduct an in-depth study of all the research in your field. During this phase, a doctoral student should critically assess the existing literature on their topic and find gaps they may be able to fill with their research.

Step 7: Research and collect results

Once a student has completed their literature review, they’ll do more first-hand research and perform experiments to help answer the questions they’re exploring for their dissertation.

Step 8: Produce a thesis and write a dissertation

Doctoral Dissertation Image


Once you’ve completed your research and gathered sufficient results, it’s time to write your final thesis and dissertation. 

Though the two terms are often used interchangeably, your thesis is the argument or conclusion you’ve arrived at, while your dissertation is where you demonstrate your thesis.

Your dissertation is the culmination of all the research you’ve done. Dissertations are original work and often focus on a newly developed theory. A dissertation is roughly the length of a book, and can often take years to produce.

Step 9: Viva Voce

Viva voce is a Latin phrase that means “with living voice” or “by word of mouth.” It’s also the final — and one of the most important — steps in the process of earning a PhD.

Unlike other degrees, where you take a final exam, a PhD candidate must defend their thesis before a panel of appointment examiners. It’s common for the examiners to ask many questions, and this process can often take several hours.

Once you successfully complete your viva voce, you’ll be awarded your doctorate and can add that coveted “Dr.” to your title.

Online colleges offering PhD programs

Many students choose to pursue a PhD through an online doctoral program for the flexibility and convenience it brings. 

Here are a few popular online PhD programs:

What can you do with a PhD?

A PhD is the highest-degree that someone can earn. But after all those years of work, what exactly can you do with your degree?

One of the most common career paths for someone with a PhD is academia. Those with a doctorate degree often go on to teach at universities or spend their careers performing research, not all that different from what they did to earn the degree in the first place.

But academia isn’t the only option for PhD recipients, nor is it the most lucrative. 

PhD students often study STEM fields — science, technology, engineering, and math. Those industries are thriving today more than ever, making it a great field for those holding a doctorate.

What can you be in phD Image


Some of the highest-paying PhD fields include:

  • Information assurance
  • Computer science
  • Biochemistry and molecular biology
  • Organic chemistry

Though academia and STEM may be the most common paths for PhD participants, they’re hardly the only ones. There are many options available to someone with a PhD. Other non-STEM fields include clinical psychology, market research, business development, linguistics, and intelligence.

A doctorate is the highest level of degree someone can achieve. There’s no doubt that it takes a considerable amount of work, and it takes most people years to achieve this recognition. 

It’s important to understand these trade-offs before you get started. But once you earn your PhD, you will hold one of the most highly-respected titles in the academic field and have a lot of doors open to you.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. 1) How long does a PhD take?

A. According to CBS news on an average, an American Student takes 8.2 years to complete their Ph.D. This can change according to various courses and in various countries.

2. 2) What qualifications do I need?

A. In US Bachelors degree holders can also apply for Ph.D. For applying in a PhD program one should have completed 16 years of formal education. Qualification in the entrance test is also necessary.

3. 3) Can I take PhD as a part-time?

A. Yes, part-time PhD is possible, and it has a more flexible schedule with classes and degree completion. In some programs, a minimum one-year residency is required. But, part-time PhD will take more time, and managing a part-time PhD will be more challenging.

4. 4) What is M.Phil?

A. A M.Phil qualification is less advanced than that of a PhD. In this, the students are expected to master a content area and it can be mastered in two years. Moreover, the PhD dissertation takes more time than an M.Phil dissertation.

5. 5) What are Financial Aid options available for me?

A. For Ph.D. there are a lot of financial aid opportunities available in the form of Scholarship and loans. Eg: National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program.

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How to Get a PhD

Last Updated: January 10, 2024 Fact Checked

This article was co-authored by Carrie Adkins, PhD . Carrie Adkins is the cofounder of NursingClio, an open access, peer-reviewed, collaborative blog that connects historical scholarship to current issues in gender and medicine. She completed her PhD in American History at the University of Oregon in 2013. While completing her PhD, she earned numerous competitive research grants, teaching fellowships, and writing awards. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 682,955 times.

A PhD, short for Doctor of Philosophy, may help you secure a position as a college or university professor, a researcher in a government or industrial laboratory, a consultant, or an independent practitioner. [1] X Research source If you have the curiosity to explore a subject in depth and the tenacity to do so for many years, applying for a graduate PhD program may be an excellent step in reaching your full potential. By learning the steps necessary to complete your prerequisite education, apply to graduate schools, and complete the work, you'll be well on your way.

Completing Prerequisite Education

Step 1 Complete an undergraduate degree in a broad field.

  • Generally, it's recommended that students interested in pursuing advanced degrees should develop a wide skill-base during their undergrad. In other words, while you may ultimately be interested in studying Zoology, an undergrad degree in basic Biology might provide you with a diverse base that you'll be able to narrow in your future studies.
  • Many universities offer majors designed to funnel you into an advanced degree. Pre-law majors and Pre-med majors are two notable examples of this. Talk to your academic advisor about your interest in pursuing a PhD after you graduate, if you've yet to select a major.

Step 2 Develop a close relationship with at least one faculty member.

  • A good way to develop a relationship with a professor is to take multiple classes with her and join her lab, or research team. Go to office hours, introduce yourself, and express your interest in advanced degree work. Most professors are more than happy to work with a talented student who shows a sincere interest in their work.
  • It's also a good idea to forge relationships with graduate students at your school. Speak to graduate students and faculty about their experiences at the school, even if you plan on going elsewhere for your advanced degree. Many will be happy to let you know about the advantages and disadvantages of studying for and obtaining a Ph.D. It can be a great way to get insider information and get ahead of the game.

Step 3 Obtain experience in the field with a research internship.

  • Work-study programs in your field of interest can also be extremely attractive of graduate applications. If you're studying English, try to secure employment in the Writing Lab, rather than the cafeteria to give yourself an edge and valuable experience.

Step 4 Make contacts in your field.

  • National and regional conferences, such as the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR), allow dedicated undergrads the opportunity to rub elbows with experts and contribute to the discussion.

Step 5 Start researching graduate programs in your junior year.

  • Look for programs with a good reputation, but give more weight to the faculty and the research interests of the other graduate students at prospective schools. What you're looking for in an advanced degree program is camaraderie and common ground, not an arbitrary ranking on some "prestigious" list.
  • The applications are expensive--sometimes $50 or $80 dollars each--so you won't be able to apply to all programs. Try to select a range of programs to apply to: choose a few big dream schools with great facilities and prestigious faculty and lots of competition to see if you can't get in. Apply to smaller programs that you'd also be happy attending. Apply to as many as you can afford to give yourself the best chance.
  • For some fields, a master's degree will be a more appropriate subsidiary or even terminal degree. At worst, a master's degree can be an excellent primer for the graduate school life, especially if teaching assistantships or fellowships are available.

Applying to Graduate Programs

Step 1 Take the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) general or subject test

  • While most Master's programs only require the general test, which is like an advanced version of the SAT, some Ph.D programs will require that you take the subject test, which is given in several sections, including biology, literature, and other fields. It's a much more difficult test than the general--the reading list for the Subject test in lit is several hundred authors from a variety of periods. Make sure you take the correct test for the program to which you're applying. [5] X Research source
  • Schedule your test early in the application season, to give yourself enough time to retake it, if necessary. The test can be somewhat expensive, more than $100, so start studying now with a good-quality commercial study guide.
  • When you arrive for the test, you can arrange to have your scores sent directly to the graduate programs you'll be applying to. This has the advantage of cutting out an extra step in your application process, but also ensures that the school will see your scores, good or bad. If you're worried about your score, arrange to have them sent to you instead.

Step 2 Secure letters of recommendation from people familiar with your work.

  • It's important to ask for these letters as early as possible, preferably at least 3 months before you need to submit your applications. Professors will be inundated with letter-writing requests at the last minute, increasing the possibility of them writing a poor evaluation. Don't be one of those students.

Carrie Adkins, PhD

Carrie Adkins, PhD

" Ask well in advance, and supply any materials that might help them ," adds Carrie Adkins, PhD in History. "Professors can only write so many thorough, detailed letters of recommendation, so if you help them out by asking a month or two before the deadline and providing them with your CV and statement of purpose, you’ll be more likely to get their best efforts ."

Step 3 Write a statement of purpose.

  • If you're planning on applying to lots of schools, it can be a time-saver to write a "form" version of your letter, allowing space to customize the letter for more specific programs. It's very important to tailor each statement of purpose to the particular program to which you're applying. This demonstrates your seriousness and interest in the school. Each letter should read as if you're only interested in studying at that school.

Step 4 Assemble your application packets and submit them by the deadline.

  • a completed application form
  • Undergraduate and graduate transcripts
  • A curriculum vitae (CV) or resume
  • Recent GRE scores
  • Statement of Purpose
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (for international students)
  • 2-3 Letters of Recommendation

Step 5 Apply for teaching or research assistantships.

  • Applying for financial aid will often involve supplementary application materials, like a teaching statement, research statement, or other short writing prompts. Research the specific requirements at each university for specific instructions when applying for financial aid.
  • If full funding isn't an option, consider applying for need-based scholarships. Often, these are available to minority applicants or students in financial straits. Likewise, the application fee can often be waived. Contact individual departments when you're applying to check about need-based application waivers.

Completing Your Degree

Step 1 Choose a major professor and committee.

  • Choose people who you can work with, and who share a common research interest, as well as people you get along with personally. Personal differences often pop up during these kinds of working relationships, making it important to avoid them in the beginning.
  • Your proposed academic advisor/research supervisor should ideally be named in your statement of purpose, with the reasons you want to work with that person. Those reasons should show that you know something about that person's background and why he or she would make an effective advisor.

Step 2 Submit a plan of study.

  • The names and signatures of your committee members , the program director, and the student. You'll also need your student ID number and other personal information.
  • A brief statement of your academic and research goals . This will typically be a super-condensed version of your research question or thesis statement, probably no more than 50-100 words.
  • A list of the required courses you'll take over the next two years, listing course number, title, department, and instructor, as well as the semester you intend to take the course. Most programs require around 12 hours of required coursework for an advanced degree.
  • A list of the elective courses you'll take , with corresponding course numbers, titles, departments, and instructors, as well as the semester you intend to take the course. Most programs require somewhere between 20 and 30 elective hours for an advanced degree.
  • Dissertation hours . When you've passed your preliminary examinations, your coursework will change to independent research and dissertation work, but you'll still be registered for a course with a course number and a particular number of credit hours, with your major professor or thesis chair as the instructor. This information will also need to be included on the plan of study form.

Step 3 Complete the requisite coursework.

  • In graduate school, the course load is usually somewhat less than the undergraduate degree, because of the intensity of the coursework and other research or teaching responsibilities. A "full load" is usually considered 6 or 9 hours, though you'll be doing 20 or more hours of teaching or research in a given week. [6] X Research source
  • For a PhD student, a typical coursework semester might involve three courses: a required core class and two elective courses. Typically, elective courses will still be in the department the student is studying, if not the particular program. For example, a comparative lit PhD studying Medieval literature may take a 20th century poetry course in the English department as an elective, though probably not a biology class.

Step 4 Complete your written examination.

  • The written examination, sometimes called the "prelim," will typically be submitted to the department chair by your major professor, then administered to you toward the end of your second year of classes. When you pass the exam, you'll be considered "Post-Prelim" and may begin the process of completing your dissertation. [7] X Research source

Step 5 Begin performing research and collecting data.

  • Start with a research question. A research question is what you'll hope to answer over the course of your dissertation research. It needs to be narrow, but with broad-reaching implications. A starting research question might be something like, "How are women represented during the silver age of American comic book publishing?" or "What are the implications of spontaneous genetic mutation during breeding in drosophila, and what effect might this have on cancer research?"

Step 6 Explore the literature in your research field.

  • As you complete your coursework and add complexity to the topic in which you're interested, you'll likely change and add depth to your initial research interest. That's fine. Let the research grow your understanding of the topic, and change the way you approach it. That means you're on the right track.

Step 8 Prepare a doctoral dissertation/thesis

  • In the humanities , several semesters following your coursework and preliminary examination will be devoted to completing the research involved with your interests. During this time, you'll be expected to periodically update your committee on your progress, providing them with literature reviews and outlines, depending on your arrangement. You may also be expected to publish supplementary papers periodically in academic journals.
  • In the sciences , you'll spend your post-prelim semesters doing lab work, or other field work depending on your field of study. The time will be spent collecting data and performing experiments to move your research forward, to be collected in the dissertation, and probably published in peer-reviewed journals.

Step 9 Prepare for the oral defense of your dissertation

  • Most "defenses" are cordial affairs, not debates, though you should expect to be pressed and argued with regarding your methods, your conclusions, and other aspects of your work. The best way to prepare for your defense is to know your dissertation and your research inside and out.
  • At a successful defense, you'll need to present yourself and your work well both orally and in writing to earn recognition as a PhD candidate and a researcher. Practice delivering your main point quickly and your overall presentation or paper with confidence.

Funding Your Research

Step 1 Apply for departmental grants or additional appointments.

  • In the hard sciences , money is allocated to provide different labs, projects, and individuals money on a competitive case-by-case basis. To apply, you'll typically write a detailed proposal of your research goals and submit it to the department.
  • In the humanities , it's also common to seek subsequent teaching appointments in tangential fields: if your research involves the representation of women in comic books, and you've been teaching in the English department, why not pick up a special-topics course in Women's Studies?

Step 2 Apply for private research grants.

Surviving the Process

Step 1 Avoid petty competition and departmental rivalry.

  • Don't Try to do everything at once. Because you will spend several years to earn your doctorate, it's important to slow down and do everything with the attention to detail the process deserves. You don't want to get your dissertation hung up because of a silly documentation error you rushed through.

Step 3 Be tenacious and display initiative.

  • During the time you spend working on your doctorate, you'll face a variety of challenges. The lab's funding may be cut. You may lose grant money. Your paper may get rejected from a conference. Fail early and fail often. Create opportunities for yourself and work around the challenges.

Step 4 Stay organized.

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About This Article

Carrie Adkins, PhD

Before you can get a PhD, you'll need to complete your prerequisite education and take the GRE, or Graduate Record Exam. You will also need letters of recommendation from 1 or 2 distinguished professors in your field to submit with your application. Once you are admitted to graduate school, you should seek out funding opportunities, like grants or teaching positions. To earn your PhD, you will need to take courses, pass written and oral exams, conduct original research in your field, and write a dissertation. For more ways to get your PhD for free, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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5 routes to getting a Doctorate

While most of those studying for a PhD take the PhD by thesis pathway, there are five viable routes to achieving a Doctorate degree

PhD by thesis

This is the most common means of getting a Doctorate degree. Over the three or four years of research at university, your PhD supervisor will support you as you aim to produce a thesis based on your research proposal .

A thesis is typically 60,000-90,000 words in length - although this can vary between institutions. For instance, the University of Glasgow's College of Social Sciences expects a thesis to be 70,000-100,000 words including references, bibliography and appendices, while the University of Cambridge has set an upper limit of 80,000 words.

Once completed, you'll need to defend your PhD thesis in front of a panel of examiners during your viva voce .

PhD by publication

This route involves submitting previously published work - such as books, book chapters and journal articles, which together form a coherent body of work and show evidence of an original contribution to a particular field of study.

It's often taken by mid-career academics that haven't had the opportunity to undertake a standard Doctorate degree.

Generally, a minimum of five to eight published pieces are required, but this varies between institutions and depends on their length. The published work will be assessed to the same rigorous standards as a traditional PhD by thesis.

You must also provide a written supporting statement, which can range from 5,000 to 20,000 words, and present your work to an academic committee. A supervisor will assist you with selecting which publications to submit and with the supporting statement.

Some universities accept only their own graduates for a PhD by publication, while others restrict this route to their academic staff. In general, you should have graduated from your first degree at least seven years ago to be eligible.

For example, The University of Manchester has published its own Guidance for the PhD By Published Work , with eligibility only extending to current members of staff.

Professional Doctorate

Geared primarily towards current professionals in vocational sectors such as healthcare , teaching and education , and engineering and manufacturing , this type of Doctorate degree includes a significant taught component and a smaller research project.

Professional Doctorates are often taken on a part-time basis and can last between two and eight years. Like their standard PhD counterparts, they usually begin in October or January.

While you won't typically be looking to get an academic job , your research is expected to contribute to theory as well as professional practice. Projects often revolve around a real-life issue that affects your employer.

Several professional Doctorates, such as the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy), are accredited by a professional body - for instance, the Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) and The British Psychological Society (BPS) - and may also lead to a professional qualification .

Common titles for graduates of professional Doctorate degrees include:

  • Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
  • Doctor of Education (EdD)
  • Doctor of Engineering (EngD)
  • Doctor of Medicine (MD).

Unlike many professional Doctorates, the EngD is typically offered as a full-time course and is aimed at young engineering graduates with little or no professional experience.

Explore what's currently available at Find a Professional Doctorate .

Integrated PhD

This four-year qualification, also known as the New Route PhD, involves studying a one-year research Masters degree (MRes) before progressing onto a three-year PhD.

Offered by a select number of universities across the UK, integrated PhDs are supported by the government and the British Council through UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) . Visit Research Council funding for further information on research and funding for different types of PhD.

The integrated PhD involves a combination of taught materials, practical experience and advanced research. This allows you to learn subject-specific methodologies, while building the transferable skills that will enable you to become a leader in your chosen profession.

Institutions can also develop personalised integrated PhD programmes to meet each student's needs. For example, universities may offer you the opportunity to gain a postgraduate certificate (PGCert) in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education - perfect if you're considering a career as a higher education lecturer .

As PhDs are based primarily on independent research rather than time spent in lectures and seminars, distance learning has always been a viable route for many Doctoral students.

PhDs by distance learning offered by course providers such as The Open University are therefore a good option to consider if you've got family or work commitments or are an international student - as this gives you the chance to undertake Doctoral research without having to live close to your chosen institution. It's also a suitable mode of study if your subject requires you to be based in a specific location away from the university.

For the most part, you'll be in touch with your supervisor by phone, email or Skype/Zoom. You'll need to bear in mind that even if you opt for this form of research, you'll generally still need to attend university for one or two weeks of each academic year for meetings and to receive research skills training. Your final examination may be undertaken either face-to-face or virtually.

With online PhDs, you can usually register as a full or part-time student. The level of fees you pay varies between institutions - some charge the same as for a standard PhD while others offer a reduced rate.

Check that any funding you plan to apply for is available to distance learning students, as this isn't always the case.

Search for distance learning PhDs .

Find out more

  • Explore what is a PhD?
  • Sort out funding for postgraduate study .
  • Consider what to do after completing your PhD .

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How to Choose a PhD Program

Successfully completing a doctoral program requires commitment and perseverance. the most important step in this process is to consider whether academic life is right for you and what kind of doctoral program — from discipline to environment — will be the best fit for your goals and preferences., we asked our current students and faculty, “what is key to making this decision” following are some questions they suggested you ask yourself, and answer, in order to select the appropriate program..

First, a basic description of a doctoral program:

As a doctoral student, you will spend the first two years of your program exploring areas of interest through coursework. In the two to three years that follow, you will select and pursue your own research topic, one which will make an original contribution to the existing body of knowledge in your field. Your original research culminates in an extensive written document known as the doctoral dissertation.

General Questions

If you are considering your career options, answering these questions will help you clarify your goals and ambitions — and determine if a doctoral program is the right decision for you.

  • Am I the type of person who is suited for a career in academia? Am I independently motivated to answer questions that I find interesting?
  • Do I want to spend the rest of my career doing research, as well as reading and talking about it?
  • Do I have a strong enough academic background in order to apply and be accepted by the program?
  • Is now the time for me to pursue a PhD?
  • What are my goals after completing the PhD?

Program Questions

If you know you want to pursue a doctoral degree, answers to these questions will help you select the right program for you.

  • How many faculty are working with students?
  • How many faculty members are doing research in areas related to my own interests?
  • What opportunities are there to work with a variety of faculty and to be exposed to different approaches in research (modeling, work with data, experiment design)?
  • Am I technically prepared to learn to do research in this field?
  • Most PhD students change their vision of research and many change their intended concentration area after joining the program and being exposed to a variety of research styles. Does my program of choice offer flexibility needed to do so?
  • Is there financial support for students to attend academic conferences to present their own research?
  • What opportunities are there for students to participate in colloquia, both as an attendee and as a presenter?
  • What is the department’s placement record? What types of jobs do graduates take and where?
  • Finally, how well do graduates of the program perform in the long term (contributing to the field through publication, practice of management and earning tenure)?

Hear From Our Doctoral Community

From undergrad to phd, uniting great minds, wharton’s stat bridge ma program takes flight, why this phd student chose to study business ethics at wharton.

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how to do phd

10 things you need to know before starting a PhD degree

So you want to do a PhD degree, huh? Here we've got everything you need to know about getting started.

So you want to do a PhD degree, huh? Are you sure about that? It’s not going to be an easy decision, so I’ve put together a list of 10 things you need to know before starting a PhD degree. Oh, and don’t panic!

I have recently graduated from the University of Manchester with a PhD in Plant Sciences after four difficult, but enjoyable, years. During those four years, I often felt slightly lost – and there was more than one occasion on which I didn’t even want to imagine writing up my thesis in fear of delving into fits of panic.

On reflection, I realise that – to quote a colleague – commencing my PhD was like “jumping in the deep end with your eyes closed.” If only I’d known to take a deep breath.

1. Are you sure you want to do a PhD degree?

Let’s be under no false impressions, completing a PhD isn’t easy. There will be times when you feel like Wile E Coyote chasing after the Roadrunner – a little bit out of your depth a lot of the time. It’s four years of your life, so make sure it is what you really want to do.

If you want to pursue a career in science, a PhD isn’t always necessary.

It is possible to make great inroads into industry without a doctoral degree. That said, a PhD can also be a very useful qualification with many transferable skills to add to your CV.

By the time you’ll have finished, you can include essentials such as time management, organisational skills, prioritising workloads, attention to detail, writing skills, presenting to an audience – and most importantly – resilience, to name but a few.

2. Choose your project, and supervisor, wisely.

This is  very  important.

Time after time, our experienced scientists at EI, including Erik Van-Den-Bergh (and I agree) say, “ make sure you’re extremely passionate about exactly that subject. ” When I saw the PhD opening that I eventually was offered, I remember being demonstrably ecstatic about the project before I’d even started it.

I was always interested in calcium signalling and organised a meeting with my potential supervisor immediately, which (to quote Billy Connolly) I leapt into in a mood of gay abandon.

Not only does this help you to keep engaged with your project even through the painstakingly slow times, it also greatly enhances your ability to sell yourself in an interview. If you can show passion and enthusiasm about the project and the science then you’ll be that one step ahead of other candidates – which is all the more important now that many studentships are competitive.

You have to  be the best  out of many, often exceptional candidates.

However, as important as it is to be passionate about your project, make sure that the person who will be supervising you is worthy.

Does your potential supervisor have a prolific track record of publishing work? What is the community of scientists like in the lab you may be working in? Are there experienced post-doctoral scientists working in the lab? Who will your advisor be? Is your supervisor an expert in the field you are interested in? Is the work you will be doing ground-breaking and novel, or is it quite niche?

There is nothing more frustrating – and I know many PhD degree students with this problem – than having a supervisor who is rarely there to talk to, shows little interest in your work, and cannot help when you are struggling in the third year of your project and some guidance would be much appreciated.

Personally, and I was very lucky to have this, I think it’s incredibly useful to have two supervisors. My PhD degree was split between the University of Manchester and the Marine Biological Association in Plymouth. Between my supervisors, I had two people with expertise in different fields, who could give me some fantastic advice from different perspectives. This also meant that I had two people to check through my thesis chapters and provide useful comments on my drafts.

PhD students networking during the last Student Symposium

Make sure you are passionate about your subject before taking it to PhD level. And by passionate I mean  really  passionate.

For a start, you will most likely have to write a literature review in your first three months, which if done well will form the main bulk of your thesis introduction and will save you a lot of stress and strain when it comes to writing up.

At the end of your first year, you will have to write a continuation report, which is your proof that you deserve to carry on to the end of your three or four years. This doesn’t leave much time for lab work, which means time management is incredibly important. If you think you’ll be able to swan in at 11 and leave at 3, think again.

Fundamentally, never, ever rest on your laurels! As tempting as it may be to slack-off slightly in the second year of your four year PhD, don’t.

4. Be organised.

This is a no-brainer but still, it’s worth a mention. Take an hour on a Monday morning to come up with a list of short-term and long-term goals. You’ll probably have to present your work at regular lab meetings, so it’s always worth knowing what has to be done (lest you look a pillock in front of the lab when there’s nothing to show for your last two weeks.)

It’s always good to have a timeline of what will be done when. If you have a PCR, maybe you can squeeze in another experiment, read a few papers, start writing the introduction to your thesis, or even start collecting the data you already have into figures.

The more good use you make of your time, the easier it’ll be to finish your PhD in the long run. Plus, it’s lovely to sit back and look at actual graphs, rather than worry about having enough to put into a paper. Once you’ve typed up your data, you’ll realise you’ve done far more than you had anticipated and the next step forward will be entirely more apparent.

5. Embrace change – don’t get bogged down in the details.

Felix Shaw – one of our bioinformatics researchers at EI – put it best when he said, “ it felt like I was running into brick walls all the way through [my PhD]… you’d run into a brick wall, surmount it, only to run straight into another. ”

You’ll find that, often, experiments don’t work. What might seem like a great idea could turn out to be as bad as choosing to bat first on a fresh wicket on the first day of the third Ashes test at Edgbaston. (Yeah, we don't know what that means either - Ed).

Resilience is key while completing your PhD. Be open to change and embrace the chance to experiment in different ways. You might even end up with a thesis chapter including all of your failures, which at the very least is something interesting to discuss during your  viva voce .

6. Learn how to build, and use, your network.

As a PhD student, you are a complete novice in the world of science and most things in the lab will be – if not new to you – not exquisitely familiar. This matters not, if you take advantage of the people around you.

Firstly, there are lab technicians and research assistants, who have probably been using the technique you are learning for years and years. They are incredibly experienced at a number of techniques and are often very happy to help show you how things are done.

There are postdocs and other PhD students, too. Not only can they help you with day-to-day experiments, they can offer a unique perspective on how something is done and will probably have a handy back-catalogue of fancy new techniques to try.

There are also a bunch of PIs, not limited to your own, who are great to talk to. These people run labs of their own, have different ideas, and might even give you a job once you’ve completed your PhD.

Don’t limit yourself to the labs directly around you, however. There are a massive number of science conferences going on all around the world. Some of them, such as the Society of Biology Conference, take place every year at a similar time in different locations, attracting many of the leaders in their respective fields.

If you are terrified by the prospect of speaking at a full-blown science conference and having your work questioned by genuine skeptics, there are also many student-led conferences which will help you dangle your fresh toes in the murky waters of presenting your work.

One such conference, the Second Student Bioinformatics Symposium, which took place at Earlham Institute in October 2016, was a great place for candidates to share their projects with peers, who are often much more friendly than veteran researchers with 30 year careers to their name when it comes to the questions at the end of your talk.

Another great reason to attend conferences, of course, is the social-side too – make the most of this. You never know who you might meet and connect with over a few drinks once the talks are over and the party commences.

7. Keep your options open.

You should be aware that for every 200 PhD students,  only 7  will get a permanent academic post , so it’s  incredibly unlikely that you’ll become a Professor  – and even if you make PI, it probably won’t be until your mid-forties.

You may also, despite having commenced along the academic path, decide that actually, working in a lab environment isn’t for you. Most PhD graduates, eventually, will not pursue an academic career, but move on to a wide range of other vocations.

It might be that Science Communication is more up your street. This was certainly the case for me – and I made sure that I took part in as many public engagement events as possible while completing my PhD. Most Universities have an active public engagement profile, while organisations such as STEM can provide you with ample opportunities to interact with schools and the general public.

You might also consider entrepreneurship as a route away from academia, which might still allow you to use your expert scientific knowledge. There are a variety of competitions and workshops available to those with a business mind, a strong example being Biotechnology YES.

I, for example, took part in the Thought for Food Challenge, through which I have been able to attend events around the world and meet a vast array of like-minded individuals. Many of the participants from the challenge have gone on to set up successful businesses and have even found jobs as a result of the competition.

10 things phd fire

8. Balance.

Remember that you still have a life outside of your PhD degree – and that this can be one of the greatest opportunities to make amazing friends from around the world.

A science institute is usually home to the brightest students from a variety of countries and can provide a chance to experience a delightful range of different people and cultures. Don’t just stick to the people in your lab, go to events for postgraduate students and meet people from all over campus.

There are usually academic happy hours happening on Fridays after work where you can buy cheap beer, or some lucky institutions even have their own bar. At Norwich Research Park, we not only have the Rec Centre, along with bar, swimming pool, calcetto, samba classes, archery, and a range of other activities, but there are also biweekly “Postdoc pub clubs” which are very fun to join on a Tuesday evening.

Maintain your hobbies and keep up with friends outside of your PhD and you’ll probably find it’s not that gruelling a process after all.

Plus, the people you meet and become friends with might be able to help you out – or at least be able to offer a sympathetic shoulder.

10 things phd relaxing

9. Practical advice.

If, after reading all of this, you’re still going to march forth and claim your doctorhood, then this section should be rather useful.

Firstly, make sure your data is backed up. It’s amazing how many people don’t do this and you’d be bonkers not to. Keep your work saved on a shared drive, so that if your computer decides to spontaneously combust upon pressing the return key, you won’t have lost all of your precious work – or have to go through every one of your lab books and type it all up again.

Secondly, don’t leave your bag in the pub with your half-written thesis in it. I did this, the bag was fine, I was in a state of terror for at least half an hour before the kind person at Weatherspoons located said bag.

Thirdly, read. Read broadly, read anything and everything that’s closely related to your project – or completely unrelated. It’s sometimes amazing where you might find a stroke of inspiration, a new technique you hadn’t thought of … or even in idea of where you might like to go next.

Finally, ask questions – all of the time. No matter how stupid it might sound in your head, everyone’s probably been asked it before, and if you don’t ask, you don’t get.

You’ll probably look far less stupid if you just ask the person standing next to you how the gradient PCR function works on your thermal cycler rather than standing there randomly prodding buttons and looking flustered, anyway.

10. Savour the positives.

At the end of all of this, it has to be said that doing a PhD is absolutely brilliant. There’s no other time in your life that you’ll be this free to pursue your very own project and work almost completely independently. By the time you come to the end of your PhD, you will be the leading expert in the world on something. A real expert! Until the next PhD student comes along …

Related reading.

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A PhD, is it worth it? Just ask our students

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The realities of doing a PhD

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My advice for PhD students? See what bites

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COVID and my PhD: to lockdown and back

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How does a PhD work and how to find the right one

Becky Shaw, PhD student at Earlham Institute

Building the confidence to take on a PhD

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PhD life, 10 things we learned in our first six months

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What’s the third year of a PhD like? Tips for navigating your PhD

how to do phd

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  • Organizational Behavior
  • Technology & Operations Management

Students in our PhD programs are encouraged from day one to think of this experience as their first job in business academia—a training ground for a challenging and rewarding career generating rigorous, relevant research that influences practice.

Our doctoral students work with faculty and access resources throughout HBS and Harvard University. The PhD program curriculum requires coursework at HBS and other Harvard discipline departments, and with HBS and Harvard faculty on advisory committees. Faculty throughout Harvard guide the programs through their participation on advisory committees.

How do I know which program is right for me?

There are many paths, but we are one HBS. Our PhD students draw on diverse personal and professional backgrounds to pursue an ever-expanding range of research topics. Explore more here about each program’s requirements & curriculum, read student profiles for each discipline as well as student research , and placement information.

The PhD in Business Administration grounds students in the disciplinary theories and research methods that form the foundation of an academic career. Jointly administered by HBS and GSAS, the program has five areas of study: Accounting and Management , Management , Marketing , Strategy , and Technology and Operations Management . All areas of study involve roughly two years of coursework culminating in a field exam. The remaining years of the program are spent conducting independent research, working on co-authored publications, and writing the dissertation. Students join these programs from a wide range of backgrounds, from consulting to engineering. Many applicants possess liberal arts degrees, as there is not a requirement to possess a business degree before joining the program

The PhD in Business Economics provides students the opportunity to study in both Harvard’s world-class Economics Department and Harvard Business School. Throughout the program, coursework includes exploration of microeconomic theory, macroeconomic theory, probability and statistics, and econometrics. While some students join the Business Economics program directly from undergraduate or masters programs, others have worked in economic consulting firms or as research assistants at universities or intergovernmental organizations.

The PhD program in Health Policy (Management) is rooted in data-driven research on the managerial, operational, and strategic issues facing a wide range of organizations. Coursework includes the study of microeconomic theory, management, research methods, and statistics. The backgrounds of students in this program are quite varied, with some coming from public health or the healthcare industry, while others arrive at the program with a background in disciplinary research

The PhD program in Organizational Behavior offers two tracks: either a micro or macro approach. In the micro track, students focus on the study of interpersonal relationships within organizations and the effects that groups have on individuals. Students in the macro track use sociological methods to examine organizations, groups, and markets as a whole, including topics such as the influence of individuals on organizational change, or the relationship between social missions and financial objectives. Jointly administered by HBS and GSAS, the program includes core disciplinary training in sociology or psychology, as well as additional coursework in organizational behavior.

Accounting & Management  

Business economics  , health policy (management)  , management  , marketing  , organizational behavior  , strategy  , technology & operations management  .

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  • 06 November 2018

Twenty things I wish I’d known when I started my PhD

  • Lucy A. Taylor 0

Lucy A. Taylor earned her zoology PhD from the University of Oxford, UK. She is now a postdoctoral researcher at Save the Elephants in Nairobi, Kenya, and a visiting researcher in the Department of Zoology at Oxford.

You can also search for this author in PubMed   Google Scholar

Starting a PhD can be tough. Looking back, there are many things I wish I’d known at the beginning. Here, I have curated a list of advice from current PhD students and postdoctoral researchers from the Department of Zoology at my institution, the University of Oxford, UK, to aid new graduate students.

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This is an article from the Nature Careers Community, a place for Nature readers to share their professional experiences and advice. Guest posts are encouraged. You can get in touch with the editor at [email protected].

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  • How to Apply for A PhD Abroad – International Study
  • Applying to a PhD

So you’ve decided to enrol onto a doctoral degree and study abroad at the same time. This is a great opportunity to develop yourself both personally and academically. However, do you actually go about securing a PhD as an international student? To help answer this for you, we’ve created this guide to explain how to apply for a PhD in foreign universities.

Why Do Your PhD Abroad?​​​​​​​

There are many benefits to studying abroad.

Some PhD students do so as a way to develop a new language, discover more about a different culture, and to meet new people.

Besides personal reasons, undertaking a doctorate degree abroad can also for academic purposes. For example, in some countries, a particular research field may not be very popular and so there may not be many doctorate options available. In these cases, undertaking a PhD abroad will open up many more opportunities. It could also offer greater funding, lower tuition fees, better laboratory equipment and more experienced supervisors. Not only would these factors result in a more enjoyable PhD, but they could also contribute to greater career prospects. For example, you will likely have more opportunities to write publications, attend conferences and collaborate with other researchers. All of these will help you establish yourself as a respectable researcher within your field.

Is It Difficult to Apply to PhDs Abroad?​​​​​​​

It’s not as difficult as you would imagine when it comes to applying to a PhD in a foreign country. Regardless of whether you’re applying to a university within the EU, such as the UK, Finland or Spain, or to universities within the US or Asia, the processes are relatively similar.

The differences in the application process can be categorised into three areas.

  • the documents you need to provide,
  • the prerequisite tests you need to sit,
  • how much you need to communicate with the potential supervisors before applying.

We’ve provided a basic outline of the application processes below. Although this will provide you with a good starting point, we highly recommend you look at the university websites for specific instructions and guidance before applying.

Will I Need a Student Visa?​​​​​​​

This will depend on what country you are applying to. For example:

  • In the UK, applicants from outside the EU will need a Visa Tier 4 (Student). This will allow them to undertake a full-time PhD. However, due to UK visa restrictions, international students are unlikely to be able to enrol onto a part-time degree.
  • In Germany, most students will not require a student visa but will require a residence permit.
  • In the US, applicants will need to hold an F-1 Student Visa.
  • In Asia, the requirements differ depending on the specific country. For example, in China, you will require an X1 Student Visa whereas in Singapore you will require a Student Pass.

Because of the significant differences between countries, we highly recommend it is highly that you check the requirements on an individual case-by-case basis. This is best done by checking the government website of the country you wish to apply to.

General Process for Applying to PhDs Abroad​​​​​​​

When applying to a PhD position, most universities regardless of where they’re located will require:

  • Online Application – An electronic form to provide your details and attach all supporting documents. You will also need to make any application fees during this process if required.
  • Academic Transcripts – Most universities need a scanned copy of your transcripts when applying. You will only have to submit official hard copies once they have accepted your admission.
  • CV – This should include details of your previous education, undergraduate degree and any experiences revenant to the field you’re applying to.
  • Statement of Purpose/Personal Statement – A letter which outlines why you’re applying to the PhD and why you believe you’re suitable for the project.
  • Letters of Recommendation – this should preferably be provided by your undergraduate degree course tutor or a professor who knows you well.

Language Tests

If your PhD is to be undertaken in English and English isn’t your first language, most universities will require you to sit an English language proficiency test. The most common tests, in order of popularity, are:

  • IELTS (International English Language Testing Systems)
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)
  • PTE (Pearson Test of English)

The minimum test scores will change from university to university. They will also vary depending on the research field. For example, research projects related to English Literature or Law will require relatively high scores whilst projects in Science and Engineering will require slightly lower scores. To provide an example, the University of Leicester in the UK requires a minimum overall IELTS score of 7 for Law PhDs but has a lower overall score requirement of 6 for Engineering PhDs.

Finding a PhD has never been this easy – search for a PhD by keyword, location or academic area of interest.

How to Apply for PhDs in EU Countries​​​​​​​

For UK universities, there are generally two ways of applying. You can either apply directly through the university’s website or you can make an application through the UCAS Postgraduate system .

In Spain, Italy and Germany, before applying to a PhD you will first need to pass a pre-application process. This involves checking that your qualifications meet their eligibility requirements. Before undergoing this pre-screening process, it would be beneficial to first speak to your government. They may offer advice on how your countries qualification system corresponds to the qualification system in the country hosting the PhD.

Once you’ve made your application, the university will review it and get in contact with you. For most EU institutions, they will invite you for a Skype or telephone interview with them if they believe you may be a suitable candidate.

If you require a student visa to study in an EU country, it’s recommended that you submit your application at least 3-4 months before the proposed PhD start date.

How to Apply for PhDs in USA

In addition to the English language exams mentioned previously, international applicants will also need to sit additional exams to be eligible for PhDs in the USA. These are the GRE General Exam and GRE Subject Exam(s). The GRE Subject Exam(s) you will need to undertake will be specific to your field and will be specified by the university as part of their edibility requirements.

Securing a PhD position in the United States is considered relatively difficult compared to other countries. As a result, it is commonly recommended that you apply to at least 9 different universities to increase your chances of securing a position.

How to Apply for PhDs in Asia

As Asia covers a wide range of countries such as China, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, UAE and India, their application processes naturally differ from one another. Therefore, check the specific application process for each university you’re interested to get the most accurate information.

To summarise:

  • China – uses two centralised application services, CUAC and CUCAS. Both these services help international students find and apply to a PhD project in China. Students can also apply directly to a University if they wish to.
  • Singapore – rather than applying to a specific research project, you will have to apply to a faculty or department within a University. Only once you have been accepted into the university department will their research projects become available to you. Like US universities, most universities in Singapore will have required you to have sat a GRE Exams prior to applying to them.
  • UAE – you must apply directly to your chosen university. To be eligible for a PhD in UAE, you must hold a Master’s degree and it must be from a university recognised by their government. You will also be required to undertake GRE Exams before making your application.

How to Apply for PhDs in Australia

To apply to a PhD in Australia, you will first be expected to find and email a potential supervisor. If you’re an international student and you make an application directly to the university without doing this first, it’s highly likely that you won’t be considered for the position.

Upon discussing the project with the supervisor, they will instruct you to put in a formal application. This formal application will require the information previously outlined above.

Similar to EU institutions, if an Australian university believes you’re a strong candidate, they will likely invite you to a Skype or telephone interview.

Unlike EU universities, PhDs in Australian universities can start at any time of the year. Therefore, unless a specific funding requirement is attached to the project, there are usually no deadlines associated with applying to their PhDs. However, try to apply 3 to 4 months before you intend to start your studies.

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  • a holder of an Australian permanent humanitarian visa.

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How to get a PhD

How to get a PhD

Study tips Published 5 Apr, 2022  ·  4-minute read

Trying to wrap your head around how PhD programs work? We don’t blame you. Sometimes it feels like you need a PhD just to figure out how to get a PhD.

So, with a little help from our academics and some UQ PhD candidates, we’ve broken down the application and preparation process into 10 manageable steps:

  • Complete prior research
  • Choose your topic
  • Find a PhD supervisor
  • Write your PhD proposal
  • Identify potential scholarships
  • Gather required documents and apply
  • Determine if you'll continue working during your PhD
  • Calculate how long you’ll be researching your PhD
  • Develop the traits and behaviours of a good PhD student
  • Apply and get accepted

Let’s discuss how to get a PhD in Australia – from choosing your topic to getting stuck into the actual research.

1. Complete prior research (if necessary)

You don’t necessarily need a master’s degree to start a PhD. However, you do need to have completed extensive research. This might involve an academic research program (such as a bachelor's degree with an honours year or a Master of Philosophy ), research conducted in your professional career, or a combination of both. The important thing is that you can demonstrate experience in conducting effective research, as this is a key part of the PhD selection criteria.

Learn more about doing a PhD without a master's degree

2. Choose your topic

Whether you’re developing a thesis on a topic you’ve already worked on or branching out into a new area of interest, you’ll want to know early what kind of topic you want to research for your PhD. Finding a niche that sparks your curiosity is important for ensuring you’ll stay inspired during the 3+ years ahead.

Keep in mind that you generally have two options here. You can complete a PhD by:

  • joining an existing research project in an area that interests you 
  • start a fresh research project that aligns with your specific goals.

Get tips for choosing your PhD topic or explore available research projects at UQ

3. Find a PhD supervisor

One of the essential steps to consider when thinking about how to get a PhD is finding someone to guide you through the process.

Approaching academics about your PhD can be intimidating, but shortlisting and selecting the most appropriate person / team to supervise your research project is important. By choosing your mentor carefully, you can ensure you’ve got someone in your corner who understands your research, has relevant expertise, and will be there to support you throughout your journey.

Learn how to find the right PhD supervisor

4. Write your PhD proposal

Check with your supervisor to see if they require a formal PhD proposal (most will, but not all). If so, with their guidance, it’s time to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard).

Even if your supervisor doesn't explicitly ask for one, a PhD proposal is a valuable document for outlining the scope of your research and giving your project its initial momentum – so it might be worth writing one either way.

Learn how to write a good PhD proposal

5. Identify potential scholarships

Dedicating yourself to research sometimes means sacrificing your income in the short term, though it can lead to more financial security in the long term . To help support yourself during your studies, you can apply for PhD scholarships and funding.

Learn how to get a PhD scholarship

6. Gather required documents and apply

It’s time to jump online and do the official application process. Aside from your research proposal, you should also prepare to provide your:

  • academic CV
  • academic transcript
  • degree certificate(s)
  • English language documents (if needed)
  • ID (such as a passport)
  • two references / letters of recommendation from people who can comment on your research experience.

  Learn how to apply online for a UQ PhD

7. Determine if you'll continue working during your PhD

Some PhD candidates continue doing part-time or casual work while completing their research. However, this isn't easy and may not be feasible in most cases; it takes serious time-management skills to juggle any kind of job alongside a full-time PhD. So, think carefully about whether you’d like to keep working in some capacity or commit your attention fully to your research.

Learn more about working while doing a PhD

8. Calculate how long you’ll be researching your PhD

To complete your PhD within the standard 3.5-year* timeframe, you'll need to be organised with a clear project plan. Of course, the very nature of research is that you'll discover unexpected things and take unplanned detours along the way. So, your plan should include contingencies for any obstacles you might hit to ensure you still complete your research on time. 

*In special cases, you may be able to request an extension of your tuition for up to 4 years, but that is the maximum time allowed for a PhD.

Explore how long a PhD takes

9. Develop the traits and behaviours of a good PhD student

We know you’ve already got what it takes, but there are some skills and attributes you could cultivate or practise to make your upcoming journey a little smoother. Between writing your proposal and meeting with potential supervisors, be sure to set some time aside to work on yourself as well.

Discover what makes a good PhD student

10. Apply and get accepted

All the preparation is done. You’ve equipped all the gear, chosen your guide and mapped out your route. It's time to apply and set the wheels in motion.

Submit your PhD application

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Related stories

How to choose a PhD topic

How to decide on a PhD topic

4-minute read

How to find a PhD supervisor

How to find a PhD supervisor

5-minute read

How to write a PhD proposal

How to write a good PhD proposal

How to get a PhD scholarship

How to get a PhD scholarship or funding

3-minute read


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Couldn’t find the answer? Post your query here

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  • IIT JAM News & Updates

PhD Admission: Dates, Eligibilty, Admission Process, Preparation Tips

PhD admission 2024 has commenced. Everything you need to know about PhD Admission 2024 is right here, including PhD eligibility criteria, application and admission processes, job opportunities, and a list of colleges/universities that offer PhD.

PhD Admission 2024: Latest Updates

Phd admission 2024, phd entrance exams 2024, phd admission 2024: college and mode of admission.

  • PhD Admission in Top Colleges / Top Universities 2024: Application …

Why Should Pursue a PhD?

Phd admission procedure, eligibility for phd admission 2024, phd admission process 2024, merit-based phd admissions, entrance based phd admissions, phd entrance exams , phd entrance exams: institutional level, phd exams held at national level , structure of a phd course, list of popular universities in india offering phd admission 2024, phd admission 2024: syllabus, disciplines for phd admissions 2024, phd admission 2024: preparation tips, job prospects after phd.

PhD Admission Procedure

Confused about your exam or college applications?

Be the first to know.

Get Access to Latest Updates

PhD Admission 2024: PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) is the highest degree or doctorate awarded for research in a specific subject. PhD programs last 3 to 5 years. As per PhD eligibility criteria, PhD qualifications require a master's degree or an MPhil with a minimum aggregate score of 55% is required for a PhD. The CSIR UGC NET is a national-level PhD entrance exam that is held twice a year amongst the other entrance exams. In India, there are numerous PhD Scholarships available to students who wish to pursue a PhD. After completing their PhD degrees, students can choose from a variety of PhD Jobs and earn an average annual salary of INR 5 - 10 LPA. PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)  is a programme that involves substantial research work and presentation of the thesis, which is to be accredited by fellow academicians. One can pursue a PhD course in a discipline or stream that he/she has studied in his/her post-graduation. PhD requires a great level of commitment and an eye for detail. Candidates interested in PhD admissions in India are required to give presentations on their research work, submit their progress reports, and defend their thesis in an open defence viva-voce. PhD admissions 2024 are mainly determined by entrance exams but few universities also accept merit-based admissions. For entrance-based PhD admission, universities and colleges will hold the following PhD Entrance Exams; CSIR-UGC NET, UGC NET, DBT JRF Biotech Entrance Test, JRF-GATE, and IISC PhD Entrance Exam.  In this article, check all the details about PhD admission process, PhD entrance exams, PhD eligibility criteria, the application process, preparation tips, job prospects, list of colleges /universities offering a PhD and more. To know about PhD syllabus and subjects , click here!

Also Check: List of Private PhD Colleges in Maharashtra To apply for PhD admission, candidates must complete an online application form. In 2024, top PhD entrance exams such as the CSIR UGC NET, UGC NET, and IIT JAM will be used to determine PhD admission in India. A valid GATE score is also required for candidates interested in pursuing a PhD in Engineering and Technology. However, a select few colleges will offer merit-based PhD admission 2024, followed by a personal interview.

Here are the latest updates of PhD admission 2024:

  • Applications are invited for admission to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programme at the Indian Institute of Information Technology Guwahati. 
  • IIIT Guwahati has concluded the registration process for PhD admission for the academic year 2024-25 on January 08, 2024. 

PhD Admission in Top Colleges / Top Universities 2024: Application Form Dates

The table below includes the top PhD colleges and their application dates for PhD Admission 2024:

Also Read: Top Government PhD Colleges in Maharashtra

PhD is considered one of the most valued degrees not just in India but abroad as well. When it comes to your career graph, a PhD degree can be a good qualification for the aspirants. There are many colleges or universities that offer a PhD course for aspiring students, however, the question remains – Why should one have a PhD degree or why should a person opt for a PhD course. The answer to this question comes along with the benefits that are associated with a PhD degree.

A PhD degree offers a wide range of employment opportunities. One of the most sought-after jobs for a PhD degree holder is of a lecturer or a professor in a university or a researcher in most fields. Along with this, a PhD degree holder can get a job in publishing houses, educational institutes, law firms, consultancy, etc

Candidates will have in-depth knowledge and develop mastery over the subjects they have chosen for specialisation, which will be extremely useful for them in their careers

Candidates will get an insight into the theoretical aspect of the course and will get practical exposure as well

It is a respectable and reputed qualification

In order to apply for a PhD in India, there are several universities where students will find varied courses in research. For each university in India, there is a specific number of seats available. Some of these universities shortlist candidates on the basis of entrance examinations, interviews and research proposals.

  • In India, the PhD application process is available in both online and offline modes
  • For applying to a university, applicants are required to procure or download the application form and prospectus for their respective courses by either writing to the university or by downloading the same online from the official website of the university
  • For some universities, the PhD application forms need to be forwarded to the university official address prior to the last date with the required documents
  • Considering the fee structure for a PhD course, the average or the tentative course fee is about INR 20,000 to 50,000 per year (varies from course to course and university to university)

Also Read:  PhD courses in Yoga

Students who intend to pursue PhD in India must meet the required eligibility criteria. Listed below are the detailed PhD qualification required for pursuing a PhD from India:

Masters degree holders are eligible for admission into the doctoral programme. Although, for some subjects, having a Masters in Philosophy (MPhil) is needed for a PhD It must be noted by the candidates that in some Indian universities, for Masters programme, a specific percentage (or equivalent CGPA) is required by the candidates to be eligible to apply for a PhD

For admission into some reputable universities, a candidate must qualify the all India examination, like National Eligibility Test for Lectureship (NET) conducted by NTA. Final year students appearing in the qualifying degree examination can also apply although they must submit the attested copies of their qualifying degree certificates

Admission is offered on the basis of interview. The interview may be supplemented with a written exam if needed

Candidates should have a valid Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) score to pursue PhD in the field of engineering and technology. Also, candidates should have completed his/her degree in M.Tech - Masters of Technology / M.E - Masters in Engineering in any engineering branch in order to apply for PhD in engineering

To be eligible for a PhD, there are many other PhD entrance tests in India that one can take

The need for a PhD degree in India has increased in recent times because of the increasing career prospects and the growing requirement for higher specialisation. Applicants who wish to do a PhD must take the following points into consideration with respect to the admission procedure of PhD. Admission to PhD programmes is made based on merit and/or admission exams. 

Admission into the colleges/ universities in India is available for the candidates in Full time and Part time programmes in various disciplines of engineering, arts, management, commerce, science, humanities, finance, law, medicine and IT.

Candidates can choose to pursue their PhD either full time or part time. The minimum duration of PhD is 2 years wherein the course follows the semester system including theory and practical versions on the specialisation on a respective course.

For PhD admission, Masters degree is required in India. Some universities in India offer seats to the students having a minimum of 55% or equivalent.

In some cases, doing a Master in Philosophy (M.Phil) is a prerequisite to begin a PhD course offered by some universities.

The admissions in a PhD programme is done through an entrance test at the university level or national level.

The admission procedure for both processes is described below.

  • PhD admission to prestigious institutions is based on merit.
  • The institute may request the candidates submit an abstract of their research proposal for this purpose.
  • This is done primarily to scrutinise the candidates, after which the selected candidates are advised of the next steps.
  • Applicants must also meet the fundamental eligibility standards of 50-55 per cent (approx) in the PG course.
  • To get admission to PhD programmes, national and institutional entrance exams are held.
  • For admission to PhD programmes, some universities even conduct personal interviews in addition to entrance tests

The PhD entrance exams conducted in India may vary university-wise. PhD admission in India is based on enrollment to several universities. Universities accept the results of either a national-level or a university-level entrance examination. The following section summarises the PhD Admission 2024 entrance exam schedule for the accepted PhD entrance exams. Mentioned is the list of the top entrance exam for PhD in India that candidates are required to take in order to pursue their PhD from some colleges/universities in India:

Also Read: IIT JAM 2024 Admission

PhD entrance exams held at the institutional level are those exams the institutions undertake to provide admission to PhD degree aspirants.

Universities accept either national-level or university-level admission examination results. Following is a summary of the PhD Admission 2024 entrance exam program for the recognized PhD entrance exams.

Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT) / Departmental Admission Test

  • PhD applicants are not required to apply online through CUSAT CAT
  • They rather need to apply for PhD at Cochin University of Science and Technology through DAT - Departmental Admission Test
  • PhD application forms can be obtained from the particular departments, the students are interested to join
  • Completed applications must be submitted to the departments involved within the time frame specified in the notification
  • An aspirant who wants to pursue a programme of study and research leading to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) must apply for admission as a Full-Time or Part-Time research student in an Academic Unit of study or in an institution recognised by the University for this purpose, under an appropriate Faculty
  • Part-Time registration in the case of recognised institutions shall be provided only to permanent workers of the respective institutions
  • Students for admission to the PhD Programme must hold a Master's degree or a professional degree recognised as equivalent to a Master's degree by the applicable statutory regulatory body, with at least a 55 percent aggregate mark
  • The admission criteria declared by the University shall be based on the guidelines/norms provided by the UGC and other statutory organisations concerned, as well as any other rules created by the University from time to time
  • The Departmental Admission Test (DAT) is usually held annually, generally before the end of August
  • The University's relevant Department will administer the DAT for the PhD Programme (including admission to Recognized Institutions)
  • The Departmental Admission Test (DAT) will consist of two parts: a written exam and an interview
  • In the event of candidates conducting interdisciplinary/ multidisciplinary research, the written exam may be on a subject offered by the academic unit where the candidate wishes to be registered
  • The Entrance Test syllabus will include subject/subjects particular to the Academic Unit of Research in question
  • The National Law University, Delhi (NLU D) organises AILET 2024 every year to give admission to BA LLB (Hons), Master of Law (LLM), and PhD programmes
  • The entrance exam will be organised in offline mode
  • The AILET law entrance exam for PhD consists of two sections, with a total of 100 marks
  • The updated AILET 2024 syllabus for the PhD programme includes one Multiple Choice Question section and the other is descriptive form

BITS Pilani PhD Entrance Examination

  • Full-time and part-time PhD programmes are available at BITS Pilani
  • Under the PhD Aspirants Scheme, industries and R&D organisations partnering with BITS can fund applicants to work towards a PhD
  • After passing the PhD qualifying examination, a candidate is typically admitted to the PhD programme
  • A few candidates may be admitted as provisional candidates to the programme before passing the PhD qualifying exams. This rule applies to all full-time research scholars on campus
  • The Academic Regulations of the Institute govern the general operation of the PhD programme

Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST), Thiruvananthapuram PhD

The Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology aims to conduct basic and applied research to address the national R&D needs of science and technology in general, and the Indian Space Programme in particular.

The Institute invites highly motivated applicants to apply for admission to the PhD Program, in disciplines such as Aerospace Engineering, Avionics, Chemistry, Earth and Space Sciences, Humanities, Mathematics, and Physics.

  • Candidates must be Indian citizens
  • Exam-takers must be under the age of 35 on June 7, 2024
  • Age relaxation is permitted under government regulations
  • Applicants who are about to finish their qualifying degrees and receive their degrees before October 31, 2024, are also eligible to apply for PhD admission
  • Admission to the PhD programme will be decided on an online screening test followed by an interview for candidates having an M.E /M.Tech. as their highest qualifying degree
  • The interview will take place by video conference
  • Candidates with valid UGC-CSIR-NET-JRF/Lectureship/NBHM/JEST post-ME/ M.Tech will be summoned for an interview through video conference
  • Applicants having a Master's Degree in Science as their highest qualifying degree must have a Qualifying Master's degree with a minimum of 65 percent marks (for General applicants) or 7.00 CGPA on a scale of 10 or equivalent
  • They must have passed a national level eligibility test in the relevant fields, such as a valid UGC-CSIR-NET JRF/Lectureship or NBHM/JEST/GATE and State Government Science and Technology Scheme
  • Entry to the PhD programme will depend on an online standard test accompanied by a personal interview for candidates with a B.E - Bachelor of Engineering / B.Tech - Bachelor of Technology as their highest qualifying degree

Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai

  • The TIFR University offers PhD and M.Sc-PhD programmes in the natural sciences, including physics, chemistry, and biology, as well as mathematics and computer science
  • The PhD programme typically lasts five years, the integrated M.Sc.-PhD programme six years, and the M.Sc. programme two years
  • Students are admitted to TIFR via a rigorous screening procedure that includes a written test and an interview
  • Selection process is based entirely on merit. Only the top 1.5% of applicants are accepted
  • It is a perfect site for young scientists to begin their careers, thanks to its distinguished staff, world-class facilities, and vibrant research environment

International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad PhD

  • Applicants with exceptional academic performance and R&D experience are encouraged to apply through a Standing Committee
  • Applicants must email their curriculum vitae - CV - to pgadmissions(at) This way of admission is only available for MS by Research and PhD programmes. Applications can be submitted at any time of the year
  • Candidates must submit an application that includes a resume and a statement of purpose
  • Email applications may be sent at any time of year
  • If the committee deems it essential, applicants may be invited for an interview
  • Students can pursue PhD in Computer Science and Engineering, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Civil Engineering, Bioinformatics, Computational Natural Sciences, IT in Building Science, Computational Linguistics, Spatial Informatics, Cognitive Science, Human Sciences

Symbiosis International PhD Entrance Test (PET) 2024 For PhD Programme

Research programmes leading to the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree are available at Symbiosis International (Deemed University), in the following streams - PhD (Law), PhD (Management), PhD (Computer Studies), PhD (Health Sciences), PhD (Media and Communication), PhD (Humanities and Social Sciences), PhD (Engineering).

  • SIU provides both full-time and part-time programmes
  • A PG degree with a minimum of 55% is required
  • Given the social distance guidelines imposed by the COVID -19 pandemic and to provide eager students with the option to begin their PhD programme as soon as possible, Symbiosis International Deemed University - SIU will hold the PhD Entrance Test (PET 2024) online this year
  • Candidates with NET/ SET/ SLET/ GATE/ M.Phil or UGC/ CSIR/ ICMR DBT/ RGNF/ MANF/ DST Inspire & NBHM Scholars are excluded from the entrance exam for the duration of the certificate/validity award's period
  • However, such candidates are required to attend a personal interview
  • CA/CS with 55 percent marks are allowed, as are PG Diplomas from IIMs and XLRI
  • Those with PG diplomas from other universities must produce proof of equivalency from statutory organisations such as AICTE/ UGC/ BCI. AICTE approval/AIU equivalence is not sufficient for eligibility
  • Extensive experience does not provide any extra advantage for exemption from entrance exams

These exams are held on a national level for the PhD Courses. Here are examples of some national-level PhD courses -


  • The CSIR NET test will be held two times in 2024
  • National Testing Agency (NTA) annually administers the CSIR UGC NET exam. Candidates' eligibility for Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) or Lectureship (LS) posts in science and technology will be determined by this exam
  • Candidates who pass the CSIR UGC NET test will be allowed to seek JRF and lecturer posts in different streams
  • The fields include Life Sciences, Chemical Sciences, Physical Sciences, Mathematical Sciences, Earth, Oceanic, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, etc., in Indian institutions and colleges
  • JAM 2024 is being organised by IIT Roorkee.
  • Students applying for admission to the academic programmes covered by JAM 2024 for the academic year 2024-24 must take JAM 2024 exam.
  • For all Test Papers, the JAM 2024 Examination will be administered Online only as a Computer Based Test (CBT).
  • The paper will be divided into three parts: A, B, and C. All sections are required.
  • Candidates who pass JAM 2024 may apply for admission to IITs for the academic year 2024-24.
  • The JAM scores may be used to shortlist candidates for an interview for the final selection in IISc Bangalore's integrated PhD programmes in Physical Sciences, Chemical Sciences, Mathematical Sciences, and Biological Sciences.
  • IIT JAM 2024 is open to all Indian and foreign nationals.
  • There is no upper age limit.
  • Applicants should be aware that simply appearing in JAM 2024 or being on the merit list of any Test Paper does not guarantee or offer automatic admission.

JNUEE / JNU Direct PhD

  • The National Testing Agency accepts JNUEE applications for admission to various courses at Jawaharlal Nehru University.
  • Master's Degree holders with sufficient research experience and publications, as well as M.Phil. Degree holders are eligible for admission if they have obtained a minimum of 55% of the marks or comparable grades defined by UGC guidelines.
  • A national-scale entrance examination is followed by an interview to determine admission.
  • The Admission Centre can recommend courses to candidates admitted to the PhD programme.
  • To be qualified to proceed in the programme and publish the dissertation/thesis, PhD scholars must acquire a minimum of 55% of the marks or equivalent grade on the UGC 7-point scale in the course work.


  • Chancellor Dr. G. Viswanathan established the Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) in 1984 as Vellore Engineering College.
  • PhD degrees offered through VITREE include PhD in Engineering, Integrated PhD in Engineering / Technology, PhD in Sciences, PhD in Languages, PhD in Management, PhD in Law, PhD in Fashion Technology, PhD in Design & Planning.
  • The minimum term of study and research will be 30 months for full-time research students and 36 months for part-time scholars from the date of registration for the PhD programme to the date of thesis submission.
  • The minimum duration of study and research will be four years, beginning with registration for the Integrated PhD programme and ending with thesis submission.
  • Selection is based on VITREE 2024 score, PG Degree marks, research proposal, and interview. Candidates who meet the eligibility criteria must take the VITREE 2024 computer-based test (CBT) for 2 hours at their test site of choice.
  • The question paper for the PhD programme will consist of 100 MCQs (70 technical questions, 15 English communication skills questions, and 15 statistics and probability questions).
  • The chosen candidates will be required to attend a personal interview via online mode on June 18 and 19, 2024. The selected candidates will be notified by July 1, 2024.
  • Selection for the Integrated PhD is based on performance in the VITREE 2024 score, UG Degree marks, Research proposal, and Personal Interview conducted online.

Also Read : Top M.Sc + PhD Colleges in India

In India, PhD is a programme that has been designed for students who have already done their undergraduate and postgraduate training. As far as the overall structure of PhD is concerned, it is an advanced research qualification that consists of coursework and research work. The particular requirements to earn a PhD degree differs considerably according to the country, institution, and time period, from entry-level research degrees to higher doctorates.

The structure of a PhD programme involves pedagogy, coursework, qualifying exam, preparation of research proposal and thesis work. In each stage of the programme, the performance of the student is evaluated throughout all the semesters.

For PhD admissions, the majority of the universities/institutes conduct their own entrance examinations and also consider the GATE/ NET scores. Here is a list of some of the popular universities in India that offer PhD courses to the candidates:

The PhD Admission syllabus is determined by the stream chosen. The contents for the science stream are comparable to the CSIR NET Syllabus, while the topics for the other courses are similar to the UGC NET Syllabus. The syllabus for PhD studies varies depending on the specialisation in the field chosen by the candidates.

PhD programmes include both traditional academic classroom sessions and research projects. Admission to PhD programmes is heavily reliant on the research effort. A PhD course consists of course study, a qualifying examination, research proposal/abstract preparation, and thesis work.

The table below lists the names of various major disciplines that are offered in India for the candidates to pursue their PhD

Here are some preparation tips for PhD entrance exam preparation for PhD admission 2024 -

  • Students should gather past year PhD entrance exam question papers from reliable sources and study accordingly.
  • They must refer to the PhD entrance exam syllabus as per their specialisation.
  • The entrance exam format varies depending on the conducting body; therefore, the aspirants must be informed of the structure to plan accordingly.
  • They must cover all exam subjects at least one month before the exam.
  • To relieve exam stress, the students must take advantage of the various mock tests available.
  • Keeping up with current events is vital because they are essential for grades.
  • Visiting the exam centre a day before the exam to avoid last-minute confusion about where the exam centre location is advised.
  • Before the exam, students must get a good night's sleep.

In today’s world, there is immense scope for the candidates after they have completed their PhD. Gone are those days when the scope of PhD was limited to academia. After completing a PhD, one should track his/her potential and apply to jobs based on his/her exact skills and expertise.

Following are a few career options that candidates can choose after pursuing a PhD:

Lecturer & Professor

Author & Writer

Editor & Critic

Human Services Worker

Independent Consultant

Philosophical Journalist

Industrial R&D Lab professionals

Senior Research Scientist

Stay tuned to CollegeDekho for more such updates and information. Aspirants can also contact our QnA Zone to get their queries resolved by our experts.

CollegeDekho wishes good luck to all the candidates seeking PhD admissions in India!

A PhD is an abbreviation for Doctor of Philosophy, which is the highest academic course level.

A doctorate or PhD degree typically takes three years to complete. Candidates accepted into the programme have a maximum of 5 to 6 years to complete their research. However, the duration of the PhD programmes varies by institute.

A PhD programme allows you to specialise in a variety of fields. Chemistry Clinical Psychology Education Physics Electronics and Communications Engineering Educational Leadership and Administration are some of the popular doctorate level courses.

Yes. Candidates interested in pursuing a PhD programme must first complete their master's degree and then apply.

A PhD is the highest educational qualification that can be obtained. A PhD candidate can expect to earn PhD salary between INR 6 and INR 12 lakhs per year.

Humanities, social sciences, education, and other easy PhD courses are among the many available.

Yes. It is every so often possible to forego your master's programme and enrol directly in doctoral courses. You can choose to forego your PG degree by enrolling in a research programme after earning your bachelor's degree.

A specific group of students can finish their PhD in two years. Nothing, however, can be specified as such.

In most cases, a two-year Master's OR MPhil degree in the relevant field from any accredited Indian or foreign university is the minimal requirement for admission to a PhD programme. She or he must have earned a master's degree or a grade equivalent with at least 55%.

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How to apply for Phd in USA?

How to apply for PhD in USA for international students - The USA is inarguably one of the most preferred study destinations for international students, especially for its PhD programs. One of the main factors that attract so many applicants for PhD in the USA is that there are a wide range of courses available for PhD candidates. This is why international students prefer to study in the USA and research a lot about “how to apply for PhD in USA”. Besides, the US has also created a flexible platform for intensive research. Another positive aspect of pursuing a PhD in USA for Indian students is that it invests a lot in Research and Development. TOP EXAMS: IELTS | TOEFL | GRE | G MAT Country Guide: UK | Ireland | Australi a | Canada

Steps for Applying PhD in USA

Eligibility for applying phd in usa, how to apply for phd in usa with scholarship.

How to apply for Phd in USA?

It is because of these initiatives that the US walks away with most of the international awards in any field and also records one of the highest registrations for patents in the world. Therefore, there is little room left for any doubt why the US attracts so many international students to its universities every year. However, candidates applying for PhD in the USA have questions on how to apply for PhD in USA for Indian students, when the application process starts. Added to that candidates are left out of the list of the PhD requirements in USA for international students. Here we have explained the entire process of how one can apply for PhD in the USA right from the time needed to research for universities to submission of application forms.

Read the steps to know "how to apply for PhD in USA" from India or for International students. The steps mentioned can be followed, right after the candidates' decision to pursue Phd in USA.

Choose your major subject - The first step before applying for a PhD in USA is to choose the subject in which one wants to do a Major. Most aspirants opt for the course in which they already have a bachelor’s degree, though there is no such hard and fast rule that requires one to choose the same subject. However, students who wish to pursue their PhD in another field have to present strong reasons and show proof of experience in the concerned field. In American countries PhD can be applied after a bachelors degree.

Research for universities - Once the aspirant has chosen his Major subject, the next step in “how to apply for PhD in USA” is to find universities that offer PhD in the USA in that particular subject. It is advisable to shortlist at least 8 to 10 PhD universities in USA. Some of the major factors to consider while choosing a university are:

Does the department’s research match the subject? Study carefully the current research initiatives of the university.

Does the candidate want a master’s degree with PhD in the USA? Check if the university provides a master's degree in your preferred subject and the facility to apply for a PhD in the USA for Indian students after your master’s course.

There are many universities in the US that offer a combined master’s and PhD degree. Generally, it takes between 3 and 6 years to complete a PhD in the USA. In that case, students are given the master’s certificate within 2- 3 years and then they can continue with their research in the next couple of years. Such courses are more common in arts and humanities-related subjects.

Top Universities for PhD USA

Deadlines - Once the list of universities, where one wants to apply for PhD in USA has been decided, the next big step is to look for deadlines for the same. There are several PhD programs, which offer rolling admissions in the USA, though the admission depends on the availability of seats. Usually, there are fewer seats in PhD compared to any other level. Also, the deadlines for application vary from department to department. Deadlines for some of the universities for PhD in US

List of scholarships to study abroad by country

Before gathering the things and researching answers to the question “How to apply for PhD in USA?” firstly check with your eligibility requirements for applying to PhD in USA. Here are the necessary PhD requirements in USA for international students

16 years of education - Minimum of 16 years of education is required, before applying for PhD. Therefore, the candidate must have completed at least 4 years of education (graduation or diploma) after 10+2.

Master’s - Students who have completed their master’s degree are also qualified to apply for PhD in the USA for Indian students. In fact, it is the standard norm in many universities. It is, therefore, ideal for a student to choose a specialized program in which he/She has graduated.

Tests - The admission procedure for PhD in the USA is more or less the same as in the case for MS in the US . The candidate needs to sit for the same standardized tests. The application for the tests is the first steps when you apply for PhD in USA. Listed below are the exams needed before applying for PhD in the universities.

GMAT - GMAT is taken for admission to management studies. Business schools use this test as a criterion for admission into a wide range of management programs.

GRE - GRE is mandatory for almost all graduate-level programs in the USA, including management studies. While all universities require GRE general test scores, some universities also ask students to take GRE subject tests.

TOEFL - TOEFL is an English proficiency test for students from non-native English-speaking countries. TOEFL is conducted more than 50 times a year at 4,500 test centers in 165 countries.

IELTS - IELTS is also an English proficiency test for students from non-native English-speaking countries. The IELTS test measures a candidate’s English language command on 4 different parameters- Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking.

However, not all universities require GRE or GMAT scores as part of PhD admission requirements in USA. Most of them, in fact, require a summary of the previous work the candidate has done.

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Application package

Mentioned below are the main documents which are necessary, while applying for PhD in USA for Indian students. Candidates can collect and prepare the drafts for these documents at earliest before applying for the university. These are the requirements for PhD in USA.

Statement of Purpose (SOP) - The Statement of Purpose is one of the most important elements of the application package for admission into PhD programs in the USA. It reflects the candidate's commitment to joining the PhD program and goals in life. The important thing to remember while writing an SOP is that it should be brief and reflect clarity regarding what the candidate wants from the program.

Letter of Recommendation (LOR) - The Letter of Recommendation is an independent assessment of the candidate's potential. Most universities require at least two to three recommendation letters. It is advisable to have recommendation letters written by the candidate's professors or employers.

Resume - At the PhD level, many universities would require the candidate to submit a resume along with the application. It should contain basic information like date of birth, academic qualifications and achievements and details of any previous work in his area of interest.

Academic transcripts - Academic transcripts include all the qualifications that the candidate will list in his application form. It is advisable for a candidate to start arranging for his transcripts from October itself.

Writing samples - Admission to PhD programs in certain universities may require you to write an application essay on a particular topic that can be discussed during your interview.

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The following elements are also important in the application package -

Work experience certificates, if applicable

Photocopies of passport

Certificates for extra-curricular activities mentioned in the application form.

WES Evaluation documents, if required by the university.

Interview - Many universities in the USA, have a separate interview round for PhD candidates. These interviews are conducted by invitation only, i.e., the candidate is called for an interview only after his application is approved by the universities. The candidate is basically asked general as well as specific questions about the subject he wants to pursue in PhD in the USA. With the interview round the last for “how to apply for PhD in USA” process comes to the end.

As the university fees are high for pursuing a PhD in USA for international students there are many organizations, NGOs, universities, and government bodies that provide scholarships to students to support their financial aid. These scholarships have different conditions like gender, local and international students, merit, creative or art talents, sports, volunteering activities, disability, etc., While applying for scholarships check for this eligibility and apply. Scholarships are of two types fully funded and partially funded. Scholarships which are for fully funded PhD in USA, cover all your expenses like university, accommodation, insurance, travel, and other miscellaneous. Partly funded scholarships cover up to 50% of your university fees or accommodation fees. For acquiring a fully funded PhD in USA for Indian students, a few of the scholarships are Full Bright Scholarships and Yale University Scholarships. The other partially funded scholarships are AAUW International Fellowships, Asian Cultural Council Fellowship Program.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

Universities in the US usually require a GPA score of 3 to pursue PhD in the USA.

International students will have to apply for the F-1 visa to pursue PhD in the USA.

You can work in the US after your PhD but you will have to apply for an employment visa as your F-1 visa will expire 60 days after your PhD in the USA ends.

To study PhD in USA, the candidate have to clear the entrance exams like GRE or GMAT through which university accepts your application. Along with them an english proficiency test like IELTS/PTE/TOEFL score should also be submitted in the application. For more details check the information in this article.

Generally in USA, the master's degree is included with the doctoral program. So if completed your bachelor's degree, you are eligible to apply for PhD in USA. If you already completed the masters this acts as an added advantage during the PhD application process.

In order to get Ph.D. admission in USA  you must meet the eligibility criteria for Ph.D. You must also fulfil the general requirements to get Ph.D. admission in USA.

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Questions related to

My brothers live in USA(Seattle) since 2015 and till now he haven't faced any problem on the basis of his nationality or by being Indian.We Indian are safe in America as the peoples of America doesn't fight over the religion. We do that thing.Americans are very good with the peoples comes form another country specially for us(Indian),because we have earned their respect by doing the good jobs over there.

Hope this will help,please feel free to ask if you have any further queries.

Hello Aspirant,

Hope your doing good!

Students planning to pursue an MS degree in the US have to display their English proficiency by sitting for the IELTS exam which evaluates the following skills-

  • IELTS Listening
  • IELTS Writing
  • IELTS Speaking and,
  • IELTS Reading

Almost the majority of the universities or graduate schools accept IELTS scores from the applicants and more than 3 million test-takers applied for the IELTS test to get admission to different institutions in the US.

Most of the universities accept 5.5 IELTS in the USA and in case the IELTS score is less than 5.5, then you must consider taking the IELTS Test again. While targeting an average university in the US Universities, the candidates’ IELTS score must be at least 6.5 or higher than that.

On a safer side, A score of 7 in IELTS is a good score acceptable by some of the well known colleges in the US.

For more details, Do refer to the link mentioned below, It will give you step by step procedures about the exam and colleges!

Hope this helps, For more such queries ping us more

Thankyou, Good Luck for everything ahead :)

Explore Career Options (By Industry)

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Data Administrator

Database professionals use software to store and organise data such as financial information, and customer shipping records. Individuals who opt for a career as data administrators ensure that data is available for users and secured from unauthorised sales. DB administrators may work in various types of industries. It may involve computer systems design, service firms, insurance companies, banks and hospitals.

Bio Medical Engineer

The field of biomedical engineering opens up a universe of expert chances. An Individual in the biomedical engineering career path work in the field of engineering as well as medicine, in order to find out solutions to common problems of the two fields. The biomedical engineering job opportunities are to collaborate with doctors and researchers to develop medical systems, equipment, or devices that can solve clinical problems. Here we will be discussing jobs after biomedical engineering, how to get a job in biomedical engineering, biomedical engineering scope, and salary. 

Geotechnical engineer

The role of geotechnical engineer starts with reviewing the projects needed to define the required material properties. The work responsibilities are followed by a site investigation of rock, soil, fault distribution and bedrock properties on and below an area of interest. The investigation is aimed to improve the ground engineering design and determine their engineering properties that include how they will interact with, on or in a proposed construction. 

The role of geotechnical engineer in mining includes designing and determining the type of foundations, earthworks, and or pavement subgrades required for the intended man-made structures to be made. Geotechnical engineering jobs are involved in earthen and concrete dam construction projects, working under a range of normal and extreme loading conditions. 

Operations Manager

Individuals in the operations manager jobs are responsible for ensuring the efficiency of each department to acquire its optimal goal. They plan the use of resources and distribution of materials. The operations manager's job description includes managing budgets, negotiating contracts, and performing administrative tasks.


How fascinating it is to represent the whole world on just a piece of paper or a sphere. With the help of maps, we are able to represent the real world on a much smaller scale. Individuals who opt for a career as a cartographer are those who make maps. But, cartography is not just limited to maps, it is about a mixture of art , science , and technology. As a cartographer, not only you will create maps but use various geodetic surveys and remote sensing systems to measure, analyse, and create different maps for political, cultural or educational purposes.

GIS officer work on various GIS software to conduct a study and gather spatial and non-spatial information. GIS experts update the GIS data and maintain it. The databases include aerial or satellite imagery, latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates, and manually digitized images of maps. In a career as GIS expert, one is responsible for creating online and mobile maps.

Remote Sensing Technician

Individuals who opt for a career as a remote sensing technician possess unique personalities. Remote sensing analysts seem to be rational human beings, they are strong, independent, persistent, sincere, realistic and resourceful. Some of them are analytical as well, which means they are intelligent, introspective and inquisitive. 

Remote sensing scientists use remote sensing technology to support scientists in fields such as community planning, flight planning or the management of natural resources. Analysing data collected from aircraft, satellites or ground-based platforms using statistical analysis software, image analysis software or Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a significant part of their work. Do you want to learn how to become remote sensing technician? There's no need to be concerned; we've devised a simple remote sensing technician career path for you. Scroll through the pages and read.

Database Architect

If you are intrigued by the programming world and are interested in developing communications networks then a career as database architect may be a good option for you. Data architect roles and responsibilities include building design models for data communication networks. Wide Area Networks (WANs), local area networks (LANs), and intranets are included in the database networks. It is expected that database architects will have in-depth knowledge of a company's business to develop a network to fulfil the requirements of the organisation. Stay tuned as we look at the larger picture and give you more information on what is db architecture, why you should pursue database architecture, what to expect from such a degree and what your job opportunities will be after graduation. Here, we will be discussing how to become a data architect. Students can visit NIT Trichy , IIT Kharagpur , JMI New Delhi . 

Budget Analyst

Budget analysis, in a nutshell, entails thoroughly analyzing the details of a financial budget. The budget analysis aims to better understand and manage revenue. Budget analysts assist in the achievement of financial targets, the preservation of profitability, and the pursuit of long-term growth for a business. Budget analysts generally have a bachelor's degree in accounting, finance, economics, or a closely related field. Knowledge of Financial Management is of prime importance in this career.

Data Analyst

The invention of the database has given fresh breath to the people involved in the data analytics career path. Analysis refers to splitting up a whole into its individual components for individual analysis. Data analysis is a method through which raw data are processed and transformed into information that would be beneficial for user strategic thinking.

Data are collected and examined to respond to questions, evaluate hypotheses or contradict theories. It is a tool for analyzing, transforming, modeling, and arranging data with useful knowledge, to assist in decision-making and methods, encompassing various strategies, and is used in different fields of business, research, and social science.

Finance Executive

A career as a Finance Executive requires one to be responsible for monitoring an organisation's income, investments and expenses to create and evaluate financial reports. His or her role involves performing audits, invoices, and budget preparations. He or she manages accounting activities, bank reconciliations, and payable and receivable accounts.  

Investment Banker

An Investment Banking career involves the invention and generation of capital for other organizations, governments, and other entities. Individuals who opt for a career as Investment Bankers are the head of a team dedicated to raising capital by issuing bonds. Investment bankers are termed as the experts who have their fingers on the pulse of the current financial and investing climate. Students can pursue various Investment Banker courses, such as Banking and Insurance , and  Economics to opt for an Investment Banking career path.

Product Manager

A Product Manager is a professional responsible for product planning and marketing. He or she manages the product throughout the Product Life Cycle, gathering and prioritising the product. A product manager job description includes defining the product vision and working closely with team members of other departments to deliver winning products.  

Treasury analyst career path is often regarded as certified treasury specialist in some business situations, is a finance expert who specifically manages a company or organisation's long-term and short-term financial targets. Treasurer synonym could be a financial officer, which is one of the reputed positions in the corporate world. In a large company, the corporate treasury jobs hold power over the financial decision-making of the total investment and development strategy of the organisation.


An underwriter is a person who assesses and evaluates the risk of insurance in his or her field like mortgage, loan, health policy, investment, and so on and so forth. The underwriter career path does involve risks as analysing the risks means finding out if there is a way for the insurance underwriter jobs to recover the money from its clients. If the risk turns out to be too much for the company then in the future it is an underwriter who will be held accountable for it. Therefore, one must carry out his or her job with a lot of attention and diligence.

Welding Engineer

Welding Engineer Job Description: A Welding Engineer work involves managing welding projects and supervising welding teams. He or she is responsible for reviewing welding procedures, processes and documentation. A career as Welding Engineer involves conducting failure analyses and causes on welding issues. 

Transportation Planner

A career as Transportation Planner requires technical application of science and technology in engineering, particularly the concepts, equipment and technologies involved in the production of products and services. In fields like land use, infrastructure review, ecological standards and street design, he or she considers issues of health, environment and performance. A Transportation Planner assigns resources for implementing and designing programmes. He or she is responsible for assessing needs, preparing plans and forecasts and compliance with regulations.

Conservation Architect

A Conservation Architect is a professional responsible for conserving and restoring buildings or monuments having a historic value. He or she applies techniques to document and stabilise the object’s state without any further damage. A Conservation Architect restores the monuments and heritage buildings to bring them back to their original state.

Safety Manager

A Safety Manager is a professional responsible for employee’s safety at work. He or she plans, implements and oversees the company’s employee safety. A Safety Manager ensures compliance and adherence to Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) guidelines.

A Team Leader is a professional responsible for guiding, monitoring and leading the entire group. He or she is responsible for motivating team members by providing a pleasant work environment to them and inspiring positive communication. A Team Leader contributes to the achievement of the organisation’s goals. He or she improves the confidence, product knowledge and communication skills of the team members and empowers them.

Structural Engineer

A Structural Engineer designs buildings, bridges, and other related structures. He or she analyzes the structures and makes sure the structures are strong enough to be used by the people. A career as a Structural Engineer requires working in the construction process. It comes under the civil engineering discipline. A Structure Engineer creates structural models with the help of computer-aided design software. 

Individuals in the architecture career are the building designers who plan the whole construction keeping the safety and requirements of the people. Individuals in architect career in India provides professional services for new constructions, alterations, renovations and several other activities. Individuals in architectural careers in India visit site locations to visualize their projects and prepare scaled drawings to submit to a client or employer as a design. Individuals in architecture careers also estimate build costs, materials needed, and the projected time frame to complete a build.

Landscape Architect

Having a landscape architecture career, you are involved in site analysis, site inventory, land planning, planting design, grading, stormwater management, suitable design, and construction specification. Frederick Law Olmsted, the designer of Central Park in New York introduced the title “landscape architect”. The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) proclaims that "Landscape Architects research, plan, design and advise on the stewardship, conservation and sustainability of development of the environment and spaces, both within and beyond the built environment". Therefore, individuals who opt for a career as a landscape architect are those who are educated and experienced in landscape architecture. Students need to pursue various landscape architecture degrees, such as  M.Des , M.Plan to become landscape architects. If you have more questions regarding a career as a landscape architect or how to become a landscape architect then you can read the article to get your doubts cleared. 

Orthotist and Prosthetist

Orthotists and Prosthetists are professionals who provide aid to patients with disabilities. They fix them to artificial limbs (prosthetics) and help them to regain stability. There are times when people lose their limbs in an accident. In some other occasions, they are born without a limb or orthopaedic impairment. Orthotists and prosthetists play a crucial role in their lives with fixing them to assistive devices and provide mobility.

Veterinary Doctor

A veterinary doctor is a medical professional with a degree in veterinary science. The veterinary science qualification is the minimum requirement to become a veterinary doctor. There are numerous veterinary science courses offered by various institutes. He or she is employed at zoos to ensure they are provided with good health facilities and medical care to improve their life expectancy.


A career in pathology in India is filled with several responsibilities as it is a medical branch and affects human lives. The demand for pathologists has been increasing over the past few years as people are getting more aware of different diseases. Not only that, but an increase in population and lifestyle changes have also contributed to the increase in a pathologist’s demand. The pathology careers provide an extremely huge number of opportunities and if you want to be a part of the medical field you can consider being a pathologist. If you want to know more about a career in pathology in India then continue reading this article.

Speech Therapist


Gynaecology can be defined as the study of the female body. The job outlook for gynaecology is excellent since there is evergreen demand for one because of their responsibility of dealing with not only women’s health but also fertility and pregnancy issues. Although most women prefer to have a women obstetrician gynaecologist as their doctor, men also explore a career as a gynaecologist and there are ample amounts of male doctors in the field who are gynaecologists and aid women during delivery and childbirth. 

An oncologist is a specialised doctor responsible for providing medical care to patients diagnosed with cancer. He or she uses several therapies to control the cancer and its effect on the human body such as chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation therapy and biopsy. An oncologist designs a treatment plan based on a pathology report after diagnosing the type of cancer and where it is spreading inside the body.


The audiologist career involves audiology professionals who are responsible to treat hearing loss and proactively preventing the relevant damage. Individuals who opt for a career as an audiologist use various testing strategies with the aim to determine if someone has a normal sensitivity to sounds or not. After the identification of hearing loss, a hearing doctor is required to determine which sections of the hearing are affected, to what extent they are affected, and where the wound causing the hearing loss is found. As soon as the hearing loss is identified, the patients are provided with recommendations for interventions and rehabilitation such as hearing aids, cochlear implants, and appropriate medical referrals. While audiology is a branch of science that studies and researches hearing, balance, and related disorders.

Healthcare Social Worker

Healthcare social workers help patients to access services and information about health-related issues. He or she assists people with everything from locating medical treatment to assisting with the cost of care to recover from an illness or injury. A career as Healthcare Social Worker requires working with groups of people, individuals, and families in various healthcare settings such as hospitals, mental health clinics, child welfare, schools, human service agencies, nursing homes, private practices, and other healthcare settings.  

For an individual who opts for a career as an actor, the primary responsibility is to completely speak to the character he or she is playing and to persuade the crowd that the character is genuine by connecting with them and bringing them into the story. This applies to significant roles and littler parts, as all roles join to make an effective creation. Here in this article, we will discuss how to become an actor in India, actor exams, actor salary in India, and actor jobs. 

Individuals who opt for a career as acrobats create and direct original routines for themselves, in addition to developing interpretations of existing routines. The work of circus acrobats can be seen in a variety of performance settings, including circus, reality shows, sports events like the Olympics, movies and commercials. Individuals who opt for a career as acrobats must be prepared to face rejections and intermittent periods of work. The creativity of acrobats may extend to other aspects of the performance. For example, acrobats in the circus may work with gym trainers, celebrities or collaborate with other professionals to enhance such performance elements as costume and or maybe at the teaching end of the career.

Video Game Designer

Career as a video game designer is filled with excitement as well as responsibilities. A video game designer is someone who is involved in the process of creating a game from day one. He or she is responsible for fulfilling duties like designing the character of the game, the several levels involved, plot, art and similar other elements. Individuals who opt for a career as a video game designer may also write the codes for the game using different programming languages.

Depending on the video game designer job description and experience they may also have to lead a team and do the early testing of the game in order to suggest changes and find loopholes.

Talent Agent

The career as a Talent Agent is filled with responsibilities. A Talent Agent is someone who is involved in the pre-production process of the film. It is a very busy job for a Talent Agent but as and when an individual gains experience and progresses in the career he or she can have people assisting him or her in work. Depending on one’s responsibilities, number of clients and experience he or she may also have to lead a team and work with juniors under him or her in a talent agency. In order to know more about the job of a talent agent continue reading the article.

If you want to know more about talent agent meaning, how to become a Talent Agent, or Talent Agent job description then continue reading this article.

Radio Jockey

Radio Jockey is an exciting, promising career and a great challenge for music lovers. If you are really interested in a career as radio jockey, then it is very important for an RJ to have an automatic, fun, and friendly personality. If you want to get a job done in this field, a strong command of the language and a good voice are always good things. Apart from this, in order to be a good radio jockey, you will also listen to good radio jockeys so that you can understand their style and later make your own by practicing.

A career as radio jockey has a lot to offer to deserving candidates. If you want to know more about a career as radio jockey, and how to become a radio jockey then continue reading the article.


Careers in videography are art that can be defined as a creative and interpretive process that culminates in the authorship of an original work of art rather than a simple recording of a simple event. It would be wrong to portrait it as a subcategory of photography, rather photography is one of the crafts used in videographer jobs in addition to technical skills like organization, management, interpretation, and image-manipulation techniques. Students pursue Visual Media , Film, Television, Digital Video Production to opt for a videographer career path. The visual impacts of a film are driven by the creative decisions taken in videography jobs. Individuals who opt for a career as a videographer are involved in the entire lifecycle of a film and production. 

Multimedia Specialist

A multimedia specialist is a media professional who creates, audio, videos, graphic image files, computer animations for multimedia applications. He or she is responsible for planning, producing, and maintaining websites and applications. 

An individual who is pursuing a career as a producer is responsible for managing the business aspects of production. They are involved in each aspect of production from its inception to deception. Famous movie producers review the script, recommend changes and visualise the story. 

They are responsible for overseeing the finance involved in the project and distributing the film for broadcasting on various platforms. A career as a producer is quite fulfilling as well as exhaustive in terms of playing different roles in order for a production to be successful. Famous movie producers are responsible for hiring creative and technical personnel on contract basis.

Copy Writer

In a career as a copywriter, one has to consult with the client and understand the brief well. A career as a copywriter has a lot to offer to deserving candidates. Several new mediums of advertising are opening therefore making it a lucrative career choice. Students can pursue various copywriter courses such as Journalism , Advertising , Marketing Management . Here, we have discussed how to become a freelance copywriter, copywriter career path, how to become a copywriter in India, and copywriting career outlook. 

Careers in journalism are filled with excitement as well as responsibilities. One cannot afford to miss out on the details. As it is the small details that provide insights into a story. Depending on those insights a journalist goes about writing a news article. A journalism career can be stressful at times but if you are someone who is passionate about it then it is the right choice for you. If you want to know more about the media field and journalist career then continue reading this article.

For publishing books, newspapers, magazines and digital material, editorial and commercial strategies are set by publishers. Individuals in publishing career paths make choices about the markets their businesses will reach and the type of content that their audience will be served. Individuals in book publisher careers collaborate with editorial staff, designers, authors, and freelance contributors who develop and manage the creation of content.

In a career as a vlogger, one generally works for himself or herself. However, once an individual has gained viewership there are several brands and companies that approach them for paid collaboration. It is one of those fields where an individual can earn well while following his or her passion. 

Ever since internet costs got reduced the viewership for these types of content has increased on a large scale. Therefore, a career as a vlogger has a lot to offer. If you want to know more about the Vlogger eligibility, roles and responsibilities then continue reading the article. 

Individuals in the editor career path is an unsung hero of the news industry who polishes the language of the news stories provided by stringers, reporters, copywriters and content writers and also news agencies. Individuals who opt for a career as an editor make it more persuasive, concise and clear for readers. In this article, we will discuss the details of the editor's career path such as how to become an editor in India, editor salary in India and editor skills and qualities.

Advertising Manager

Advertising managers consult with the financial department to plan a marketing strategy schedule and cost estimates. We often see advertisements that attract us a lot, not every advertisement is just to promote a business but some of them provide a social message as well. There was an advertisement for a washing machine brand that implies a story that even a man can do household activities. And of course, how could we even forget those jingles which we often sing while working?


Photography is considered both a science and an art, an artistic means of expression in which the camera replaces the pen. In a career as a photographer, an individual is hired to capture the moments of public and private events, such as press conferences or weddings, or may also work inside a studio, where people go to get their picture clicked. Photography is divided into many streams each generating numerous career opportunities in photography. With the boom in advertising, media, and the fashion industry, photography has emerged as a lucrative and thrilling career option for many Indian youths.

Social Media Manager

A career as social media manager involves implementing the company’s or brand’s marketing plan across all social media channels. Social media managers help in building or improving a brand’s or a company’s website traffic, build brand awareness, create and implement marketing and brand strategy. Social media managers are key to important social communication as well.

Production Manager

Quality controller.

A quality controller plays a crucial role in an organisation. He or she is responsible for performing quality checks on manufactured products. He or she identifies the defects in a product and rejects the product. 

A quality controller records detailed information about products with defects and sends it to the supervisor or plant manager to take necessary actions to improve the production process.

Production Engineer

A career as a Production Engineer is crucial in the manufacturing industry. He or she ensures the functionality of production equipment and machinery to improve productivity and minimise production costs to drive revenues and increase profitability. 

Product Designer

Individuals who opt for a career as product designers are responsible for designing the components and overall product concerning its shape, size, and material used in manufacturing. They are responsible for the aesthetic appearance of the product. A product designer uses his or her creative skills to give a product its final outlook and ensures the functionality of the design. 

Students can opt for various product design degrees such as B.Des and M.Des to become product designers. Industrial product designer prepares 3D models of designs for approval and discusses them with clients and other colleagues. Individuals who opt for a career as a product designer estimate the total cost involved in designing.

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An Azure Administrator is a professional responsible for implementing, monitoring, and maintaining Azure Solutions. He or she manages cloud infrastructure service instances and various cloud servers as well as sets up public and private cloud systems. 

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Individuals in the information security manager career path involves in overseeing and controlling all aspects of computer security. The IT security manager job description includes planning and carrying out security measures to protect the business data and information from corruption, theft, unauthorised access, and deliberate attack 

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Careers in computer programming primarily refer to the systematic act of writing code and moreover include wider computer science areas. The word 'programmer' or 'coder' has entered into practice with the growing number of newly self-taught tech enthusiasts. Computer programming careers involve the use of designs created by software developers and engineers and transforming them into commands that can be implemented by computers. These commands result in regular usage of social media sites, word-processing applications and browsers.

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An IT Consultant is a professional who is also known as a technology consultant. He or she is required to provide consultation to industrial and commercial clients to resolve business and IT problems and acquire optimum growth. An IT consultant can find work by signing up with an IT consultancy firm, or he or she can work on their own as independent contractors and select the projects he or she wants to work on.

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Highlight links, change contrast, increase text size, increase letter spacing, readability bar, dyslexia friendly font, increase cursor size, everything to know about md-phd programs.

I am sure you have heard about MD programs as a pre-health student but what about MD-PhD programs? An MD-PhD (Doctorate of Medicine and Philosophy) is a dual doctorate degree program for students who are interested in careers that most refer to as “physician-scientists”.

Students who graduate from MD-PhD programs typically go on to become faculty members at medical schools, universities, and research institutes. These programs prepare you for careers where you will spend most of your time doing research in addition to caring for patients. If you enjoy research, this may be the path for you!

What prerequisites should I take?

  • MD-PhD programs require the same courses similar to what medical schools want. These include your biology, chemistry, biochemistry, physics, and more. You can choose to major in anything as long as you complete the required pre-requisite courses listed. And it is highly recommended to choose a few MD-PhD programs you may be interested in so that you know if you are on track.
  • Research is an essential component to your application into an MD-PhD program. Research experience and letters from research mentors or faculty are taken highly into account. You must be able to write essays about your various research experiences and talk about them during your interviews. This demonstrates your will and desire of wanting to go into a more research-focused field of medicine.


  • Generally, you need a strong MCAT and GPA when applying to these programs. Similar to the medical school application process, you want to be able to exemplify that you were able to handle the science-heavy courses during your undergraduate years. And that includes being able to balance the other requirements such as research and volunteering. The MCAT itself also takes a lot of time and dedication to studying, where most students take the MCAT during their Junior year on top completing their upper-level pre-requisite courses.
  • Total MCAT: 513.9
  • GPA Science: 3.75
  • GPA Non-Science: 3.82

Application Timeline

  • June: Applicants can begin submitting their primary application through AMCAS
  • October–March: MD-PhD applicant interviews
  • December–March: Admissions decisions sent to applicants
  • March–April: MD-PhD final decisions
  • June–August: MD-PHD program journey begins

*Note that this timeline can look different depending on each applicant and program*

Overall, these programs are great to look into if you are wanting to get into the clinical aspect of medicine that also combines a high amount of research. These programs are funded by the National Institute of Health (NIH) so students who are admitted to these highly competitive programs most likely receive full tuition and living expenses covered.

The difference between MD and MD-PhD is being able to describe your passion for wanting to pursue this program of medicine and what research experience you have obtained leading up to applying.

Feel free to make an appointment with an advisor if you want to look more into this!

Ed.D. vs. Ph.D.: Which is Right for Me?

  • Academics  

You might know what the letters stand for and both are terminal degrees for their fields of study. But there are distinctions in how these two doctorates are earned and used that could make a difference in your career plans.

What is a Ph.D.?

A Ph.D., or doctor of philosophy degree, is a terminal academic degree in many disciplines. It is generally the highest level of education one can attain in the field and often leads to a career in academia or research.

What is an Ed.D.?

A doctor of education degree, or Ed.D., is similar to a Ph.D. in that it is a terminal degree in the field of education. The main difference is that the Ed.D. is geared to practical application, such as teaching or educational leadership, while the Ph.D. is geared more to theoretical research. A student may also obtain a Ph.D. in education to pursue research, but both degrees are considered the highest level one can attain in the field.

Another difference? The Ed.D. is traditionally earned in a shorter amount of time than the Ph.D. At Sacred Heart University, candidates for the Ed.D. can complete their degree in 3.5 to 4 years.

Is it better to hold a Ph.D. or an Ed.D. in Education?

The answer usually depends on what you plan to do after attaining your degree. If you're interested in pursuing a career in education administration or leadership, then an Ed.D. might be the right choice for you. That degree path is often a good fit for principals, academic administrators, superintendents, curriculum coordinators, instructional coaches and mid-career teacher leaders.

On the other hand, if you are more interested in conducting research and teaching at the college level, then a Ph.D. in education might be a better fit.

How do I earn a Ph.D. or Ed.D.?

Earning a Ph.D. or Ed.D. requires extensive research on a specific topic. Candidates must present and defend their findings and typically contribute new knowledge to the field through their advanced research.

The Ed.D. is often referred to as one of the ‘professional doctorates’ because it focuses on honing practical skills and knowledge. Professional doctorate programs graduate experts in fields such as education, health care, business, law or psychology.

How long does it take to earn a Ph.D. or Ed.D.?

The amount of time spent on either degree depends on a host of factors. A Ph.D. program usually requires about 3-6 years of research and writing, depending on the field, the scope of the research and whether the candidate is working full or part time on the degree.

The length of time to complete an Ed.D. also varies. Some institutions offer full-time programs over two years, while others have part-time opportunities that take 2-5 years. The Ed.D. usually requires a residency, and many who are already in the education field might be able to complete it at their current place of employment.

Are there other terminal degrees?

Some fields do not have Ph.D. options. A studio artist might attain a master of fine arts (MFA). Those who finish medical studies generally earn a doctor of medicine or MD.

In addition to an Ed.D. in educational leadership or higher education leadership, Sacred Heart University offers several other doctorate programs, including:

  • Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (FNP-DNP)
  • Post-Master's Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
  • Ph.D. in Social Work

What sets SHU’s doctorate programs and terminal degrees apart?

SHU has been named one of the fastest growing private doctoral institutions by U.S. News & World Report. Our dedicated faculty members ensure that our doctorate programs are anything but cookie cutter, guiding students to reach their highest academic and professional potential.

The online Ed.D. in educational leadership focuses on social justice and belonging. Candidates are accepted through a rolling admissions process and complete the program in about 3.5 to 4 years. Ideal for school leaders such as principals and superintendents, the program expands knowledge of leadership principles related to social and emotional learning (SEL).

The Ed.D. in higher education leadership prepares higher education professionals to lead their organizations from a social justice and belonging perspective, and to effectively, ethically lead faculty and staff.   The Ph.D. in social work allows candidates to earn their degrees part time and online and includes a one-week summer immersion on campus.

At the Welch College of Business & Technology, students in the three-year, low-residency Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) in finance program learn quantitative and qualitative applied research methods – usually while continuing to work full time. This prepares them for higher-level roles in their finance corporate position or careers in academia with a finance/business focus.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program, named one of the best in CT by U.S. News & World Report , emphasizes clinical decision-making, self-directed learning and real-world experience.

Want to know more about Sacred Heart University’s doctorate programs?

Talk to our team of admissions counselors , each of whom specializes in specific programs. Have a one-on-one conversation with one of our counselors to get all your questions answered either virtually or in person. Email [email protected] , call 203-365-7619 or schedule an appointment today. 

Want to hear more from SHU? Subscribe to our newsletters to get the latest updates delivered right to your inbox.

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Additional information about International Student Program reforms

Ottawa, February 5, 2024— Further information is being provided to clarify the announcement of an intake cap on new international study permit applications and other changes . International students make important contributions to Canada’s campuses, communities and economy; however, we have seen unsustainable growth in the International Student Program in recent years. These recently announced reforms will support sustainable population growth in Canada and improve system integrity, while helping to ensure that international students have a positive experience in Canada.

1. Cap and provincial attestation letter

As of 8:30 a.m. ET on January 22, 2024, most new post-secondary international students at the college or undergraduate level must provide a provincial attestation letter (PAL) from a province or territory with their study permit application. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will return any application received that does not include a PAL, unless otherwise exempt.

This attestation will serve as proof that the student has been accounted for under a provincial or territorial allocation within the national cap. Provinces and territories have been asked to have a plan in place for issuing PALs by March 31, 2024. The Government of Canada is working with the Government of Quebec to determine how the certificat d’acceptation du Québec pour études could serve as a PAL.

International students whose applications were received by IRCC before 8:30 a.m. on January 22, 2024, as well as those who have already been approved for a study permit and intend to travel to Canada for an upcoming program, do not need to take further action as a result of the cap.

Who needs a provincial attestation letter?

  • most post-secondary study permit applicants
  • most non-degree granting graduate programs (for example, certificate programs and graduate diplomas)
  • anyone else not included in the exception list below

Who doesn’t need a provincial attestation letter?

  • primary and secondary school students
  • master’s or doctoral degree students
  • visiting or exchange students
  • in-Canada study permit and work permit holders (includes study permit holders applying for an extension)
  • in-Canada family members of study permit or work permit holders
  • students whose application we received before 8:30 a.m. ET on January 22, 2024

2. Post-graduation work permit (PGWP) update for graduates of master’s degree programs

In recognition that graduates of master’s degree granting programs are excellent candidates to succeed in Canada’s labour market and potentially transition to permanent residence, we have made a change to the length of the PGWP, so that they have the opportunity to meet the required Canadian work experience in order to apply for their permanent residence.

Starting on February 15, 2024, a longer, 3-year post-graduation work permit will be available to those who are graduating from a master’s degree program that is less than 2 years and who meet all other PGWP eligibility criteria.

The length of PGWPs for programs other than master’s degrees will continue to align with the length of the study program, to a maximum of 3 years.

Who is eligible for a longer post-graduation work permit (PGWP)?

  • Graduates of programs that are at least two years in length at PGWP-eligible designated learning institutions are eligible for a 3-year PGWP, as are graduates of master’s degree programs less than 2 years in length.

3. PGWP eligibility for public-private partnership college programs

Some provinces allow public colleges to license their curriculum to be delivered by an affiliated private college. In these cases, students physically attend a private college, but graduate with a diploma from a public institution. Concerns have been raised with regard to the quality of education provided by these institutions, as well as the lack of sufficient student supports. The Auditor General of Ontario has also raised concerns about a lack of oversight into program quality and student services at these institutions.

As such, IRCC has made a change to restrict PGWPs for these institutions, anticipating that without the ability to apply for a PGWP, there will be a reduction in the number of international students enrolling in them.

Who is eligible for a PGWP after graduating from a public-private partnership college program?

  • International students currently enrolled will remain eligible for a PGWP if they meet other program eligibility criteria.

Who is not eligible for a PGWP after graduating from a public-private partnership college program?

  • New students enrolling in this type of program will not be eligible for a post-graduation work permit.

4. Changes to open work permit eligibility for spouses

In the coming weeks, eligibility for open work permits for the spouses and common-law partners of international students will be updated.

Who can get an open work permit?

  • Eligibility is limited to the spouses and common-law partners of students in graduate (master’s and doctorate) and professional degree–granting programs only.
  • Once these changes are in effect, spouses and common-law partners of international students seeking to extend their existing work permit will continue to be eligible under this stream.

Who will not be eligible for an open work permit?

  • The spouses and common-law partners of international students in other levels of study, including undergraduate and college programs, will no longer be eligible for an open work permit unless they already hold an open work permit under this stream.

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Guest Essay

I’m a Neuroscientist. We’re Thinking About Biden’s Memory and Age in the Wrong Way.

President Biden seated in a chair holding a stack of what looks like index cards.

By Charan Ranganath

Dr. Ranganath is a professor of psychology and neuroscience and the director of the Dynamic Memory Lab at the University of California, Davis, and the author of the forthcoming book “Why We Remember: Unlocking Memory’s Power to Hold On to What Matters.”

The special counsel Robert K. Hur’s report, in which he declined to prosecute President Biden for his handling of classified documents, also included a much-debated assessment of Mr. Biden’s cognitive abilities.

“Mr. Biden would likely present himself to a jury, as he did during our interview with him, as a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.”

As an expert on memory, I can assure you that everyone forgets. In fact, most of the details of our lives — the people we meet, the things we do and the places we go — will inevitably be reduced to memories that capture only a small fraction of those experiences.

It is normal to be more forgetful as you get older. Generally, memory functions begin to decline in our 30s and continue to fade into old age. However, age in and of itself doesn’t indicate the presence of memory deficits that would affect an individual’s ability to perform in a demanding leadership role. And an apparent memory lapse may or may not be consequential, depending on the reasons it occurred.

There is forgetting, and there is Forgetting. If you’re over the age of 40, you’ve most likely experienced the frustration of trying to grasp that slippery word on the tip of your tongue. Colloquially, this might be described as forgetting, but most memory scientists would call this retrieval failure, meaning that the memory is there but we just can’t pull it up when we need it. On the other hand, Forgetting (with a capital F) is when a memory is seemingly lost or gone altogether. Inattentively conflating the names of the leaders of two countries would fall in the first category, whereas being unable to remember that you had ever met the president of Egypt would fall into the second.

Over the course of typical aging, we see changes in the functioning of the prefrontal cortex, a brain area that plays a starring role in many of our day-to-day memory successes and failures. These changes mean that as we get older, we tend to be more distractible and often struggle to pull up words or names we’re looking for. Remembering events takes longer, and it requires more effort, and we can’t catch errors as quickly as we used to. This translates to a lot more forgetting and a little more Forgetting.

Many of the special counsel’s observations about Mr. Biden’s memory seem to fall in the category of forgetting, meaning that they are more indicative of a problem with finding the right information from memory than Forgetting. Calling up the date that an event occurred, like the last year of Mr. Biden’s vice presidency or the year of his son’s death, is a complex measure of memory. Remembering that an event took place is different from being able to put a date on when it happened, which is more challenging with increased age. The president very likely has many memories, even though he could not immediately pull up dates in the stressful (and more immediately pressing) context of the Oct. 7 attack on Israel.

Other “memory” issues highlighted in the media are not so much cases of forgetting as they are of difficulties in the articulation of facts and knowledge. For instance, in July 2023, Mr. Biden mistakenly stated in a speech that “we have over 100 people dead,” when he should have said, “over one million.” He has struggled with a stutter since childhood, and research suggests that managing a stutter demands prefrontal resources that would normally enable people to find the right word or at least quickly correct errors after the fact.

Americans are understandably concerned about the advanced age of the two top contenders in the coming presidential election (Mr. Biden is 81, and Donald Trump is 77), although some of these concerns are rooted in cultural stereotypes and fears around aging. The fact is that there is a huge degree of variability in cognitive aging. Age is, on average, associated with decreased memory, but studies that follow up the same person over several years have shown that although some older adults show precipitous declines over time, other super-agers remain as sharp as ever.

Mr. Biden is the same age as Harrison Ford, Paul McCartney and Martin Scorsese. He’s also a bit younger than Jane Fonda (86) and a lot younger than the Berkshire Hathaway C.E.O., Warren Buffett (93). All these individuals are considered to be at the top of their professions, and yet I would not be surprised if they are more forgetful and absent-minded than when they were younger. In other words, an individual’s age does not say anything definitive about the person’s cognitive status or where it will head in the near future.

I can’t speak to the cognitive status of any of the presidential candidates, but I can say that, rather than focus on candidates’ ages per se, we should consider whether they have the capabilities to do the job. Public perception of a person’s cognitive state is often determined by superficial factors, such as physical presence, confidence and verbal fluency, but these aren’t necessarily relevant to one’s capacity to make consequential decisions about the fate of this country. Memory is surely relevant, but other characteristics, such as knowledge of the relevant facts and emotion regulation — both of which are relatively preserved and might even improve with age — are likely to be of equal or greater importance.

Ultimately, we are due for a national conversation about what we should expect in terms of the cognitive and emotional health of our leaders.

And that should be informed by science, not politics.

Charan Ranganath is a professor of psychology and neuroscience and the director of the Dynamic Memory Lab at the University of California, Davis, and the author of “ Why We Remember: Unlocking Memory’s Power to Hold On to What Matters .”

The Times is committed to publishing a diversity of letters to the editor. We’d like to hear what you think about this or any of our articles. Here are some tips . And here’s our email: [email protected] .

Follow the New York Times Opinion section on Facebook , Instagram , TikTok , X and Threads .

PhD Student Awarded Prestigious NIH Summer Internship Program

how to do phd

A doctoral student in the Department of Communication will participate in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Summer Internship Program . 

Third-year Ph.D. student Ruth Heo is studying quantitative computational research methods.  Computational science is a branch of mathematics that using computing to solve complex problems.  Heo’s training will help her apply her research towards health-related issues. 

Heo will join a team led by Dr. Brenda Curtis with the NIH Technology and Translational Research Unit.  The Curtis Lab blends uses computational psychiatry to study the interactions between people who use drugs and their environments.  Curtis integrates social media and big data to form technology-based tools to help treat people living with substance abuse. 

As a social scientist, Heo will study social media messaging. 

“There’s lots of observational data from social media that leave digital traces all around,” Heo said.  “We’re recollecting it and applying computational methods like generating a model using natural language processing. We are tracking their posts to see whether their sentiments or some specific knowledge of their health issues can predict their health behavior.” 

Heo is eager to learn how computational methods are applied in the health realm.  She believes studying a person’s social media posts tends to yield better data about their health behaviors than relying only on self-reported data. 

“When a (person) is doing a clinical trial, we can't really predict whether they’ll make a good performance throughout it,” Heo said.  “So, we want to make a more accurate model using their social media posts. If we analyze their posts at the start and then compare their performance after the clinical trial and based on the language they use in their social media, that really predicts the outcome.” 

As an NIH summer intern, Heo will have access to professional development programs such as core competency training and educational and career advising.  Her internship will begin in June. Heo credits two mentors, Dr. Winson Peng from the Department of Communication and Dr. Serena Miller with the School of Journalism for their recommendations to the program. 

As she looks forward to her studies, Heo says she wants to shed light on this opportunity and urge others to follow. 

“I encourage the undergrads in ComArtSci to apply for this internship to get a chance to work with prominent researchers and pave their own path.” 

By: Kevin Lavery 


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    You'll need to choose a research topic, design and conduct your research, compile and analyze your data, and then write, rewrite, and defend your dissertation. Plus, some classes may only be offered during a particular semester or in a specific order. In short, getting a PhD isn't a quick process. 4.

  18. How to Apply for A PhD Abroad

    For UK universities, there are generally two ways of applying. You can either apply directly through the university's website or you can make an application through the UCAS Postgraduate system. In Spain, Italy and Germany, before applying to a PhD you will first need to pass a pre-application process.

  19. How to Choose a PhD Research Topic

    Consider several ideas and critically appraise them: You must be able to explain to others why your chosen topic is worth studying. You must be genuinely interested in the subject area. You must be competent and equipped to answer the research question. You must set achievable and measurable aims and objectives.

  20. How to get a PhD in Australia

    You can complete a PhD by: joining an existing research project in an area that interests you start a fresh research project that aligns with your specific goals. Get tips for choosing your PhD topic or explore available research projects at UQ 3. Find a PhD supervisor

  21. PhD Admission: Dates, Eligibilty, Admission Process, Preparation Tips

    As per PhD eligibility criteria, PhD qualifications require a master's degree or an MPhil with a minimum aggregate score of 55% is required for a PhD. The CSIR UGC NET is a national-level PhD entrance exam that is held twice a year amongst the other entrance exams.

  22. How to Prepare for and Start a PhD

    A guide to help you prepare for and start a PhD, covering topics such as building relationships, planning your research, finding a suitable working environment, completing induction and writing early. Learn how to make your research smoother and more valuable with tips and advice from

  23. How to apply for PhD in USA

    Download PDF How to apply for PhD in USA for international students - The USA is inarguably one of the most preferred study destinations for international students, especially for its PhD programs. One of the main factors that attract so many applicants for PhD in the USA is that there are a wide range of courses available for PhD candidates.

  24. Everything to Know about MD-PhD Programs

    MD-PhD programs require the same courses similar to what medical schools want. These include your biology, chemistry, biochemistry, physics, and more. You can choose to major in anything as long as you complete the required pre-requisite courses listed. And it is highly recommended to choose a few MD-PhD programs you may be interested in so ...

  25. Top Online PhD in Health Science Degrees for 2024

    The University of South Dakota is accredited through the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and holds a host of additional programmatic accreditations for specialized programs, making USD a prestigious and well-respected institution.. USD's online Health Sciences PhD program includes 75 credit hours of major area coursework, plus 15 credit hours of discipline-specific coursework, allowing each ...

  26. Ed.D. vs. Ph.D.: Which is Right for Me?

    The answer usually depends on what you plan to do after attaining your degree. If you're interested in pursuing a career in education administration or leadership, then an Ed.D. might be the right choice for you. That degree path is often a good fit for principals, academic administrators, superintendents, curriculum coordinators, instructional ...

  27. Top Online Ed.D. Programs Of 2024

    The highest degree educators and educational leaders can earn is the doctorate. At this level, schools offer doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) and doctor of education (Ed.D.) degrees. These share some ...

  28. Additional information about International Student Program reforms

    Ottawa, February 5, 2024—Further information is being provided to clarify the announcement of an intake cap on new international study permit applications and other changes.International students make important contributions to Canada's campuses, communities and economy; however, we have seen unsustainable growth in the International Student Program in recent years.

  29. Opinion

    Dr. Ranganath is a professor of psychology and neuroscience and the director of the Dynamic Memory Lab at the University of California, Davis, and the author of the forthcoming book "Why We ...

  30. PhD Student Awarded Prestigious NIH Summer Internship Program

    A doctoral student in the Department of Communication will participate in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Summer Internship Program.. Third-year Ph.D. student Ruth Heo is studying quantitative computational research methods. Computational science is a branch of mathematics that using computing to solve complex problems.