Ph.D. in English

The Doctoral Degree in English is one of the most coveted programs introduced by the college in the academic year 2022-23 currently being run by the Department. The department is having distinguished research supervisors with myriad of research and academic experience.

The thrust areas of this program is used to promote the canonical as well as emerging domains in the English that can shape the education in English Language, English Literatures, Applied Linguistics and study of English as interdisciplinary areas including philosophy, psychology, sciences, social sciences, technology, artificial intelligence and language etc. In addition, the Department has also taken cognizance of newer areas such as researches across the media, post-colonial studies and Literature in English, Translation Studies and Cultural Studies with their interdisciplinary orientation and research in these areas are being encouraged. Consequently, we at the Department have opened our Doctoral programme to newer areas and methodologies and welcome a greater numbers of research scholars from India and abroad.

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Key Information


Candidates must have a Master’s Degree in English from a UGC recognized University with 55% marks or above or its equivalent, and the candidates from Reserved Categories must have 50% marks. In addition, the candidates should have passed SET/ NET/JRF examinations or should hold M. Phil. Degree in English from UGC recognized University. If required, you may refer VCD No. Exam./Thesis/Uni./VCD/947 of 2018 dated 15th June, 2018 available on University of Mumbai website for more details.

  • M.A./M.A. Hon. in English, Foreign Languages, Linguistics, TESOL
  • Entrance Examination in case of subject/faculty change candidates
  • Advanced level proficiency in the English Language
  • Qualifying GPA/Percentage in the previous exam (As per the University guidelines)
  • M.Phil./SET/NET in relevant subject
  • Statement of Research Interest (SRI) in not more than 1000 words
  • Interview

Documents required at the Time of application

Following documents are required to be uploaded ‘Online’ along with duly filled Google Form link given below:

  • Mark sheets of Graduate and Post-Graduate Degrees (Statements of Marks) and Degree Certificates
  • Caste Certificate, Caste Validity, Non-creamy layer Certificate and all the relevant documents if any.
  • PET/ SET /NET /JRF Certificate or M. Phil. Passing and Degree Certificate

Intake Capacity:

The allotted intake capacity to the Research Centre is 18 for the academic year 2022-23. However, the intake capacity will be as per the availability of seats with research supervisors.

Progression Monitoring

Progress will be monitored in accordance with the University of Mumbai’s regulations as stated in the latest VCD.

Pre PhD Coursework Structure (12 Credits)

Semester I Semester II
Research Methodology (4 Credits) Advanced Guided Reading (Seminar) (4 Credits)
Key Concerns in English Language and Literature (4 Credits)  


Doctoral researchers for the PhD in English will be examined in three parts.

  • The first part relates to the coursework. The candidates need to score at least 50% in the assessment of each course. However, candidates who have successfully completed M.Phil. in the relevant subject and discipline are exempt from this part.
  • The second part is a thesis, which is an original body of work representing the methods and results of the research project. The minimum limit is 80,000 words for the main text. The word limit does not include appendices (if any), essential footnotes, introductory parts and statements, or the bibliography and index. At the time of thesis submission, the candidate must have published research articles and make presentation(s) at conferences as specified in the VCD.
  • The third part includes an open defence at the Viva voce.

Research Supervisor

The proposed PhD programme is intended to involve English not only as a language of instruction but also as a core component. A teacher registered/recognized as a PhD supervisor in English with research interest publications in English studies may act as the primary/first supervisor. Owing to the interdisciplinary and inter/multilingual scope of research areas, faculty members relevant disciplines may participate in this Doctoral Program as co-supervisors as needed. The primary supervisor will normally be the main contact throughout the doctoral research journey and will have overall responsibility for academic supervision.

Important Points

  • It is recommended that to be eligible as primary research supervisor, the concerned teacher, (even though they are already registered as Research Guide/Supervisor in English), should get a separate recognition from the University as Research Supervisor in Applied Language Studies in English.
  • Besides the existing norms of the University for Recognition as research supervisor/guide, the concerned teacher must have minimum three Research Papers published in National/International/ research journals on English language studies.

Research Advisory Committee

The research centre shall constitute the RAC as per the latest VCD of the University. The research advisory committee with the centre will scrutinise the proposal for research and will hold the formal presentation of the scholar and forward the recommendations to the RRC at the University.

Guidelines for a Research Proposal

A research proposal is a document explaining what you would like to research for your doctorate. It is important that the candidate knows about the particular requirements of the research centre before submitting their application. In general, the proposal should have the following:

The title should be concise and descriptive. An informative but catchy title proves effective.

The proposal should indicate the intended research area. The candidate might also refer to the way in which their own background and experience give them competence in their chosen area. They should avoid broad research areas as a PhD topic or one that has no relevance to the research areas of research supervisors registered with the University of Mumbai. Also, avoid vague descriptions of your research interests.

An overview of the research question, explaining why it is of academic and or practical importance, should be provided. Focus on key questions within the candidate’s niche area to demonstrate that the proposed research is manageable and can be completed within the normal time period allowed.

The objectives should be formulated with the hypothesized conclusion of one's research in mind for a more cohesive research framework. Further, it is perfectly acceptable for the objectives to not be met due to incompatible research findings in the course of your research. However, this process should be detailed in your research work nevertheless.

The proposal should demonstrate that the candidate is aware of existing debates and issues raised in relevant bodies of literature. They should indicate the importance of previous research in the concerned area. References to key articles and texts should be made to show that the candidate appreciates the relevance of those references to their research area. The proposal needs to indicate how the candidate’s project fits into the secondary literature/criticism on this topic as well as how their own research question might make a useful contribution to the area. Since any PhD is expected to be an original piece of research, you should be able to demonstrate that your proposed area has not been studied before or that it examines a previously studied area through a new perspective/methodology etc.

The candidate needs to demonstrate an awareness of the methodological tools available to them and show some understanding of those suitable for their research. Descriptions of the method may include the design, procedures, the sample, and any instruments (interviews, case studies, modelling, etc.) that will be used, where applicable.

Add a plan for the work to be undertaken. It should explain roughly how long you would spend on each chapter, what each chapter may be about, etc. Also, give a tentative timeline of the proposed work. Please ensure that your timeline is realistic. It should not seem over-ambitious to potential reviewers.

You need to include a shortlist of references to key articles and texts.

The proposal should normally be 1500 to 2000 words long.