Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


PhD Admissions Scheme


The department of Materials Science and Engineering at IIT Kanpur offers following degree programmes. The goal of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programme of the department is to create future teachers, scientists, innovators, incubators, and engineers with strong analytical skills and in-depth training in theoretical concepts as well as experimental skills. The core philosophy of programme is to develop an enquiring attitude in the student enabling him/her to contribute to the scientific and engineering innovations and develop new paradigms. These objectives are achieved by offering a large number courses in various areas of specialisation followed by training the students in the scientific method of investigation of their research topics. Department encourages students towards an interdisciplinary course work and research to develop an overall understanding of the science and technology. Further to the course work, submission of a PhD thesis on original research topic is an integral part of the programme.

Financial Assistantship

  • Full Institute assistantship is available for a period of 4 years. Rs.25,000/- for the first two years and there after it is raised to Rs.28,000/- respectively for another two years.

  • After that, on the recommendation of SPGC after submission of a detailed progress report duly commented and signed by the supervisors and Peer Review Committee (PRC), the scholarship can be extended for another year on full assistantship. Subsequent extensions are made on case to case basis upon the recommendation of PRC and SPGC with assistantship provided at a reduce rate.

  • A student can also be funded (assistantship) by other agencies such as CSIR during his/her PhD.


  • Students with M. Tech. background:

    The student should complete a minimum of 16 units/credits of courses (4 courses or more). A minimum CGPA of 7.0 should be maintained throughout the programme.

  • Students with B. Tech./M. Sc. Background:

    The student should complete a minimum of 40 units/credits of courses (10 courses or more). A minimum CGPA of 7.0 should be maintained throughout the programme.

  • All the PG students will have to compulsorily register for the seminar courses before the completion of programme:

    • MSE690-Seminar Participation in II semester and

    • MSE691- Seminar Presentation in III semester

  • It is compulsory for all the new PhD students to registered for four courses in the first semester i.e. without any thesis credits. For the selection of the courses students can seek advice of DPGC or supervisor if they have already identified one. Students with little or no background in materials science fundamental courses are recommended to take M. Tech. compulsory courses which can be discussed with DPGC or the thesis supervisor. Students without a strong materials science background are encouraged to do more basic courses such as compulsory M. Tech. courses to hone up their fundamentals. Students can also audit (i.e. without registering) certain courses, if permitted by the instructors.

  • Coursework has to be completed before the student can appear for comprehensive exam.

Access the list of all PG-level courses offered at MSE

Teaching Assistant (TA) duty

  • PG Students on institute assistantship will have to put in 8 hours of TA work/week. The DPGC will assign TA work every semester.

Choice of Advisor/Guide

  • The student can chose his/her PhD guide within a period of 2 months after joining in the programme. Towards this, the students are encouraged to interact with the faculty members of the department. A student can also chose a co-guide in consultation with the guide if necessary.

Steps during PhD

Various committees that are formed for the following steps are explained here.

  • Comprehensive Examination

    Students registered in the PhD programme must pass a comprehensive examination designed independently designed by each department. Passing this exam is a mandatory requirement for formally registering into the PhD programme. A student can appear in the comprehensive examination only after he/she has completed the course requirements and satisfied the minimum specified CPI requirement.

    Students admitted with B. Tech., M.Sc., M.A. or M.Phil. degrees may appear in the comprehensive examination earliest at the end of the second semester, but must pass it before the end of the fifth semester after their first registration.

    Students admitted with M. Tech. or equivalent degrees may appear in the comprehensive examination earliest at the end of the first semester, but must pass it before the end of the fourth semester after their first registration.

    The above time limits are exclusive of the period of sanctioned leave, if any.

  • State of the Art Seminar (SOTA)

    Every PhD programme is formally admitted to the candidacy for the PhD Degree is required to give a general seminar in the department covering the State of Art of the area of research. This seminar must be given within six months of passing the comprehensive examination. A report of satisfactory completion of this requirement is to be communicated to Chairperson, SPGC by the thesis supervisor through the Convener, DPGC.

  • Peer Review

    While thesis advisory committee monitors the progress of a PhD student's thesis each semester after Comprehensive exam and SOTA are completed, after completion of eight semester, a peer review committee needs to formed which submits its report to the SPGC each semester for the continuation of the program and the scholarship.

  • PhD Open Seminar

    On completion of PhD thesis work, the PhD Open Seminar can be delivered. Students are expected to submit their thesis with in a stipulated after the open seminar. For details one can consult the PG manual on the SPGC website.

  • Thesis Oral Defense

    One the referee reports on the thesis are recieved, the student will defend the thesis in front of the Oral Board (which will be open for all). Details regarding the constitution of the Oral Board and other related matters can be found in the PG manual on the SPGC website.

Other general comments

PhD students are encouraged to attend as many departmental/institute seminars/lectures (not related to coursework) as possible to broaden their horizons.

Conferences: Institute funding is available to the PhD students after they finish the coursework requirement. In addition, students are encouraged to seek the financial support from various organizations such as DST, DBT, CSIR and many other bodies and trusts.

PG manual is available at the SPGC webpage. It has complete information regarding institute rules and guidelines.

Criteria for the admission into the PhD Programme

Recent News

  • 2015 PhD admission test & interview: 2nd and 3rd December, 2015

  • New Website Launched

  • MSES body selected for 2014-15

  • Waitlisted candidates Selected for M. Tech. program for the year 2014-2015 (2nd M. Tech. List)

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