IIT Madras Ph.D. Admission 2023 Application Form, Exam Date, Eligibility & Pattern

IIT Madras will soon release the official dates for the Ph.D. written test and interview for the Autumn Semester 2021-22. Based on the performance of candidates in the written test and interview, a final admission list of the selected candidates will be announced. Students will begin taking classes for the Ph.D. program on August 2, 2021.

Important Dates to Remember

This section of the article will discuss the important dates to remember for students interested in pursuing the PhD program at IIT Madras.

EventsTentative Dates
Notification releaseMarch 24
Application Form releasedMarch 25 – April 14
Correction of the ApplicationApril 17 – April 18
Mock TestTo be announced
Date of examinationSeptember 19
Release of Admit CardTo be announced
Declaration of ResultTo be announced

Description of the IITM PhD program

PhDs typically last 5 years and may include both residential and non-residential components. Students must check the admission notification on the official website. Candidates will be selected based on merit, entrance exams like GATE and NET, and interviews organized by the respective departments.

  • In the Engineering/Sciences/Management/Humanities & Social Sciences stream, Bachelor’s degree holders can apply for a Direct PhD after their undergraduate training.
  • Half-Time Research Assistantship (HTRA) funding is available from the Ministry of Human Resource Development and fellowships from other funding agencies, such as CSIR, UGC, DST, ICMR, AICTE, etc.

Eligibility for PhD at IITM 

Engineer with a PhD.

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  • Graduate of an engineering or technology program with an excellent academic record.
  • Research Master’s degree in Engineering/Technology with an excellent academic record
  • Five-year dual degree in engineering or a five-year BS+MS dual degree in mechanical engineering from a well-recognized technical institute
  • M.Sc. students with two years of study. You do not need to pass any National Level Exam
  •  with an 8.0 or higher from an IIT (entry through JAM).
  •  To be eligible for registration, students must have a valid GATE score or UGC-JRF/NET/CSIR-JRF or equivalent qualification in the relevant area.
  • A student with a bachelor’s degree in engineering or technology AND more than five years of relevant work experience after completing their master’s degree in engineering or technology may be exempted from the test requirement.

Obtaining a PhD in science

  • Graduate degree in sciences with a good academic record and a valid GATE score or UGC-JRF/NET/CSIR-JRF/NBHM/INSPIRE score 
  • Graduate of a technical institute with a master’s degree in engineering/technology, 5-year BS+MS degree, or 5-year integrated degree with an excellent academic record.
  • Students with a two-year master’s degree. No national-level examinations are required for students who entered IITs (through JAM) with an 8.0 or higher.
  • M.Sc. students with a CGPA greater than 8.0 are considered high achievers. The Science Departments at IIT Madras offer direct admission to their PhD programs in sciences with departmental interviews.

PhD in Humanities and Social Sciences

  •  MA Degree in the relevant area and Qualifying UGC NET, JRF, CSIR-JRF, GATE Score, or equivalent qualification tenable for the current year in the appropriate area, or international level postgraduate admission examination such as GRE (Non-HTRA).
  • Engineering/Technology Master’s Degree, BS+MS Dual Degree/5 Year Integrated Degree from an educational institution funded by the central government and with a good academic record. 

PhD in Management

  • An undergraduate degree or equivalent in any professional discipline of at least four years, or an advanced degree or equivalent in a relevant discipline, with a good academic record.
  • An international level admission test, such as the GMAT/GRE (Non-HTRA), is needed instead of a national level exam like the GATE/CAT/UGC-JRF/NET/CSIR-JRF.
  • As an alternative to the above examination, you should have at least five years of management experience. (This clause applies to candidates who do not qualify for the HTRA.)
  • Master’s degrees with a good academic record in Engineering or Technology or Master’s degrees by research in Engineering or Technology in a relevant discipline are exempt from qualifying for National level examinations.
  • Suppose you have an MBA or 2-year postgraduate diploma from a Centrally Funded Technical Institute (CFTI) with a cumulative grade point average of 8 and above. In that case, you do not need to qualify for National Level Examinations.

Admission to the IITM PhD program

  • Application forms for PhD programs at IIT Madras are available on the university’s website. Students interested in applying for the PhD will have to complete the application form on the official website.
  • The Selection Committees of the respective departments will interview applicants who meet the minimum eligibility requirements for the various PhD programs.
  • On the last day prescribed for receipt of a completed application, those students who have earned a PG degree 10 years ago will be subjected to a departmental test.

Students from abroad 

A student can also apply for the PhD program if they reside outside of India. Several categories can be found, including – 

  1. To apply for self-funding, students need to submit the following:
    1. A Master’s degree in Engineering/Technology, a Master’s degree by Research in Engineering/Technology or a Master’s degree in Sciences/ Humanities and Social Sciences / Management Studies with a good academic record.
    2. Minimum scores of 6.5 (overall) and 80 (overall) on IELTS and TOEFL, respectively, plus a valid GRE/GMAT. 
    3. Applications must be submitted through the Indian High Commission/Embassy.
  2. Students (international) interested in the PhD program have the option of applying for various scholarships. You can find them here – 
  3. The criteria for ICCR candidates are as follows:
    1. The degree must be in Engineering/Technology, Engineering/Technology by Research or Science/Humanities/Social Sciences/Management Studies with a good academic record.
    2. Minimum scores of 6.5 (overall) and 80 (overall) on IELTS and TOEFL, respectively, plus a valid GRE/GMAT. 
    3. To apply, candidates must contact the Indian High Commission or Embassy.
  4. Scholarships offered by foreign embassies/governments
  5. Students are funded with the ASEAN Scholarship for the entire duration of their PhD program.
  6. As part of the Faculty Improvement Programme (FIP). 

What are the steps to applying?

Application forms for PhD programs at IIT Madras are available on the university’s website. On the university’s official page, students interested in applying for the PhD program can find the application form. For students to fill out the application form, they must first log in to the official website. You must pay the application fee to submit the application form successfully. Interviewees must bring the printed application form with them to their interview. The steps to completing the PhD application form are as follows:

  • Create a user account by visiting https://research.iitm.ac.in/user.
  • To complete an application, click on “Apply to Department” (up to three applications per user).
  • The email ID provided during registration will receive an email containing a link to activate the account.
  • You can edit your profile information under the “My Profile” menu.
  • A number is given to the applicant once the payment process has been completed.
  • You will receive an email containing your application.

Documents needed for the PhD at IITM

The following documents are required during the interview: 

  • Upon online registration, candidates receive a printed application copy.
  • You should produce the following documents for proof of qualification: Grade cards, degree certificates, and marks sheets.
  • Copies of community certificates issued by the respective state governments to SC, ST, OBC and NCL. A valid certificate issued by the concerned authority is required for candidates who claim the EWS (Economically Weaker Sections) reservation.
  • Disability descriptions must be verified by an authorized doctor in Persons with Disabilities (PWD) candidates.
  • The GATE/NET score or the DAE/JEST certificate (UGC-JRF/Net/CSIR-JRF/JEST/DAE) or another fellowship award certification.
  • Certificate of the Project Coordinator in the prescribed format and a copy of the letter of appointment from Dean IC and SR of IITM regarding the project appointment of the Project Associate.

Scholarships for PhD students at IITM 

IIT Madras offers Half-Time Research Assistantships (HTRA) to Ph.D. students enrolled in the regular scheme. To qualify for the assistantship, students must fulfill the following requirements:

  • To earn this assistantship, they should work eight hours per week as members of the Department.
  • Every semester, the assistantships are renewed. To keep the assistantship, they must show good performance in the research and the preceding semester.
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