- In most of the universities, the master's degree is a prerequisite for pursuing a doctoral program. Some of the universities may consider exceptional bachelor’s degree marks / awards coupled with good work experience in the relevant field for the admission. However this may vary from case to case.
- A relevant work experience or some research background in the field can greatly improve the chances of the admission. The admission committee expects you to have an idea of what your dissertation or doctoral research will be about when you apply. Some of the schools may interview the potential candidates over telephone or Skype. The invitation to interview could be to know more about the candidate & his research plans so that the admission committee becomes more comfortable to provide a student direct funding or scholarship. Sometimes they may expect some more clarifications from the student with regards to his earlier research background or what the student may have written in the statement of purpose (SOP) & the essays, if there are any.
- Most of the universities (especially in the USA) expect a good score in GRE - General test & a good TOEFL score. A good GRE score according to the new GRE pattern is anywhere above 310 out of 340 for the PhD admission. A good TOEFL score can range anywhere from 100 to 120.
- A good GPA (Grade Point Average) at the undergraduate / post graduate level is also an important concern for the admission committee. It clearly indicates the student’s capability to perform research & eventually become successful in the field of interest.
Ask yourself a question – “Do you have a passion – ‘a burning desire’ for research? Also do you have any research topic in your mind that always motivated your curiosity?”
You MUST know these questions & their answers before you plan your doctoral studies.