Find the list of top 50 PhD admission tests before the next PhD admission session kick starts

New Delhi: Doctoral degree, or popularly known as PhD, is one of the highest degrees practiced by Higher Education system in India. Most of the universities or institutes in India admit PhD students in two sessions: Autumn (July-August) and Spring (January-February). Of course, there are many universities or research institutes admit candidates once a year for PhD programmes.

For the January 2018 (Spring) session, some universities have already notified their admission process for doctoral programmes. PhD aspirants or students should know and kick start start their preparation to clear the PhD Admission Test. Here, SkillOutlook presents the Top 50 PhD admission tests or entrances, which may help PhD aspirants to fine tune their decision in selecting universities or institutes.


Undoubtedly, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi is the most popular destination for PhD programmes in general stream subjects. The entrance test of JNU for PhD programmes is tough due to competition as a large number of students apply for it. JNU admits candidates once a year for the academic session. PhD programmes offered by Banaras Hindu University are another popular choices for students. BHU takes PhD scholars twice a year.

List of Top PhD Admission Entrances conducted by Universities or Institutes

Name of Institutes/Universities Remark
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi The most popular PhD Entrance Test in India.  JNU Entrance conducted once in a year in May-June
Banaras Hindu University The larsgest residentail university in Asia.
Jamia Millia Islamia A premier central university
Central Universities Common Entrance Test (CUCET) CUCET 2017 is a pan India test conducted by a consortium of 10 Central Universities, for selecting students in various programmes including UG, PG and PhD in the 10 participating universities.
Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) Notifies PhD entrance test once in a year in October month.
Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER) Mohali One of the IISER group. It offers PhD programmes with JRF.
Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER) Mohali One of the IISER group. It offers PhD programmes with JRF.
Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research (IISER) Thiruvananthapuram These are a group of premier science education and research institutes under Ministry of HRD. There are seven IISREs: Mohali, Pune, Bhopal, Thiruvananthapuram, Kolkata, Tirupati, and Berhampur. Generally, they don’t conduct own PhD entrance test. Candidates must qualify in at least one of the National Level Eligibility Tests or Fellowships.
Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) Human Resource Development Division (HRDD), BARC offers DGFS-Ph.D. programme under the aegis of Homi Bhabha National Institute (HBNI).
Savitribai Phule Pune University Formerly University of Pune and University of Poona. It is one of popular universities for PhD programmes.
Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women (IGDTUW)  It is a women’s university located in New Delhi.  Conucts Research Aptitude Test (RAT) once in a year , Notifies in May
IIT (ISM) Dhanbad ISM admits Junior Research Fellows( JRFs ) for PhD.programme through GATE / Written Test and Interview twice in year (Phase 1 & Phase 2). Notifies in March and September
IIT Madras Admits PhD students twice a year on  a rolling basis. Fellowship is offered as per Ministry of HRD rules.
IIT Bombay Admits PhD students twice a year. Fellowship is offered as per Ministry of HRD rules.
IITs Except few new IITs, all IITs offer doctoral programmes. Generally, admit PhD students with JRF twice a year.
Punjab University, Chandigarh For academic year 2017-18, the total PhD Seats were 482.
Chhattisgarh Swami Vivekanand and Technical University, Bhilai For academic year 2017-18, 652 seats. Offers all most all subjects: Science, engineering, Humanities, Management.
Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla PhD For academic year 2017-18, total PhD seats were 224.
Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam For academic year 2017-18, total PhD seats were 381 seats. The PhD test is poplarly known as PhD Written Aptitude Test (WAT).
Joint Entrance Screening Test 2017 (JEST) 2017 Admission  for a PhD / Integrated Ph.D Programme in Physics or Theoretical Computer Science or Neuroscience or Computational Biology in  one  of the Participating Institutes.
BITS Pilani A popular private university. Admits students twice a year.
Delhi Technological University The University offers Full Time/Part-Time scholars for PhD in various branches of Engineering, Sciences, Humanities and Management.
Central University of Hyderabad A premier central university and conducts its own entrance test.
Pondicherry  University A Central University
Tata Institute of Fundamental Research  A public research institution in Mumbai and Hyderabad.
NIT Surathkal For academic year 2017-18, total PhD seats were 150 seats.
NIT Rourkela A leading National Institutes of Technologies (NIT) group of Institute
NITs There are 31 NITs in India.
Symbiosis International University, Pune A premier private university based in Pune. Notifies PhD admission in May month each year.
Thapar University A private university based in Patiala, Punjab.
Amrita University A private university based in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu
UGC-NET Some universities exempt UGC NET qualified candidates to appear PhD entrance tests.
CSIR -UGC NET Some universities exempt CSIR-UGC NET qualified candidates to appear PhD entrance tests.
National University of Educational Planning and Administration. NUEPA offers MPhil and PhD programmes in the following research areas: Education Policy, Education Planning, Education Administration and Education Finance.
Alagappa University Alagappa University is a public university located in Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu.
University of Mysore A state university  Karnataka
BR Ambedkar Open University A public university based in Hyderabad.
Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University Lucknow A Central University in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
SRM University A private university based in Chennai
VIT University Vellore Institute of Technology, formerly known as Vellore Engineering College, is a private university in Tamil Nadu, India.
Manipal University It is a private research and educational institute located in Manipal,
North Eastern Hill University, Shillong  A Central University based in Meghalaya
Tezpur University, Assam aACentral University located in Tezpur, Assam.
Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA), Bangalore Primarily conducts research primarily in the areas of astronomy, astrophysics and related subjects.
South Asian University, New Delhi South Asian University is an International University sponsored by the eight Member States of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation.
University of Delhi A leading university in India
Jadavpur University Jadavpur University is a public state university based in Kolkata, West Bengal, India.
Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research Bangalore It is a multidisciplinary research institute located at Jakkur, Bangalore
Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST) It is a government-aided institute and deemed university for the study and research of space science, based in Thiruvananthapuram.
Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) Mainly, it is benchmark test for Mtech programmes in IITs and NITs. But some use as benchmark for PhD and Intergrated PhD programme admission.

Indian Institutes of Technology, India’s premier engineering & technology institutes, admit PhD students in two phases or two sessions. For IITs (IIT Bombay and IIT Gandhinagar) , the admission process for the January 2018 (Spring) session has been notified. However, most of the IITs will soon notify their admission process for the next semester of 2017-18 PhD programmes.

During the current session July 2017-18, SkillOutlook observed that the following university has advertised for large number PhD seats for admissions:  Chhattisgarh Swami Vivekanand and Technical University, Bhilai  (682 PhD seats), Punjab University, Chandigarh (482 PhD seats ), Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam (382 PhD seats), and Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla (224 PhD seats) and University of Mysore (958 PhD seats).

Among private universities, BITS Pilani, Manipal University, Amrita University, SRM University, etc conduct their own PhD entrance test for short listing candidates for research interview. BITS Pilani and Manipal University releases PhD admission notification twice a year.


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