PhD English Literature Course, Entrance Exams, Syllabus, Distance Learning, Colleges, Jobs, Scope 2020-2021

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PhD or Doctor of Philosophy in English Literature is a doctorate level course spread over a span of minimum 3 years and maximum 5 years. This course is ideal for students who are interested in studying literature written in English language.

The course includes studying literature from different time periods, exploring the language, its history and a scope to add something of your own to the language. 

Key Highlights of PhD English Literature

  • Full-Form: Doctor of Philosophy in English Literature
  • Duration: 2 to 5 years
  • Eligibility: Post Graduation in English or in any other related field.
  • Admission Process: Entrance based and personal interview
  • Entrance exams: UGC NET, JNUEE, GATE, etc.
  • Top Colleges: Andhra University, Loyola College, Chennai, IIT Kanpur, English and Foreign Language University, Hyderabad, etc.
  • Average course fees: INR 30,000 to INR 1.3 Lakh per year
  • Distance education: Available
  • Distance education fees: INR 10,000 to 1 Lakh
  • Job Options: English Professor, English Teacher, Editor, Journalist, Critic Writer, Technical Writer, Public Relation Officer, Translator
  • Average Salary Package: INR 4.5 to 6 Lakhs
  • Top Recruiting Areas: Power plants, manufacturing areas, chemical plants, steel plants, educational institutes.
  • Top Recruiting Companies: Media Houses, Education Institutions, Publishing Houses, Translation Houses, etc.


The candidates who have completed their master’s degree in English language with minimum 55% of marks are eligible to apply for this course.

Admission to PhD English Literature programme is generally entrance based followed by personal interview. However, some colleges may accept admission on merit basis also.

top college

Check Top PhD English Literature colleges in India.

Some of the top colleges/ universities which offer PHD in English Literature are given below:

NIRF Rankings 2020 Name of Institute Admission Process Average Fees (INR)
4 IIT Kanpur Entrance based INR 26,000
5 Presidency College, Chennai Entrance based INR 13,000
6 Loyola College, Chennai Entrance based INR 6000
19 Andhra University Entrance based INR 15,000
- English and Foreign Language University, Hyderabad Entrance based INR 9,000

The average fee charged by colleges or universities for this course varies from INR 30,000 to 1.3 Lakhs. The fee is subject to vary as per the type of the institution.

The average starting salary that a PhD English Literature degree holder can earn ranges between INR 4.5 to 6 Lakhs. The salary offered is directly proportional to the experience earned in the field. The salary increases with an increase in the experience in the field.

PhD English Literature professionals find jobs as a English Professor, English Teacher, Editor, Journalist, Critic Writer, Technical Writer, Public Relation Officer, Translator, etc. Some top recruiting areas for such professionals are Media Houses, Education Institutions, Publishing Houses, Translation Houses, etc.

PhD English Literature Admission Process

PhD English Literature Admission Process

The admission to PhD in English Literature course is generally on the basis of entrance test which is followed by a personal interview round conducted at the university or the college. However, some colleges or universities may offer admission on a merit basis.

Some colleges also ask for M.Phil as a requirement for PhD admissions. In such cases, selected candidates will be required to appear for only a personal interview round.

ALERT: As of now, most of the admission process including the entrance exams has been postponed due to the ongoing pandemic.

The DUET Exam conducted by Delhi university has been postponed for the time being. New dates regarding the same will be notified on the official website.

Merit Based admission process

  • Candidates need to apply at the official website of the college/university they want to take admission in.
  • They need to fill the application form and submit the required documents.
  • After successful registration, colleges release their merit list of selected candidates.
  • In case of some colleges or universities, selected candidates may be required to go through a personal interview round.
  • Selection in this case is done on the basis of performance in the personal interview round.

Entrance Based admission process

  • It is advisable for candidates to visit the official website of the college or university they want to apply in to check whether they meet the eligibility criteria and what entrance test is required for admission.
  • Then, candidates must register themselves for the entrance test on the official website of the conducting body.
  • Those candidates who clear the cut off of entrance examination are then called for a personal interview round.
  • Final selection is made on the basis of performance in the Personal Interview round.

PhD English Literature Eligibility Criteria

Candidates who wish to apply for a PhD English Literature programme must meet the eligibility criteria mentioned below. The general eligibility criteria is:

  • Candidates must have completed their Master’s degree in English language with minimum 55% marks from a recognised University.
  • There may be a relaxation of 5% marks for reserved category students.
  • Candidates need to have valid marks in the entrance examination as required by the college or university.
  • In some colleges, M.Phil is a prerequisite for PhD English Literature admission. In Such cases, selected candidates will be required to appear only for a personal interview round.
  • The eligibility criteria may vary from college to college.

PhD English Literature Entrance Exams

The widely accepted entrance exam for PhD English Literature admissions is the UGC NET exam. However, some universities or colleges may conduct their own entrance examinations for PHD admissions at their own level.

entrance exam
  • UGC NET: National Eligibility Test (NET) is conducted by University Grants Commission of India (UGC). There are two sections in this examination consisting of 50 and 100 multiple choice questions respectively. The total duration of the exam is 180 minutes. It is conducted twice a year, once in June and once in December.
  • GATE: GATE examination is jointly conducted by IISC and 7 IITs. A valid score in GATE is considered as a basis by IITs for PHD Admissions. It is a 180 minute examination that consists of MCQs and NAT.
  • JNUEE: It is a national level entrance examination conducted by NTA for M.Phil/ PhD admissions.
  • DUET: It is conducted by NTA for admission in PHD courses in Delhi University. It is a 2 hour examination.
Exam Name Application Period Exam Date (Tentative) Mode of Exam
UGC NET Exam 2020 March 16, 2020- June 30, 2020. In the month of July Online
GATE 2020 August 31, 2019- October 5, 2019 In the month of February Online
JNUEE March 2, 2020- June 30, 2020 In the month of July(Postponed) Online
DUET 2020 June 20,2020- July 4, 2020 In the month of July(Postponed) Online

How to prepare for the entrance exams?

  • The exam for PhD English Literature consists of syllabus of English only except for GATE. GATE consists of questions from the science section.
  • Important areas of study are – romantic period, Victorian period, Modern period, Contemporary period, Modern British Literature, Indian writing in English, History of Indian language and all those topics that you have studied during graduation and post graduation.
  • Divide the syllabus into your strong and weak areas.
  • Prepare flowcharts, use different color pens to memorize stuff.
  • Practice previous year question papers and revise.

How to get admission in a good college?

Given below are some tips to secure admission in a good PhD English Literature College.

  • The first thing to keep in mind is to secure good marks in master’s degree.
  • Next, candidates should be fully aware about the entrance examinations, their application procedure, important dates, syllabus, exam pattern etc.
  • Prepare well for entrance examinations by practising and revising concepts. Also prepare by attempting previous year examination papers and mock tests.
  • Be updated about current affairs and prepare well for the personal interview round.
PhD English Literature: What is it About?

PhD English Literature: What is it About?

  • PhD English Literature is a doctorate Level course. The course involves a high intellect and interest in English subject. The course involves the study of English language and literature from all the parts of the world, their origin, their analysis etc.
  • The students have to go study about different areas of literature – british literature, roman literature, American literature etc.
  • The students are required to attend classes and conduct research under professors.
  • The students have to appear for examinations and present a thesis on their research work towards the end of the course.
  • Students get to learn about different aspects of English language, their usage and a chance to add something of their own to the language.

PhD English Literature: Course Highlights

Course Level Doctorate Level
Full Form Doctor of Philosophy in English Literature
Duration 2-5 years
Examination Type Semester/Annual as per college norms.
Eligibility Masters degree in English Language with minimum 55% marks
Admission Process Merit based or entrance based
Course Fees (INR) INR 10,000 to INR 1,30,000
Average Salary (INR) INR 4.5 to 6 Lakhs
Recruiting Companies Media Houses, Education Institutions, Publishing Houses, Translation Houses, etc.
Job Positions English Professor, English Teacher, Editor, Journalist, Critic Writer, Technical Writer, Public Relation Officer, Translator
Why study PhD English Literature?

Why study PhD English Literature?

  • PhD English Literature is a desirable course for those who are interested in studying about the rich history of the language and want to learn about different types of English literature.
  • The course also helps you in developing various skills- research skills, analytical skills, verbal and written communication skills.
  • There are a number of job opportunities available for candidates in both government and private sectors such as in media houses, print agencies, educational institutions etc.
  • Candidates can work as Professors in colleges, editor in various companies, content creators, write their own books or novels etc.
PhD English Literature vs PhD English

Course Comparison

PhD English Literature vs PhD English

Also check Top PhD English colleges in India

PhD English Literature and PhD English are two similar looking courses. But their prospects are different. PhD English Literature deals with the literature written in english language while PhD English deals with the language itself. A detailed comparison between these two courses based on various parameters is given below. 

Parameters PhD English Literature PhD English
Course Level Doctorate Doctorate
Course Duration 2 to 5 years 2 to 5 years
Overview It is a doctorate level course and deals with research in English literature from all around the world. The main objective of the course includes researching about the literature written in English language It is a doctorate level course which deals with English language, its grammar and other aspects. It includes performing extensive research about English, it’s origin and how it has evolved over the past years. 
Eligibility The candidates who have completed their master’s degree in English language with minimum 55% of marks are eligible to apply for this course. The candidates who have completed their master’s degree in English language with minimum 55% of marks are eligible to apply for this course.
Admission Process Entrance exam followed by Personal Interview Entrance exam followed by Personal Interview
Examination Type Semester/Annual as per college norms Semester or yearly
Average Fees (INR) INR 10000- 1.3 Lakhs INR 50,000 - 3 Lakhs
Average Salary (INR) INR 4.5 to 6 Lakhs INR 4 to 8 Lakhs
Top Colleges Presidency College, Mewar University, English and Foreign Language University Lady Shri Ram College, Hindu College, Ramjas College, Gargi College
Job Roles Critic, Journalist, Teacher, Writer, Translator Senior Research and Development Manager, Assistant Professor, Head of the educational department, 
Top recruiting areas Media Houses, Education Institutes, Publishing Houses Advertising Industry, Translation Agencies, Communication Industry

phd english litrature fee vs Phd english fees
Phd English litrature salary Vs Phd English Salary
PhD English Literature Top Colleges

PhD English Literature Top Colleges

Given below are details of some top colleges and universities offering PhD English Literature.

NIRF Ranking 2020 Name of the Institute Location Average Fees (INR)
4 Indian Institute of Technology Bombay INR 26,000
5 Presidency College Chennai, Tamil Nadu INR 10,000
6 Loyola College, Chennai Chennai, Tamil Nadu INR 6,000
19 Andhra University Andhra Pradesh INR 15,000
- Delhi University Delhi INR 9000
- Mewar University Chittorgarh, Rajasthan INR 60,000
- English and Foreign Language University Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh INR 9000
- Islamic University of Science and Technology Pulwama, Jammu and Kashmir INR 10,000
- Sri Padmavati Mahila Visvavidyalayam Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh INR 42,000

PhD English Literature College Comparison

Sometimes selecting between two colleges can be a daunting task. Hence to ease the process, a comparison between two of the  top colleges offering PhD English Literature is given below.

Parameters English and Foreign Language University Mewar University
Location Hyderabad, Telangana Chittorgarh 
Overview EFLU was founded in 1958 as the Central Institute of English. It has 7 schools and 26 departments.The University is specially set up to conduct research and training in teaching education,literature, linguistics etc. It is an Autonomous, private and self financed University built to develop a centre of learning and research at par with international standards. The University offers all types of courses- engineering, management, polytechnic, arts etc.
Affiliation UGC UGC
Admission Criteria Entrance based followed by personal interview Entrance based followed by personal interview
Average Fees (INR) INR 9,000 INR 60,000
Average salary offered INR 6 to 7 Lakhs INR 4 to 5 Lakhs
Average Annual fee Comparison of top colleges

PhD English Literature Distance Education

Several colleges and universities offer the option of distance learning and part-time PhD option for PhD English Literature courses. These options are suitable for those candidates who are either working professionals or are pursuing some other course of study.

PhD English Literature Syllabus

PhD English Literature Syllabus

Since PhD English Literature consists of theory, research work and writing theories, so there is no predefined syllabus. Some of the areas of interest around which the course may revolve are mentioned below in the table:

S.No. Subject of Study
1. African-American Literature
2. Renaissance Literature
3. Medieval Literature
4. Literary Criticism and Theory
5. Prose Fiction
6. Literature in the twentieth Century
7. Women’s Literature
8. Colonial and Post-Colonial Literature
9. Dramatic Literature
10. Lesbians, Gay and Bisexual Literature
11. English Poetry

PhD English Literature Books

Some of the books which can be read by PhD English Literature students are given below in the table.

Name of the book Author
Mansfield Park Jane Austen
Villette Charlotte Bronte
Several Poems Anne Bradstreet
Little Women Louisa May Alcott
Ohio Sherwood Anderson
Shadow Lines Amitav Ghosh
Midnight’s Children Salman Rushdie
PhD English Literature Job Prospects and Career Options

PhD English Literature Job Prospects and Career Options

  • After completion of a PhD English Literature, candidates usually look for a job in educational institutions.
  • However, there are several job roles available for candidates which they can pursue after completing their PhD.
  • Job opportunities are available in numerous media houses, publishing houses, Translation houses, data centres, etc. Jobs in these workplaces are available in both government and private sectors.

Some of the job roles offered to PhD English Literature students are given below:

Job Profile Job Description Average Salary (INR)
Professor They teach students studying at UG or PG level and ensure that they learn the language properly. They can teach English or Drama to students. Many of the teachers conduct research alongside teaching the students. INR 6 Lakhs
Editor Editors may work in print houses, media houses or publishing houses. Their task is to go check the content written by junior writers and edit and modify it according to the needs. INR 5.53 Lakhs
Journalist/ Correspondents These people work with news or media agencies. Their task is to collect, write, present or distribute the news in a creative way. INR 4.79 Lakhs
Reporter A reporter usually works with news channels. He is the person who visits different locations and does reporting. INR 5 Lakhs
Critic Critics are those people who present an assessment of various art forms. There are movie critics, literature critics, fashion critics, food critics etc. INR 4 Lakhs

Given below is a graph representing various job roles offered to PHD in English Literature students and the average salary offered to them:

Average Salary offered for various job profile
PhD English Literature Future Scope

PhD English Literature Future Scope

  • There are a lot of career opportunities available for candidates who wish to pursue PhD English Literature.
  • Job opportunities are available for candidates in both government and private sectors They can work in media houses, publishing houses, educational institutions, print agencies etc.
  • Job roles offered are of Editors, Journalists, critic writers, professor, school teachers, public relation officers etc. The starting salary offered to PhD English Literature lies between the range of INR 4.5 to 6 Lakhs. 
  • Candidates can also write their own books, novels or stories or can write for museums or arts galleries. They can also work as lexicographers which means they will have an opportunity to write, compile or edit a dictionary. 
  • They also have an option to work in the public sector in English speaking countries because they have excellent spoken and written communication skills and because of their ability to research and analyze.
PhD English Literature: FAQs

PhD English Literature: FAQs

Ques. What does PhD stand for in PhD English Literature?

Ans: PhD stands for Doctor of Philosophy in PhD English Literature.

Ques. How long does it take to get a PhD English Literature?

Ans: It takes 3 to 5 years to complete PhD English Literature.

Ques. Does a PhD English Literature lead to an increase in Salary as an editor?

Ans: Yes, if you hold a PhD English Literature degree, it will definitely give you a higher salary than what you will be earning with a master's degree in English language.

Ques. What are the areas of study in PhD English Literature?

Ans: The areas of study of PhD English Literature are- American literature, colonial and post colonial literature, African-American Literature, Eighteenth century literature etc.

Ques. Do PhD English Literature students get a stipend?

Ans: Yes, generally the students studying PhD English Literature get stipend. The amount of stipend however, depends upon the institute or university they are pursuing it from.

Ques. What is the scope of PhD English Literature?

Ans: As a  PhD English Literature professional you can work as Professor in colleges or universities. Moreover, you can also work as an editor, critic, writer, literary agent, journalist etc.

Ques. What is the difference between M.Phil in English Literature and PhD English Literature?

Ans: In M.Phil in English Literature, candidates will be required to interpret and critically analyze and already completed research work while in PhD English Literature, candidates have to conduct their own research work and present a thesis on the same. Both of the courses have their own implications and it is upto your interest which of them you want to pursue.

Ques. Can I do a direct PhD English Literature after completing my MA?

Ans: To pursue PhD English Literature, you have to appear for the entrance examination after completing your MA. Entrance examination will be further followed by a personal interview, if selected.

Ques. Can I work as a Journalist after completing a PhD English Literature?

Ans: Yes, you can find a number of jobs as a Journalist after completing your PhD English Literature in various news and media agencies.

Ques. What minimum marks are required to pursue PhD English Literature?

Ans: Candidates aspiring to do PhD English Literature should have a minimum of 55% marks MA in English.

Ph.D. (English Literature) Fee Structure in India


25.16 K (Minimum Fee)PUBLIC COLLEGES2.91 L  (Maximum Fee)
1.14 L (Average Fee)
66 K (Minimum Fee)Private COLLEGES2.71 L (Maximum Fee)
1.97 L (Average Fee)

Ph.D. (English Literature) Fee Structure By state


Tamil Nadu

1.14 LPUBLIC COLLEGES1.14 L
1.14 L
66 KPrivate COLLEGES66 K
66 K

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Ph.D. (English Literature) Colleges IN INDIA

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CMJ University
Ri-Bhoi, Meghalaya
UGC
2.55 L Total fees
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Mewar University - [MU]
Chittorgarh, Rajasthan
NCTE
28 K Total fees
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6.69 K Total fees
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98.2 K first year fees
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YBN University - [YBN]
Ranchi, Jharkhand
NCTE
1.05 L first year fees
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OPJS University
Churu, Rajasthan
NCTE
2.4 L Total fees
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