Academic Regulations for PhD Programmes

January, 2012

Ph.D. Programme

Ph.D. is a research programme. The dissertation is the centerpiece of the programme. The coursework and qualifiers are there to ensure the necessary breadth in the areas for the student.
The semester wise courses and the planning of Ph.D. study are dependent on the student's background. It is expected that a Ph.D. student takes the relevant courses in first two semesters like the M.S.~by Research students (see above). Thereafter, the steps involved are:
  1. Clearing Breadth Qualifier Courses
  2. Clearing of Depth Courses
  3. Comprehensive Exam
  4. Dissertation proposal defense
  5. Dissertation defense.

Breadth Qualifier courses

A PhD student should clear 3 or 4 courses (depending on the programme) to test his/her breadth of knowledge in the respective programmes.

Minimum Depth course requirements

A PhD student has to complete 4 depth courses other than breadth qualifiers. 1 project course can be taken in place of depth course.
The requirements given above are the absolute minimum that a student must take, regardless of his/her background. Students are encouraged to take additional courses to build breadth and depth of knowledge in areas of their choice.

Thesis Credits

A student must register for a total of at least 60 credits of doctoral dissertation (called thesis credits) to be eligible for the degree.
Externally registered PhD students must register for 4 thesis credits even when they are at their host Institutions.

Comprehensive Exam

The comprehensive exam is meant to assess the student’s capacity to do research and problem solving ability.
After clearing the breadth qualifier, the student will conduct literature survey in the area of his/her research. The student will select a set of research papers in consultation with the Advisory Committee. After studying these papers in depth, and also after studying the related papers in the form of literature survey, the student has to submit a report followed by a presentation and an oral examination by a committee.
The advisory committee consists of the advisor, a subject matter expert and another member outside the area of research.
During the Comprehensive Exam, student is expected to have:
  • Clear understanding of the state-of-the-art literature
  • Understood the key contributions
  • Understanding of significant gap areas
  • Understood the scope of research in the chosen research area
  • Ability to perform research in the chosen research area
Note: Comprehensive Exam is mandatory to those students who have joined from the academic year 2009-10.

Dissertation Proposal

A doctoral student is expected to defend his or her dissertation proposal to an appropriate committee. The committee should have one expert examiner from the Institute and another examiner from outside of the Institute. They are nominated by the PG Chair and the Dean (R&D). A student is declared a Ph.D. candidate after this requirement is satisfied. This is expected to be accomplished before the end of 10 semesters.

Dissertation Defense

The dissertation has to successfully defend to a committee of examiners (and advisors) set up by the PG Chair and Dean (R&D). The committee will have one or two examiners from the Institute and one or two examiners from outside. An examiner from the Institute serves as the chair of the evaluation committee. The dissertation is expected to be supported by accepted publications in conferences and journals of repute.

Academic Performance

The student should maintain a CGPA of 7.0 in the coursework to become a Ph.D candidate.

Residency requirements

Minimum is 6 semesters. The maximum duration for a Ph.D is 12 semesters. To continue beyond 5 years, explicit approval of the Dean (R&D) needs to be obtained.
Student must give a 1-page report on work done so far and a brief amount of what needs to be done and when it will be done. The advisor should write a brief report on the students report also. A student cannot register without this permission.


Page last updated on 21st August, 2015