Top 10 PhD entrance Exams for MSc Students

Top 10 PhD entrance Exam: PhD entrance examinations play a crucial role in identifying the most suitable candidates for doctoral programs offered by various institutes and universities. These examinations serve as a means to assess the potential and effectiveness of candidates in their chosen fields of study. By evaluating candidates’ knowledge, skills, and aptitude, these PhD entrance exam help institutes and universities select the most qualified individuals for their Ph.D. programs.

Moreover, PhD entrance exam also enable institutes and universities to award scholarships or fellowships to deserving candidates. These financial incentives not only support students financially during their doctoral studies but also recognize their academic achievements and potential contributions to research and scholarship. Ultimately, PhD. entrance exam serve as gateways to advanced academic and research opportunities, paving the way for intellectual growth, professional development, and meaningful contributions to the academic community.

Top 10 PhD entrance Exam for MSc students

Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) degree holds immense significance and value globally, being the highest academic achievement awarded by universities worldwide. Undertaking Ph.D. research enables students to enhance their potential and abilities, equipping them with advanced skills to comprehend and address complex questions and problems within their chosen field of study.

Read: Top 7 Biotechnology Entrance Exams

Top PhD Entrance Exam 2024

In the field of life sciences, obtaining a Ph.D. signifies expertise and proficiency in the domain, empowering individuals to pursue careers in research, teaching, or other specialized roles. International students pursuing a Ph.D. in life sciences are expected to conduct innovative and impactful research, pushing the boundaries of knowledge and addressing emerging challenges in the biological sciences.

Ultimately, Ph.D. programs in life sciences are designed to cultivate highly skilled and knowledgeable researchers who can lead and inspire transformative change in their respective fields, thereby shaping the future of scientific inquiry and discovery.

The reason for listing the top PhD entrance exams in India is that you will know which doctoral programs’ entrance examinations are currently the active states with high paying. Below are the top 10 PhD entrance exam that many of you haven’t done before. without getting more time let’s start.


CSIR-UGC NET (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research – University Grants Commission National Eligibility Test) is a prestigious PhD entrance exam for pursuing a Ph.D. degree. CSIR, established in 1942 by the Government of India, is a national R&D organization funded by the public. With 38 laboratories/institutes across India, CSIR-UGC NET is conducted twice a year, in June and December.

This national-level exam, conducted by CSIR-UGC, aims to award junior research fellowships or lectureships. It covers various disciplines, including life sciences, earth sciences, mathematical sciences, chemical sciences, and physical sciences. Eligible candidates, who have completed or are appearing for a Master’s degree, must have secured at least 55% (for general and OBC candidates) or 50% (for SC/ST/PWD candidates) to qualify.

Successfully qualifying in CSIR-UGC NET allows candidates to directly register for doctoral programs or pursue a Ph.D. degree, paving the way for advanced research opportunities.

Exam FeaturesDetails
Conducting BodyNational Testing Agency (NTA)
QualificationsMSc in Basic Science
Mode of ExamOnline -CBT (Computer Based Test)
Exam Fees☆ Rs. 250 for SC/ST
☆ Rs. 500 for OBC
☆ Rs. 1000 for general category
Exam duration3 Hrs (180 min)
No. of Papers☆ Paper 1: 200 Marks
☆ Paper 2: 200 Marks
Paper LanguageEnglish and Hindi
Official website

2. NCBS (National Centre for Biological Sciences)

The National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), situated in Bangalore, is a constituent of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) based in Mumbai. NCBS conducts entrance examinations for admission to its Ph.D. programs. These PhD entrance exams are highly regarded at the national level and serve as a gateway for aspiring researchers.

NCBS Ph.D. entrance exams are conducted for candidates holding master’s degrees in basic science disciplines such as chemistry, physics, mathematics, and biology. These exams provide an opportunity for candidates to pursue advanced research and academic endeavors in their respective fields of study.

Exam FeaturesDetails
Exam NameNCBS Ph.D. exam
Conducting BodyNCBS
QualificationMSc in basic science
Mode of ExamOffline
Exam Fees———-
Exam duration3 Hrs
No. of Papers————
Paper LanguageEnglish and Hindi
Official website
PhD Entrance Exam

3. DBT JRF Exam

The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) is a government department in India operating under the Ministry of Science and Technology. DBT conducts a prominent Ph.D. entrance examination tailored for biotechnology students. This department collaborates with the National Centre of Cell Science to facilitate fellowship opportunities exclusively for biotechnology students nationwide.

Candidates aspiring to pursue Ph.D. programs are selected through the Biotechnology Eligibility Test (BET) examination administered by DBT. Among the successful candidates, the top 275 students are eligible to register for Ph.D. programs in universities and institutes, while the subsequent 100 students are enrolled in DBT-sponsored projects. This initiative aims to foster research and innovation in the field of biotechnology by providing opportunities for advanced study and practical experience.

Exam NameDBT JRF Entrance Exam
Conducting AuthorityDepartment of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India
PurposeAwarding Junior Research Fellowships for pursuing Ph.D. in Biotechnology and allied areas
FrequencyConducted once or twice a year depending on notification
Eligibility Criteria★ Master’s degree in Biotechnology, Life Sciences, Agriculture, Veterinary Science, Pharmacy, or Medicine (MBBS) with at least 60% marks (55% for SC/ST/OBC/PH candidates)
Exam FormatOnline test (multiple-choice questions)
Subjects CoveredBiotechnology, Life Sciences, General Science
Exam Duration3 hours
Exam CentersVarious centers across India
Fellowship BenefitsFinancial support for pursuing Ph.D. studies, contingency grant, and other allowances
Apply Online


The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) conducts a national-level Ph.D. entrance examination for candidates holding an MSc or equivalent degree in basic sciences. This examination is held across various states in India, including Bangalore, Mumbai, Bhopal, Hyderabad, Varanasi, among others.

To be eligible for the ICMR Ph.D. entrance examination, candidates must secure a minimum of 55% marks for the general/OBC category and 50% for SC/ST/PWD categories in their MSc or equivalent degree.

ICMR’s initiative aims to promote advanced research in the field of medical sciences by providing opportunities for aspiring researchers to pursue Ph.D. programs and contribute to the advancement of knowledge in healthcare and related disciplines.

Exam FeaturesDetails
Exam NameICMR JRF examination
Conducting BodyPGIMER Chandigarh
QualificationMSc in basic science
Mode of ExamOnline
Exam Fees———-
Exam duration2 Hrs
Type of QuestionsObjective type
Paper LanguageEnglish


Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) conducts a national-level entrance examination called JGEEBILS (Joint Graduate Entrance Examination for Biology and Interdisciplinary Life Sciences) for biology, which serves as an entry point for their Ph.D. program. More details can be found at The entrance exam is known as TIFR PhD, and candidates must have an MSc in basic science to be eligible. Successful candidates may receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 25,000.

6. GATE (Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering)

GATE (Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering) is a prestigious entrance examination conducted by the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and seven Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) including IIT Delhi, IIT Bombay, IIT Madras, IIT Kanpur, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Roorkee, and IIT Guwahati. The exam is held annually in February at 660 centers across various countries including India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, etc. For candidates in their final year of bachelor’s and master’s degrees, GATE serves as a gateway to pursue master’s and Ph.D. programs. For further information, interested individuals can visit

  • Name of Entrance Exam: GATE exam
  • Qualifications: Candidates must hold an MSc degree in basic science to be eligible.
  • Remuneration: Successful candidates may receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 25,000.
  • Application Fees: Rs. 750 for SC/ST/PWD candidates and Rs. 1000 for open and OBC candidates.

7. JNU PhD

Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) is renowned as one of the top universities in India, established on April 22, 1979. It has earned international acclaim and is ranked 2nd among universities in India. JNU conducts Ph.D. entrance examinations for admission to its doctoral programs. For further details, interested individuals can visit

  • Name of Entrance Exam: JNU Ph.D. Entrance
  • Qualifications: Candidates must possess an MSc degree in basic science to be eligible.
  • Remuneration: Successful candidates may receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 25,000.

8. NIMHANS PhD Entrance

The National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience (NIMHANS) is recognized as one of the most prestigious institutes in India, designated as an “Institute of National Importance.” It specializes in training and research in mental health and neuroscience.

NIMHANS is renowned for producing over 1000 psychiatrists annually and offers studies in various disciplines including basic biological sciences, ancient health systems, molecular biology, and more. The institute conducts an entrance examination for admission to its doctoral degree programs, known as the NIMHANS JRF Entrance Exam. For further information, interested individuals can visit

  • Name of Entrance Exam: NIMHANS Entrance
  • Qualifications: Candidates must hold an MSc degree in basic science to be eligible.
  • Remuneration: Successful candidates may receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 25,000.


The National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) in Hyderabad conducts a renowned entrance examination for master’s and Ph.D. degrees, commonly known as NIPER-JEE or NIPER.

This examination, jointly conducted by NIPER, provides opportunities for students interested in research across various states in India, including Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Nagpur, Bangalore, among others. For further information, interested individuals can visit

  • Name of Entrance Exam: NIPER
  • Qualifications: Candidates must possess an MSc degree in basic science to be eligible.
  • Remuneration: Successful candidates may receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 25,000.

10. University of Hyderabad Ph.D. entrance exam

The University of Hyderabad, esteemed as one of the premier universities in India, conducts a Ph.D. entrance examination for aspiring candidates. Offering over 13 Ph.D. degrees in various subjects such as Biotechnology, Microbiology, Botany, etc., the university is renowned for its academic excellence and research opportunities. For further details, interested individuals can visit

  • Name of Entrance Exam: UoH PhD
  • Qualifications: Candidates must possess an MSc degree in basic science to be eligible.
  • Remuneration: Successful candidates may receive a monthly stipend of Rs. 25,000.

How to Crack Top 10 PhD entrance exam for MSc students

That’s some solid advice for exam preparation! You’re absolutely right that practice is key, especially for exams like NET with a multiple-choice format. Tactics such as eliminating choices and reasoning out the correct answer can significantly improve your chances of success.

Focusing your reading and note-taking efforts on topics you find challenging is a smart strategy. It helps optimize your study time and ensures you’re making the most of your efforts. And the idea of creating a loop for each topic, where you review, practice, and revisit the material, is a great way to reinforce your understanding and retention.

Skipping doubtful questions during the exam is a wise move to avoid unnecessary negative marks. It allows you to prioritize questions you’re more confident about and manage your time effectively.

Overall, it sounds like you’ve got a solid approach to exam preparation that balances reading, practice, and strategic thinking. Good luck with your studies!

Benefits of Cracking PhD Entrance Exam

Clearing the Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) exam, whether CSIR JRF or UGC JRF, offers several significant advantages:

  • Career Opportunities in Research: Qualifying for JRF opens up avenues for enrolling in a Ph.D. program at various research institutions and universities. This paves the way for a career in research, allowing individuals to go deeper into their chosen field of study and contribute to the advancement of knowledge.
  • Opportunity for Academic Pursuits: With a JRF qualification, individuals can pursue academic careers by applying for Assistant Professor positions in universities across India. The JRF certificate includes the NET certificate, which is a prerequisite for Assistant Professor positions, making candidates eligible for these roles.
  • Financial Support: The government of India provides a monthly stipend of Rs. 31,000 plus House Rent Allowance (HRA) to JRF-qualified students enrolled in a Ph.D. program. This financial support eases the burden of academic expenses and living costs during the pursuit of higher education.
  • Promotion and Career Progression: After two years, the stipend amount for JRFs is increased to Rs. 35,000 plus HRA for the subsequent three years. Additionally, successful JRFs can be promoted to Senior Research Fellows (SRF) based on their performance and contributions during the JRF tenure.
  • Path to Ph.D. Completion: JRF provides a stepping stone towards completing a Ph.D. Individuals who perform satisfactorily during their JRF tenure may progress to SRF status and continue their research work, ultimately leading to the completion of their Ph.D. degree.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *